Encountering the Old Testament, 3rd Edition

A Christian Survey

series: Encountering Biblical Studies


34. Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi: Rebuilding a People

Chapter Intro Video

Chapter Objectives

  • Summarize the basic structure and content of the books of Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi
  • Discuss the authorship question related to Zechariah 9–14
  • Describe the nature and role of disputations as Malachi used them

Chapter Summary

  1. Haggai’s messages focused on Judah’s spiritual apathy.
  2. Haggai assured his audience God would bless them if they honored God by rebuilding the temple.
  3. The different subject matter in Zechariah 1–8 and 9–14 has led some to suggest a multiple authorship view for the book.
  4. Zechariah 1–6 describes eight night visions in which God revealed his purposes for his people.
  5. Malachi’s message is a series of six disputations.
  6. Malachi’s words about God’s ultimate justice find fulfillment in John the Baptist and in Jesus.
  7. Malachi closed his book with a command to remember the law of Moses and a promise that God’s day of judgment was coming.

Study Questions

  1. Identify the historical setting in which Haggai and Zechariah prophesied. How would you characterize Haggai’s audience?
  2. How did Haggai and Zechariah motivate the people to rebuild the temple?
  3. Discuss the pertinent issues surrounding the authorship of Zechariah.
  4. On what aspects of Judean life did Zechariah’s visions touch? How many visions do you remember?
  5. What did Zechariah promise about the priesthood (3:1–10; 6:9–15)?
  6. How did Zechariah describe the messianic kingdom? How were his words fulfilled in the New Testament?
  7. What’s the main theme of Malachi?
  8. Malachi described many types of abuses in his day. How are people—even Christians—sometimes guilty of these same abuses today?