Chapter 1-2 + Summary of Haggai
Summary of Haggai:
The book of Haggai is both a narrative History and a prophetic message. The Key personalities are Haggai, Zerubbabel, and Joshua. Haggai was called by God to encourage the people to finish the construction of the temple in Jerusalem. The construction had ceased because of opposition and because the neighboring countries, and the Jews were frightened.
Chapter 1: Haggai exhorts to build a Temple
In the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord comes to Haggai unto Zerubbabel (governor of Jerusalem) and Joshua (the high priest).
The Lord is angered because the people say it is not time for the temple to be finished. The Lord criticizes their words of procrastination and lack of progress. The houses of individuals are in working order, but the house of the Lord is not.
The Lord explains that the people have “…sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.” (Haggai 1:6) Here we can learn a great life lesson, if we work and work with no reward than it is like putting money in pockets with holes, because we will lose the money. We need to be wise and productive with our money… living within your means!
Chapter 2: Peace in his Temple
The Lord speaks to the people and addresses their anxiety that the current temple is far less impressive than Solomon’s. The Lord exhorts them to be strong. Haggai questions the priests and essentially teaches them that a smaller temple is STILL a TEMPLE. A recent drought is seen as a consequence of the people’s refusal to build the temple. However, God sees their change of heart and promises a harvest of blessing to come. The Lord will give peace in His temple!
Scripture Thought (What I Learned):
In chapters 3 and 4 we learn a lot about God’s mercy and WHO God really is. In LDS doctrine, we believe that God, His Son and the Holy Ghost are all individual and distinct persons. We believe that God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ have bodies of flesh and bones. After all, we are created in their image, right!? I just love how God says he “repented” (which of course means changed his mind in this context), but God was going to destroy a city and then changed his mind because the people changed their ways. God never hates people, he loves all his children, but he gets upset and sometimes (like any good parent) has to discipline his children.
Jonah gets mad about God NOT destroying the city, but they gets mad at God killing a plant. Here we see the selfishness of Jonah, he only wanted the plant because it gave him shade. God teaches him and any reader a good lesson, ALL Life is important and everyone has a purpose and meaning!
Chapter 3: Jonah saves Nineveh
The word of the Lord comes to Jonah and is again told to cry against Nineveh and its people. Jonah preaches to the people and almost immediately the people repent with ashes and sackcloth. They fasted and turned to their God. Upon seeing this, God decides not to destroy Nineveh.
“…God repented of the evil that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.” (Jonah 3:10)
Chapter 4: Jonah is angry
Jonah is upset because God chose not to destroy Nineveh. He leaves the city and sits in the hot sun where God causes a plant (a gourd of some sort) to grow to provide shade for Jonah. The next day God sends a worm to kill the plant. Without any shade from the hot sun, Jonah is angered and in pain and claims it would be better for him to die.
God questions Jonah’s anger about the death of the plant and asks him why he thinks a plant should be spared from destruction but a large city like Nineveh should not be saved.