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Of all the books of the Bible, which is your favorite?

For me, it's Haggai. But why?

We recently put a new lock on our front door. I'm in love with these locks that have keypads on them so that you can enter without a key if you know the code. It's been surprisingly helpful in churchlife because other people are in and out of our home for a number of reasons. Well, we replaced our old keypad lock with a new, even better keypad. This one holds 20 codes! When deciding what to use as our "churchlife code," Amanda suggested we base the code off of scripture verses from Haggai, since I love the book so much.

That got me thinking about how much I love Haggai.

Okay, I do admit that the fact that Haggai is largely unknown and ignored (is it really a book of the Bible, or is he making this up?) does fuel my passion for it, but my reasoning goes far beyond trying to impress my friends. So here is why I think Haggai surpasses Ephesians, the Psalms, Romans, and all the other great Biblical writings:

Haggai captures God's Eternal Purpose

  • No other book, in my opinion, presents God's Eternal Purpose for man so clearly as Haggai. The whole book is about the call to build the House of the Lord. Why does God want us to build a House for Him? Chapter 1, Verse 8: "Go up into the mountains and bring down timber and build my house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored,” says the LORD. His Purpose is about Him, not us, so that He can be pleased and honored. And yet, on another level, it is about us.
God speaks a lot in Haggai
  • I've got nothing against Paul or Moses or David. In fact, I think very highly of them. But nothing replaces hearing directly from God, which we get to do a lot more in the Old Testament than we do the Epistles. God speaks a lot in Haggai. And yes, He does do it through the prophet, Haggai, but you could almost read the book and not even notice Haggai's role in it.
Although Haggai uses symbolism, it does not beat around the bush
  • Again, I am all for the symbolism of Revelation or the parables of the Gospels. I was an English major in college, so I sort of have to like symbolism. But it is nonetheless refreshing sometimes to put the symbolism aside and just get straight to the point. And that's what Haggai does. God doesn't hint at this or that. He doesn't speak in riddles. His complaints are clear and justified, while his desires are specific and actionable. 

Haggai is about a remnant

  • Haggai is also a sober reminder that, no matter what God says, it will only be a small group of people who listen. Yet at the same time, that seems to be enough for God. He does not complain about numbers. He is looking for quality, not quantity. 

Haggai is short

  • Last but not least, Haggai is short. You could read it in 10 minutes. In fact, you should take the next 10 minutes and read Haggai yourself. It is simple, sweet, and gets to the point.

Do you want to know what God is after on this planet? He is after a house - one made up of living stones. As 2 Peter 2:4 says: 

As you come to Him, the Living Stone - rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to Him - you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

And I don't think there is anywhere in the Bible where God so clearly says, "Hey, I love you. I want you to be part of my house. Stop caring about your worldly matters and enter into my Eternal Purpose. I promise you won't regret it."

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Reader Comments (1)

Per your suggestion, I read Haggai and enjoyed it. It had been quite some time since I had read the book. Lots there to apply to our fellowship currently I think. I found the message hopeful. I'm glad you're writing again; I think that's hopeful too.

February 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterChris

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