More so than at any other time, citizens of the wealthiest nations are spending an inordinate amount of their mental and physical energies lavishing unwarranted care on their homes, while totally neglecting the spiritual House of God their Creator. Of course people need adequate shelter from the elements, and expect some measure of comfort. But to lavish an inordinate amount of their time, energy and money on their homes is clearly quite different to effecting necessary repairs and replacements. The distinction between the material necessities of life, and lavish living, is made evident by the Lord's warning: "The more care they lavish on their cities, houses, and property, and on their own persons, the fiercer will be My indignation against their sins, says the Lord." (2 Esdras 16:47,48 NEB).
The panelling of walls with wood is used as an example of lavishing superfluous attention on one's home. This is what the Lord God has said: "Is it the time for you yourselves to dwell in your panelled houses, while this House is waste?" (Haggai 1:4).
The Judgement of God upon everyone who has allowed His spiritual
House to become waste (in them) is as follows: "You
look for much (reward) and get little. At the moment when you would bring
home the harvest, I blast it. Why? says the Lord of Hosts. Because My
(spiritual) House lies in ruins, while each of you has a house that he can
run to. It is your fault that the heavens withhold their dew and the earth its
produce. So I have proclaimed a drought against land and mountain, against corn,
new wine, and oil, and all that the ground yields, against man and cattle and
all the products of man's labour." (Haggai 1:9
Speaking figuratively as to one's spiritual needs, the Lord said: "You have sown much but reaped little, you eat but never as much as you wish, you drink but never more than you need, you are clothed but never warm, and the labourer puts his wages into a purse with a hole in it." (1:6 NEB).
When a person ignores their spiritual need and consequently the spiritual House of God, Almighty God allows the quality of that one's life to become diminished. This does not mean that people should run to some church, but that they must give more than the usual attention to the spiritual principles of God contained in His Holy Word the Bible.
All of these questions are answered in The Opened "Little Scroll". None of one's spiritual needs can be filled by planning and building house extensions or lavishing other forms of care on one's home and property. Nor can one please God and inherit the promise of spirit immortality in the heavenly paradise of God while living as a wealthy heathen. (Luke 18:24,25).
The reason why so many people are consumed by such preoccupations, is that their lives are not satisfying their spiritual need. Merely making material changes in one's life is likened to putting one's wages "into a purse with a hole in it."