Haggai 2 (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 514)

Haggai 2New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 2

Assurance of God’s Presence. On the twenty-first day of the seventh month,[a] the word of the Lord came through Haggai the prophet:Speak to the governor of Judah, Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel, and to the high priest Joshua, son of Jehozadak, and to the remnant of the people:

Who is left among you[b]
    who saw this house in its former glory?
And how do you see it now?
    Does it not seem like nothing in your eyes?
Now be strong, Zerubbabel—oracle of the Lord
    be strong, Joshua, son of Jehozadak, high priest,
Be strong, all you people of the land—oracle of the Lord
    and work! For I am with you—oracle of the Lord of hosts.
This is the commitment I made to you
    when you came out of Egypt.
My spirit remains in your midst;
    do not fear!

For thus says the Lord of hosts:[c]

In just a little while,
    I will shake the heavens and the earth,
    the sea and the dry land.
I will shake all the nations,
    so that the treasures of all the nations will come in.
And I will fill this house with glory—
    says the Lord of hosts.

Mine is the silver and mine the gold—oracle of the Lord of hosts.

Greater will be the glory of this house
    the latter more than the former—says the Lord of hosts;
And in this place I will give you peace—[d]
    oracle of the Lord of hosts.

Priestly Ruling with Prophetic Interpretation.[e] 10 On the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month in the second year[f] of Darius, the word of the Lord came to Haggai the prophet: 11 Thus says the Lord of hosts: Ask the priests for a ruling:[g] 12 If someone carries sanctified meat in the fold of a garment and the fold touches bread, soup, wine, oil, or any other food, do they become sanctified? “No,” the priests answered.13 Then Haggai asked: “If a person defiled from contact with a corpse touches any of these, do they become defiled?” The priests answered, “They become defiled.” 14 Then Haggai replied:

So is this people,[h] and so is this nation
    in my sight—oracle of the Lord
And so is all the work of their hands;
    what they offer there is defiled.

15 Now reflect,[i] from this day forward—before you set stone to stone in the temple of the Lord, 16 what was your experience?

When one went to a heap of grain for twenty ephahs,
    there were only ten;
When one went to a vat to draw fifty ephahs,[j]
    there were only twenty.
17 I struck you, and all the work of your hands,
    with searing wind, blight, and hail,
    yet you did not return to me—oracle of the Lord.

18 Reflect from this day forward, from the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month.[k] From the day on which the temple of the Lord was founded, reflect!

19 Is there still seed in the storehouse?
    Have the vine, the fig, the pomegranate,
    and the olive tree still not borne fruit?
From this day, I will bless you.[l]

Future Hope.[m] 20 The word of the Lord came a second time to Haggai on the twenty-fourth day of the month:[n] 21 Speak to Zerubbabel, the governor of Judah:

I will shake the heavens and the earth;
22     I will overthrow the thrones of kingdoms,
    and destroy the power of the kingdoms of the nations.
I will overthrow the chariots and their riders,
    and the riders with their horses
    will fall by each other’s swords.

23 On that day—oracle of the Lord of hosts—I will take you, my servant, Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel—oracle of the Lord—and I will make you like a signet ring,[o] for I have chosen you—oracle of the Lord of hosts.


  1. 2:1 Twenty-first day of the seventh month: October 17, 520 B.C.
  2. 2:3 Who is left among you: i.e., who is old enough to have seen the first Temple prior to its destruction in 587 B.C.? Compare the reaction of priests who were alive then (Ezr 3:12–13).
  3. 2:6–9 These verses emphasize that the total fulfillment of God’s promises to Israel is on the horizon. Such an eschatological event, which will shake the nations (v. 6; cf. v. 21), finds an echo not only in the political revolts in the Persian empire in 521 but also in the formative events of Israel’s history (Ex 19:18; Jgs 5:4; Ps 68:8–9) when God intervened on behalf of the Israelites. The bringing of treasures of all the nations (v. 7) to Jerusalem recalls the visionary passages of Isaiah of the pilgrimage of all nations to Jerusalem (Is 2:2–4; 60:6–9).
  4. 2:9 Peace: after God’s presence or glory has returned to the Temple, Jerusalem will receive the treasures from the nations, making the Temple more glorious than ever; and from that place God will extend shalom, a peace which embraces prosperity, well-being, harmony.
  5. 2:10–14 A request for a priestly ruling (Heb. torah) is made in the form of a dialogue between Haggai and the priests. Explicit examples where such priestly rulings are quoted are rare in prophetic books. The interchange illustrates an essential role of the priesthood: the interpretation of God’s law (cf. Lv 10:9–11).
  6. 2:10 Twenty-fourth day of the ninth month in the second year: December 18, 520 B.C.
  7. 2:11 Ask the priests for a ruling: i.e., a determination on whether defilement and sanctity can be physically transmitted. The priests are expected to make a legal decision. The answer is that sanctity cannot be transmitted (v. 12) but defilement can (v. 13). Priestly duties are enumerated in Lv 10:10–20.
  8. 2:14 So is this people: the prophet’s interpretation is that the restored sacrifices were not acceptable because the people’s behavior was tainted.
  9. 2:15–19 This prophecy is retrospective and should be read with 1:5–11, a description of the conditions of economic deprivation before the rebuilding of the Temple.
  10. 2:16 Ephahs: see note on Is 5:10.
  11. 2:18 Twenty-fourth day of the ninth month: December 18, 520 B.C., the date of the refounding of the Temple (vv. 10, 20), the central date in Haggai.
  12. 2:19 I will bless you: from the day of the refounding of the Temple, agricultural plenty and fertility are assured. This link between temple and prosperity is part of the ancient Near Eastern temple ideology that underlies Haggai and Zec 1–8.
  13. 2:20–23 This final oracle of hope is uttered on the day of the refounding of the Temple. Unlike the other oracles it is addressed to Zerubbabel alone, who, as a Davidic descendant, will have a servant role in God’s future Israelite kingdom to be established when God intervenes to overthrow the nations.
  14. 2:20 Twenty-fourth day of the month: December 18, 520 B.C. (as in v. 18).
  15. 2:23 Like a signet ring: this promise to Zerubbabel reverses the punishment of his grandfather (Jer 22:23–25). A signet is a ring or other instrument used to mark documents or materials with the equivalent of an official signature. A lower official could thus be authorized to act on behalf of a higher official. Like a signet ring, Zerubbabel represents the Lord.

Haggai 1 (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 514)

Haggai 1New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 1

Prophetic Call to Work on the Temple. On the first day of the sixth month in the second year[a] of Darius the king, the word of the Lordcame through Haggai the prophet to the governor of Judah, Zerubbabel,son of Shealtiel, and to the high priest Joshua, son of Jehozadak: Thus says the Lord of hosts: This people has said: “Now is not the time to rebuild the house of the Lord.”

Then the word of the Lord came through Haggai the prophet: Is it time for you to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies in ruins?[b]

Now thus says the Lord of hosts:
    Reflect on your experience![c]
You have sown much, but have brought in little;
    you have eaten, but have not been satisfied;
You have drunk, but have not become intoxicated;
    you have clothed yourselves, but have not been warmed;
And the hired worker labors for a bag full of holes.

Thus says the Lord of hosts:

Reflect on your experience!
Go up into the hill country;
    bring timber, and build the house
that I may be pleased with it,
    and that I may be glorified,[d] says the Lord.
You expected much, but it came to little;
    and what you brought home, I blew away.
Why is this?—oracle of the Lord[e] of hosts—
    Because my house is the one which lies in ruins,
    while each of you runs to your own house.
10 Therefore, the heavens withheld the dew,
    and the earth its yield.
11 And I have proclaimed a devastating heat[f]
    upon the land and upon the mountains,
Upon the grain, the new wine, and the olive oil,
    upon all that the ground brings forth;
Upon human being and beast alike,
    and upon all they produce.

Response of Leaders and People. 12 Then Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel, and the high priest Joshua, son of Jehozadak, and all the remnant of the people[g] obeyed the Lord their God, and the words of Haggai the prophet, since the Lord their God had sent him; thus the people feared the Lord. 13 Then Haggai, the messenger of the Lord, proclaimed to the people as the message of the Lord: I am with you!—oracle of the Lord.

14 And so the Lord stirred up the spirit of the governor of Judah, Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel, and the spirit of the high priest Joshua, son of Jehozadak, and the spirit of all the remnant of the people, so that they came to do the work in the house of the Lord of hosts, their God,15 on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month in the second year[h] of Darius the king.


  1. 1:1 First day of the sixth month in the second year: August 29, 520 B.C. This is the first of six chronological indicators in Haggai. Darius: Darius I, emperor of Persia from 522 to 486 B.C. Governor: term used for local rulers of provinces in the Persian imperial structure. Zerubbabel: grandson of King Jehoiachin (cf. 2 Kgs 24:8–17).
  2. 1:4 Your paneled houses…house lies in ruins: the contrast here is between the unfinished Temple and the completed houses of the Judeans.
  3. 1:5 Reflect on your experience: the prophet exhorts the people to consider the futility of their efforts as a result of their neglecting work on the Temple. The following verses call attention to harsh conditions in Judah after the return from exile and the preoccupation of the people with their personal concerns.
  4. 1:8 That I may be glorified: for the prophet, the rebuilding of the Temple restores the glory God had lost in the eyes of the nations by the Temple’s destruction.
  5. 1:9 Oracle of the Lord: a phrase used extensively in prophetic books to indicate divine speech.
  6. 1:11 Devastating heat: this pronouncement of natural disaster, which functions as a warning to the people for their failure to rebuild the Temple, concludes the opening oracular section of Haggai.
  7. 1:12 The remnant of the people: here the phrase appears to refer to the prophet’s audience, but the “remnant” theme, though often in different Hebrew terminology, suggesting especially those whom the Lord will call back from exile and re-establish as his people, is important in the prophets (cf. Is 4:3; 37:31–32; Jl 3:5; Mi 4:7; Ob 17) and in the New Testament (cf. Rom 11:1–10).
  8. 1:15 Twenty-fourth day of the sixth month in the second year: September 21, 520 B.C. The resumption of work on the Temple occurred twenty-three days from the beginning of Haggai’s prophecy. This date formula repeats in reverse order the formula ofv. 1, thereby bringing to conclusion chap. 1; it also initiates the next unit in 2:1.

Book of Haggai (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 513)

Book of the Prophet Haggai (Taipo Bible Reading Marathon Day 513)

Book of the Prophet HAGGAI

Haggai (1:1) was a prophet who, along with Zechariah, his contemporary, encouraged the returned exiles to
rebuild the temple (see Ezr 5:1–2; 6:14). Haggai means “festal,” which may indicate that the prophet was born
during one of the three pilgrimage feasts (Unleavened Bread, Pentecost or Weeks, and Tabernacles; cf. Dt 16:16).


Based on 2:3 Haggai may have witnessed the destruction of Solomon’s temple. If so, he must have been in his 70s
during his ministry.


10th Book of the 12 Minor Prophets (Old Testament)


Prophet Haggai.

The Book

The Book of Haggai is named after its presumed author, the prophet Haggai. It is a short book, consisting of only
two chapters.

Haggai’s words concern conditions in the Persian province of Judah at the beginning of the postexilic period during
the reign of the Persian king Darius I (522–486 B.C.). The community in Judah is struggling with its identity in light of
the loss of its statehood through the demise of the monarchy and the destruction of the Temple. Haggai’s oracles
address both these problems. First, the provincial government, despite its subordination to Persian hegemony, is
seen as the legitimate heir to the Davidic monarchy; the governor Zerubbabel, himself a descendant of the Davidic
line, and the high priest Joshua together provide political, economic, and religious leadership for the survivors of the
Babylonian destruction and the returnees from the Babylonian exile who live together in Judah. Still, the possibility for
restoration of Davidic rule is not relinquished but rather is shifted to the eschatological future. Second, the Temple’s
ruined state is addressed by a rebuilding program. The prophet links the well-being of the community to the work of
Temple restoration, and his exhortations to the leaders and the people to begin work on this project are apparently
heeded. The brief period of Haggai’s ministry (August to December 520 B.C.) marks the resumption of work on the
Temple, the symbol of divine presence among the people.

Six date formulas (1:1, 15; 2:1, 10, 18, 20) are an important feature of the Book of Haggai. In their specificity and in
their link to the reign of a foreign king (Darius), the dates underscore God’s control over history, as do similar
chronological references in Zechariah, a prophetic book connected in literary and thematic ways to Haggai.

The prophecies of Haggai can be divided into two major parts:

I. The Restoration of the Temple (1:1–15)

II. Oracles of Encouragement (2:1–23)