Haggai, Zechariah & Malachi
Teacher: Rebecca Murdock
These often overlooked last three books of the Old Testament merit our attention for a number of reasons. Keep these in mind as you read this week:
HAGGAI: (honeymoon phase of returning to God)
- The joy of returning home after exile.
- How human it is to want to build our own empires first, instead of building the kingdom of God.
- How quickly correction was accepted and applied, and the blessings that ensued.
- Hope for the future of the covenant finally working the way it was supposed to.
- Helpful dates included by Haggai.
ZECHARIAH: (hope for a better relationship with God)
- Haggai and Zechariah ministering around the same time period.
- Similar language and symbolism as that of Revelation, setting a tone.
- Weird imagery, but pointing toward the Messiah to come.
- Changing of high priest’s filthy clothes to that of a ruler - symbolic of God’s people if they obey Him.
- Hope for a new international kingdom and judgment on Israel’s enemies.
- A recommitment from God of what He will do if the Israelites are obedient.
MALACHI: (the relationship begins to fall apart again)
- The Israelites are again doubting God’s love and interest in them, challenging God to prove it.
- God proves his love, but also asks “where is the honor due me?” challenging their half-hearted sacrifices.
- A conversation with the priests, using imagery from Leviticus and Deuteronomy, about what defilement looks like through injustice.
- A list of all the ways covenant has been broken.
- Some mercy offered to a small remnant who has been faithful, but an overall frustrated God bookending a testament that started so beautifully in covenant marriage and now is ending in a bitter separation.
Listen to the book of Haggai from BibleGateway: ESV, KJV, MSG, NIV, NKJV
Short Outline of the Book of Haggai from the English Standard Version:
- The command to rebuild the Temple (1:1-15)
- Messages of comfort and hope (2:1-13)
Listen to the book of Zechariah from BibleGateway: ESV, KJV, MSG, NIV, NKJV
Short Outline of the Book of Zechariah from the Today's English Version:
- Messages of warning and hope (1:1 – 8:23)
- Judgment on Israel’s neighbors (9:1-8)
- Future prosperity and peace (9:9 – 14:21)
Listen to the book of Malachi from BibleGateway: ESV, KJV, MSG, NIV, NKJV
Short Outline of the Book of Malachi from the Today's English Version:
- Israel’s sins (1:1 – 2:16)
- God’s judgment and his mercy (2:17 – 4:6)