Haggai chapters 1-2 Star Chart: On"the first day of the sixth month of the second year of Darius", 520 B.C., Haggai reproved the people for their apathy in allowing the Temple to lie in ruins and reminded them of their ill success in everything because of their not honoring God as to His house (Hag. 1:1-11). Then "they came and did work in the house of the Lord of hosts, their God, in the four and twentieth day of the sixth month" (1:14-15) in 520 B.C. commencing to build the Temple till "the twenty-first day of the seventh month" (Hag 2:1-9) when Haggai predicted that the glory of the new temple would be greater than that of Solomon's is 27° days. From then until "the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month" (Hag 2:10-23) "the day that the (red radius line) foundation of the Lord's temple was laid" (2:18) from which time forth God promises His blessing is 63° days more making 27 + 63 = 90° days total.
The Glory of This Latter House
Shall Be Greater Than the Former
1:1 In the second year of (Cepheus) Darius the king, in the sixth month, in the first day of the month, came the (red radius) word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet (Orion) unto Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah (Auriga), and to Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest (Aquarius), saying,
520 B.C. “There was indeed,” as Pusey observes, “a second fulfilment of seventy years, from the destruction of the temple by Nebuchadnezzar, b.c. 586, to its consecration in the sixth year of Darius, b.c. 516.Darius came to the throne about the year b.c. 521, and published his edict of permission for the Jews to rebuild the city and temple in the second year of his reign, which was the sixteenth of their return from Babylon.
Haggai began to prophesy in the second year of Darius Hystaspis, i.e., in B.C. 520. (Comp. Haggai 1:1 and Ezra 5:1.) The object of his mission was to rouse the restored exiles from a condition of religious torpor, and induce them to complete the restoration of the Temple. To understand the circumstances under which Haggai began this work we must cast a glance backward at the history of the preceding fifteen years. The favourable edict of the first year of Cyrus (B.C. 536) had brought up to Judæa a congregation of some 42,360 freemen, besides 7,337 male and female slaves. In the seventh month of this year these restored exiles had set up an altar to Jehovah, and had observed the Feast of Tabernacles according to the ancient ordinance. The next year witnessed the foundation of the second House. We read that the joy appropriate to this occasion was damped by the regrets of the aged men who had seen the Temple of Solomon in its magnificence (Ezra 3:12). This form of discouragement is found operating again, after Haggai had persuaded his countrymen to resume the work of building. (See Haggai 2:3.) A more direct obstacle to the business of restoration was the antagonistic attitude of the Samaritans. The semi-idolatrous character of the Samaritan religion had induced Zerubbabel and Joshua to decline the co-operation of their brethren of the north. Irritated at this slight, Rehum and Shimshai incited the heterogeneous tribes who had settled in Samaria, and “weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building.” In order to obtain legal sanction for their proceedings, these adversaries secured the assistance of certain counsellors at the Persian court. This was in the reign of “Ahasuerus” (Cambyses), the successor of Cyrus. Their intrigue, however, did not come to a head till the accession of “Artaxerxes” (the usurper Pseudo-Smerdis, B.C. 522 or 521). In reply to a Samaritan petition alleging that Jerusalem had always been “a rebellious city, and hurtful unto kings and provinces,” Artaxerxes issued an edict forbidding the rebuilding of the city. The prohibition made no mention of the Temple. It was easy, however, for Rehum and Shimshai to extend its scope, and stop the “work of the house of God” “by force and power” (Ezra 4:23-24).
It does not appear that the Jews themselves cared to have it otherwise. The usurper’s reign lasted less than a year, and the accession of Darius Hystaspis (B.C. 521) might well have been regarded as an opportunity for obtaining an abrogation of the adverse decree. But the duties of religion were now regarded with indifference. The wealthy citizens availed themselves of the change of dynasty to commence building private mansions not void of pretension to magnificence (Haggai 1:4; Haggai 1:9). But the dwelling-place of the Most High lay neglected. The work had progressed but slowly during the thirteen years preceding the accession of Artaxerxes. For at least a year and a half it was entirely suspended. It was at the close of this period that Haggai and Zechariah came forward and “prophesied unto the Jews that were in Judah and Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel” (Ezra 5:1). The mission of both prophets dates from the middle of the year B.C. 520, the second year of Darius. Haggai’s earliest utterances. occurred in the sixth and seventh months of that year (Haggai 1:1 to Haggai 2:9). Zechariah next takes up the strain with an exhortation to repentance, dating from the eighth month (Zechariah 1:1-6). Haggai delivers his final address on the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month. Exactly two months later begins Zechariah’s series of visions (Zechariah 1:7 seq.).
The prophecy of Haggai gives us specific chronological marking points (Haggai 1:1, 1:15, 2:1, 2:10, 2:20). The prophecy begins in September, 520 B.C.
In 538 B.C. Cyrus King of Persia allowed the exiled Jews to return to Jerusalem after 70 years in captivity. Two years later (536 B.C.) construction on the temple began, led by Zerubbabel. The work stopped after two years (534 B.C.). After 14 years of neglect, work on the temple resumed in 520 B.C. and was finished four years later in 516 B.C. (Ezra 6:15)
(1) The first (Hag 1:1-15), on the first day of the sixth month of the second year of Darius, 520 B.C., reproved the people for their apathy in allowing the temple to lie in ruins and reminded them of their ill success in everything because of their not honoring God as to His house. The result was that twenty-four days afterwards they commenced building under Zerubbabel (Hag 1:12-15). (2) The second, on the twenty-first day of the seventh month (Hag 2:1-9), predicts that the glory of the new temple would be greater than that of Solomon's, so that the people need not be discouraged by the inferiority in outward splendor of the new, as compared with the old temple, which had so moved to tears the elders who had remembered the old (Ezr 3:12, 13). Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel had implied the same prediction, whence some had doubted whether they ought to proceed with a building so inferior to the former one; but Haggai shows wherein the superior glory was to consist, namely, in the presence of Him who is the "desire of all nations" (Hag 2:7). (3) The third, on the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month (Hag 2:10-19), refers to a period when building materials had been collected, and the workmen had begun to put them together, from which time forth God promises His blessing; it begins with removing their past error as to the efficacy of mere outward observances to cleanse from the taint of disobedience as to the temple building. (4) The fourth (Hag 2:20-23), on the same day as the preceding, was addressed to Zerubbabel, as the representative of the theocratic people, and as having asked as to the national revolutions spoken of in the second prophecy (Hag 2:7).
2 Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, This (Auriga, Orion) people say, The time is not come, the time that the Lord's house should be built.
3 Then came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet (Orion), saying,
4 Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your (red radius line) cieled houses, and this house lie waste?
5 Now therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways.
6 Ye (Aquarius) have sown much, and bring in little (half moon); ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a (solar or lunar) bag with (red radius line) holes.
7 Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways.
8 Go up to the (Milky Way) mountain, and bring (red radius line) wood, and build the (red radius line) house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the Lord.
9 Ye looked for much, and, lo it came to little (half moon bowl); and when ye brought it home, I did (red radius line) blow upon it. Why? saith the Lord of hosts. Because of mine (red radius line) house that is waste, and ye run every man (Perseus) unto his own (red radius line) house.
10 Therefore the heaven over you is stayed from dew, and the earth is stayed from her fruit.
11 And I called for a drought upon the land, and upon the mountains, and upon the (solar) corn, and upon the new wine, and upon the (solar) oil, and upon that which the ground bringeth forth, and upon men, and upon (Taurus) cattle, and upon all the labour of the hands.
12 Then Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel (Auriga), and Joshua the son of Josedech (Aquarius), the high priest, with all the remnant of the (Gemini) people, obeyed the voice of the Lord their God, and the words of Haggai the prophet (Orion), as the Lord their God had sent him, and the people did fear before the Lord.
13 Then spake Haggai (Orion) the Lord's messenger in the Lord's message unto the (Auriga, Aquarius) people, saying, I am with you, saith the Lord.
14 And the Lord stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel (Auriga), governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Josedech (Aquarius), the high priest, and the spirit of all the remnant of the (Gemini) people; and they came and did work in the house of the Lord of hosts, their God,
15 In the four and twentieth day of the sixth month, in the second year of Darius the king.
2 In the seventh month, in the one and twentieth day of the month, came the word of the Lord by the prophet Haggai (Orion), saying,
2 Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah (Auriga), and to Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest (Aquarius), and to the residue of the (Gemini) people, saying,
3 Who is left among you that saw this (red radius line) 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 (Auriga), saith the Lord; and be strong, O Joshua, son of Josedech, the high priest (Aquarius); and be strong, all ye (Gemini) 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 (desirable riches) of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the Lord of hosts.
Notice that our Lord himself is Aries the Lamb who taught in this Temple giving it a greater glory than Solomon's.
“The abundance of the sea shall be converted unto thee, the forces (i.e. ‘resources’ or ‘wealth:’ it is as here a singular noun with a plural verb) of the Gentiles shall come unto thee:” and he adds in almost verbal accordance with this prophecy of Haggai, “they shall bring gold and incense,” and “I will glorify the house of my glory.” Isaiah 60:5-7; Isaiah 60:11; Isaiah 60:13; Isaiah 60:17. See also Isaiah 61:6. Nor is the Messianic reference of the prophecy excluded or obscured by this interpretation. He who satisfies the desire of all nations will call forth and receive the willing offering to Himself of all they hold most desirable, in grateful acknowledgment of the satisfaction they find in Him.
8 The (lunar) silver is mine, and the (solar) 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.
10 In the four and twentieth day of the ninth month, in the second year of Darius, came the word of the Lord by Haggai the prophet (Orion), saying,
exactly three months after the congregation had resumed the building of the temple (cf. Haggai 1:15), and about two months after the second prophecy (Haggai 2:1), a new word of the Lord was uttered through Haggai to the people.
11 Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Ask now the priests concerning the law, saying,
12 If one bear (solar) holy flesh in the skirt of his (Auriga) garment, and with his skirt do touch (solar) bread, or pottage, or wine, or oil, or any meat, shall it be holy? And the priests answered and said, No.
13 Then said (Orion) Haggai, If one that is unclean (Auriga) by a dead body (Perseus) touch any of these (solar foods), shall it be unclean? And the (Aquarius and Orion) priests answered and said, It shall be unclean.
14 Then answered Haggai (Orion), and said, So is this (Gemini) people, and so is this nation before me, saith the Lord; and so is every work of their hands; and that which they offer there is (black Zodiac) unclean.
15 And now, I pray you, consider from this day and upward, from before a (lunar) stone was laid upon a (solar) stone in the (red radius line) temple of the Lord:
16 Since those days were, when one came to an heap of twenty measures, there were but ten (half moon): when one came to the (Aquarius) pressfat for to draw out fifty vessels out of the press, there were but twenty (half moon).
17 I smote you with (red radius) blasting and with mildew and with hail in all the labours of your hands; yet ye turned not to me, saith the Lord.
18 Consider now from this day and upward, from the four and twentieth day of the ninth month, even from the day that the foundation of the Lord's temple was laid, consider it.
19 Is the seed yet in the (red radius) barn? yea, as yet the (green Milky Way) vine, and the fig tree, and the pomegranate, and the olive tree, hath not brought forth: from this day will I bless you.
20 And again the word of the Lord came unto Haggai (Orion) in the four and twentieth day of the month, saying,
21 Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying, I will shake the heavens and the earth;
22 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 (Auriga) chariots, and those that ride in them (Auriga); and the (Pegasus) horses and their (Auriga) riders shall come down, every one by the (Orion and Perseus) sword of his brother.
23 In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, my (Orion) servant, the son of Shealtiel, saith the Lord, and will make thee as a (solar) signet: for I have chosen thee, saith the Lord of hosts.
"The Desire of All Nations Shall Come"
Haggai 2:6-9 says, "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; 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. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, saith the Lord of hosts. 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."
"I will shake all nations" refers to the civil wars of Rome as well as the wars Rome fought against other nations. For instance, the Battle of Actium in 31 B.C. where the empire of Ptolemaic Egypt was defeated by Rome; and the Battle of Magnesia in 190 B.C. where the Seleucid Syrians were defeated by Rome. "The glory of this latter house (built by Zerubbabel) shall be greater than of the former (built by Solomon)." How is this possible? In Ezra 3:12 the people wept with disappointment when they compared the Second Temple with the first built by Solomon. It was a poor replica. Although Herod remodelled Zerubbabel's Second Temple, he didn't cause it to surpass the glory of Solomon's Temple. How could God make the inferior building into a superior building? Of course one answer is that Christians collectively became a Temple when they received the gift of the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:19-22; 1 Pet. 2:5). "I WILL DWELL IN THEM AND WALK AMONG THEM; AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE" (2 Cor. 6:14). But strictly speaking of the physical building, Christ actually did dwell in, and walk in, and teach in the literal Second Temple and thereby GLORIFIED it more than Solomon's Temple (Luke 2:22-26; John 7:14-43). That Temple was destroyed in 70 A.D. Either the Messiah "CAME" to that Temple and GLORIFIED it before 70 A.D., or Haggai was false.
But was Jesus desired by the nations of that time? Yes.
Josephus says that the JEWS were "incited ... to war" by "an ambiguous oracle" "found in their sacred Scriptures, to the effect that at that time one from their country would become ruler of the world. This they understood to mean someone of their own race, and many of their wise men went astray in their interpretation of it" (Wars 6:5:4). Six thousand Pharisaic Jews refused to swear an oath to Caesar on the basis of "Him who would some day be set over the people with the title of King, for all power would belong to him" (Josephus, Ant., 17, 2, 4). They DESIRED the Messiah. It was because Herod knew they were expecting a Divine king at this time due to Daniel's 70-Weeks Prophecy, that he remodelled the Jerusalem Temple intending to show that he was the fulfillment of Haggai's prophecy. See Herod's speech in
The CHINESE expected the appearance of the "Holy One":
The Chinese philosopher, K'ung Fu-Tze (Confucius), predicted the coming: "The Holy One must be sought in the West." Verbally handed down from father to son, "by the year 64 after the Christian Era, the Emperor Mimti, we are told, under the influence of this expectation sent messengers westward into India, that there they might enquire for the long-predicted Holy One of Confucius" (Du Halde's China, Vol. I., 360,361; Le Compte's China, 118,200).
The pagan ROMANS expected His appearance:
Referring to the siege of Jerusalem the royal historian writes, "Prodigies had occurred, which this nation [the Jews], prone to superstition, but hating all [non-Jewish] religious rites, did not seem it lawful to expiate. There had been seen hosts joining battle in the skies, the fiery gleam of arms, the temple illuminated by a sudden radiance from the clouds. The doors of the inner shrine were suddenly thrown open, and a voice of more than mortal tone was heard to cry that the Gods were departing. At the same instant there was a mighty stir as of departure. Some few put a fearful meaning on these events, but on most there was a firm persuasion that in the ancient records of their priests was contained a prediction of how at this very time the East was to grow powerful, and rulers, coming from Judaea, were to acquire universal empire" (Tacitus, Histories, 5:13). Also consider the pagan poet Virgil. His Eclogues were completed and published in Rome "when he was about thirty" or circa 40 BCE (James Rhoades, The Poems of Virgil, 1952, v). In Eclogue IV, Lonsdale and Lee translate his remarkable prophecy of Roman desire for the Messiah in these words, "A god-like child shall be born... come quickly to receive your power for all the world awaits you. Oh that I may live to see so noble a subject for my verse!" (Works of Virgil). Virgil based his Eclogue IV on a previous prophecy by the Sibyl of Cumae, given in 63 BCE She had said, according to Suetonius, "Nature is about to bring forth a king to the Roman people". If nature was to usher in such a ruler, it would be an event of some prominence. Suetonius has much more to add, "Throughout the whole East, an ancient and constant opinion had familiarly prevailed; that they who proceeded from Judaea were fated to obtain the sovereignty of the world" (Suetonius, Life of Vespasian, IV). Nero was even advised by astrologers to set up his headquarters in Jerusalem as it was to become the centre of world rule (Suetonius, Nero, 40).
The PARTHIAN Magi astrologer-priests expected Him (Matthew 2)
The Parthians rose to power around 250 B.C. around the southern shores of the Caspian Sea. That was the same land to which the ten lost tribes of Israelites had been taken captive. They migrated west by 226 A.D. The geographer Strabo describes the Parthian king's council which "consists of two groups, one that of kinsmen [king's relatives], and the other that of WISE MEN and MAGI, from both of which groups the kings were appointed" (Geography 11.9.3). Therefore the Magi of Matthew 2 were Israelites following the star (an angel) and the prophecy of Numbers 24:17 -- "There shall come a star out of Jacob and a scepter shall rise out of Israel." The Magi (magician-priests), numbering very probably twelve, went to great pains "to follow [the king's] star" to Bethlehem.
The Kushites of INDIA expected Him:
We know that the ruler of India sent scouts into Palestine, very nearly coinciding with the actual birth of Yeshua, "to know whether the predicted royal child had actually made his appearance" (Jones, Asiatic Researches, Vol.X., 27,28). Some speculate that the Indians received this knowledge of the expected appearance of the Messiah from the Magi, and this may have some ground of proof. But it should be recalled that Israelites were making voyages around the world at the time of King Solomon which were taking three years and more to complete (1 Kings 10.22-24; James Bailey, The God-Kings and the Titans: The New World Ascendancy in Ancient Times, 1973; Rene Noorbergen, Secrets of the Lost Races, 1977; John Philip Cohane, The Key, 1969, 1973; Cyrus H. Gordon, Before Columbus. Links Between the Old World & Ancient America, 1971).
The MAYANS of North America expected Him:
Spence in Myths and Legends, says that gods worshipped by this ancient people "had promised not to desert mankind altogether, but to return at some future indefinite period and resumde their sway of radiance and peace" (Volume on Mexico and Peru, p.169). Separated from Palestine by thousands of miles and thousands of years, the Mayan Indians of Yukatan, Mexico expected the Messiah.
Christ's birth was officially recorded in a Roman Census record. The Roman Emperor Julian (called "the Apostate" because he turned from Christianity to paganism) attempted to destroy Christianity within the Roman Empire. In his antagonism toward Christianity, he said, "Jesus, whom you celebrate, was one of Caesar's subjects. If you dispute it, I will prove it by and by; but it may as well be done now. For you yourselves allow that he was enrolled with his father and mother in the time of Cyrenius" (Nathaniel Lardner's Works, vol. 7, p. 626-627). Julian didn't deny that Jesus was a real person. Luke records this very census under Cyrenius in chapter 2. A stone found by archaeologists in Rome in 1764 proves that Cyrenius did rule Syria twice, exactly when Luke says he did. The Romans had the census figures of 4 B.C. in their royal files, with Jesus and his family name recorded there as late as 350 A.D. Furthermore, Justin Martyr in 105 A.D. said, "Now there is a village in the land of the Jews, thirty-five stadia from Jerusalem, in which Christ was born, as you can ascertain also from the registries of the taxing under Quirinius your first procurator in Judaea" (First Apology, ch. 34). Appealing to public records that didn't exist would be a huge blunder -- unless these records really existed.