Originally we took the “sixth month” to be the sixth month of God’s sacred calendar, which is Elul. This was wrong. Upon closer examination, it became clear that the reference to the “sixth month” is simply to the sixth month and second year of King Darius’ reign from when it started. This date is according to the civil, lunar Persian calendar! God did not once mention the sacred calendar through Haggai. He does in Zechariah—but not Haggai. He simply refers to the second year within Darius’ reign. PERIOD! I (we) assumed that what He states in Zechariah applied to Haggai. In retrospect, it is obvious that God used HIS calendar for Zechariah and the PERSIAN calendar in Haggai to keep the prophecy hidden in code—harder to be understood before its time to be revealed had come. We missed this. Anyone can read the two books and see that one contains dates of the month that apply to God’s calendar and one does not. We made a connection that did not exist.
A series of clues point to Haggai 1:1 being in the SPRING of the year, NOT the fall. Let’s see.
To find the second year of Darius’ reign, we must look at when his reign began. Historians agree that Darius’ reign began in late September-early October 521 BC. Many sources could be included that say this. For instance, the 11th Edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica (widely seen as the most reputable edition) records that Darius came to office in October, 521 BC—and probably on the 10th of Tishri, or the Day of Atonement that year (October 10).
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