And the elders of the Jews built, and they prospered through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo…
From this subject we learn —
1. That man in this world needs a sanctuary, in which he may call on the name of the Lord his God. We are closely bound to the material globe, and the holiest affections. The most spiritual exercises naturally cling round some sacred spot where we have been accustomed to meet with God and with His people. Speaking of an old village church, Washington Irving says, "For my part, there are feelings that visit me in a country church, amid the beautiful serenity of nature, which I experience nowhere else; and, if not a more religious, I think I am a better man on Sunday than on any other day of the seven." This principle lies deep in human nature. Among the most sacred memories of life are the childhood recollections which carry us back to the old familiar church, which then seemed so grand and impressive, where with father and mother we reverently worshipped God.
2. We learn that toil and sacrifice enter into the building of these sanctuaries. God does not ask for that which costs us nothing. Sacrifice may not be needed by Him, but it is necessary for us, and without it human nature cannot attain its highest and best.
3. We learn not to neglect the sanctuary.
(E. B. Mason.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And the elders of the Jews builded, and they prospered through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo. And they builded, and finished it, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and according to the commandment of Cyrus, and Darius, and Artaxerxes king of Persia.
WEB: The elders of the Jews built and prospered, through the prophesying of Haggai the prophet and Zechariah the son of Iddo. They built and finished it, according to the commandment of the God of Israel, and according to the decree of Cyrus, and Darius, and Artaxerxes king of Persia.