NEGLECTING GOD’S HOUSE
“Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house.” Haggai 1:9
After God’s people returned from their captivity in Babylon, Haggai greatly influenced the progress of rebuilding the temple. The book of Haggai records some of Haggai’s message to the people. In our text, God is using this inspired prophet to point out the fact of and the consequences for their wrong priorities. Their sin was NEGLECTING GOD’S HOUSE. The words were direct, “Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house.” The people were content to attend to their private homes and responsibilities while leaving God’s house unattended. Secondly, they were suffering God’s chastisement because of it. “Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it.” God was not blessing their personal lives or their work because they were NEGLECTING GOD’S HOUSE.
We could name more than a few ancient landmarks that have been moved in recent generations. One of those is the importance of God’s house, the local church. NEGLECTING GOD’S HOUSE is as common in our day as it was in the days of Haggai. This neglect can be found in numerous forms. Some neglect the doctrinal significance of the local New Testament church. Confused by false teaching and tradition, they do not embrace the New Testament ekklesia, the assembly of a called out membership, which the Bible calls, “the house of God” (I Timothy 3:15). Others neglect the practical importance of God’s house by attendance that is inconsistent. When social, vocational, and family functions take priority over God’s assembly, there is NEGLECTING of GOD’S HOUSE.
In Haggai’s day, God wanted His house to be a priority. Nothing is said in Haggai’s message to indicate that God wanted the people to neglect their family duties or their community obligations. These things are important, but not to the neglect of God’s business. Many are NEGLECTING GOD’S HOUSE by their lack of financial support or their failure to contribute brotherly love and service to the Lord’s house and work. Haggai’s message is still needed today.