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Prophets After the Exile

(Category 12 of 16)

Watch our Read Scripture video on the book of Haggai, which breaks down the literary design of the book and its flow of thought. There is one Read Scripture video dedicated to the book of Haggai, which aims to help you see its unique contribution to the story of Jesus, but also how they work within the Bible’s overall framework.

In this book, Haggai challenges Israel after the exile to remain faithful to their God and rebuild the temple.

Explore Haggai



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The book of


WITH the Babylonian exile in the past, and a newly returned group of Jews
back in the land, the work of rebuilding the temple can begin. However, sixteen
years after the process is begun, the people have yet to finish the project, for
their personal affairs have interfered with God’s business. Haggai preaches a fiery
series of sermonettes designed to stir up the nation to finish the temple. He calls
the builders to renewed courage in the Lord, renewed holiness of life, and renewed
faith in God who controls the future.
The etymology and meaning of Haggay is uncertain, but it is probably derived
from the Hebrew word hag, “festival.” It may also be an abbreviated form of haggiah,
“festival of Yahweh.” Thus, Haggai’s name means “Festal” or “Festive,” possibly
because he was born on the day of a major feast, such as Tabernacles (Haggai’s
second message takes place during that feast, 2:1). The title in the Septuagint
is Aggaios and in the Vulgate it is Aggaeus.

The Command to Build God’s House


1 IN athe second year of King Darius, in the sixth month, on the first day of the month, the word of the LORD came by bHaggai the prophet to cZerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to dJoshua the son of eJehozadak, the high priest, saying,
2 “Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying: ‘This people says, “The time has not come, the time that the LORD’s house should be built.” ’ ”
3 Then the word of the LORD acame by Haggai the prophet, saying,
4 “Is it atime for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this 1temple to lie in ruins?”
5 Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts: a“Consider your ways!

6 “You have asown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; And bhe who earns wages,

CHAPTER 1 References

1 aEzra 4:24;
Hag. 2:10;
Zech. 1:1, 7
bEzra 5:1; 6:14
c1 Chr. 3:19;
Ezra 2:2; Neh.
7:7; Zech. 4:6;
Matt. 1:12, 13
dEzra 5:2, 3;
Zech. 6:11
e1 Chr. 6:15
3 aEzra 5:1
4 a2 Sam. 7:2
1Lit. house
5 aLam. 3:40
6 aDeut.
28:38–40; Hos.
8:7; Hag. 1:9,
10; 2:16, 17
bZech. 8:10
8 aEzra 3:7
1Lit. house
9 aHag. 2:16
bHag. 2:17
10 aLev. 26:19;
Deut. 28:23;
1 Kin. 8:35;
Joel 1:18–20
11 a1 Kin. 17:1;
2 Kin. 8:1
bHag. 2:17
12 aEzra 5:2

Earns wages to put into a bag with holes.”

7 Thus says the LORD of hosts: “Consider your ways!
8 “Go up to the amountains and bring wood and build the 1temple, that I may take pleasure in it and be glorified,” says the LORD.
9 a“You looked for much, but indeed it came to little; and when you brought it home, bI blew it away. Why?” says the LORD of hosts. “Because of My house that is in ruins, while every one of you runs to his own house.
10 “Therefore athe heavens above you withhold the dew, and the earth withholds its fruit.
11 “For I acalled for a drought on the land and the mountains, on the grain and the new wine and the oil, on whatever the ground brings forth, on men and livestock, and on ball the labor of your hands.”

The People’s Obedience

12 aThen Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, with all the remnant of the people, obeyed the voice of the LORD their God, and the words of Haggai the prophet, as

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the LORD their God had sent him; and the people feared the presence of the LORD.
13 Then Haggai, the LORD’s messenger, spoke the LORD’s message to the people, saying, a“I am with you, says the LORD.”
14 So athe LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, bgovernor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of all the remnant of the people; cand they came and worked on the house of the LORD of hosts, their God,
15 on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month, in the second year of King Darius.

The Coming Glory of God’s House


1 In the seventh month, on the twenty-first of the month, the word of the LORD came 1by Haggai the prophet, saying:
2 “Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people, saying:
3 a‘Who is left among you who saw this 1temple in its former glory? And how do you see it now? In comparison with it, bis this not in your eyes as nothing?
4 ‘Yet now abe strong, Zerubbabel,’ says the LORD; ‘and be strong, Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest; and be strong, all you people of the land,’ says the LORD, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ says the LORD of hosts.
5 a‘According to the word that I covenanted with you when you came out of Egypt, so bMy Spirit remains among you; do not fear!’
6 “For thus says the LORD of hosts: a‘Once more (it is a little while) bI will shake heaven and earth, the sea and dry land;
7 ‘and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to athe 1Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this 2temple with bglory,’ says the LORD of hosts.
8 ‘The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,’ says the LORD of hosts.
9 a‘The glory of this latter 1temple shall be greater than the former,’ says the LORD of hosts. ‘And in this place I will give bpeace,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

The People Are Defiled

10 On the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet, saying,
11 “Thus says the LORD of hosts: ‘Now, aask the priests concerning the law, saying,

13 a[Matt.
28:20; Rom.
8:31] 14 a2 Chr.
36:22; Ezra
1:1 bHag. 2:21
cEzra 5:2, 8;
Neh. 4:6

CHAPTER 2 References

1 1Lit. by the
hand of
3 aEzra 3:12,
13 bZech. 4:10
1Lit. house
4 aDeut. 31:23;
1 Chr. 22:13;
28:20; Zech.
8:9; Eph. 6:10
5 aEx. 29:45,
46 b[Neh.
9:20]; Is.
63:11, 14
6 aHeb. 12:26
b[Joel 3:16] 7 aGen. 49:10;
Mal. 3:1
b1 Kin. 8:11;
Is. 60:7; Zech.
2:5 1Or desire
of all nations
2Lit. house
9 a[John 1:14] bPs. 85:8, 9;
Luke 2:14;
[Eph. 2:14] 1Lit. house
11 aLev. 10:10,
11; Deut.
33:10; Mal. 2:7
13 aLev.
22:4–6; Num.
19:11, 22
14 a[Titus 1:15] 15 aHag. 1:5, 7;
16 aHag. 1:6, 9;
Zech. 8:10
17 aDeut.
28:22; 1 Kin.
8:37; Amos
4:9 bHag. 1:11
cJer. 5:3;
Amos 4:6–11
18 aEzra 5:1, 2,
16; Zech. 8:9
19 aZech. 8:12
bPs. 128:1–6;
Jer. 31:12, 14;
[Mal. 3:10] 21 aEzra 5:2;
Hag. 1:1, 14;
Zech. 4:6–10
bHag. 2:6, 7;
[Heb. 12:26,
27] 22 a[Dan. 2:44;
Rev. 19:11–21] bPs. 46:9;
Ezek. 39:20;
Mic. 5:10;
Zech. 9:10
23 aSong 8:6;
Jer. 22:24 bIs.
42:1; 43:10

12 “If one carries holy meat in the fold of his garment, and with the edge he touches bread or stew, wine or oil, or any food, will it become holy?” ’ ” Then the priests answered and said, “No.”
13 And Haggai said, “If one who is aunclean because of a dead body touches any of these, will it be unclean?” So the priests answered and said, “It shall be unclean.”
14 Then Haggai answered and said, a“ ‘So is this people, and so is this nation before Me,’ says the LORD, ‘and so is every work of their hands; and what they offer there is unclean.

Promised Blessing

15 ‘And now, carefully aconsider from this day forward: from before stone was laid upon stone in the temple of the LORD—
16 ‘since those days, awhen one came to a heap of twenty ephahs, there were but ten; when one came to the wine vat to draw out fifty baths from the press, there were but twenty.
17 a‘I struck you with blight and mildew and hail bin all the labors of your hands; cyet you did not turn to Me,’ says the LORD.
18 ‘Consider now from this day forward, from the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, from athe day that the foundation of the LORD’s temple was laid—consider it:
19 a‘Is the seed still in the barn? As yet the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate, and the olive tree have not yielded fruit. But from this day I will bbless you.’ ”

Zerubbabel Chosen as a Signet

20 And again the word of the LORD came to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month, saying,
21 “Speak to Zerubbabel, agovernor of Judah, saying:

b‘I will shake heaven and earth.
22 aI will overthrow the throne of kingdoms; I will destroy the strength of the Gentile kingdoms. bI will overthrow the chariots And those who ride in them; The horses and their riders shall come down, Every one by the sword of his brother.

23 ‘In that day,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel My servant, the son of Shealtiel,’ says the LORD, a‘and will make you like a signet ring; for bI have chosen you,’ says the LORD of hosts.”

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The Assured Judgment of the Wicked

To the Chief Musician. Set to 1“Do Not Destroy.” A Michtam of David awhen Saul sent men, and they watched the house in order to kill him.

1 DELIVER me from my enemies, O my God; 1Defend me from those who rise up against me.
2 Deliver me from the workers of iniquity, And save me from bloodthirsty men.

3 For look, they lie in wait for my life; aThe mighty gather against me, Not for my transgression nor for my sin, O LORD.
4 They run and prepare themselves through no fault of mine.

aAwake to help me, and behold!
5 You therefore, O LORD God of hosts, the God of Israel, Awake to punish all the 1nations; Do not be merciful to any wicked transgressors. Selah
6 aAt evening they return, They growl like a dog, And go all around the city.
7 Indeed, they belch with their mouth; aSwords are in their lips; For they say, b“Who hears?”

8 But aYou, O LORD, shall laugh at them; You shall have all the 1nations in derision.
9 I will wait for You, O You 1his Strength; aFor God is my 2defense.
10 1My God of mercy shall acome to meet me; God shall let bme see my desire on my enemies.

PSALM 59 References

title a1 Sam.
19:11 1Heb. Al
1 1Lit. Set me
on high
3 aPs. 56:6
4 aPs. 35:23
5 1Gentiles
6 aPs. 59:14
7 aPs. 57:4;
Prov. 12:18
bJob 22:13;
Ps. 10:11
8 aProv. 1:26
9 a[Ps. 62:2] 1So with MT,
Syr.; some
Heb. mss.,
LXX, Tg.,Vg.
my Strength
2Lit. fortress
10 aPs. 21:3
bPs. 54:7 1So
with Qr.;
some Heb.
mss., LXX,
Vg. My God,
His mercy;
Kt., some
Heb. mss., Tg.
O God, my
mercy; Syr. O
12 aProv. 12:13
13 aPs. 104:35
bPs. 83:18
14 aPs. 59:6
15 aJob 15:23
1So with
LXX,Vg.; MT,
Syr., Tg.
spend the
17 aPs. 18:1

11 Do not slay them, lest my people forget; Scatter them by Your power, And bring them down, O Lord our shield.
12 aFor the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips, Let them even be taken in their pride, And for the cursing and lying which they speak.
13 aConsume them in wrath, consume them, That they may not be; And blet them know that God rules in Jacob To the ends of the earth. Selah

14 And aat evening they return, They growl like a dog, And go all around the city.
15 They awander up and down for food, And 1howl if they are not satisfied.

16 But I will sing of Your power; Yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy in the morning; For You have been my defense And refuge in the day of my trouble.
17 To You, aO my Strength, I will sing praises; For God is my defense, My God of mercy.




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