I hadn’t thought about the fact that the people rebuilding the temple would probably have never seen the original one now in ruins. Would those memories have been kept alive in families living in exile? If there were any faithful ones still alive that had seen the glorious splendor of the original temple, Haggai’s words were a comfort for them. “My Spirit remains among you, just as I promised when you came out of Egypt. So do not be afraid.”
How can human hands build a house worthy of the glory of God? A big project like building a temple for God may have seemed overwhelming. It certainly was the first time around for Solomon. You may recall Solomon’s father, King David had the vision for a grand temple, but it was God’s plan that Solomon be the one in charge of its construction. We read about that in 1 Kings 8. Solomon’s prayer of dedication is beautiful.
While we know this text is speaking of the failures of Judah, I can’t help but see so many parallels to what is happening today. Many people are on a self-destructive path heading for who knows where. I’ve seen preachers twist the words of Scripture to make it say something it doesn’t just to appease the crowd.
Humanity seems to be in a continuous spiral away from God. Why is that? Do you see it, too? Many are caught in the “trap of their own foolishness,” and “from the least to the greatest, their lives are ruled by greed.” Good news–there are also seasons of revival!
I wonder how old Joshua was when God said to him, “You are growing old, and much land remains to be conquered.” Just for fun, I googled: “how old was Joshua in the Battle of Jericho?” The answer came back that he was 101 years old. Whether I trust google or not, one of the commentaries I read placed Joshua at between 90 and 100 when this conversation with God took place. He was not a young man to be sure.
If you’ve ever used the excuse, “I’m too old” when it comes to doing something fun or unusual, I don’t think we have any business doing that. Think of what Joshua accomplished in conquering the land at his age. Now, we hear there is even more land. From the sounds of it, God is going to take care of those other areas. “I myself will drive these people out of the land ahead of the Israelites.”