“The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the Lord of hosts…” – Haggai 2:9
After a long delay, the small remnant of Jews who returned to Jerusalem began to rebuild the temple again. They had been at their project for almost one month, and it seems that they were not feeling very good about their progress.
Some people were there who saw the first temple that Solomon built and they felt that what they were rebuilding was nothing in comparison to the first (v.3).
But God wanted them to know that what they were doing was significant. He told them three times to “be strong…for I am with you” (v.4). He said that just as I was with you when you came out of Egypt, I am still with you, so don’t be afraid (v.5).
He then went on to tell them that in the future He is going to shake the heavens and the earth and all the nations. The “desire of all nations” (Jesus Christ) is going to come and “this house” (the temple) will be filled with glory (v.6-7).
Perhaps a lack of silver and gold made them feel the rebuilt temple was inferior, but God said the silver and gold are mine (v.8), and the glory of this latter house will be greater than the former (v.9). It will be a place of peace, saith the Lord of hosts.
What a blessing! What an encouragement! There are times that we may feel like what we are doing is nothing compared to others. We may feel our efforts to serve and to reach the world are small and pitiful. Yet God wants to encourage us, to strengthen us, and to remind us that He is with us and He is doing something through us. If we are part of His work, then our labor has meaning because of His blessing.
Don’t be discouraged. Don’t give up. Keep on building and battling and serving and giving and going. God is doing something that is greater than anything He has ever done!