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Consider Your Ways

December 16, 2012

Text: Hag 1:1-7

 

Introduction:

A. The Problem: The returning Jews were consistently putting their own needs above their commitment to the Lord. They were building their own houses, but neglecting the Temple. They were taking care of the stuff of life, but not the things of God. 

 

B. The Attitude: It is not time.

 

C. The Message: "Is it time to dwell in panelled homes while the temple lies in ruins?" - Hag 1:4

 

D. The Rebuke: Consider Your Ways.

 

NOTE: It is YOUR way – Me and You – Not someone else’s way.

 

Discussion: Consider Your Ways – Haggai’s Message Is For Us Today.
A. Apathy - Apathy is having the lack of interest; unconcern. It is the “I don’t care” attitude. Haggai 1: 2: “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.”

  1. There is the lack of concern for Spiritual Growth.  Heb 5: 12; 1 Cor 3: 1

  2. There is the lack of concern for Church Attendance.  Heb 10: 25

  3. There is the lack of concern for Church work.  Phil 2: 20, 21

  4. There is the lack of concern for one another.  1 Sam 20: 18; Gen 4: 9; Gal 6: 1, 2

 

B. Procrastination – The time is not yet come.  Haggai 1: 2

  1. But there is time for ourselves.  Haggai 1: 4

  2. It is always someday I will do it.  Matt 8: 21

  3. Men do not say, “Never”; rather, they say, “not yet.” 

  4. The present is the golden hour of opportunity.  Heb 3: 12-13

  5. God always calls “now.” He says “today.” 2 Cor 6: 2; Heb 3: 1

  6. God says work today, not tomorrow, not when I retire. Matt 20: 3, 4; Luke 9: 23 (note, daily)

 

C. Self-will – I come first. 

  1. Self-will is insisting stubbornly and arrogantly on one's way, as opposed to following the will of God.  2 Pet 2: 10

  2. We placed self on the throne instead of permitting God to occupy the place that rightfully belongs to Him.  Gal 2: 20

  3. Self-love will hinder all effort to repair and build the temple of God.  Haggai 1: 2-4

  4. Many are more concerned about their own comfort and luxury than about the things of God.  Luke 14: 18-20

  5. The pursuit of material things causes many to neglect spiritual realities.  2 Tim 4:10; Matt 13: 22

  6. Questions: 
    a. Am I self-centred or God-centred? 
    b. Am I busying myself with my own work or God’s work?

 

D. Forgetfulness - They were sent to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple but turned all energies on themselves.  They had forgotten their purpose.

  1. We too forget our purpose in God's plan.  Eph 2: 10;  

  2. Have you forgotten your first love?  
    a. The church at Ephesus lost her first love.  Rev 2: 4
    b. Call to repent and do the first works. Rev 2: 5
    c. First works have become the last for many.  1 Cor 15: 58

  3. Have you forgotten about God’s work?  No time? Adjust your plans: Make time for God - Prioritise your time. Col 4: 5

  4. Have you forgotten your purpose in life?  Eccl 12: 13

 

E. Worldliness – Worldliness caused them to forget godliness.

  1. Many are busy making money for themselves.  Luke 12: 16-21

  2. Many have forgotten about the house of God, the church of the living God.  1 Tim 3: 15

  3. Worldliness is the greatest threat to the church.  Phil 2: 21

  4. Are you serving God and mammon?  Matt 6: 24

 

F. Excuses – The work for the Lord had stopped but the work of the people had flourished.  Too often excuses are given as to why it’s not time to work for the Lord.

  1. We’ve tried that before and it just didn’t work – Your parents did not give up on you!

  2. No one is doing it – Are you sure??

  3. I’m busy - So are our other workers

  4. Times have changed – God has not changed His method of saving souls. 

  5. I can’t do as much or as well as someone else – Let the better man do the work.

  6. I am tired.  

  7. I thought someone is doing it: This is a little story about four people named Everybody, Somebody, Anybody, and Nobody. There was an important job to be done and Everybody was sure that Somebody would do it. Anybody could have done it, but Nobody did it. Somebody got angry about that because it was Everybody's job. Everybody thought that Anybody could do it, but Nobody realized that Everybody wouldn't do it. It ended up that Everybody blamed Somebody when Nobody did what Anybody could have done.

 

G. Spirituality – Am I growing as a Christian?

  1. Am I spiritual?  1 Cor 3: 1

  2. Am I setting the right example?  1 Tim 4: 12

  3. Am I diligent in my bible study?  2 Pet 3: 18

  4. Am I a praying Christian?  1 Thess 5: 17

  5. Am I serving the Lord?  1 Cor 15: 58

 

H. Some Failed To Consider Their Ways and Paid The Price

  1. Lot failed to consider the shame of Sodom.  Gen 19
    a. He lost his wife, married daughters and sons-in-law.
    b. His daughters committed incest with him.

  2. Samson failed to consider Delilah.  Judges 16
    a. He lost his life.

  3. David failed to consider the sword of Judgement when he committed adultery and murder.  2 Samuel 11|
    a. The pleasure was temporary but the consequence was devastating and long lasting.
    b. His son raped his sister.  2 Samuel 13
    c. Murder in the household.  2 Samuel 13: 28-29
    d. His son rebelled against him.  2 Samuel 15
    e. His son raped his concubines in public.  2 Sam 16: 21-22|
    f. His house was divided.  1 Kings 12 4. Judas failed to consider Jesus.

  4. Judas failed to consider Jesus.
    a. He was blinded by covetousness.  Matthew 26: 14-16
    b. He hanged himself.  Matthew 27: 5 5.

  5. Peter failed to consider his strength.
    a. He denied his Lord three times. Matthew 26: 74-75

 

I. Have You Considered Your Ways?

  1. Did you consider how much God has blessed you?

  2. Did you consider where would you be today if God has not considered you?

  3. Did you consider how much you have returned God’s love?  

  4. Did you consider the work of the church?

  5. Did you consider your example?  1 Tim 4: 12 – We are bound to influence someone by our action or inaction.

  6. Did you consider one another?  Heb 10: 24

  7. Did you consider where you would spend eternity?

 

Conclusion

A. Return to God – Rekindle the first love and do the first works.

 

B. Consider God in your life.

 

C. Consider today your salvation: Consider where you will spend eternity.

  1. Believe that Jesus is the Son of God.

  2. Repent of your sins.

  3. Confess your faith in Jesus.

  4. Be baptised for the remission of your sins.

  5. Be faithful.

 

 

 

 

 

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