Let’s read Haggai 2:6-7, “For thus says the LORD of hosts: ‘Once more (it is a little while) I will shake the heaven and earth, the sea and the dry land; and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the LORD of hosts” (NKJV).

In order to understand this “prophecy of a future judgment and a future temple,” it’s important to get the context. Haggai was a “Post-captivity prophet,” for he was raised up by God during the days after the Babylonian captivity. God, in His grace, allowed those who had been in captivity in Babylon for 70 years to return to Jerusalem in order to rebuild the temple and the city. After the temple had been rebuilt, God spoke the following words through His prophet, “The word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet, saying: ‘Speak now to Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people, saying: Who is left among you who SAW THIS TEMPLE IN ITS FORMER GLORY” And how do you see it now? IN COMPARISON WITH IT, IS THIS NOT IN YOUR EYES AS NOTHING’” (2:2-3)? God knew that, by comparison, the former temple (built by Solomon) was much more magnificent than what had just been rebuilt. God also knew that there were some who had seen both temples and He inspired Ezra to record their reaction to what they saw. Ezra 3:11-12 says, “Then all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid. But many of the priests and Levites and heads of the fathers’ houses, OLD MEN WHO HAD SEEN THE FIRST TEMPLE, WEPT WITH A LOUD VOICE when the foundation of this temple was laid before their eyes.” Compared to the temple’s FORMER GLORY, this temple was indeed “as nothing” in their eyes!

In our verses under consideration, God encourages those leaders with the absolute assurance that in a coming day a temple would be built which will outshine the glory of all of their previous temples. We sometimes use the rather crude expression, “You ain’t seen nothing yet.” In this blessed prophecy God is telling these old men, “You think the glory of Solomon’s temple was great, wait until you see the temple that will be built in a coming day when I fill it with surpassing glory!”

When will this temple actually be built? It will be built AFTER God judges the nations. That is the subject of our passage. God is going to “shake all nations” for their pride and rebellion against Him. This is repeated in verses 20-22, “And again the word of the LORD came to Haggai…speak to Zerubbabel…saying: ‘I will shake heaven and earth. I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms; I will destroy the strength of the Gentile kingdoms.” This judgment of the nations was predicted by many of the Old Testament prophets. One of the most graphic prophecies is seen in the book of Daniel. King Nebuchadnezzar was given a dream of a great image of a man and Daniel interpreted the dream by telling him the image speaks of four great Gentile Kingdoms that would rise up in rebellion against God and His earthly people Israel. He then went on to describe the destruction of those Gentile kingdoms with these words: “You watched while a stone was cut out without hands, which STRUCK THE IMAGE on its feet of iron and clay, and BROKE THEM IN PIECES” (Daniel 2:34). Yes, God is going to “shake all nations” and smash them to smithereens! But Daniel didn’t stop there, for he went on to say, “And the stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth” (verse 35). The “stone” is a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ (see Psalm 118:22 and Matthew 21:42-44) and the “mountain” speaks of His glorious KINGDOM. He will sit on His throne and establish His Millennium Kingdom (see Matthew 25:31-34 and Revelation 20:4) and when He does, a temple will be built (see Ezekiel chapters 40-43) and God “will fill this temple with glory!” (298.7) (DO)