Jesus spoke in parables. God spoke through stories. The point was to illustrate a truth. Stories and parables paint a picture of a principle. And as I was reading through Haggai this week, I saw an amazing illustration of our righteousness in Christ.
To set it up, the Book of Haggai revolves around God’s command to rebuild His house. The former temple, built by Solomon, had been destroyed and instead of making its reconstruction a priority, the people had built houses for themselves and left God’s house in ruins which prompted God to reprimand them for their negligence.
This was in the days of King Darius, who had become supportive of God’s people in part due to his relationship with Daniel. So no obstacle there. Secondly, God used Haggai, the prophet, to stir the people up because they had lost vision and hope in their self-centeredness. But after three months of building, God said through Haggai: “Who is left among you who saw this temple in its former glory? And how do you see it now? In comparison with it, is this not in your eyes as nothing?” (Haggis 2:3).
Here’s where you and I come in.
In comparison with God’s first creation of man, we’re not much to look at. None of us saw Adam in all his glory, but we understand through God’s Word that there is a glory we will be returning to. In fact, the Bible says, “For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed in our habitation which is from heaven, if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked” (2 Corinthians 5:1-3).
So going back to Haggai and the rebuilding of the temple, I came across a commentary by Charles Spurgeon. He said, “The second temple was never intended to be as magnificent as the first.” In other words, the splendors of the former house which was erected by Solomon could easily have been duplicated by the wealth of King Darius–but that wasn’t God’s plan.
God wanted to paint a picture.
“The silver is Mine, and the gold is Mine,” says, the Lord of hosts. “The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former,” says the Lord of hosts. “And in this place I will give peace,” says the Lord of hosts (Haggai 2:8-9).
THINK ABOUT THAT!
- The latter temple would carry God’s glory (that’s you and me)!
- The latter temple would have peace (that’s God’s reconciliation with man)!
- The latter temple (without the silver and gold) would still be GREATER than the former!
In other words, when God put CHRIST IN US, we may appear as nothing in comparison on the outside, but the GLORY OF GOD which formerly had to be contained in a box in the temple, is now the FULLNESS OF THE MAN OR WOMAN WHO HAS SALVATION!
This is greater!
And God calls it righteousness. When He fills us with His Spirit at salvation and we become new in His sight, the fullness of His illustration of the rebuilt temple becomes evident! “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him… the temple of the living God” (2 Corinthians 5:21, 6:16).
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Don’t let the devil feed you insecurities. The glory is within you!
When God says you can do great things, believe Him. The glory is within you!