A Word Of Encouragement

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Haggai 2:1-9

1.  God's work is always under attack. The enemy will hinder in any way he can.

2.  Upon returning from captivity, the Jews were hindered through selfishness (see the earlier part of Haggai).

a. They said, “The time is not come, the time that the Lord's house should be built."

b.  A more convenient season was always in the future, but it never came.

(1)     Maybe it was too hot, then it was too cold

(2)     Maybe it was too wet, then the fair weather required that they should be in their own fields.

3.       The prophet cried, "Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your ceiled houses, and this house lie waste?"  The people repented and returned to the work.

4.       Soon, complaints began to mount.  Someone said, "This temple isn't as beautiful as Solomon's."

Feeling that their work was small and insignificant, the people had little heart to go on.  They became discouraged by the humiliating contrast and they again began to quit.

5. God spoke again by his prophet and said, "I am with you, saith the Lord of hosts."

With this word of encouragement, God assured them that their work was important.

6. In our day, we often encounter similar circumstances.

a.  We get discouraged because we feel our labors are insignificant and unnoticed.

b.  But God says, "Work . . . for my Spirit remaineth among you."

THESIS:    The presence of the Holy Spirit should deliver us from discouragement and cause us to finish the work that God has called us to do.


A.      Discouragement is a natural reality with man.

-On the one hand, to believe is supernatural, faith is the work of the Spirit of God

-On the other hand, to doubt is natural to fallen humanity

-Discouragement is a weed that grows very easily without sowing.

-Discouragement often gives rise to faulty perception

B. Discouragement comes from an inferiority complex.

-We consider the great things God has asked from us, but we see the small things we are able to achieve.

-The people of Haggai's day were ashamed of the temple they were building. It was not as grand as that of Solomon. Thus, they gave up.

C.      Discouragement comes from comparing ourselves with others.

Whenever we contrast our work with that of others we may become discouraged.

-Someone else will always have a bigger church.

-Someone else will always have more tithes.

-Someone else will always win more souls.

-Someone else will always have a larger following.

-Someone else will always be doing more than we are doing.

D.      Discouragement comes from comparing ourselves to the past.

Whenever we contrast our work with that of the past, we may become discouraged.

-Remember the good-old-days?

-What a revival we had back then!

-What conversions!

-What power!

-How the Holy Spirit would fall!

-Surely we must be doing nothing compared to the good-old-days.

On the contrary, the Holy Spirit is still in our midst, and God is moving today.

E. Discouragement comes even to the most spiritual among us.



-Israel----- --They were discouraged at the Red Sea

They were discouraged when they found no water;

They were discouraged when they had eaten up the bread which they brought out of Egypt;

They were discouraged when they heard of the giants of Canaan, and of the cities walled to heaven.

F. What has been the result of such discouragement?

-The fearful and unbelieving have brought terrible disasters upon the church.

-Discouragement is an epidemic in the church. It is as common as mosquito bites in Arkansas.

Oh that God would save us all from discouragement, and cause us to stand up and be counted.

G.      Discouragement causes weakness.

-Three times the prophet said, "Be strong!"

-Faith gives us power, but discouragement makes us limp as a dishrag.

-God wants a church that will be strong in faith.

-We need men and women who know God and love the truth.

H.      Discouragement detracts us from God's work.

-It is significant that the prophet said to them, "Be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the Lord, and work."

-When the people of Israel began to talk and argue, they ceased to build.

          -Everyone had observations and criticisms but the walls did not rise.

-One person knew exactly how big the former temple was; another declared that their present architect was not up to the mark.

-One objected to this, and another to that.

-Whenever the church becomes discouraged, we begin to talk but we cease to work.

-Everyone knows how it ought to be done, but nobody is willing to do it.

-The Spirit of God is not in us to make us talk and argue, but to give us the power to minister and do God's work.



A.      Discouragement is defeated by remembering God's promises.

God said, "According to the word that I covenanted with you when ye came out of Egypt, so my spirit remaineth among you: fear ye not."

Remember God's promises, for surely God remembers them.

When the people came out of Egypt, the Lord was with them by His Spirit.

-His Spirit spoke to them by Moses.

-His Spirit guided and judged them.

-His Spirit rested upon the 70 elders.

-His Spirit descended upon the church at Pentecost, and He  has never one time since left her alone.

-His Spirit is working in the church.

-His Spirit remaineth with us.

The Lord was also with His people in the pillar of fire.

B. Discouragement is defeated by relying on the Holy Spirit.

Why is the Spirit among us?

-He is among us to empower us for the work of ministry.

-He is among us to anoint us for service.

-He is among us to give ability in the exercise of the gifts He has given to every believer.

-He is among us to provide healing.

-He is among us to make prayer in our stead.

-He is among us to direct our worship.

C.      Discouragement is defeated by resting in God's provision.

The people of Haggai's day feared that they could not finish the work because of their poverty.

-God declared, “The silver and the gold are mine."

-God will provide for the needs of his church.


1.       Jesus said, "Behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be."

2.       "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord."

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