Bible Reading: Haggai 2:1-9

“For thus says the LORD of hosts: Yet once more, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land. And I will shake all nations, so that the treasures of all nations shall come in, and I will fill this house with glory, says the LORD of hosts. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, decares the LORD of hosts. The latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the LORD of hosts. And in this place I will give peace, declares the LORD of hosts.” (Haggai 2:6-9)

Soon after Nehemiah went back to Jerusalem to rebuild its walls, God’s remnant returned to Israel from exile as God had promised to Jeremiah. When they had returned, God commanded them to rebuild the temple of God once more. The temple of God was God’s dwelling place on earth. There, God’s people could meet with Him and there, God revealed His glory. 

However, all the elders and those who had been around to see the previous temple before it was destroyed by the Babylonians wept. The new temple’s glory was nowhere near the old’s. However, God’s promise consoles them through the mouth of Haggai, the prophet. “Be strong, all you people of the land, declares the LORD. Work for I am with you, declares the LORD of hosts, according to the covenant that I made with you when you came out of Egypt. My Spirit remains in your midst. Fear not” (Haggai 2:4-5). 

The God who delivered His people out of Egypt was still with His people in the dawn of the post-exile times. Yet, God gave His people a vision of how He would remain faithful to the end of time. God promised that He would fill His house with glory by shaking all the nations and bringing in the best from all of them. And, the glory of God’s future temple will be much more glorious than any of the temple’s before. In this temple, there will be peace. 

What is this future temple? It is God’s church which God is preparing to present to Himself blameless and with splendour on the last day. The glory Haggai prophesied about was the glory of the church. 

What comes to mind when we think of church? Is it a weekly Sunday service that we take for granted? A place just to hang out with friends?

The church is God’s glorious masterpiece to unite people from all nations in the blood and sacrifice of Christ. It is God’s infinite wisdom to call those He loved from eternity and make a kingdom for Himself where people from all ethnicities return to serve and love their Maker with joy. Therefore, if we are part of the church, we are part of God’s plan, which He worked on from eternity. Moreover, we are part of God’s people who are being perfected to meet Christ without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but holy and blameless (see Ephesians 5:27). 

God’s church is glorious. So why do we neglect it? Why don’t we seriously pray for it? Why don’t we give ourselves to God’s work in and through it? God brought us into His church by His love and grace. We ought to serve Him with all our lives as a manifestation of our love for Him. 

Lord, show us the glory of Your church. Teach us to care about the local church You have placed us in. You work in and through Your church to bring glory to Yourself. Teach us the true meaning of Your church and Your eternal plans. Plant in us a burden to love and care for Your church. In Jesus’ name, amen.