Wednesday, October 22, 2008

HIS Signet Ring!

HIS Signet Ring!

The other day I decided to read the book of Haggai…
It’s very short – only 2 chapters – but I couldn’t recall anything
about it so I read it again.

This small book spoke to me –
I contemplated how, I too, should consider my ways!
Do I live out my first passion for Him?
Is worshipping Him at the center of my life?
Am I obedient to carry on His work even under pressure from my “enemies” to cease the work?
Can He say of me – that He will make of me His signet ring?
Lots to think and pray about!

The Nelson Study Bible (NKJV) states this about Haggai –

Haggai was a prophet to the Jews who returned from the exile to Babylon. His first task was to make them see where their hearts and priorities lay.
He urged them to do what they should have done from the start:
rebuild the temple with a willing heart.
He added to this the promise that God would be with them;
they could then return to their first enthusiasm and carry out
God’s purposes for them.
Then their worship would be joyful and sincere.

These people had resolved, after their return from captivity, to restore the worship of God to its rightful place at the center of their lives.
However, shortly after their arrival in Jerusalem their resolve vanished…
They built an altar on the temple site, laid the foundation for the new temple, but when the King ordered the work on the temple to cease
because of pressure from their enemies –
they ceased their work and made excuse for doing so.

Later, the restriction was lifted by another emperor.
But by then the people had lost their passion to worship the living God.
Haggai exhorted them to focus on their spiritual condition!

Zerubbabel the governor, Joshua the high priest, along with a remnant of the people responded to Haggai’s words from God, were obedient,
and began to work on the temple.
God promised to be with them.

You can read all about this in Haggai, chapters 1 and 2.

Chapter 2, Verse 23 really jumped off the pages of my Bible –

‘In that day,’ says the Lord of hosts, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel My servant, the son of Shealtiel,’ says the Lord, ‘and will make you like my signet ring; for I have chosen you,’ says the Lord of hosts.’
Haggai 2:23

In days gone by a signet ring was used to declare one’s authority, one’s identity, to validate that a message was from a certain person.
The ring would be pressed into soft clay or wax and then impressed on an
official document, or envelope… making a seal…
once the clay or wax dried there was no disputing whose ring it was!

How amazing it is that God spoke to Zerubbabel and said he would make him like a signet ring – He had chosen him.
God was indicting that he valued Zerubbabel and that he was God’s representative amongst the people.

Amazing – because years before God had cursed Zerubbabel’s grandfather…
Read: 2 kings 24:8-12
Jeremiah 23:24-30

Amazing – God forgave Zerubbabel because of his obedience and did not hold the sins of his grandfather against him!
Praise God!

Do you recall the story of the prodigal son?
It can be found in Luke 15:11-32
Verse 22 – “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet.”

Think with me for a minute…
Was this a signet ring?
Did it bear the family seal?
Did it signify the son’s return and acceptance into the family?
Did it indicate the value this father placed on this son?

We who have accepted Christ have been sealed with the Holy Spirit…
He has called us valuable; He has given us a new identity;
He has enabled us with His power and authority because of the Holy Spirit in us!

We are like His signet ring in this world we live in today!
We leave a mark – a deposit – a seal – of HIM - wherever we go, whatever we do!

May we be ever conscious of our attitudes, our behaviours,
our words, — our everything!
As these show Whose we are to the world!
May my life, may your life, be a reflection, a symbol, of Him to this world!

Praying you have been spoken to by His Word today!

I remain Resting in HIM,

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