Spiritual apathy can happen to anyone. The natural drift of our life, priorities, and affections is not toward God but away from Him. When such apathy, busyness, and pride rises in our life we would do well to reflect how the prophet Haggai addressed God’s people.
– Refreshing their vision for God.
Haggai uses the name “Lord of Hosts” (Yahweh Sabbaoth) 14x within 48 verses of the entire book. The name represents a military figure commanding the armies of heaven. The prophet wants to remind Israel that Assyria and Babylon are not all powerful but God is incomparably greater.
Is your vision for life’s problems and pains bigger than God and His promises?
– Rebuking sinful attitudes and actions.
Haggai will harshly rebuke Israel’s sin. The initial rebuke from the Lord is when God says in Haggai 1:2 “These people” and not “my people” (cf. Hosea 2:23). Israel was God’s chosen and treasured possession (Deut 7:6), yet at times their unfaithfulness to the Lord would arouse His anger and rebuke. Once again, God’s discipline is being used to confront and call them to repentance.
Is your vulnerability to being confronted of sin or challenged low and unapproachable?
– Refocusing their faith commitment.
Haggai reminds Israel of their purpose among the nations to be a shining light of God’s presence that was reflected in rebuilding the temple. The house of the Lord was a symbol of God’s presence, purpose, promises, and blessing. The temple was a place where Israel could meet with God, hear His word and respond in worship. Yet, since the temple was destroyed the people could not and did not meet together for corporate worship.
Is your vow of commitment to trust and obey God frequently filled with excuses or far too easily satisfied, and lacking passion and teachability?
Ultimately, when spiritual apathy is present in one’s life we must not take for granted that a person is conscious of their sin and relying solely upon the gospel of Jesus Christ for salvation. We must counsel ourselves, or others, to turn from sinful pride and self-reliance and find the freedom and forgiveness that comes through Jesus. A faith relationship with Jesus Christ will have His Spirit awake our cold or callous passions and renew us toward love and service for Him.