I’ve been spending some time in the later prophets and the Lord has challenged me on a number of occasions, but yesterday morning His challenge hit me head on. I was reading in Haggai and it came after the last six verses of Chapter 2:
Hag 2:20-23 And again the word of the Lord came unto Haggai in the four and twentieth day of the month, saying, Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying, I will shake the heavens and the earth; And I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms, and I will destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the heathen; and I will overthrow the chariots, and those that ride in them; and the horses and their riders shall come down, every one by the sword of his brother. 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. KJV
This message was for Zerubbabel, the governor of Judah, but it is certainly an encouragement to the bride of Christ today… 1) Hang onto the perishable things of life loosely; the temporal things, and 2) Grasp hold of and hang on tightly to the Kingdom of God; the unshakable kingdom. Or as I thought at the moment: Don’t focus on temporal happiness, focus on eternal joy.
Hang On To The Perishable Things of Life Loosely
God repeated what He had told Zerubbabel in 2:6-9; I will shake heaven and earth. He wasn’t referring to the pending shake of up of the Persian empire. Here His message is in connection to the coming of the Lord … In that day. He is going to remove everything that is temporal, everything that is changeable, and replace it with the eternal. We see that same message in Peter’s challenge to us:
2 Peter 3:10-12 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? KJV
And from the letter to the Hebrews:
Heb 12:26-28 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: KJV
What does the bride need? To hold on tight to those things which cannot be shaken. Everything that can be shaken, the transitory things in life, are to be held loosely. Facing the certain fact that this world and all of its things are going to pass away, how important is it that we watch ourselves with regard to the way we cling to the stuff of this world. Why would we want to risk our spiritual health by hanging on to the things of this world for a brief season when we have a kingdom from God that is eternal?
Hold On Tightly To The Unshakable Kingdom of God
The nations that try to oppose God on That Day will only succeed in destroying themselves by self-destructing wars. God will destroy them just as He did Pharaoh’s army and this time He will do it by My servant (vs 23). As used here the term refers to the Messiah. A second reference to the Messiah is a signet (ring), the emblem of the office and authority of David’s kingdom. Our signet as a man is Jesus, who came in the flesh in the line of David. The unshakable kingdom of our Lord is centered on the One who will restore the fallen kingdom of David. All that is not His kingdom will be reduced to what they are in reality; man’s kingdoms.
What does the bride need? She needs to be holy just as her bridegroom is holy (1 Pet 1:15-16). We need to turn from the fleshly things of life (sin) and grab hold of spiritual understanding and hold on tightly. Everything is going to be shaken and in the interim our enemy is going to continue his subtle battle to draw us away from God’s service one way or another. But He that is in us is greater than he that is in the world (1 John 4:4). Our focus must be fixed on Him and our relationship must never be traded for the cheap and temporary things of this world.
What does the bride need to do? The church is crying out for revival but by and large it is clinging on to the ways of the world. God wants us to have revival, He wants to see revival break out all over America, but He will not bring it until revival begins in His bride. And that is not going to happen until each and every believer repents of those things that are drawing him or her away from the Lord. That is when we will see revival and the power of the Spirit in our churches, that’s when we will see the lost open their eyes and grasp on to the hope of the message Jesus’ bride is ready to deliver.
A closing thought, my personal opinion… In my heart I believe that if there is going to be an end time revival it is going to begin in the small congregations that that are hungry for the Spirit of God. That is where He is pouring out His Spirit, those churches that are ready to let go of the world all over this country. There are going to be small fires all over America that will birth a national revival. But it has to begin with repentance at the individual level and shunning the temporal things of this world and grabbing onto the eternal things of the Spirit.
What does the bride need? To be spending a great deal of time on her knees.