- Published: 13 December 2010
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Haggai 1:5-7Thus saith the Lord of hosts;
CONSIDER YOUR WAYS
1. Ye have sown much,
and bring in little;
2. Ye eat,
but ye have not enough;
3. Ye drink,
but ye are not filled with drink;
4. Ye clothe you,
but there is none warm;
5. And he that earneth wages,
earneth wages ...into a bag with holes.
Thus saith the Lord of hosts;
CONSIDER YOUR WAYS
The people of Judah had returned to Jerusalem from the long captivity. They had built houses and finished them. But they had not rebuilt the house of the Lord. So these things were happening.
They did not build the house of the Lord for two reasons, for fear it might not be as glorious as that of Solomon, and that the Persians might not allow them to do it. We question these as reasons, and wonder if they might only be excuses.
Can it be that we might learn a lesson from this today? Can the members of the body who have a heavenly citizenship take heed?
1. Many have sown much and brought in little. They have been very active in church work and all the sidelines that go with it. But probably never a convert because of any testimony they might have had. Maybe they had none. Activity that is not properly directed cannot prosper.
2. Many eat, that is, read the Word of God as a duty, a ritual, because it is the right thing to do. But they are still hungry. It does not satisfy because they are trying to feed the old nature instead of the new. The old nature could starve on the Word of God. In fact that is a good way to control it. The Word must be taken in by the new nature and taught by the Spirit if it is going to nourish and sustain. All too many have leanness of soul.
3. Many try to drink at the one spiritual fountain, but the water of life cannot satisfy those who are in the flesh and not in the spirit. So they go to the fountain as a matter of ritual, and because it is the respectable thing to do. But they do not enjoy it, nor are they revived thereby.
4. Many clothe themselves with their own garment of righteousness and find that it is quite inadequate to warm them from the coldness of their empty profession. Only the robe of righteousness provided by the Captain of our salvation can keep us warm. Any garment that is the work of our own hands will shrink and become full of holes and leave us naked when the time of judgment comes.
5. And finally all the merits we may accumulate, all the good works we boast in, all our respectability we may have in the eyes of the world, and our own self-esteem will leak out of the bag of our religious practices and we have nothing left.
So yet today, Thus saith the Lord of hosts; CONSIDER YOUR WAYS