How God Gets Things Done
The first two verses tell of how God stirred up two of His prophets to bring about the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem. The words of these two prophets can be found in the two Old Testament books that bear their names, Haggai and Zechariah.
They began prophesying in about 520 BC and the Temple was completed about 516 BC.
The remaining verses recount further opposition to this renewal of activity inspired by the word of God carried by the two prophets. King Darius (522-486 BC) followed the initial Persian king Cyrus (559-530 BC). The opposition was unsuccessful as you will read in the next chapter.
There can be seen here the way God works in the affairs of human beings. He works by his word and by his ability to influence the affairs of people like Darius and the record-keepers of the Persian Empire,
Our calling is to act on God’s words of promise and direction. God will work out the circumstances of life as He determines.
So Psalm 1 says:
Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.
Living as God’s “Israel”
The words of this passage hardly need to be explained; they simply need to be practised. Why? Because this is the character of life in the Kingdom of God. This is the life of heaven upon earth. This is the life that God wills for those whom he has drawn to be his children through faith in Jesus.
Reflect on these following verses that speak of the work of the Triune God for us and in us:
Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)
10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Colossians 1:21-22 (NIV)
21 Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because ofa your evil behavior. 22 But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation—
Galatians 5:22-26 (NIV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
We are citizens of heaven now by the grace of God, called to live the life of heaven here in the fallen world by the grace and work of God. Perfection lies in the future but we are called to walk this path daily at the present time bearing in mind both the “Now” and “Not Yet” aspects of God’s perfect salvation.