New Defender's Study Bible Notes
2:3 left among you. There is an implication here that Haggai himself must have seen the glories of the first temple, and was distressed at the state of the new one. If so, he must have been quite old when he wrote his prophecies, because the temple had been destroyed seventy years or more before this. His great age may account for the fact that he wrote only the four brief messages which are contained in his two chapters.
2:3 in comparison of it. There were, indeed, in Jerusalem a few who had seen the first temple, and who had “wept with a loud voice; and many shouted aloud with for joy” when the new foundation was laid (Ezra 3:12).
2:6 shake the heavens. This verse is quoted in Hebrews 12:26, 27, as an event still in the future. Thus, it could not have been fulfilled at the time of Christ’s first coming (except precursively, perhaps, as a type of the terrible upheavals coming in the tribulation period), and so must be still in the future.
2:7 shake all nations. There will be global earthquakes during the tribulation period of the last days (Revelation 6:12-17; 16:18-21), whereby the earth’s topography will be readjusted to something like its original character. Also note Isaiah 40:4.
2:7 desire of all nations. The “desire of all nations” can be no one less than the Lord Jesus Christ, the world’s Redeemer. He did, in a precursive sense, fill Herod’s temple with His glory (see John 1:14; 2:13-16), but never the restoration temple. This specific prophecy evidently harks back to the Edenic promise of Genesis 3:15. He was not merely the desire of Israel, but the “desire of all nations!” Some versions incorrectly say this refers to the wealth of all nations coming to the temple.
2:7 this house with glory. Following the tribulation period, with its terrible earthquakes and other cataclysmic phenomena, the Lord Jesus Christ will return in glory (Matthew 24:30; Isaiah 40:5; etc.). There is no indication that the shekinah glory of God ever returned to the post-exilic temple or to the later temple built for the Jews by Herod. These were of much inferior construction compared to Solomon’s temple. But the temple described by Ezekiel as existing during the millennium (Ezekiel 40–48) will, indeed, once again be filled with the glory of God (Ezekiel 43:5; 44:4; compare I Kings 8:10-11).
2:8 the gold is mine. This may be an incidental reference to the incredible wealth of ornamental beauty that characterized Solomon’s original temple. But it also was a pertinent reminder to the Jews with their “cieled houses” (Haggai 1:4) that all the world’s wealth was created by God and still belongs to Him. He can both give it and take it away! We need the same reminder today.
2:9 this latter house. This, again, can only be a reference to the future millennial temple, for it was never accomplished in the restoration temple or in any other since. Furthermore, in this future temple—and not before—Christ will finally “give peace” to the world.
2:12 shall it be holy. The questions in Haggai 2:12-13 are dealing with the ceremonial laws of Moses (Haggai 2:11). One such group of laws stipulated that ritualistic cleanness is not transferable.
2:13 shall it be unclean. On the other hand, ceremonial uncleanness is easily transferred (see note on Haggai 2:12). The spiritual principle, obviously, is that sin in one’s life comes easily, by nature, but holiness comes only from the Lord and His work through faith.
2:16 pressfat. This is a vat for pressing grapes for wine.
2:17 blasting. A “blasting” is any plant disease which attacks suddenly.
2:20 came unto Haggai. Four times the word of the Lord came to Haggai (1:1; 2:1,10,20), all in the short span of time from the first day of the sixth month of the second year of Darius’ reign to the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month. These short, pungent messages did, however, stir up the people to complete the temple.
2:23 a signet. The signet ring was a symbol of honor and authority (compare Jeremiah 22:24). Zerubbabel, the human governor, thus also was given divine responsibility over the people in their revived economy, authority which had been removed from King Jeconiah just before the captivity. Note also the emphasis on this authority (perhaps even as a type of Christ) in the prophecy of Zechariah, especially Zechariah 4:6-10.