Guest Blogger: David Shields
Thus says the Lord of hosts: These people say the time has not yet come to rebuild the house of the Lord.” Then the word of the Lord came by the hand of Haggai the prophet, “Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while his house lies in ruins?
The prophet Haggai comes to speak to the people of Israel soon after their return from exile out of Babylon. The people had been sent out of the land because of their sin and found themselves back in the land that God had promised them. However, instead of busying themselves with obedience, they have focused on themselves.
The basic rebuke from God is that the people have refused to build the temple and instead have upgraded their own homes. Building God’s house was supposed to be step one of obedience when they came home from Babylon. However, it did not even make their to-do list.