Thursday: The Lord’s Signet Ring
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Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

“‘“On that day,” declares the Lord Almighty,

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“I will take you, my servant Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel,” declares the Lord, “and I will make you like my signet ring, for I have chosen you,” declares the Lord Almighty.’” (Hag. 2:23, NIV).

The final message from the Lord to Haggai was given on the same day as the previous one in order to complement it (see Hag. 2:22-23). The Lord warned of a coming destruction of kingdoms and [...]

Wednesday: The Desire of All Nations
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Read Haggai 2:6-9.

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What is being promised here, and how are we to understand its fulfillment?

Through Haggai, God announced a great earthshaking of nations on the day of the Lord when the temple would be filled with Divine presence. The prophet called on his contemporaries to look beyond the present adversities and poverty to the future glory of God’s kingdom toward which the temple pointed.

The main reason for the splendor built into the temple of Jerusalem [...]

10: First Things First – Teaching Plan
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Key Thought : Haggai’s message was simple and logical. What are our priorities, and why is it important to get them right.

[Teaching plan for First Things First June 3, 2013]

1. Have a volunteer read Haggai 1:3-7.

A. Ask class members to share a short thought on what the main idea of this text is.
B. What reason did Haggai tell Israel that their labor and efforts weren’t being prosperous?
C. Personal Application: What priority does offerings to keep the local church [...]

Tuesday: Do Not Fear!
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Together

Haggai 2:1-5 presents an interesting development in the great revival taking place among God’s people.

Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

About a month after the temple work began, God sent an encouraging word through Haggai to the remnant who had determined, without adequate resources, to rebuild God’s house as directed by the prophets. Haggai asked the elders how the temple’s current state compared to its appearance before the exile. Clearly, the present appearance did not match the former glory. People may [...]

First Things First! (Haggai)
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Ruins

“Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?” Haggai 1:4, NIV

Very old ruins have held a romantic fascination for me. When I walk beside the ruined walls, I wonder what stories could they tell of lives lived long ago. What hopes and dreams did the people who built them have? What tragedies might they have witnessed? Were the lives of those ancient folk mundane with routine and boredom? [...]

Monday: God’s Greatest Promise
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Read Haggai 1:12-14.

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Notice the sense of unity of purpose here. Why was that so important in order for them to do that which they were called to do?

This time the message instantly is obeyed by the leaders and the remnant people. They make preparations, gather materials, and resume work on the temple three weeks later. Within another week they erect an altar and restore the sacrificial worship (Ezra 3:1-6). In less than five years the [...]

Sunday: Planting Much, Harvesting Little
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Read Haggai 1:1-11.

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What was happening here and, more important, why was this happening? Even more important, how might this same principle be happening to us today? How might we be guilty of doing the same thing?

“For over a year the temple was neglected and well-nigh forsaken. The people dwelt in their homes and strove to attain temporal prosperity, but their situation was deplorable. Work as they might they did not prosper. The very elements of [...]

Sabbath: First Things First!
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gless10

Read for This Week’s Study: Haggai 1, John 2:19, Ezra 3:1-6, Matt. 1:23, 12:6, Haggai 2, Luke 24:13-27.

Memory Text: “‘The silver is mine and the gold is mine, declares the Lord Almighty’” (Haggai 2:8, NIV).

Key Thought: Haggai’s message is simple: What are our priorities, and why is it so important to get them right?

Haggai’s book, one of the shortest in the Bible, was written at a critical time in the life of Judah. The exiles had returned from their captivity in Babylon almost 20 years before; yet, they seemed to [...]

Further Study: The Day of the Lord
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“With unerring accuracy the Infinite One still keeps account with the nations. While His mercy is tendered, with calls to repentance, this account remains open; but when the figures reach a certain amount which God has fixed, the ministry of His wrath begins. The account is closed. Divine patience ceases. Mercy no longer pleads in their behalf.”—Ellen G. White, Prophets and Kings, p. 364.

“Before the worlds unfallen and the heavenly universe, the world will have to give an account to the [...]

Inside Story: Standing Up for Jesus, part 1
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The ropes bit into Bien’s [bee-YEN] wrists as she struggled to free herself.

Image © Krieg Barrie from GoodSalt.com

Her brothers had tied her to the small boat before they left to get gas for the boat’s engine. They planned to take her to the small offshore island where their grandmother lived so she couldn’t attend the heretics’ church she had been visiting. She knew she had little time. She saw some friends passing nearby and called them to help her. [...]

09: The Day of the Lord – Thought Starters
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“The Lord will be awesome to them, for He will reduce to nothing all the gods of the earth: people shall worship Him, each one from his place, indeed all the shores of the nations.” Zephaniah 2:11 NKJV

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[Thought questions for The Day of the Lord May 29, 2013]

1. An inclusive belief. From what you have studied so far in the final books of the Old Testament, would you say that God’s concept of His [...]

Thursday: God’s Answer to Injustice
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Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

Read Nahum 1-3.

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What verses especially teach us about the character of God? How can we apply what is seen here to our understanding of last-day events?

The prophecy of Nahum is God’s Word against the kingdoms of this world as represented by Nineveh. As the prophet looked at his world, he saw the hand of God moving against the Assyrian Empire. He announced that its capital city, Nineveh, would soon fall, never to rise again. Nahum [...]