August 5

Haggai 1:12-14, 2:15-19

A promise of blessing

When Haggai told the Jews who had returned from Babylon that God wanted them to rebuild the Temple, they obeyed straight away. And as they began working on the Temple, the Lord encouraged them.

The Lord said, “Before you started working on the Temple you would expect a big harvest, but there would be very little. I sent winds and hail to ruin everything you tried to grow. Today you have finished laying the foundation of the Temple. See what will happen now!

Although there is no grain left, and the grapevines and fig trees and olive trees have no fruit, I will bless you from this day on.”

Do I have to do things to be blessed?

It is only as the people started rebuilding the Temple that the Lord promised to bless them. At this stage they had only laid the foundations and already God was just waiting to pour out His blessing on them. He had wanted to bless them for so many years, but their disobedience had kept His blessing away. Now the trees would start bearing fruit again and the crops would grow tall. God’s blessings would fall on them like showers of rain.

Does that mean we have to do things to be blessed? God was not rewarding the people for what they did—but for being obedient! God had kept back His blessing so that the people would turn away from sin. Now that they were obedient and walking in His ways, the blessing He had been holding back could flow again.

It is your obedience that is important—whether it is to stop doing something wrong, or to start doing something that God has been telling you to do.

Verse for today

I will bless them and the places surrounding my hill. I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessing. Ezekiel 34:26