THE DESIRE OF ALL NATIONS
Haggai 2:1 ¶ In the seventh month, in the one and twentieth day of the month, came the word of the LORD by the prophet Haggai, saying, 2 Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest, and to the residue of the people, saying, 3 Who is left among you that saw this house in her first glory? and how do ye see it now? is it not in your eyes in comparison of it as nothing? 4 Yet now be strong, O Zerubbabel, saith the LORD; and be strong, O Joshua, son of Josedech, the high priest; and be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the LORD, and work: for I am with you, saith the LORD of hosts: 5 According to the word that I covenanted with you when ye came out of Egypt, so my spirit remaineth among you: fear ye not. 6 For thus saith the LORD of hosts; Yet once, it is a little while, and I will shake the heavens, and the earth, and the sea, and the dry land; 7 And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the LORD of hosts. 8 The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, saith the LORD of hosts. 9 The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the LORD of hosts: and in this place will I give peace, saith the LORD of hosts.
That Hebrew word here translated “desire,” is translated “pleasant” in Zechariah 7:14, and “precious, in Daniel 11:8. Therefore the most pleasant and precious thing one can be made to desire among the nations of men is salvation by the Lord Jesus Christ! And his “gospel” – his “good news” is to be preached to all nations. Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
The worship of all the redeemed will stem from Christ’s having redeemed them out of every nation, people and language. Revelation 5:9 And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;
And as he redeems them from out of the individual physical nations, he brings them into the church, which is his holy nation! Exodus 19:5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: 6 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel. 1 Peter 2:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
And the prophesy of Haggai speaks of the shaking of all nations, (2:7), for the ‘pleasant’ one of God to come unto them. And as we are told that our faith is established upon both the prophets and apostles words, let us then see what the Apostle Paul states concerning this matter stated by the Prophet Haggai. Ephesians 2:20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
Hebrews 12:25 See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven: 26 Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven. 27 And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: 29 For our God is a consuming fire.
In this New Testament passage we see clearly that the shaking of the nations is that which occurs as the kingdom of Christ is brought forth and established in the earth. It is clearly stated that it is to be a shaking of both the earth and the heavens. That is, it is to affect mankind physically, (shaking of earth), as it brings spiritual change (shaking of the heavens), to their lives as the redemption of the cross is applied to their hearts.
Here is but one example of the shaking of the physical population as the shaking of the spiritual souls took place to relieve them of Satan’s bondage. Acts 13:42 And when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these words might be preached to them the next sabbath. 43 Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the grace of God. 44 And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God. 45 But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spake against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.
And here are the words of the Lord Jesus Christ as how his gospel will shake up earthly families. These words are far from the emotional concepts of church goers in our day. Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. 36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household. 37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
This prophesy of Haggai came as the Lord provided the release of his people from the bondage of Babylon. They had been under that bondage due to their disobedience and sin against him! Haggai 1:1 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, 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.
The gospel comes to mankind who have been under bondage to sin due to their transgressions. And it is the very Person of Christ alone who can deliver the soul from Satan’s grasp! Matthew 4:14 That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, 15 The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; 16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. 17 From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; 15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. Galatians 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.
For Christ alone is The Desire of all nations! John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. Acts 4:10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
And just as Nebuchadnezzar, Darius the Mede, Alexander the Great, and Caesar physically conquered peoples in order to form their kingdoms, so the Lord Jesus, by the Holy Spirit goes forth, making the gospel effectual to the hearts of his believers in order to establish his spiritual and eternal kingdom! Daniel 2:44 And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.
Revelation 6:1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. 2 And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer.
Luke 11:20 But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. 21 When a strong man armed (Satan), keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: 22 But when a stronger than he (Christ), shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.
The prophet prophesies that the Lord God shall overthrow the earthly kingdoms. Haggai 2:22 And I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms, and I will destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the heathen; Then he speaks of the Lord taking one man, pictured by the present governor of Judah as his chosen one to establish his rule. Haggai 2:23 In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, my servant, the son of Shealtiel, saith the LORD, and will make thee as a signet: for I have chosen thee, saith the LORD of hosts.
And God the Father has chosen one man – the Lord Jesus Christ, the god-man, to establish the very rule of God within the entire realm of creation! Colossians 1:17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. 19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell; 2:9 For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. Revelation 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
In verses three and eight of our above listed text the Lord speaks to them concerning the physical beauty of the physical temple. They are grieved that their efforts have not reached the glories of the temple of Solomon. They are only looking on the physical! But the Lord tells them that all gold and silver belong to him. He doesn’t put such value on these outward, physical things. But even in our day, religious men had rather have a great ornate structure, which they call their church, than to have the glories of God’s presence within their hearts!
Consider that verse nine in our text. Then consider this portion of scripture. John 2:19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. 20 Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? 21 But he spake of the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
Here is the problem: 2 Corinthians 4:18 While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. For the true church is not an organization! It is a spiritual organism! And our land is filled with unregenerate church members who can only look on the outward appearance!
The Prophet Malachi spoke of these spiritual matters. Malachi 3:1 Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts. 2 But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap: 3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.
And the Eternal Son of God did suddenly come to his temple! Luke 2:4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) 5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. 6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. Recall in the previous column that the Lord Jesus spake of the temple of his body!
Also remember that all the true, Spirit-born believers are made part of Christ, and therefore are temples themselves! 2 Corinthians 6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Ephesians 2:21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: 22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.
Pastor Gene Breed
January 18, 2018