Page:A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi and Jonah.djvu/59

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The Christian writers above cited agree in teaching that Haggai was born in Babylon. Dorotheus, Epiphanius and others say that he was still a young man when he came to Jerusalem.[1] Augustine, however, had somewhere learned that both Haggai and Zechariah had prophesied in Babylon before they and their countrymen were released from captivity.[2] The Jewish authorities, also, seem to have thought of Haggai as a man of mature, if not advanced, age when he arrived in Palestine. Otherwise they would not have attributed to him the wisdom and influence for which they gave him credit. Ewald and other modern commentators think he may have been among those who had seen the temple of Solomon before its destruction. Cf. 23. If so, he must have been between seventy and eighty years of age when his prophecies were uttered. Perhaps his age explains why his prophetic career was so brief. At any rate, it seems to have been brought to a close shortly after the foundations of the new sanctuary were laid, while Zerubbabel was still governor of Jerusalem.


The book of Haggai consists largely of a series of four comparatively brief prophecies, all dated, the last two on the same day. It is evidently not, in its entirety, from the prophet's own hand; for, both in the statements by which the several prophecies are introduced (11 21, 10, 20) and in the body of the third (212 f.), he is referred to only in the third person. Moreover, the first prophecy is followed by a description of its effect upon those to whom it was addressed (112–15) throughout which he is treated in the same objective manner. There are similar passages in Zechariah; a fact which has led Klostermann to conclude that the book of Haggai and Zc. 1–8 originally belonged to an account of the rebuilding of the temple in the reign of Darius, chronologically arranged and probably edited by Zechariah.[3] This thesis, however, cannot be maintained; for, in the first place, as will be shown in the comments on 115 the point on which Klostermann bases his supposition,

  1. For the text of these references, cf. Köhler, 6 f.
  2. Enarrationes in Ps. cxlvii.
  3. GVI., 212 f.