Posted by: missionventureministries | February 17, 2014

THE CONSEQUENCES OF OUR WAYS – ARE WE SERVING THE LORD OR OUR SELVES? – Haggai 1:4-6

Haggai 1 vs 4-6

“Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?” Now this is what the Lord Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.” (Haggai 1:4-6)

Haggai is writing to the children of Israel that have returned to the land after their time spent in captivity in the land of Babylon. Upon returning, they acted well in the beginning, and they immediately began to re-build the Lord’s temple in Jerusalem. However, after some opposition, they put aside the building of God’s house and began working on their own houses.

When their priority changed from God to self, their blessings stopped and their self-centered hard work did not lead them to acquire very much, simply because they were no longer putting the Lord first in their lives.

This passage has many similarities to what is happening today in our world, as we see that possessions become more important then God. There has never been a time in history when people are as busy as today. Many families have both husband and wife working with some folks working two and three jobs. Work is good and the Bible says that men need to work in order to eat; but when our work replaces God, or seriously interferes with our worship of Him, something is wrong.

When this occurs we need to ask ourselves: Is God doing to us what He did to those Israelites of old who had misplaced priorities? Do we miss church regularly due to work, or because we are too tired? Or perhaps because there are other priorities that take first place in our life?

The problem is that we are so conditioned by this world that we are blinded to what is happening. We have been so accustomed to focus on self, that we don’t realize that we have lost our first love and have replaced it with something above God in our lives.

We need to be honest with ourselves and ask: Have we put something in front of God; like our job; our children; our pleasure? What is causing us to miss the full blessing of God in our life? We need to wake up and put God back where He belongs. He deserves and demands first place. After the Israelites repented and starting working again on the temple, God said, “I am with you”.

When a professing believer never seems to have enough, and his money bag seems filled with holes, it is time for him to consider carefully his ways before the Lord. After all, our God owns everything and He is well able to supply all our needs. “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)

If these necessities of life are not being provided, we urgently need to consider our ways. Is God’s kingdom and His righteousness really our first concern?

The Bible teaches that “my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). But we must remember that this promise was given to a group of Christians whose “deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their kindness,” because they “first gave their own selves to the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 8:2, 5)

Just like the people of Haggai’s generation, when we fail to focus on God’s priorities, life takes a turn and our purses seem to have “holes” in them, in the sense that the money we put in them disappears before we can pay all our bills.

A Christians that is wasting God’s generous gifts on trivia and selfishness, will have much to answer for, when the Lord returns.

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