Few sermons or Bible studies focus on Ezra or Haggai, two brief Old Testament books named for relatively unknown figures. But the message of both of these books—their emphasis on building for God, obedience to his Word, and openness to his Spirit—is one that needs to be heard clearly today.
In this Bible Speaks Today volume, Robert Fyall's pairing of Ezra with Haggai enhances our appreciation of each. The background to the books is the exile of Judah to Babylon and the return from exile following the edict of Cyrus. Ezra narrates the history of the period, while Haggai records a prophet's exhortation to the people who had ceased building the temple because of external opposition and internal failure of nerve. Throughout these chapters we see how the greater purposes of God provide encouragement to God's people in dispiriting times.
Fyall highlights parallels between the challenges Israel faced and those of today's church, demonstrating the relevance of the books of Ezra and Haggai for God's people in all times. With passage-by-passage exposition of the biblical text, this resource will be helpful for pastors, teachers, and anyone who wants to dive deeper into these seldom-discussed Old Testament books.
This revised edition of a classic volume features lightly updated language and Scripture quotations with a new interior design.
Part 1: The message of Ezra
1. The ransomed of the Lord return (1:1-11)
2. What’s in a name? (2:1-70)
3. Getting priorities right (3:1-6)
4. Starting to take shape (3:7-13)
5. The vultures gather (4:1-24)
6. God’s work cannot be stopped (5:1-17)
7. The king and the King (6:1-22)
8. God’s man arrives (7:1-10)
9. The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord (7:11-28)
10. Another exodus (8:1-36)
11. Faithless people; faithful God (9:1-15)
12. Not a happy ending (10:1-44)
Part 2: The message of Haggai
13. When are we to build? (1:1-2)
14. A wake-up call (1:3-11)
15. At the centre (1:12-15)
16. Better days are coming! (2:1-9)
17. Count your blessings (2:10-19)
18. The best is yet to be (2:20-23)