By Mike Chaffin
And again the word of the Lord came to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month, saying, “Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying:‘I will shake heaven and earth. I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms; I will destroy the strength of the Gentile kingdoms. I 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. ‘In that day,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel My servant, the son of Shealtiel,’ says the Lord, ‘and will make you like a signet ring; for I have chosen you,’ says the Lord of hosts.” Haggai 2:21-23
The last words to Haggai are a prophetic word to Zerubbabel. Words he needed to hear desperately. Zerubbabel, descendant of royal lineage, returned to Jerusalem with the first group of 42,000 to rebuild and repopulate Jerusalem. As a subject of the Medes and Persians, he wasn’t given the title of king, but that of Governor. Eighteen years later, not much had been accomplished. The job was overwhelming to say the least.
Arriving to a mound of rubble and given the directive to rebuild and govern his people I too would have been overwhelmed. It would be many years before Nehemiah arrives to rebuild the wall. Ezra too would come later to rebuild the spiritual life of the nation. Zerubbabel likely felt all alone.
But God sent Haggai to prophesy to the people. He encouraged them to rebuild the temple. The people heard God and began the job. However, their enemies kept trying to thwart and discourage them from the task at hand. Haggai was given a message just for Zerubbabel.
God tells Zerubbabel that He has his back. No one is going to do a thing to stop him. The temple was completed without further delay.
He told Zerubbabel He will make him like a signet ring. This ring makes a mark in wax to seal a document. God told him he will make his mark, and don’t be overwhelmed by the work. He has what it takes. The last word here is a word of encouragement.
It’s great when someone you look up to, who has a close relationship with the Lord, offers you a word of encouragement. It’s a bigger blessing when you lift up a brother or sister overwhelmed by a burden that looks to big. As the Apostle Paul wrote in Galatians 6:2,
Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
The last word here is one of encouragement and the importance of being an encourager.
Prayer: Lord thank you for sending Haggai to Zerubbabel to encourage him to finish the work of restoration. Lord, let me be a blessing to others like Haggai and clearly hear your word of encouragement to pass on to those in need of help. In Jesus name, amen.