Cieled HousesBro. David Chancellor
4/23/2006 6:00 PM
In the second year of Darius the king, in the sixth month, in the first day of the month, came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet unto Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest, saying, Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, This people say, The time is not come, the time that the Lord’s house should be built. Then came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet, saying, Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your cieled houses, and this house lie waste? Now therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways. Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough: ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.
Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways. Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the Lord. 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. Therefore the heaven over you is stayed from dew, and the earth is stayed from her fruit.
The people of Israel had been down to Babylon and some had come back to rebuild the temple. The temple had set unfinished due to opposition for 15 years. It was time for them to get back to work. God was encouraging them through Haggai to start. The people were procrastinating on getting started.
In every age, conditions would be conducive to say, “No one wants it; it’s not time…” It is always time to build God’s house. The time to work for God is all down through the gospel day. Even in our time it is time to do God’s work. Don’t be discouraged. Keep putting the message out. The present is our opportunity to live and work for God.
The cieled houses were overlaid and paneled with nice stuff. The thought was, “Is it time for you to have a nice house and God’s house go begging?” Some time and energy need to be spent on God’s house.
“Consider your ways…” If we don’t really get committed to God, it will come to little. Don’t expect great returns on small investments. Put something into it. Real prosperity comes in lining up your life with God’s plan. This is where you’ll find contentment and satisfaction.
Sometimes we ask God for the wrong thing. He can work it out for us in the way that is best. Focus on building God’s house, and he will build your house. Commit yourself to God, and let him build your life. Focus on building that which is of God.
2 Samuel 7:1-17
And it came to pass, when the king sat in his house, and the lord had given his rest round about from all his enemies; That the king said unto Nathan the prophet, See now, I dwell in an house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains. And Nathan said to the king, Go do all that is in thine heart; for the Lord is with thee.
And it came to pass that night, that the word of the Lord came unto Nathan, saying, Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in? Whereas I have not dwelt in any house since the time that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, even to this day, but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle. In all the places wherein I have walked with all the children of Israel spake I a word with any of the tribes of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people Israel, saying, Why build ye not me an house of cedar? Now therefore so shalt thou say unto my servant David, Thus saith the Lord of hosts, I took thee from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be ruler over my people, over Israel: And I was with thee whithersoever thou wentest, and have cut off all then enemies out of thy sight, and have made thee a great name, like unto the name of the great men that are in the earth.
Moreover I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime, And as since the time that I commanded judges to be over my people Israel, and have caused thee to rest from all thine enemies. Also the Lord telleth thee that he will make thee an house. And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever. According to all these words, and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak unto David.
In Haggai, the people were living in their nice houses and weren’t thinking of the house of God. David saw something wrong with the picture of having a nice house when God didn’t. He desired to build God a house. A tabernacle was portable and moveable. A house was more permanent. God told the prophet to tell David that he would build his house. This prophecy is two-fold. It regards both Solomon and Christ. God will build his church. In Christ, he built a permanent dwelling place that won’t have to be rebuilt. God set up his family, and we can be part of it. God’s church is the house we should be concerned with building. It’s a blessing to be part of God’s house. We don’t want God’s house to fall down or fall apart.
Consider David’s attitude compared to what Haggai was dealing with. We should be like David - concerned that God would receive the best. Put your heart into giving to and working for God.
2 Chronicles 3:3-7
Now these are the things wherein Solomon was instructed for the building of the house of God. The length by cubits after the first measure was threescore cubits, and the breadth twenty cubits. And the porch that was in the front of the house, the length of it was according to the breadth of the house, twenty cubits, and the height was an hundred and twenty: and he overlaid it within with pure gold. And the greater house he cieled with fir tree, which he overlaid with fine gold, and set thereon palm trees and chains. And he garnished the house with precious stones for beauty: and the gold was gold of Parvaim. He overlaid also the house, the beams, the posts, and the walls thereof, and the doors thereof, with gold; and graved cherubims on the walls.
The first temple was a cieled house. There was no expense spared to build it. Haggai was trying to bring them back to this. The devil would try to take away the dream and vision that God can do a work. Don’t let the vision die. David lined up the materials for the work. It is still time to build the house. Do what you can to draw souls to God.
People are on information overload these days. God may use interesting ways to get the message heard. The personal touch still goes a long way to carry the message of the gospel. We need to desire to build the house. Overcome the feeling the devil would bring that “it’s no use.” People still want it. Opportunity still exists to reach souls. It is still time to build God’s house.
The Lord hath sworn in truth unto David; he will not turn from it: of the fruit of thy body will I set upon thy throne. If thy children will keep my covenant and my testimony that I shall teach them, their children shall also sit upon thy throne for evermore. For the Lord hath chosen Zion; he hath desired it for his habitation. This is my rest for ever: here will I dwell; for I have desired it. I will abundantly bless her provision: I will satisfy her poor with bread. I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy. There will I make the horn of David to bud: I have ordained a lamp for mine anointed. His enemies will I clothe with shame: but upon himself shall his crown flourish.
This is what God spoke to David. God wants a dwelling place, not a cieled house. His house is to be in his peoples’ hearts. “This is my rest for ever: here will I dwell; for I have desired it.” God desires to stay with us. “I will abundantly bless her provision: I will satisfy her poor with bread.” This is the blessing on the house. God has promised abundant provision for his people. Why wouldn’t we want to put in whatever it takes, when there is a blessing in it for us? When you work to build the house of God, there is joy in it. You get blessed when you see a soul find God, especially when you’ve had a part in it. There’s a benefit in building the house.
Get started. Put some work into it. Once the ones Haggai spoke to found the courage, they were able to build the house. Don’t be discouraged. It IS time to build God’s house. Don’t stop with just your family. Work to build the family of God. It is still the season for God’s work to be done. Some material God may send your way may look like it couldn’t possibly be used. God can straighten it out and use it for his house. Look for a way to lift up God in the opportunities he sends your way.