As a church, we’ve been looking at the book of Haggai over the last few weeks. Its two chapters were powerful and life-changing to the returned-from-exile Jews, who needed to be challenged and re-purposed regarding their relationship with God!
Challenge and re-purpose are our friends, particularly if we want to grow in our Christian walk.
It is clear that God saw the returned Jews as ‘settlers’, rather than a people wanting to grow in worship and influence. The temple of the Lord lay in ruins some seventeen years after the people returned from exile in Babylon because the Jews had become a little too self-focused. The neglected temple mirrored the attitude of the Jews at the time, living a life that showed no real fruit because it had lost sight of its purpose: to live a ‘temple’ life, i.e. one that centralised God through relationship, prayer, worship, reading and applying of his word, sacrifice, call and community.
These ingredients for a faith-filled life are still highly relevant today. If you remember, last week I said that there is a formula to fruitfulness and, while the preceding list isn’t exhaustive, it’s a helpful start in gauging where we are at in our walk with Jesus.
Maybe our first port of call is a re-ignition to passionately seek challenge and re-purpose. The book of Haggai tells of God’s people rising up and working in unity to build together (Haggai 1:12). Be encouraged today, God is calling us all to go deeper because there’s so much more to come!