2 “Thus speaks the Lord of hosts, saying: ‘This people says, “The time has not come, the time that the Lord’s house should be built.” ’ ” 3 Then the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying, 4 “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins?” 5 Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: “Consider your ways!” (Haggai 1:2–5, NKJV)
The remnant of Israel had returned to Jerusalem from Babylonian exile more than fifteen years earlier. As the people settled in and refurbished their own houses, the temple of God was still in shambles. Instead of hastening to rebuild God’s house, the people made excuses as they ran to finish their own houses (Hag. 1:7-9). God’s prophet rebuked their negligence, prompting them to action (Hag. 1:14). Even now, there are Christians who are more concerned with their personal affairs than they are with the house of God, His church. They do not faithfully worship God nor put His business above their own. Consequently, God’s house (the church) lies in the ruin of neglect. If this describes you, then it is time to “consider your ways,” repent, and put the Lord’s will first, before your own interests.