Read Ezra 4; Haggai 1-2
Finish What You Started
The people who returned to Jerusalem from Babylonian captivity began rebuilding the temple, but they were met with opposition. The Lord sent word to the people through the prophecy of Haggai: “‘Yet now be strong, Zerubbabel,’ says the Lord; ‘and be strong, Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest,; and be strong, all you people of the land,’ says the Lord, ‘and work; for I am with you,’ says the Lord of hosts” (Haggai 2:4).
Brother Roy Deaver astutely commented on this incident, “Obligations do not disappear merely because opposition appears.” This statement remains true today. Christians are faced with opposition on all sides—false denominations posing as truth, false religions that deny the Deity of God, atheism that denies any sort of higher power at all. What is our responsibility in light of all the error we face? “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
Our responsibility is not diminished one bit by error! There is work to be done, and we are the soldiers to do it! Just as God told the men of Israel to “be strong,” He tells His church today the same: “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” (Ephesians 6:10).
Our focus must be on the things of God despite all the evil that surrounds us. Let us not become so distracted by the temporal that we lose sight of what is truly important. “If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:1-3).
Don’t give up when there is work left to be done. Don’t leave undone what you have the ability to do. Even when opposition comes, be strong, knowing that God will give His faithful children the strength to endure and overcome. Finish what you started!