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The name Zechariah (remembrance of Jehovah, or one whom Jevovah remembers), was a common name among the Jews. The same name appears several times in the Old Testament. The namesakes are: Son and successor of King Jeroboam II; King Hezekiah's grandfather; Also called Zechariah, a chief of the porters or doorkeepers of the temple; A Benjamite, also called Zecher; The son of Jehoiada the high priest, inspired by the spirit of God, slain by King Joash for his bold speech; A prophet, contemporary of King Uzziah. And the husband of the barren Elizabeth in the New Testament (Luke 1:5-25), who conceives John the Baptist.
Zechariah the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo. While in Ezra 5:1 the son of Iddo is simply mentioned. This reference may indicate that he was not Iddo's grandchild, but his son. On the other hand, it is probable that his father Berekiah had died when he was still young, and he was raised by his grandfather Iddo, who was recognized in the priestly genealogy as his grandfather's son. Zechariah was a prophet and priest who lived in the 6th century BC, little else is known about him. He lived during the friendly reign of the Persian king Darius (who allowed the Jews to return from Babylonian captivity and rebuild their temple, which Darius financed).
From Matthew 23:35 we know a Zechariah son of Berekiah, who was murdered between the temple house and the altar, mentioned by Jesus, but was probably not this prophet, but in 2 Chronicles 24:21 (Zechariah the son of the priest Jehoiada). In the Hebrew Old Testament, 2 Chronicles is the last book of the Bible, so that Zechariah was the last martyr there.
The family of Zechariah appears to have returned from Babylonia during the reign of King Cyrus, 18 years before this prophecy. He may have been very young. Given the start of temple construction. But the people had more self-interest and neglect of religion and God. He had seen the weakness for rebuilding the Temple under the new initiative under King Darius. Haggai was the first prophet to instigate rebuilding, followed two months later by Zechariah, who recalled the consequences of turning away from their fathers in the past. Connecting the present with the past. This initiated the right way to God and the rebuilding of His temple.
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Verse 1 This Bible book is accurately dated by Zechariah himself, namely in the eighth month, in the second year of king Darius, that is 520 BC. And Haggai 1:1 "In the second year of Darius the king, in the sixth month, on the first day of the month, the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet to Zerubbabel the son of She-alti-el, governor of Judah, and to Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest". Zechariah makes himself known as the son of Berechiah and the son of Iddo to whom the Word of God came. No prophecy of his own, but clearly the Words that God (of the Lord, Angel of the Lord, Second person of the Trinity: Jesus) had spoken to him.
Verse 2 He clearly begins his task as the prophet Zechariah: Look at the past, in Deuteronomy 28 God has clearly spoken about the blessing and the curse. The curse if you, His people, will not listen to Him. Today you know the curse, you have been taken captive to Babylonia by a strange people, because God was very angry.
Verse 3 But a blessing is possible: "Thus says the Lord of hosts: Return to me, says the Lord of hosts, and I will return to you." God desires to bless and not to be angry. That also applies today. God does not wish that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance (2 Peter 3:9). Unfortunately, we see today that many do not want to listen, with as a result they are going through the Great Tribulation. Now is still the time of grace and repentance and acceptance of Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord is possible.
Verse 4 Do not be stiff-necked and like your parents and fathers to whom the former prophets spoke, says the word of the Lord of hosts. Yes, by whom these prophets were killed and stoned (speech of Jesus). The Lord calls for repentance from evil ways (unfair dealings) and evil deeds of immorality, wickedness and idol worship. Today the Lord calls on the Internet, television, radio, social media, etc. to repent and turn from evil ways and deeds. Aversion to living in the world and living under the control of the Holy Spirit, according to God's Will. A holy way of life.
Example of evil way. Scientists have shown through videos that a baby (in the pregnant mother's belly) of 6 months already makes dirty faces when he dislike the mother's food, so he tastes all the mother's food. He has full awareness. So abortion at this stage is murder.
What does the Lord say? They do not hear and do not heed My Word. That was true then and certainly is true now!
Verse 5 How appropriate it was: where were the fathers and the prophets do they live forever? The land of Israel florished with honey and milk at the exodus from the desert (Egypt). Now in the time of Zechariah the land was a desolation and barrenness. The people had been taken into captivity, few inhabitants were left behind, and the land was desolate and barren because it was not tilled. Where the hills were filled with vineyards flowing with grape juice and wine, the olive trees blossomed with olives, there was aridity. The cities lay in ruins and devastated. The temple was destroyed and had to be rebuilt. God's wrath at His people's unfaithfulness and curse had been realized.
God's Word is eternal, contains the Truth and is full of God's warnings. Look and read the book of Revelation. Man is warned. They can know what is going to happen. The captivity of the Israelites and Jews is the proof. God does not allow to be mocked. All the plagues and terrors mentioned in the book of Revelation are GOING TO HAPPEN. With the current knowledge of man and science many horrors can already be explained. Think of the tsunamis, fault fractures in the earth's crust (among others the San Andreas Fault), the volcano in California, meteorites, etc. But people continue to live on their own, do not heed warnings, as if nothing is wrong. Then the Great Tribulation and the wrath of God fall upon sinful man, whom God rejects, and will come upon them in unison.
Verse 6 God has given to man His commandments and statutes, already with the Torah and the 10 commandments to Moses. Then to the prophets. Examples of infidelity all to over in the Old Testament. Jesus has given many parabolas and examples. The New Testament is full of how man should practice his or her holy way of life. The prophets and the servants of God (evangelists, missionaries, the Bible (free) via the Internet, via television and radio, they have not been overtaken by the fathers. But man came and hardly comes to repentance and revoke. Everything is given by God to man according to the purpose of God to bring man to repentance, to be converted from evil ways and deeds. God's word is eternal, the prophets and servants of God may die, but the word of God abides upright stand and endure. The disobedience of the fathers has led to exile and punishment. That is our EXAMPLE. We cannot say, "God is Love, He tolerates and forgives sin, there is no punishment, there is no hell, lake of fire". The people of God have been exiled to Babylonia and a 1900 years from the promised land Israel. After 1900 years God is bringing His people back to the promised land Israel, the land is blooming again. The evidence of God's faithfulness and loving man and doing what He says.
Many an Israelite and Jew were buried in Babylonia, by the waters of the Euphrates, far away, and not in the promised land. What a punishment, because they refused to listen to the message of the prophets. Even there were no prophets among them in the land of exile.
Verse 7 A new prophecy from God came again to Zechariah on the 24th day of the eleventh month of Sebat, corresponding to January/February according to our calendar system.
Verse 8 This time he saw in the night (dream?). He saw a man seated on a red horse, standing among the myrtle trees in the depths.
The man is an angel of God, appearing in form of man. He rides here, as Leader of the host who follow Him; to Him the others report, and He instructs the Angel who instructs the prophet.
Red, the color of blood, symbolizes the vengeance of God to be inflicted on the enemies of the Jews for their sins committed against the Jews, exceeding the measure of chastisement allowed by God.
White, the color of purity, strength and victory.
The myrtle symbol of the status of the Jewish people: It was its depressed state that caused the Jews to despond; this vision is designed to cheer them with better hopes. The angel of Jehovah's presence standing among them, is a guarantee for her safety, lowly though she now be. In the glen represents the low, melancholy state of the Jewish people.
The red and white horses are well-known symbols of war and glory, whence He who sits on the white horse (Revelation 6:2).
Verse 9 Zechariah wonders what the meaning of this vision in the night is. The angel who spoke to him gives the answer. The meaning is not to be left in the dark. So it is with the Christian life. When the Christian does not understand what something means in the Bible, he or she prays for explanation. After all, the Holy Spirit was given to explain the Bible to us. Sometimes the explanation comes quickly because the Holy Spirit opens our minds. Sometimes through a preaching or Bible study. We ourselves can be active by reading Bible commentaries or researching on the Internet. And sometimes it remains obscure for a while because we are not yet grown-up for it spiritually (and the explanation comes after years (of prayer)).
Verses 10-11 The man on the horse has sent the angels of God to the earth to patrol it. These angels have found the people in complete rest and they report this to the Angel of the Lord.
How fitting for our time, the enemies of God, who reject God, His existence, and His statutes, esteem all rest and peace. They deny God's existence, punishment from God for their sins and their crimes against their fellowmen. Thinking their laws have legal validity and set aside and despise the laws of God.
Verse 12 The Angel of the Lord is often seen in the Old Testament as the person Jesus. The character of God.
God's wrath has come upon the Israelite and Jewish people for disrespecting the Sabbaths' years and worshiping idols, hence the 70 years of captivity in Babylon, the removal from the Promised Land Israel. The Lord of hosts is God the Father.
There are three ways of computing the seventy years of the captivity. The first is, beginning from the fourth year of Jehoiakim to the first of Cyrus: this is Jeremiah’s account, Jeremiah 25:1; Jeremiah 25:11; which Daniel follows, Daniel 9:2. Another may be computed from the besieging of Jerusalem in the ninth year of Zedekiah, in the tenth month, for which a solemn fast was kept by the Jews: compare 2 Kings 25:1, with Zechariah 8:19. This computation ends with the second year of Darius, which is the reckoning Zechariah here follows. Or lastly, if we compute the beginning of the seventy years from the destruction of Jerusalem and the first temple, which came to pass in the eleventh year of the same reign, they will be accomplished in the fourth year of Darius, and this computation agrees with what is said Zechariah 7:1; Zechariah 7:5.
The seventy years of the captivity, prophesied by Jeremiah Jer 25:10-12; were on the eve of their conclusion at the time of Daniel's great prayer of intercession Daniel 9:2; they ended with the capture of Babylon, and the edict of Cyrus, permitting the Jews to return 2 Chronicles 36:22-23; Ezra 1:1.
Verse 13 The Lord Jesus has the welfare of His people (then Jews and Israelites, now Christians) in mind and constantly pleads with God the Father for them. Here He speaks with gracious and comforting words. Throughout the Bible we find words of comfort and encouragement to help us through sickness, pain, persecution, and death.
Verses 14-15 Those who think that all is at ease and peace, the enemies of God's people, are sorely mistaken. They think they can freely go about torturing, tormenting and killing God's people. God, uses the Gentile (unbeliever) to chastise and edify His people. God's zeal is kindled when the heathen goes beyond his God-given powers, then God Himself will intervene and punish the heathen. Hitler thought he was powerful and could kill 6 million Jews. His reign is ended and his fate is the lake of fire. Many countries think they can silence God's people with impunity, throw Christians in prison, torture and kill, forbid the proclamation of the gospel, close churches. But those responsible will stand before God after their death, be held accountable and receive God's punishment. Then they will experience God's wrath for their deeds FOREVER.
Israel's enemies had furthered the disaster. They had acted outside of God's chastisement. While God was a little angry, they aided in evil and destruction. They had devastated the cities of Israel, made the land desolate, yea, destroyed even the temple of God in Jerusalem. God's punishment did not last, Babylon was completely destroyed.
Satan and his followers think they will come to power in the Great Tribulation. Satan even enters the temple at Jerusalem halfway the Great Tribulation and calls himself to be God. What pride. However, their power is limited to seven years. After seven years of tribulation by Satan the Beast and their worshipers, the Coming of Jesus Christ follows. Then these worshipers go eternally into the lake of fire. And Satan is bound for 1000 years, not able to do anything, thereafter to be released for a short time, to be defeated again and also to enter into the lake of fire forever.
Vers 16 Gods mercy has returned after 70 years of wrath: the people are returning from Babylonia and Babylon. The temple is being rebuilt, financed by King Darius. It is up to the Jewish people to once again honor and worship God. To keep His laws and statutes, and to be zealous for building of God's house, the temple in Jerusalem.
Since 1948, a 1900 years after the destruction in 70 AD by the Romans (Gentiles) of God's temple in Jerusalem, the Jews have returned to the promised land of Israel through God's grace and prophecy (Ezekiel 37). Even now God's mercy applies. Also now everything is ready for the rebuilding of the temple (within three months) in Jerusalem (my house will be built therein). According to prophecy, this temple will be rebuilt and God's Word will be fulfilled. Nothing can stop the Israelites and Jews from living in the promised land (Genesis 15:18-21).
Verse 17 It is God who rebuilds the cities then and NOW, they shall overflow with prosperity. Today we see the rebuilt cities in Israel, the desert that blossoms, the fresh water that flows underground to the Dead Sea and the first fishes swim. The vineyards and olive trees are blooming again. Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. Arab peoples make peace with Israel. Yes, God has chosen Jerusalem as the capital of the earth. It is God who comforts Zion (the Israelite and Jewish people).
In the Great Tribulation, Satan will make another attempt to prevent this. But it will be his last attempt, also to murder the people of God. God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ are more powerful. The fate of Satan and his worshipers has already been decided. Jesus has won the victory on the Cross of Calvary, where Satan's head has already been crushed (Genesis 3:15 in fulfillment). Today mankind still has a chance to recognize this victory and to accept Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
After the Great Tribulation, after the defeat of Satan (Revelation 19 and 20:7-10), the New Earth follows with the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21). Then the New Jerusalem is the capital of the earth, from which God the Father will reign forever (Jerusalem is elected)!
Verses 18-19 The four horns (the four corners of the wind, North, East, South, West) which have scattered Judah, Israel and Jerusalem are from the north Assyria, Chaldeans and Samaria, Ammonites and Moabites in the east, Egypt in the south, The Philistines in the west. These four horns, symbolizing power and pride, surrounded Israel.
Verses 20-21 The smith who forges the iron in the fire with his hammer. The four horns had ravaged and scattered Israel. Now come the smiths who forge these four horns, that is to shatter.
The four winds can be found in Revelation 7:1 where the four angels hold the four corners of the earth.
The Israelites come from the four winds (Ezekiel 37:9-12), from all over the earth back to Israel: breathe upon these slain, that they may live again, O my people, and I will bring you home into the land of Israel.
Jesus speaks in Matthew 24:31 that He will send out His angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. The elect are the believers who refused the mark of the Beast during the Great Tribulation.
Revelation 19:19-21 And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth (that is, from the four winds) and their hosts gathered together to make war against him who sits on the horse and against his army. And the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who in its presence had worked the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulphur. And the rest were slain by the sword of him who sits upon the horse, the sword that issues from his mouth; and all the birds were gorged with their flesh. Here is He (Jesus) who sits on the horse (remember verse 8) who destroyed the Beast and all who had taken the mark of the Beast and cast them into the lake of fire.
For his time, prophecies given to Zechariah for the nation of Israel, but at the same time in a great agreement with Revelation, what is and will happen to ALL mankind in the future.
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Verses 1 and 2 Probably a new vision. Zechariah sees a man with a measuring line in his hand. And he asks: What is the purpose? The angel answers: This person is going to measure Jerusalem. The measurement is not stated further: no width and length are given.
Verses 3 and 4 Another angel approaches the angel to speak to the young man (Zechariah).
Jerusalem will lie like an open place, that is, without walls around Jerusalem. If we look at Jerusalem today, we see the old city of Jerusalem with its ancient walls. However, the city of Jerusalem is also larger and lies outside the walls. The entire city is not walled and lies like an open space. Possibly only 40,000 Israelites and Jews had returned from Babylonia. The rest had stayed, possibly had wealth, a home and a good job there, but had no spiritual life. Unwilling to help their brethren in rebuilding the temple and rebuilding the city of Jerusalem. They had a safe life under the reign of King Darius. Until King Darius was overthrown by the Medes and the Persians. God had to intervene to bring His people back to the Promised Land.
What a lesson! How many Christians live in the world. Enjoying the earthly things, including alcohol consumption, free sex, wealth, etc. Being completely absorbed in the world. And they are not ready for a holy Divine life. They need to be awakened by God when they are left behind and are going through the Great Tribulation.
Note that humans and livestock resided in this city. Jerusalem has been expanded with the surrounding cities. Just like London has expanded with surrounding villages.
It is a crowd that no longer consists of only 40,000 but should be larger because after the fall of Darius, the rest of the inhabitants of Babylonia also returned.
Verse 5 Some commentaries here declare the Jerusalem as the New Jerusalem where God will dwell and the gates of the walls will be open. For it is God Who protects the city and thus can be an open place. Compare Revelation 21:15, 24-27.
Verse 6 A strange transition, a new beginning. Flee from the North Country (Assyria, Chaldeans, Babylonia?), or can we say from Europe after the murder of 6 million Jews by Hitler and flee to the new state of Israel?
It is the Lord, who throughout the ages scattered Israelites over all the earth (four points of the wind: North, East, South and West of a compass). Expelled by God, because of their sins, their transgressions of God's laws and statutes.
Verse 7 Deliver yourselves to Zion (Israel), you who dwell in Babylonia, see commentary verses 3 and 4.
Verses 8 and 9 The Israelites and the Jews are God's chosen people, they are the apple of God's eye. Whoever turns against Israelites and Jews turns against God and the apple of God's eye. Nations that are not for His people, they are not blessed by God. The person who turns against the apple of God's eye will experience the consequences of his or her dislike and/or hatred. Possibly not immediately, like Hitler, but in the end Hitler lost and committed suicide. God gives man the opportunity to repent and turn from his or her evil way against His people. But if not, then the judgment of God follows after death. Many nations that are against Israel have it nationally bad, have no prosperity. Just look at the Netherlands and Europe. When they helped and defended Israel, there was prosperity. Today, the Netherlands and Europe are turning away from Israel, and their prosperity is over.
Verse 10 A reference to Revelation 21:22. It is God Who comes to dwell in (the New) Jerusalem, in the midst of His people (and the earth). Therefore rejoice and sing you people of God.
Verse 11 The fulfillment of Revelation 21:24, Isaiah 60:3, Zechariah 8:23. But the time has not come yet, first the Great Tribulation, before this prophecy becomes true.
Verses 12 and 13 King David from the tribe of Judah chose the city of Jerusalem as the capital, his son Solomon built the temple there. It is the Lord who canonizes Jerusalem as His dwelling place. It is God who chooses Jerusalem. Not the Israelite, Jewish people nor the Muslims. It is God Himself, He will do it, not man's work. Man should be silent.
It is God doing it. First United States President Donald Trump confirms Jerusalem as Israel's capital. Followed by other countries moving their embassies there, including Arab countries. That is God's work!
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Verse 1 The vision continues. Zechariah sees the high priest Joshua standing before the Angel of the Lord (Jesus) while Satan is accusing him. Satan is the accuser of every person, unbeliever but especially of believers who are faithful to God. See Job 1:6-11.
Joshua (Ezra 2:2; 3:8; 5:2), the son of Jehozadak, was high priest among the Jewish exiles returned from Babylon. Joshua was the son of Jehozadak and the grandson of Seraiah the high priest. He was also a relative of the scribe Ezra, who returned to Judah after the captivity later than Joshua. He was the first high priest after the return of the Jews from Babylonian captivity. He soon succeeded in having the altar rebuilt, the daily sacrifice kindled, and the Feast of Tabernacles celebrated. He seems to have fulfilled the high priestly ministry for a very long time; for 51 years, approximately from the year 538 to 483 BC he held this position, and was succeeded by his son Jehoiakim. He is a picture of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The returned people had stopped rebuilding the temple. The high priest Joshua represents before the Angel of the Lord this returned people, the people in Jerusalem. The sinful people who will not listen to the voice of God. Who siad: A rebuilding of the temple is useless, we are not able to do that. We are a sinful people, banished by God, have no hope of God's favor. They knew that she and the priests (among others married to strange women Ezra 9:1-2, Nehemiah 13:23-27) had acted treacherously. That is why Satan accuses them of not being worthy of God's people and of filling the priesthood. The people listened to Satan, had they stopped rebuilding the temple. God will not accept so vile and faithless heart, so lame and mutilated a service as you render Him, says the tempter Satan, therefore you had better abandon it all, and enjoy sin at least if you cannot enjoy holiness. But it is not the people that God chooses, it is God who chooses His people. The people cannot save themselves, the people's salvation is in GOD's hands! That is the core of this vision.
How striking is this not today? The believer looks at his sinful status. The believer who says (and listens to the whisperings of satan) my sins are too great, over and over again I sin, what is the sense to "fight" against sin, meaningless. The forgiveness of sin, not sinning, lies not in the power of the sinner, but in the fact that Jesus Christ died for his or her sins and in the power of the Holy Spirit. Not giving in and not listening to Satan. I do not succeed, so I just live in the world, I give in to sin. That is a wrong attitude of the Christian. We are to attack Satan and plead on the basis of the finished work of Jesus on the cross, the forgiveness of His blood, and therefore we are clean.
Verses 2 and 3 The Lord answered Satan: The Lord rebuke you. See Jude verse 9.
It is the Lord Who chooses Jerusalem, the Israelite and Jewish people.
Satan is punished by the One Who has authority: the Lord Jesus Christ. He has paid the price with His blood, and has redeemed His people. Satan has lost his rights to Jesus!
Is not this a brand plucked from the fire? The sinner lays in the fire, the consuming fire of God's judgment. But through the finished work of Jesus, it has been taken out of this fire/judgment and saved. The fire makes the wood black and dirty, so Joshua had filthy clothes. Dirt from the fire, filth from sin. God had brought the people back from Babylonia, had shown His mercy. It was wrong for Satan to accuse this people again. They were, the brand, rescued from the fire. Because God wanted to use them (verse 4).
Verse 4 According to the law of Moses, the priest and high priest had to appear before God in the temple in glorifying clothing. Here Joshua stands in filthy garments before God. It is the Angel (=Jesus) Who commands to take off the dirty garments and to replace them with rich apparel. Not on the basis of our own work, but on the basis of Jesus, who purifies. The Angel does NOT reject Joshua, BUT rejects the filthy garments. Jesus does NOT reject man, but God the Father rejects sins (dirty garments). Joshua himself had no clean clothes, it is GIVEN by the Angel. The believer is a sinner, cannot redeem himself. But God the Father imparts to him or her purity through faith in Jesus as Savior from sin and Lord. They become a royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9).
Verse 5 Zechariah now asks him to be restored to all priestly dignity, with the turban on his head (Exodus 28:4, 37). The angels, under the watchful eye of the Angel of the Lord, put on Joshua a state garment (see Priestly garments, Exodus 28).
For the Christian, the redemption of his or her sinful body applies at the Rapture of the Church and receives a new sinless and incorruptible body (1 Corinthians 15:51-52).
Verses 6 and 7 An admonition follows by the Angel of the Lord personally: Your attitude and style MUST CHANGE. You must walk in my ways (God's commandments and statutes) and observe the task assigned by ME. That is, you are My representative on earth, you are to teach my house (the Israelite and Jewish people) in my laws and commandments and be an example yourself (your children who are married to strange unbelieving women, they must put them away together with children born out of them Nehemiah 13:23-30), to guard My courts, no additional commandments, but to defend My Word. Seeing to that the people lives according to God's Will.
The Christian has to proclaim the gospel, teach the Bible (Old and New Testament, including Revelation), show in daily life that he or she respects God's commandments and Jesus Christ should be visible in daily life as well as the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22). Additional requirements apply to the pastors, elders and deacons, see 1 Timothy 3. They must see to it that their sheep, their church members live according to God's Word. No one has the right to change God's Word, like but that is not of our time, that is mistranslated, a prophecy that contradicts God's Word, all alterations that contradict God's Word.
I (the Angel of the Lord) will give you (Joshua) the right of access among those who are standing here (in heaven, where Satan accuses, and where My angels obey Me). It is the promise of Jesus that if Joshua is obedient, he will be guarded by Jesus. Joshua is a fellow follower, just as the angels (not the fallen angels) are followers of the Jesus.
Verses 8 and 9 You and your friends: Joshua and the priests, or who sit at the foot of Joshua to receive and learn God's instruction. They are men of good omen assigned to rebuild the temple against all attack and resistance. And a promise follows, the true High Priest, My servant, the Branch (Jeremiah 23:5-8), Jesus will come. He is the stone, the cornerstone, the foundation (1 Corinthians 3:10-17). Rejected by the builders, but chosen by God the Father as a foundation. Joshua may have been present when the foundation stone of the temple was laid.
On that one stone are seven facets. Seven the number of fullness, perfection. Facets, God sees everything, nothing in the heart of man is hidden, his motives and thoughts are completely open to God, nothing of man, his deeds are hidden from God.
In one day the guilt of this land will be removed. Many sacrifices were made daily in the temple. On the Day of Atonement, the high priest offered the sacrifice once a year for the sins of the people and was allowed to enter the Holy of Holies. Once and for all, the perfect sacrifice, the Branch on the cross of Calvary, died in one day. In that one day, the iniquity was taken away for everyone who believes in Jesus as Savior from his or her sins.
One day all Israelites and Jews will come to faith (Romans 13:26), one day at the Second Coming (Zechariah 14, Matthew 24:30) of the Lord?
It is God the Father Himself who engraves, namely, His Son Jesus has appointed to offer the perfect sacrifice for sins. It is God the Father Who accepted this sacrifice and raised His Son from the dead on the third day.
Verse 10 Fulfillment of Micah 4:4, Revelation 21:24 then the nations will go up and invite one another to go to Jerusalem. Under the vine and fig tree they will worship God.
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For more Bible comments, see Matthew Henry.
Verse 1 Possibly because of the overwhelming vision in chapter 3, the prophet had fallen asleep. We see this reflected in the transfiguration on the mountain of Jesus where the disciples are overwhelmed. And the disciples fall asleep in the garden of Gethsemane, while Jesus had asked them to watch in prayer. The angel wakes Zechariah to show him more.
Verse 2 The angel asks: What do you see? Zechariah answers: A golden candlestick. We know this golden lampstand from the tabernacle. The priest had to take care of this lampstand every day, including cutting the wicks so that it did not smoke. Here it is God himself who takes care of the lampstand.
Gold indicates perfection. To obtain pure gold, the gold must be purified by fire to burn all the impurities. The people of God, the Israelites and Jews, must be purified by the fire of God from sin, the punishment of captivity to Babylonia. The believer serves through the trials of God, being purified from sin into a holy walk through the power of the Holy Spirit, which is the oil of the two olive trees. The candlestick is the people of God (Israelites and Jews, the Church), who should let the light of God shine on this dark earth. In the Old Testament and later in the Great Tribulation: the Kingdom of God. The Church is to proclaim the gospel to everyone on earth.
The lampstand has one bowl on the top, which feeds the seven lamps. There is only ONE Holy Spirit who feeds the people of God. The seven lamps (of the lampstand in the tabernacle/temple) in the Old Testament were the twelve tribes. In the New Testament the entire Church of the Lord Jesus Christ, which we see in the seven letters to the church, Revelation 2 and 3.
Seven lips lead from the bowl to the lamps. For each lamp, there is a constant flow of oil, with no shortage. It is the believer's connection with the well, the bowl, the Holy Spirit. It is necessary not to break this connection, otherwise the lamp will be extinguished (1 Thes. 5:19).
Verse 3 So in verses 12-14, is it explained what is the meaning of the two olive trees.
Verses 4-6 Zechariah does not understand the vision and asks the angel for its meaning.
Zerubbabel was the leader of the first group of Jewish exiles who returned from the kingdom of Babylon. He was the son of Pedaiah and probably by levirate and inheritance law the son of Shealtiel (Neh. 12:1; Haggai 1:14; 2;2), the son of Assir (1 Chr. 3:17) the son of King Jeconiah. Zerubbabel had eight children: seven sons and one daughter.
It is God's encouragement to Zerubbabel to continue and complete the rebuilding of the temple. For is not by his own strength, but by the power of the Spirit of the Lord of hosts.
Verse 7 The city of Jerusalem with the temple in ruins, destroyed by the enemies. It looks like a great mountain, impassable and immobile, a mess. The enemies lie in wait to stop rebuilding. The enemies of the Jews are proud and hard as great mountains; but when God has work to do, the mountains that stand in the way will shrink to molehills, for the work is of God. But "Who are you, O great mountain, that you stand in the way of God, and think you can stop the progress of His work?" To Zerubbabel, he is God's representative, you will become a plain. All difficulties will disappear and all objections will be overcome. "Every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain" Isaiah 40:4. Faith can move mountains and make them plains. Christ is our Zerubbabel; mountains of difficulties stood in the way of his undertaking, but for him they were all leveled; nothing is too hard to do His grace.
Verses 8 and 9 The word of the Lord continues: The hands of Zerubbabel will FINISH the work. Why? Because it is God Who sends and completes. A called Christian may know that he or she must only obey God's command and it is God Himself who completes it, even when there are difficulties, years of struggle, battle against the powers of darkness, in the end it is God Who completes. When I look at the church in Almere, The Netherlands, which fight is going on for 28 years. Continuous lack of fellow workers, because of the growth. But time and again God provides workers and the work is not yet finished.
Possibly Zerubbabel himself laid the first cornerstone (foundation), and the Jews continue to build the temple.
Jesus laid the cornerstone, He died on the cross. He is the Christ who rose from the dead on the third day. Now His workers have been allowed to preach the gospel for 2000 years until the Rapture of the Church. Then the work continues with the Two Witnesses and the 144,000 sealed ones from the 12 tribes of Israel and the Kingdom of God will be proclaimed. UNTIL ... Until the end of the Great Tribulation and satan is finally defeated!
With the 1000-year reign of Christ and the New Temple (of Ezekiel build).
No small things should be despised. Everyone helped build the wall of Jerusalem, including the priests and goldsmiths (see Nehemiah). The disciples started on Pentecost with 3000 persons, now 2000 years later billions have come to faith. It may seem small in Sunday school, but that is where the foundation is laid and are born evangelists, that are the lips.
The angels rejoice at every person who come to believe, so the Jews rejoiced when the wall around Jerusalem was completed in 50 days.
The seven lamps are the eyes of God for Whom nothing is hidden. Nothing that lives in the heart of man, Jew and enemy. None of his or her motives and thoughts.
Verses 11-14 The two olive trees are the two witnesses of God. In Revelation 11:4 this is given: These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands (there are two and only one in Zechariah) which stand before the Lord. In other words, the Two Witnesses in the Great Tribulation (Moses and Elijah) who will proclaim the Kingdom of God to everyone on earth. Moses represents the Law, and Elijah the prophets. In short, the complete Word of God. The complete commandments of God are proclaimed to EVERYONE on earth. It is God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ Himself (the 2 olive trees) who make Himself known through the 2 olive branches (Moses and Elijah) through the Holy Spirit (the only one bowl). Jesus Christ is seated at the right hand of God the Father. One olive tree on the right, the other on the left.
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Verse 1 So far the visions were encouraging and peaceful. However, the following are opposite. God deals with those who are not faithful to God.
Whether Zechariah had fallen asleep again is not clear, but he raises his eyes and sees a flying scroll. In his day, the Old Testament was written on parchment, and was kept in the synagogue. It was a precious possession, because it was copied manually, and had to be rewritten from the beginning if the copyist made a mistake.
Verse 2 How long a Biblical cubit is, opinions vary from 45 cm to 52.5 cm. If we assume an average of 49 cm (19 inches), then 20 cubits is almost 10 meters (32 feet) long and 10 cubits is almost 5 meters (16 feet) wide. An odd size for a scroll, normally between 25 to 30 cm (10 to 12 inches) wide. The scroll was set on papyrus or parchment. The Torah scrolls were written parallel to the longitudinal edge in columns of equal width, with an equal number of lines, separated from each other by space (intercolumn). Both hands are needed to read a scroll. The text to be read is rolled out with the right hand, while the text that has already been read is rolled up with the left hand, so that it does not just hang loose. Hebrew scrolls are used in synagogue services and the direction of reading is reversed. In Zechariah's time the scroll was read in the porch of the temple.
Verse 3 It is a flying scroll that goes over all the land. Compare the angel that flies in midheaven to proclaim the everlasting gospel to all the nations and tongues of the earth, Revelation 14:6. It is about the validity of God's words, even when people think they can get away with cheating. Moses had already written curses at the end of his law (Deut. 29:26) in the Torah. Whether Zechariah thought of this, we do not know. Such similarities help to see that God's presence is something other than a beautiful dream. The Judeans who had returned from the deportations had memories of that temple, just as they had experience of the Torah and the curses at the end. The temple is being built again, said the previous vision. God's words are going to do what they are meant to do, says this vision. Zechariah's vision is about trusting in God's presence.
There are many interpretations of this flying scroll. In ancient Greek translations, the scroll has been changed into a sickle (the two Hebrew words are very similar). Subsequent generations thought much more about God's final and final appearance, as in Joel 4 and Revelation 14, where the sickle also occurs. On the Internet: UFOs, missiles. Why threaten each other with God's work? Zechariah's vision itself says otherwise. Here it is not about the end of time, but about restoration and renewal, the eradication of corruption, a curse that goes out over the whole land.
It was a curse to those who were building their own house and not the temple of God. They thought of themselves first, robbed time from God for their own works, that is, stealing from God. Today it is not much different, the Christian is more concerned with his own pleasure and wealth than devoting himself to preaching the gospel, the labor in the church, devoting time to Bible study and prayer (for the spiritual work and respect by governments for God's laws), money for evangelism and missionaries.
The warning is GREAT, whoever steals from God will be swept away from this moment!
1 Corinthians 6:8-10 says: But you yourselves wrong and defraud, and that even your own brethren. Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor sexual perverts, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God!
Who falsely swears by the name of God and commits perjury. He or she will be swept away is God's promise. Possibly by "all the land" is meant not only Israel, but the whole earth.
Verse 4 One cannot fool around with the Word of God, it is the Word of the Lord of hosts. It is certain. One can think that one can sin freely, not obey God's laws, and can worship satan and demons. However, after death everyone will have to answer to God. And if one has cast God aside, then one does not enter the kingdom of God.
God comes into the house of the thief and false swearer. That is in the house, with everyone who is present there, they are jointly responsible. They have not reproved. His house may be of wood, straw, and stone, which will not stand before God who is a consuming fire (1 Corinthians 3:15). The lesson for the pastor, proclaimer of God's Words, who tolerates sins, who condones sins, in his house people come to visit God. Is he a thief of God's Word, does not speak the Truth in his house, his church? God will deal with him.
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Verse 5 The angel comes forward to Zechariah and says: "Lift your eyes, and see what this is that goes forth". In short, the angel asks Zechariah to look carefully at what he sees. The believer cannot take a cursory knowledge of the Bible. The Bible requires time, attention and study!
Verse 6 An ephah is a measure of content for dry goods, such as grain, about 40 liters. An ephah is a bat for wet ware and a tenth chomer according to Ezra 45:10-11 and ten omer according to Exodus 16:36. It is a picture of the Jewish people filling their iniquity. It is not only in Jerusalem, but in all Israel. Possibly also a reference to the deceptive way in which the grain in the ephah was measured and sold. The fraud, deception, theft and extortion in commerce. How can we not compare that today with the usurious profits made by a few and profit from the wars in the world and drive up prices.
Verse 7 Zechariah sees a woman sitting in the ephah. The woman is the sinful Jewish people. Israel was a holy nation to the Lord (Jer. 2:3); but now it is wicked, and its wickedness is nowhere so scandalous, so repulsive, and in many cases so scandalous when it is found among professors of religion.
The lead cover locks so that the woman is unable to get out of the efa. Lead is a heavy weight. It shows that the wrath of God is against impenitent sinners:
Verses 8-11 The wings of a stork are large, able to bear a heavy weight. Symbolically think of the stork delivering the baby. Here are two women (storks) who had the wind under their wings to carry the woman in the ephah with her gigantic wickedness away from Israel to Shinar. Shinar is the area in the lower reaches of the rivers Euphrates and Tigris.
This vision was fulfilled about 400 years later. The image of the Romans who in 70 AD. ruthlessly destroy the Jewish nation and scatter them to the four cardinal points of the earth. The measure (of the ephah) was full, the sin complete through the rejection of Jesus Christ as the Messiah and His crucifixion. The Jewish people were blind, stupid, obstinate, and in utter darkness.
To build a house for it. It is not a limited time like the Babylonian captivity, it is a very long time. The time we now know from 70 AD. with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple by the Romans until 1948, after the murder of 6 million Jews in World War II and in 1948 the state of Israel was proclaimed. Since then, to date, returning to their promised land.
The lesson for the Gentiles is that God never leaves sin unpunished. It takes until the measure is full, that applies to peoples, nations and individuals. We are now very quickly approaching that the measure is full for the nations, the nations will be handed over to satan, the Beast and the false prophet. The 7 years of Great Tribulation is very near, in which in the first three and a half years the individual still has the opportunity to convert to God through the preaching of the Two Witnesses (Zechariah 4:13, Revelation 11) and the 144,000 sealed ones (Revelation 7:1-8) and upon rejection in the last three and a half years, God's wrath pours down upon all the earth. With the final end and one is condemned to the lake of fire.
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This chapter can be divided into two parts
Verse 1 Zechariah sees a new vision. Two mountains of copper. Copper had a high value in its days, much more than today.
Jerusalem was accessible between two mountains. Possibly the valley of Jesophat, near the temple, which lies between Mount Moriah and the Mount of Olives. The four chariots with horses pass through this entrance.
Verses 2-6 In the days of Zechariah, chariots with horses were mainly used in warfare. We know the number four from Daniel and the four winds of the earth, and the compass, the whole earth.
The first chariot had red horses, meaning war and bloodshed.
The second chariot had black horses, signifying the melancholy consequences of war; it brings mourning and death, destruction and desolation, causes famines, and pestilences.
The third chariot had white horses, victory, return of comfort, peace and prosperity means after dark and gloomy times: though God grieves the children of men, yet He will have pity.
The forth chariot had dappled gray horses, gray and brown; some speckled and mottled and ash-colored, meaning different events are intertwined and opposed, a day of prosperity and a day of adversity pit one against the other.
Two chariots go to the north, the strong Babylonia, with greater cruelty and guilt, than Egypt, one chariot to the south.
Three years after this vision, Babylonia will be completely destroyed by the Medes and Persians, the white horses.
Verses 7-8 The horses patrol the earth: it is God who cares for the whole earth and sees everything. After the fall of Babylonia (North Country), the Jews are given rest by King Darius, who orders that the Jews may return to Israel and rebuild Jerusalem with the Temple.
Verses 9-11 The word of God comes to Zechariah with a commission. Possibly Jews had come from Babylonia with gifts, because they had heard that the rebuilding was slow. Possibly they (those who come from Babylon) were staying in Josiah's house. Josiah should accept the gift. He may also have been treasurer of the temple. The assignment is to make a crown of silver and gold from this. One crown of silver and one crown of gold? And to put it on the head of Josiah the high priest.
Verses 12 and 13 A crown on kingship. Josiah is the image of the Lord Jesus Christ: Priest and King. The believer belongs to a royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9). Christ, as a priest, lives in Heaven to plead for the believers. He does this seated at the right hand of His Father (Hebrews 8:1).
Jesus is the promised Branch (Jeremiah 23:5), Who in His 1000-year Kingdom will rebuild the temple and reign as King (ruler) over all the earth. Bear royal honor: He is the Anointed and Chosen One by God the Father. He and His Father have the same thoughts, they do not want anyone to perish (2 Peter 3:9). Their mind is the well-being of man. Therefore their peaceful understanding between the two of them.
Verse 14 The crowns, according to Jewish tradition, were hung in the windows of the temple in front of everyone.
This vision will be fulfilled if one (Jew, Israelite and Christian) listens and obeys diligently the Word of the Lord God. See next chapter.
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God had only given one fast, which was on the Day of Atonement. However, the Jews had added more: The capture by Nebuchadnezzar on the 17th day of the month Thammuz (July). The burning of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar on the 9th day of the month Ab (August). The slaughter of Gedaliah on the 3rd day of the month Tishri (October), see Jeremiah 41:1-10. The Siege of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar on the 10th Day of the Month of Tebeth (January).
These were all HUMAN institutions, not commanded by God. They controlled the human mind, religion. And were not aimed at God. The fast was aimed at the FAST, and therefore God must hear it. An enforceable fast, not focused on the sanctity of fasting. More of a human "pleasure".
Verse 1 Two years after the first vision (1:1) God speaks to Zechariah. Possibly the rebuilding of the temple was (almost) complete. But from the following verses it appears that it was more religion among the returned Jews and Israelites than their hearts were set on God Himself.
Verses 2 and 3 In Bethel (Beth-el) the ark had been kept for a long time and therefore belonged to one of the most holy places in Israel. Perhaps that is why this delegation on behalf of all Israel was sent to the priests and the prophet Zechariah. To ask the favor of the Lord for an answer. Should we continue to fast and weep into the fifth month now that this "no longer applies"? For the Israelites and Jews had partly returned from Babylon, the temple had been rebuilt, so the mourning is over.
Verse 4 It is the Lord God who speaks to the prophet Zechariah and gives the answer.
Verse 5 The answer of God is not only to the delegation of Bethel, but to ALL THE PEOPLE OF THE LAND. It is a great charge from God to His people: "Have you really fasted and mourned for the past 70 years (of exile in Babylonia)? Was it REALLY for Me?"
God sees and looks into the human heart. He knows the true motives, for Him, or religion?
God does not just answer the question posed. He responds to all four HUMAN (see above) instituted fasts. He rejects their fast, for it is self-centered, their grief, their own pity, it is more formal, their thought: God HAS TO bless us, our prayer He has to answer. It was an outward character, piety, and not an inward heart of repentance to God. God desires a personal relationship of humility, holiness, worthy of God. For the Christian, a life under the control of the Holy Spirit, full of the nine fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22), a daily life in which Jesus Christ is visible (see verses 6-12). A confession of guilt and sincere repentance, see Daniel 10. A real seeking for the Will of God to do and be done.
Verses 6 and 7 A heavy charge from God. When you eat and drink, is that for yourself? Should you not thank Me that I take care of your food and drink? Have I not blessed you with milk and honey in Israel when the prophets traveled through Israel and My Word was: LISTEN to My Word and obedient to My Word. Then Jerusalem with its cities had rest. You ask: Should we continue fasting? No, you must do what you have not yet done; you must repent of your sins and reform your life. That is what I now call you to, and it is the same to which the former prophets of your fathers cried. Remember the former flourishing status of their country: Jerusalem was then inhabited and prosperous, now it is desolate and in need. The surrounding towns, now in ruins, were then inhabited and they lived in peace. The land was densely populated: people lived in the south of the plain, which was not fortified, and yet they lived safely, it was fertile, and so they lived in abundance. But then God called to them through the prophets, as one in earnest, and urged them to change their ways and actions, or else their prosperity would soon be at an end. Well, says Zechariah, you should have taken notice and deduced that what was required of them to prevent the judgments, and what they did not do, is required for the removal of the judgments; and if you do nothing, all your fasting and weeping will mean nothing.
Today many Christians seek their own prosperity, wealth and health. Some give their tithe from their wealth. But their hearts are not within it. Some fast for fear of the future, persecution, losing their well-being, seeing the decline of their country, the governments with their disobedience to God, sometimes under the motto we should think of the environment. But they do not protest against the government violating God's laws. There is no repentance and they themselves do not live in obedience to God. They go to church on Sunday, but their hearts are not with God. Christians who refuse to listen and look the other way as if they had not been spoken to. Do not accept the Bible as full Truth and say that is not of our time, that no longer applies. They think they know better than Almighty God.
Verses 9 and 10 God desires honesty, justice given (no corrupt judges and governments), the neighbor is loved as yourself, mercy is shown to the poor, no oppression of the neighbor, no prejudice. God looks into your heart for your motives to do something for God and your neighbor. Is it selfishness to have it yourself better? Do you go over corpses and plot disaster for the other (out of revenge)?
No profit making from disasters and wars and exorbitant profit, driving up prices?
A right size and right fair price for the merchandise.
God's judgments on Israel for their sins were written for admonition to us Christians (1 Cor. 10:11).
Verses 11 and 12 These stubborn sinners deliberately hardened their hearts, they would not hear what God said to them by the written word, by the law of Moses, and by the words of the prophets who preached to them. They had Moses and the prophets, the Old Testament, but decided they would not hear them. The words of the prophets were not heeded by them, though they were words which the Lord of Hosts sent and commanded them, so that by despising them, they insulted God Himself and resisted the Holy Spirit. They made their hearts hard as diamonds and stopped their ears from hearing the teaching of God Almighty. As a result, your God became angry and sent you into exile from the promised land of milk and honey.
How we do not see it in the churches today. Repentance and teaching of God's Word, the Bible is lacking in many churches, no teaching of sins. Rather the contrary, sin is justified and explained away. After all, Jesus died for all sins. But 1 Corinthians 6:10, Galatians 5:19-21, Ephesians 5:5 and others are very clear. Everything that does not please God, IS SIN! May I say some preachers, lead the churchgoers not to Heaven, but straight to the lake of fire. Through their own fault. No Bible knowledge, listen to what others say and explain.
Verse 13 Unjust of God? God is patient, but there are limits. For hundreds of years God sent His prophets calling for repentance, acknowledgment of sins, to do the Will of God. Proclamation of blessing and curse. God CALLED during their lifetimes through His servants. Until God's measure was full with the stubborn people, and now it is His turn to hear no more when His people call to Him.
We are still living in a time of God's grace. Through the Bible, free via the Internet in many languages, via social media, television, radio, God calls to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. But even now, many do not want to listen, turn to demon and satan worship, live their own lives, seek the best for themselves, want to know nothing about sin and God. There is still God's grace, but we are approaching very quickly that God's measure is full. We see it in many Latin American countries, Cuba and other countries. Surrendered by God to their own (democratic) wish of communism and socialism, resulting in bitter poverty, hunger and oppression. And no one takes it as a lesson, they stubbornly turn away from God.
Verse 15 Israel is banished from the Promised Land from 70 a.D. to 1948. God has kept His Word of curse. His people persisted despite all the examples of their forefathers. The punishment of God: they were scattered among all the nations of the earth, to the north, east, south and west, the four winds of the earth. The land of Israel was desolate. By their sins, the pleasant land was made desolate.
The lesson for us: Are we stubborn and NOT taking it as an example? The choice is completely voluntary. God does not force anyone, man nor woman. But just as murder leads to imprisonment, the death sentence, so also rejecting God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ has its consequences. No one can blame God for the consequence, it is your completely free choice. A warned person counts for two!
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Verses 1 and 2 Again God speaks to Zechariah. God expresses His wrath against His people, He shows that He is the Lord of hosts, holy and does not tolerate sin, just as people think today that God tolerates sin and does not chrage. How foolish can one be. God is holy. That is why Jesus had to die on the cross. Later in this chapter we see that a non-holy life of Israelite, Jew and Christian has its consequences.
The Lord is jealous for Zion with great jealousy, that is yet to come. Today we see a fulfillment with the state of Israel. The Jews are returning to the promised land. Israel is blooming and the deserts are becoming fertile again. But this chapter will have its fulfillment in the 1000-year Kingdom of Christ, which is after the Great Tribulation, but may I say, which is going to happen in a decade?
Verse 3 Today God does not yet dwell in Jerusalem. First, the temple is to be rebuilt in the Great Tribulation. In the second half of the Great Tribulation, Satan will enter the temple and proclaim himself god (Daniel 9:27). At the end of the Great Tribulation, Jesus will come back to earth with his saints (the Church (and angels?)) (Matthew 24:30, Daniel 7:13, Revelation 17:19-21) and defeat Satan and he will be cast for 1000 years into the abyss. During these 1000 years, the Lord Jesus Christ reigns on earth in His Kingdom and this chapter is being fulfilled. Then Jesus lives in Jerusalem. The complete fulfillment is after these 1000 years when Jesus and God the Father both dwell in the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:22-27).
Verses 4 and 5 Whether this applies in the 1000-year Kingdom and also in the New Jerusalem, I have no answer to.
The children will be healthy, strong and active; boys and girls will not lie sick in bed, but (with a pleasant face and delight to their parents) will play happily and cheerfully in the streets. They shall have plenty with food enough for all. No times of famine because when they play in the streets which is a good sign that they lack nothing and they are healthy.
They have not to fear the alarm of war and terrorist attacks, but enjoy perfect security and peace. For Jesus reigns as King and provides peace and security.
Boys and girls will play peacefully, not fight in the streets, in perfect harmony. No dominating behavior of boys over the girls.
The elderly with staff, because of their advanced age (200-900 years?) enjoy watching the children's play in the streets and squares.
Verse 6 In the days of Zechariah this prophecy was too wonderful to be fulfilled. Then were the enemies around Israel, the exiles in Babylonia. Their enemies who wished to hinder the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the Temple. Today it is not much different. Europe, Muslim and other countries are hating the Jews, Anti-Semitism and Nazism are rising again. Many countries want the destruction of Israel and especially Jerusalem. But they are badly mistaken if they think they will succeed, FOR it is the WORK OF GOD. They are fighting against an Almighty God, a battle they will lose. For to fight against God is foolishness and futility.
Verse 7 It is God Who brings His people back to the promised land Israel. It is not human work! Ezekiel 37 is being fulfilled. The dry bones of the dead (the graves of the gassed Jews in the Second World War?) are clothed with sinews, flesh and skin: The Jewish people have been returning to Israel from 1948 and are continuing to the present day (the growth of the sinews and skin).
From the east country and from the west country, in short, from all over the world, the Jews return to Israel. No one knows where the 10 tribes of Israel are. Personally, I am thinking of the possibility that they will not return, because the 144,000 sealed ones (Revelation 7) will proclaim the Kingdom of God in all the world.
Verse 8 According to the apostle Paul, all Israel comes to faith (Romans 11:26), no doubt that will be the case in the 1000-year Kingdom of Christ. Then this verse 8 is fully fulfilled, just as in the New Jerusalem and on the New earth. Then the 12 tribes of Israel will be faithful to their God and there will be righteousness.
Verses 9 and 10 In the days of Zechariah the people were grieved, and looked upon the ruins and deserts. But God says: Let your hands be strong to rebuild the temple and Jerusalem. For before your return from Babylonia there was nothing for man to earn and the cattle yielded nothing and the coming (traveling through the land) man was not safe from the foe. For it was God Himself who set all men against each other.
But I (God) shall reverse your destiny. So be strong now and let your hands work.
How was that not in 1948? The land of Israel was in ruins and with deserts. Then also those who returned were to be strong in their lands and cultivate the land anew, to rebuild cities, to irrigate the deserts with water. Now the land is a thriving and with fertile deserts. Belongs to the most prosperous countries of the world, rich in resources (treasures given by God). Arab states make peace with Israel. It is safe to travel throughout Israel. A lot of tourism, yes many people and Christians from all over the world visit Israel. There is money to be gain. Much knowledge and science is being exported to other countries, including to the former Arab enemies!
Verses 11 and 12 Already in the days of Zechariah God is no longer angry as in the former days. For the seed yields fruit, the vines yield grapes and wine. Why? Because God gives dew and rain on the land at the right times. He causes the remnant of His people to inherit the promised land. That is the fulfillment in the days of Zechariah.
After the Jewish people's rejection of the Messiah Jesus, the people were once again banished from the Promised Land. In 70 AD. the Romans destroyed the city of Jerusalem and the temple and they were scattered over all the earth. The Christian is the grafted branch and everyone should come to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior from sin and Lord of his/her life. He or she should live in obedience to Jesus. The Jewish and Israelite people are an example to the Christian of what the consequences are, if one perseveres and is stubborn in sin. What the consequence is: a rejection by God. Do not grieve and do not quench from the Holy Spirit!
Verse 13 The Jewish people in Babylon were a byword of cursing. In the Second World War, the Jews were a cursed people. Under Anti-Semitism and Nazism, the Jews are cursed. In Islam and many Muslim countries, the Jew is cursed.
But God will grant salvation. His promise is that Israel will become a blessing to the nations. At the time when Europe supported the State of Israel, they prospered. As Europe turns against them, Israel is once again a curse and Europe is going downhill. This is seen happening with every country that turns against Israel, that is the hand of God.
In the 1000-year Kingdom of Christ and on the New Earth, Israel will be a blessing to all nations. For it is Jesus Who reigns and brings blessing. So look to the future and let your hands be strong.
The "Christian" who curses the Jew, who says that the Jews killed Jesus and hung the Cross, they are not Christians because they have no idea what Christianity means. The Christian is the grafted branch on the root of Israel. Jesus had to die for man's sin. Every individual Christian has nailed Jesus to the Cross by his/her sin. It was the Gentile Pilate who only had the right to condemn Jesus to the Cross (the Jew had no such right!). The heathen is guilty and each person individually.
Jesus, the JEW, has become the blessing for all people, for all who wish to believe in Him as Savior and Lord. So be strong and accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord.
Verse 14 God is not to be mocked. Then God showed His wrath to their fathers, their ancestors would not listen to the prophets sent by God. Because of their stubbornness, God did not repent of banishing them from the Promised Land and punishing them.
Today many governments and people individually think, OH we can go our own way. There is no God, for we see no punishment. How wrong are they. God is long-suffering, waiting and watching. Giving man time to repent and turn from his or her evil walk. Until the measure is full. Just look at Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua there the population deliberately chose against God and for the left wing with communism and socialism. Now the population is dying in deep poverty, no food in the supermarkets, churches are closed or with communist teachings. That is not the fault of God, but a free "democratic and voluntary" choice of the people.
In churches, the Word of God is no longer taught purely. Preachers preach to the mouth of the church members. Sin is no longer sin. They deceive and lead their flock right into the lake of fire and Satan laughs. But man is individually guilty, he or she must read the Bible, Old and New Testament, including Revelation. God warns man SUFFICIENTLY, he or she can read, listen (the Bible is in many languages in audio) and pray the Holy Spirit for explanation. Man has no excuse!
Verses 15-17 In the days of Zechariah, God turned away His wrath and purposed to do good to the Jews (the house of Judah). Unfortunately, despite the return of God's blessing and seeing the earlier wrath, the people were stubborn and rejected the Messiah. They would not know anything about a doctrine of sin. They wanted independence, through works to turn away the wrath of God. Wished to set their own measures and values (verse 16) above God's. To keep the Torah as if it brought deliverance from sin, all directed to one's own works, like all the other faiths in the world.
The believer who thinks that he or she does not need to live by God's commandments encounters himself. God forgives sin when confessed, but God rarely removes the consequence(s). A believer who lives in the world, not according to God's Will, is a foolish virgin (Matthew 25) and does not enter to the marriage feast (to Heaven), but remains behind (Matthew 24:40-41).
They do NOT hate what God HATES. Rather contrary they love, for God hates. Done with that today is no longer of our time. As if man has a greater wisdom than the Omniscient God. The foolish man with his knowledge of a lifetime (or since creation 6000 years ago), versus a God who is Creator of the universe and has lived for billions of years. Look at the God-given knowledge to Solomon in his proverbs. What does man think that he or she is more than God? No man is able to speak all the languages of the world, but the Holy Spirit understands and speaks every language. No doctor or specialist who has a complete knowledge of the entire human body and mind. Everyone has their own specialization. But God as Creator knows man completely, He has no specializations! He KNOWS WHAT IS BEST FOR MAN, therefore He has given prohibitions. Sex before marriage leads to abortion and AIDS. Anal sex leads to terrible diseases.
Verses 18-19. These fasts are discussed in the commentary at the beginning Zechariah 7.
Verses 20-21 This prophecy will be fulfilled during the 1000-year Kingdom of Christ and on the New Earth. People will invite inhabitants from other cities to visit Jerusalem (the dwelling place of God) (see also Revelation 21:22-27). Perhaps you can think of the trips organized today by organizations and churches to visit Israel. Many visit the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem to entreat God's favor. Then many will visit God (the temple is no longer in the New Jerusalem Revelation 21:22), to seek the Lord of hosts.
Verse 22 It will not be limited to individual people from cities, it will be nations and mighty peoples (rulers) who go to Jerusalem to seek God's face. They will recognize God's power and Wisdom. As the Queen of Sheba recognized the wisdom of Solomon (God-giving). They will be humble and entreat the favor of God for their land.
Verse 23 Men of every language shall take hold of the robe (Hebrew tzitzit: memorial tassels Numbers 15:38-39) of a Judean man, and go with him to God, because they have heard that God blesses him. The Judean man's cloak has 10 memorial tassels. Numbers 15:39 "and it shall be to you a tassel to look upon and remember all the commandments of the Lord, to do them, not to follow after your own heart and your own eyes, which you are inclined to go after wantonly".
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Verse 1 God speaks to Zechariah again. It is unclear who is meant by HE, probably the eye of the Lord. Source: biblicalcyclopedia Hadrach.
On the locality in question, great division of opinion exists. Adrichoinius says, "Adrach, or Hadrach, alias Adra is a city of Caelesyria, about twenty-five miles from Bostra, and from it the adjacent region takes the name of Land of Hadrach. This was the land which formed the subject of Zechariah's prophecy". Rabbi Jose, a Damascene, according to Jarchi, declared he knew a place of this name east of Damascus; and Michaelis says "To this I may add what I learned, in the year 1768, from Joseph Abbassi, a noble Arab of the country beyond Jordan. I inquired whether he knew a city called Hadrakh He replied that there was a city of that name, which, though now small, had been the capital of a large region called the land of Hadrakh," End of source.
In short, one does not know where this country Hadrach is.
Damascus still exists in Syria, where the war already last for 11 years (March 2022).
The eye of the Lord is not only on the 12 tribes of Israel, but on other people, that is, on all the nations of the earth.
Verses 2 and 3 Source christipedia.nl 1. The ancestor of the Rechabites; 2. A great city in Syria from ancient times. The city of Hamath was at the foot of the Antilebanon on the river Orontes, 213 km (132 miles) north of Damascus and near Zoba, and was therefore also called Hamath-zoba. Founded by the Canaanites, the city was later occupied by the Syrians. End source. Today, HAMATH, one of the most charming regions of Lebanon, is a potential olive grove country.
Hamath, which lay at the entrance to Palestine from Damascus, should not only border on Damascus in territory. Pursuing its southerly course, it reaches Tyre and Sidon, whose conceit of wisdom and godless pride had to be punished. The Tyrians were celebrated for their worldly wisdom. Ancient Tyre was on the mainland and had a temple. Tyre and Sidon were two of the oldest cities and richest in the world. Tyre was known for its arts and manufactures, especially glass and pottery. Sidon for her commerce. The port of Tire had a rich stream of Asian trade, having almost a monopoly of the Mediterranean. Her wealth was enormous. The inhabitants lived luxuriously, hence their enormous pride. Tyre had a great exposure to invasion, so another city was built half a mile into the sea. The prophecies of Isaiah and Ezekiel were fulfilled by Nebuchadnezzar, who completely destroyed ancient Tyre and left the city in a heap of ruins. After this fall, the Tyrians concentrated their strength to the island. Surrounded the city with a double wall 48 meters (150 feet) high, filled in with 8 meters (25 feet) of earth. So that with the surrounding sea, the city seemed impregnable.
Verse 4 However, the Lord will strip it. This prophecy was fulfilled 200 years later. Alexander used the ruins (dust, stones and timber) of ancient Tire to build a pier from the mainland to the island. After a siege of seven months, 10,000 were slain by the sword and 30,000 were enslaved. The city was burned with fire and thus this verse/prophecy was literally fulfilled.
Verses 5 and 6 Ashkelon and Gaza (the territory of the Philistines, present territory of the Gaza strip of the Palestinians) they shall see and writhe in anguish the fall of Tyre. History records that after a siege of two months Gaza, King Betis was dragged through the city (king from Gaza shall perish). Source wikipedia: Askelon (Hebrew: אשקלון, Arabic: عسقلان, ʿAsqalān) s a coastal city in the Southern District of Israel on the Mediterranean coast, 50 kilometres (30 mi) south of Tel Aviv, and 13 kilometres (8 mi) north of the border with the Gaza Strip. The ancient seaport of Ashkelon dates back to the Neolithic Age, until it was destroyed by the Mamluks in 1270. The modern city was rebuilt in 1949 on the remains of the Palestinian city of Al-Majdal Asqalan. Kibbutz Yad Mordechai is located 10 kilometers south of the city. Here is a museum about the Warsaw Ghetto.
A mongrel people shall dwell in Ashdod. In the course of its history, it has been ruled by the Ancient Egyptians, the Canaanites, the Philistines, the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Hasmoneans, the Romans, the Persians, the Arabs and the Crusaders.
Verse 7 The blood in the mouth indicates the drinking of sacrificial blood. The abominations between his teeth: eating blood sacrifices to idols. Despite this, God will not completely destroy it, but a remnant remains. It indicates the submission by King David, chieftain of Judah.
The fulfillment happened in the time of Jesus, Luke 6:17: a great multitude came from Tire and Sidon (Ekron like the Jebusites).
Verse 8 It is logical that the Jews were afraid of the surrounding nations to rebuild Jerusalem and the temple. But God is Who protects, have no fear, says God in this verse. A remarkable fact is that when Alexander went up to Jerusalem, he was troubled by a dream in which he was commanded to spare Jerusalem and give great privileges. Herod had the temple enlarged just before the time of Jesus.
Today we see God's protection of the city of Jerusalem. Many times after 1948 the surrounding nations have marched against Jerusalem, but God has protected. Now many countries have their embassies in the capital Jerusalem. And you can see this with your own eyes. These verses 1 to 9 have been fulfilled!
Verse 9 See the fulfillment written in Matthew 21 1-11. Matthew 21:4 says: This took place to fulfil what was spoken by the prophet (Zechariah). Continued by verse 5 a quotation from Zechariah 9 verse 9.
No show of riding on a horse, like many kings in the time of Jesus, with great spectacle, or with chariot and horses. But a humbly riding a donkey colt, the foal of an ass. Virginity. A character of peace and redemption.
He (Jesus) comes triumphant and victorious. Other English translation "just and endowed with salvation". With the meaning of God was with Him, in spite of all humility, entertaining Him in the great work He had to do as Savior from sin, bestowing powers of power (over demons) and healing.
Verse 10 Is still future. See Zechariah 14 verse 4 His (Jesus') feet will stand on the Mount of Olives. Revelation 19:19 The nations that worshiped the Beast, and the people that took the mark of the Beast, they are destroyed. Then the chariots from Ephraim and the horses from Jerusalem (those that gathered to make war in Revelation 19:19) and the battle bow will be destroyed. After this victory of Jesus, Jesus will bring peace in His 1000-year Kingdom. His dominion will extend from Jerusalem to the ends of the earth.
The Jews were given the opportunity to accept Jesus as Savior from their sin in Matthew 21. However, they did not want to know anything about sin. They wanted a deliverer from the Roman yoke and rejected Jesus when He did not come as King and deliverer from the Roman yoke. Zechariah 9 verses 9 and 10 should have been contiguous. However with their rejection came the interval of 2000 years with Jesus as Savior from sin, the preaching of the gospel, the Church.
Verse 11 The blood of my covenant that is the covenant made by God with the Israelites on Mount Sinai. Where God has given His commandments and statutes through Moses to the Israelites with the blessing and the curse.
The waterless pit: dungeons, deep wells in which there was no water and in special cases prisoners were lowered. Think of Joseph who was kept captive in the pit before being sold by his brothers.
Under the devastations of Antiochus (one of the kings of the Greek monarchy), the Israelites suffered terribly. He sought to overturn the Jewish faith and establish the worship of Jupiter in their temple. However, it only made the Israelites more obstinately in their faith.
Verse 12 God promises that if His people return to Him, will (continue to) keep His laws and statutes, He will bring redemption and will repay them doubly for their suffering.
For the Church, Jesus Christ is the covenant blood. With His death on the cross and blood, He has bought the believer. Sinners are prisoners of sin. But how will the believer receive a reward according to his or her works if he perseveres in the faith with gold, silver and precious stones. Hope is the God-given prospect of a life with God and redemption from sin through the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. In Him is the hope of eternal life and redemption from the sinful body.
Verse 13 God shows Himself here as a warrior. The bow is Judah (2 Sam. 1:18) and the arrow is Ephraim (Ps. 78:9), God's mighty weapon against the enemies of Zion. Here mentioned by name: Greece. They become a hero's sword that is irresistible and invincible. God uses His people to fight against the enemies of His people. He uses the Church to proclaim Him and punish the unbelievers.
Verse 14 Then the Lord will appear to them, see Zechariah 14:4, Matthew 24:30 and Revelation 19:19. His arrows will kill the enemies like lightning. Just think like tornadoes, hurricanes and severe storms, that is where lightning strikes. Nothing can resist against this violence and leaves a trail of destruction.
Whirlwinds of the South Land were the worst storms.
The trumpets are blown in Revelation 8, 9, and 11.
Verse 15 With sling stones we can think of the smooth stones, as David rapped from the ground and hurled at the giant Goliath. The stone penetrated his brain and killed him. They are small stones on the ground and seem harmless. But in the hand of God (David was used by God) a deadly weapon.
A bowl that was used at the altar of burnt offering to collect the blood of the sacrificial animals and pour it out (Ex. 27:3).
Verse 16 It is God who brings deliverance from the enemies. After redemption comes peace. The people of Israel are the chosen people of God. They are the crown jewels of God. They will shine in the Promised Land. They will wear the jewels in their diadems on their heads.
The believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, they will reign with Jesus in His 1000-year Kingdom. The believer may also wear a diadem.
Verse 17 The grain and the wine indicate the blessings of God. The grain nourishes the young men, and makes them strong, and the maidens fruitful. No more violence and war, but peace and abundance in the 1000-year Kingdom of Christ.
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Verse 1 Ask rain from the Lord. He makes the storm clouds and gives the torrential rain in the season resulting in vegetation in the field. The first rain fell in the seed season, in the autumn, the last fell in the spring, between March and May, bringing the wheat to the ear. How could the Israelites not be reminded that it is God Who gives the rain. How many Christians today thank God for their food and drink? Once a month, on Thanksgiving, once a week or daily? Do we realize that without rain there is no food and drink and no life? The rain in the right amount and at the right time provides the rice, potatoes and vegetables. The fruits of the trees, apples, pears, oranges. The meadow that blooms with grass and the cows give their milk. Enough reason to thank God for it. And PRAY that God gives the rain in the right amounts and at the right time.
But as opposed to neglecting God, looting and exploiting the earth, and not managing the climate properly, humans are experiencing global warming, which scientists say is making the oceans warmer, more water evaporating, resulting in multiple and more powerful hurricanes that ravage America and the tsunamis in Asia. With billions of dollars in damage. People loses their homes and source of income. Shops, supermarkets and factories destroyed.
The Israelites had to pray for the first and the late rain. If any of these were missing, the harvest would be poor. Spiritually we can apply this: We can pray that people will come to faith in Jesus Christ, but if the prayer for spiritual growth is lacking, it is like seed that falls along the path, rocky grounds and upon thorns (Matthew 13:1-23), they (young believers) are eventually lost.
Verse 2 The teraphim was a statue of household or family gods with human form. The exact meaning is unknown. The people of God, who have set their God aside and worship idols, prophets with false dreams who give false hopes, who listen to soothsayers (which God had forbidden). Today (daily) consultation of horoscopes. The occultism of worshiping demons, sacrificing children to demons. They are all without God, and wander like lost people, seeing no solution, bringing divorce and suicide. Fleeing into alcohol, sex and drugs. The Israelites did not listen to their God and to the prophets sent by God, they descended because it no longer had a shepherd to direct and guide them. Today many people do not want to know about God's laws, about the Bible, reject the message of the true proclaimers of God. Be deceived by the false proclaimers of the Bible, who speak at the mouth of the people, false teachers they are. Leading people straight to the lake of fire. In which church is the Rapture of the Church proclaimed? The book of Revelation, Daniel, Ezekiel and Zechariah explained? Insisted on a life under the control of the Holy Spirit? Calling to a holy walk to the glory of God and Jesus Christ? To be an example to the unbeliever?
Therefore the wrath of God is kindled against the shepherds (pastors) and GOD WILL VISIT (to these goats of verse 2)! Hebrews 13:17 is clear: Pastors they will be accountable to the Lord Jesus Christ. How few live in this realization! How many pastors and others do not attenuate the Bible, preach the Word of God, give weak preaching and no teaching of holy living. Clearly NO FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT (Galatians 5:22) are seen in their lives nor in their church members.
Verses 3-5 When the people return to God, then God will give them the cornerstone, the peg that holds the tent, from among them. Not from the strangers, but from their own people. This was fulfilled in the time of the Maccabees. And its full fulfillment takes place in the Messianic Kingdom, the cornerstone being Jesus Christ.
Spiritually, Jesus Christ is already the cornerstone (the foundation) of the Church (1 Cor. 3:11). The believer passes through the mire of persecution and torture, from them comes the Church of a royal priesthood. And in the 1000-year Kingdom they will be rulers (kings). The battle bow of the proclamation of the gospel goes over the whole earth. The battle bow of the Two Witnesses and the 144,000 sealed ones will sweep all over the earth in the Great Tribulation. They will fight because the Lord is with them. But those who ride on horses, and worship the Beast and the false prophet, they will be ashamed and destroyed.
In the time of the Maccabees (second century BC), this was already partly fulfilled by the defeats of Antiochus.
A further fulfillment is seen in the defeats of Israel's enemies during the wars after 1948. The Six Day War, in particular, brought a great victory, and Egyptian soldiers testify that they saw the angels fighting for Israel.
Verse 7 Ephraim was the leading tribe of the 10 tribes, most of which had not yet returned from Babylonia. They needed the most encouragement from God.
Verse 8 I will signal for (better translation: hiss)them to Me and gather them in. The shepherd used a flute to call the sheep to him. A beekeeper hisses to summon the bee swarm. It seems hard work, but seems to be easily accomplished. It seems impossible to gather together the 10 tribes that have spread all over the world, but when God signals, they will gather.
Verse 9 It is God who has scattered the 10 tribes among the nations on earth. Nevertheless, we know the many Jewish quarters in many cities around the world where (Orthodox) Jews live, have their synagogues, and practice their Jewish religion.
Verses 10 and 11 I will bring them home from the land of Egypt. Some think this was literally fulfilled when King Ptolemy Philadelphus of Egypt sent 120,000 Jews from his country to their own, as was the promise to take them out of Assyria by Alexander, the son of Antiochus Epiphanes. But it has its spiritual feat in raising precious souls together from a bondage worse than that of Egypt or Assyria, and bringing them into the glorious liberties of the children of God and their enjoyments, which are like the beautiful fruitful pastures. in the land of Gilead and Lebanon.
Verse 12 It is God Himself who causes the Israelite and Jewish people to return to Him in worship. Ezekiel speaks of the dry bones on which muscles, nerves and flesh grow, BUT there was no spirit yet. That comes later. We see the return to Israel, but still keeping the Law. There is still no spirit, no true worship of God. The number of abortions in Israel is shockingly high. Many young people do not know God. But there will come a time (perhaps not until the 1,000-year Kingdom of Christ) when everyone will know God and walk in His Name.
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God's prophet Zechariah, who in the previous chapters was an ambassador sent to promise peace, here is a herald sent to declare war. The Jewish nation will regain its prosperity, and for some time will prosper and become great; it will be very happy in the end at the arrival of the long-awaited Messiah, in the preaching of his gospel. But when thereby the elect remnant among them is called to repentance, the body of the nation, persisting in unbelief, will be utterly forsaken and given to ruin, because it has rejected Jesus; and this is foretold here in this chapter: the Jews who rejected Christ, which was their measure-filling sin, and the wrath that came upon them to the utmost because of that sin.
It describes the storm that came upon Palestine, after the period of the Maccabees, before the coming of the Messiah.
Verses 1-3 Some understand by Lebanon the temple, which was built of cedars of Lebanon, and its stones white as the snow of Lebanon. It was burned with fire by the Romans and the gates were broken open by the wrath of the soldiers. Calvin sees it as a prediction of tumult and trouble as a storm that traverses Palestine.
Basan was a fertile Overjordanian region. A country east of the Sea of Galilee and north of Gilead. It extended north to Mount Hermon, and east to Salcha, Deut. 3:10, Joshua 12:5. Bashan originally belonged to the king of the Amorites Og, Num. 21:33; but was conquered by the Israelites, and allotted to the half tribe of Manasseh, Num. 33:33; Joshua 21:6. The country was also known for the excellent height of its oaks, Isa. 2:13.
Herod and the priests were shepherds in their office, such men should have protected God's flock entrusted to their task. However, the High Priest declared Jesus guilty of blasphemy and with him the priests and scribe. Herod declared Jesus innocent and washed his hands in innocence and handed Jesus over to be crucified. They were the young lions that roared in their pride against Jesus. The splendor of the Jordan, the coming King and forgiveness of sin by Jesus, was destroyed on Calvary's Cross.
Verses 4-17 The prophet is initially painted as a type of Jesus and ends up as a foolish shepherd.
Verse 4 The prophet and Jesus are commanded by God the Father to shepherd the people as a good shepherd.
Verse 5 Their buyers slaughter them without feeling guilty. In the temple square in the days of Jesus, the buyers bought the sheep raised by the shepherds of Ephraim and sold them with usury to the people who wanted to make a sacrifice in the temple. They came from all over Palestine and during their journey they did not take a sheep from their own flock, but bought it in the temple square. The buyers and sellers wanted to get rich with their usurious profits. They bought in great numbers from the shepherds of Ephraim.
In the time of Jesus, the chief priests and the elders who owned the flock, by their traditions, the commandments of men, and their impositions upon the conscience of the people, became perfect tyrants, devoured their houses, confiscated their riches and shelled the flock instead of feeding them. The Sadducees, who were deists, corrupted their judgment, they set themseleves on the seat of Moses. The Pharisees, intolerant of superstitions, corrupted their morals by invalidating the commandments of God, Matthew 15:16.
Verse 6 God will not spare His stubborn people who would not know anything about acknowledgment of sin. They cried (John 19:12-15): Away with Him (Jesus)! We have no king but Caesar (the Roman emperor). Jesus came to save His people from the penalty of sin, but the people rejected Him, wanting not to be healed. Their abandonment was their downfall.
In the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple in AD 70, one and a half million Jews were murdered by the Romans (fall each into the hand of his king=Emperor Caesar). The land of Palestine became a wasteland.
When we extend this prophecy to today, even now the world is against God and do not wish to know anything about sin recognition. That applies to unbelievers and believers. In the Great Tribulation, God will hand them over to kings who serve Satan. The people are going to follow the Beast and the false prophet and take the mark 666. God's wrath comes upon mankind with the many ravages described in Revelation. Pride at its peak in Babylon and its vast trade and wealth, but falls in Revelation 16 with the final fall of the rebellious people against God. God does not save the stubborn and rebellious man in the Great Tribulation.
Verse 7 I took two staffs with me, pastoral sticks; other shepherds have but one staff, but Christ had two, signifying the double care He had for His flock, and for what He did for the souls as well as the bodies of men. David speaks of God's rod and his staff (Ps. 23:4), a correcting rod and a supporting staff. One of these staffs was called Grace, signifying the temple, which is called the beauty of holiness, which Christ called the house of His Father. And for which He showed great zeal when He cleared it from the buyers and sellers. The others he called Union, denoting their marital status, and the incorporated society of that nation, which Jesus also provided by preaching love and peace among them.
Verse 8 In general it seems an act of power and justice for the punishment of the sinful shepherds and the restoration of the grievances of the mistreated flock. Some understand it as three orders of princes, priests, and scribes or prophets, who, when Jesus had finished His work, were laid aside for their unfaithfulness. Others understand it of the three sects among the Jews, of Pharisees, Sadducees, and Herodians, all whom Jesus silenced in dispute (Matthew 22) and cut off shortly afterwards, all in a short time.
Verse 9 There is mutual enmity between God and evil men; they are hateful to God and hate God. Nothing speaks more of the sinfulness and misery of an unregenerate state than this. The carnal mind, the friendship of the world, their enmity to God, and God hates all workers of iniquity; and it is easy to foresee where this will end up. They will make themselves prey for the wolf. Those who reject God's grace (and Jesus), they become prey to their sins and end up in the lake of fire. Just as Moses got angry and smashed the two stones of the 10 commandments, so the provocation of God's grace comes to an end.
In the final time, son will betray his father, neighbor will rise up against his neighbor. Today we already see church members who accuse and betray their pastor to the police (and let those that are left devour the flesh of one another).
Verse 10 Although after the crucifixion of Jesus 30 AD. God gave the Jewish people another 40 years to repent, the people were killed in 70 AD. horribly murdered after the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. With that the covenant of God with the Jewish people "ended" (broken my rod Grace). Nevertheless, it has not been completely set aside and still Jews come to believe in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.
Verse 11 The Jewish people became the most miserable of the nations. Banned from the promised land, one and a half million were murdered by the Romans in AD 70. Scattered over all the earth. Hated by many nations in the world. Killed by the Crusaders. And as a climax, the murder of the six million Jews in the concentration camps with their burning (the worst imaginable for a Jew) in the Second World War.
Let man notice. This was the Word of God. And applies to ANY HUMAN who rejects God!
Verse 12 The chief priests weighed out the wages of Jesus: 30 pieces of silver, the price of a slave (Mark 14:10-11). After the betrayal by Judas and he regretted his deed, he returns the blood money to the chief priests. The chief priests refused because the money had been paid for a death. Then Judas threw the 30 pieces of silver into the temple (House of the Lord). Then Judas hanged himself. The chief priests collected the 30 pieces of silver and bought the potter's land (Matthew 27:5-10) as a burial ground for foreigners living in Israel who could not afford a burial. This land is still in Jerusalem (to visit). With that, this prophecy was completely fulfilled.
The potter's valley of Ben-hinnom (Topeth) was an unclean place to the Jews because Josiah had defiled it with carrion and bones (2 Kings 23:10 sacrifice of sons and daughters to Molech). The potter took his clay from this valley. See also Jeremiah 18 and 19.
Verse 14 At the time of Rehoboam (the king after King Solomon) there was already a division between Israel (10 tribes) and Judah (2 tribes). First the Israelites were taken away to Babylonia, then the Jews (Judah). The Jews in the world are clearly recognizable by their appearance. Many can prove (DNA) that they are Jews on their current return to Israel. However, there is a clear separation, nobody does not know where the 10 tribes from Israel are. That brotherhood between Judah and Israel is annulled.
Verses 15 and 16 The prophet Zechariah is commanded by God: Take once more the implements of a worthless shepherd. The foolish shepherd has no staff, no sack (with stones to keep the wolves away). He only looks after his own welfare and not the welfare of his sheep. He does not protect his sheep. The priests, scribes and Pharisees imposed impossible rules on the people to improve their own position. They made the Law of Moses a ceremonial law.
Matthew 24:4-5 "And Jesus answered them, “Take heed that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray".
Today we hear of the many deceptions of tithing (give multiples). However, that is not used for evangelism and mission, but for the own enrichment of the pastor. Not to mention the good ones.
Verse 16 The priests, scribes and Pharisees in the days of Jesus they were worthless shepherds. They perished in the destruction of the temple. But the Romans also did not go unpunished, they too were smite by the sword and their empire was destroyed.
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Verse 1 The words that follow are from God, so indisputable. It is God, He is the Creator of the world. The Creator and therefore He has an undeniable irresistible dominion. He created the earth, plants, trees, crops, fish, birds and man. He is the Almighty. He knows every thought and motivation of man. He forms man in the interior of the woman's belly. With that His authority is established. No man nor fallen angels can imitate Him. He is unique. And with that, these prophecies will be fulfilled.
Verses 2 and 3 A cup of reeling like a cup of wine leads to intoxication and drunkenness. A better translation is "threshold" in the sense of one who enters a house, the threshold breaks and the whole house collapses, falls on his head and dies. Many countries take offense at the State of Israel and especially the city of Jerusalem. At the end of the Great Tribulation, all the nations of the earth will go to Jerusalem and besiege it. But as the threshold breaks, so will these nations be intoxicated, grievously wounded, and die.
Verse 4 Yes, how to explain this verse is difficult. Today we have the fighters, the bombers, the tanks. But if we go through with this, God will strike all these crews with blindness, they will crash and be unable to operate the tanks.
On the other hand, the Christian Jew Meno Kalisher has a different explanation and says that we should take the Bible literally. According to him, there will be peace through the world government at the beginning of the Great Tribulation, which will end the trillions of devouring armaments of each country, resulting in prosperity from the money released. All weapons are destroyed. This advancing to Jerusalem of all the peoples of the earth is not with airplanes and tanks, but indeed like the knights in the Middle Ages with horse and rider. An interesting explanation. Those in the Great Tribulation will see the correct explanation.
Verse 5 It is interesting that the heads of Judah are spoken of. Where are the 10 tribes? Okay, Jerusalem belongs to the territory of Judah, King David. They do not look to their own strength, but trust completely in their God Jehovah.
Verse 6 God will make them like wood, yea, like sheaves (which is more combustible), for this fire, not only to be consumed by it, but to burn the more strongly thereby. They shall devour all the nations around Jerusalem, for it is God who hath determined the place of Jerusalem. No nation on earth can change that place. The United Nation can decide anything. If it is not according to the Will of God, it is fruitless and does not come into progress.
As fire comes out of the mouth of the Two Witnesses and consumes all who resist them (Revelation 11:5).
Verses 7 and 8 In that day, the weakest of the inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be like David, they shall be men of war, bold and valiant, able and strong like David himself. They will attain great things like David, and become as servile to Jerusalem to guard it as David himself was in founding it, and as formidable as he was to its enemies. Divine grace makes children not only men, but also champions, makes weak believers not only good soldiers, but also great soldiers, like David.
It is the angel of the Lord who makes the weak strong and overcomers.
Verse 9 Nations rise up against Jerusalem, many and mighty nations, but they will all be destroyed, their power will be broken and their efforts thwarted. The mischief they are planning will return upon their own heads. At the second Coming of Christ, He will complete their destruction, when He will lay down all opposing rulership, principality, and power. The last enemy will be destroyed of all who fought against Jerusalem.
Verse 10 The blessings are poured out on the house of David. They are no more and no better than the grace of God makes them. The house of David is wholly summarized in Jesus Christ, the Son of David. All who recognize Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, both Old and New Testament believers.
It is God's grace that we are reconciled in Jesus Christ. The Spirit of compassion is given to the believer as a pledge and effect of the sanctification of the believer, so that he or she is convinced of sin, and it is the power of the Holy Spirit to sin no more, that is, to live according to the Will of God, to praise and honor God the Father. To lead a holy life.
The Spirit of prayers. Nothing happens without prayer. Even though God has given us His promises and God knows what we need, it is His Will that the believer asks Him in prayer. It is for His glory to answer prayers, but it is for man to pray in faith. God had promised to bring back the exiled people after 70 years, yet Daniel's prayer was needed to move God to do this and keep His promise. Daniel pleaded on the basis of God's promise. It is the prayers of the believers that cause God's angels to fight against Satan and demons, against rulers who reject God's Word and laws.
They will look on Him whom they have pierced (see John 19:16-37). The Jews shouted, Crucify Him, Crucify (John 19:6). At Pilate's command, Jesus was crucified and His hands and feet were nailed to the Cross. These scars are permanent (John 20:24-29) with Jesus. And all nations will see Jesus at His second Coming (Matthew 24:30).
Every individual person is GUILTY for the crucifixion of Jesus through his or her sin, no one excepted.
At this Second Coming, they will mourn like the mourning of an only child. Like a parent's mourning for the death of an only beloved child. As one mourns for an only son, in whose grave the hopes of his family are buried, and shall be in bitterness inwardly as one who is in bitterness for his firstborn, as the Egyptians in all their land for the death of their firstborn.
Verses 11-14 Hadad-rimmon was the site of a plain of Esdraelon in the time of Jerome. Many battles were fought here and is located near Megiddo.
Each individual and each family separately will mourn. All contributed to the debt. Everyone is guilty of sin.
Two of them are royal families: the house of David and the house of Nathan (not the prophet), another son of David (2 Sam. 5:14), brother of Solomon, from whom Zerubbabel was descended, as evidenced by the genealogy of Christ, Lu. 3:27-31.
Two are holy families (verse 13), the family of the house of Levi, which was God's tribe, and especially the family of Shimei (Numbers 3:18 and 21), which was a branch of the tribe of Levi (1 Chron. 6:17), and probably some of the descendants of that family were now known by preachers to the people or ministers of the altar. As the princes should mourn for the sins of the magistracy, so should the priests mourn for the iniquity of the holy things.
According to Jewish tradition, the women mourn separately, as we know from Queen Esther (Ester 4:10-17).
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Verse 1 A fountain shall be opened to cleanse them from sin and uncleanness. Commentaries explain this as the fountain that came out when the soldier put his spear into Jesus' side, causing blood and water to come out of His side, the cleansing of man's sin, evidence that Jesus had died for the sin of man. Sin makes man unclean, defiles the mind, makes man hateful and rebellious against God. Jesus is the fountain through the Holy Spirit who purifies the mind of man and makes the believer desire to live in honor and glory, according to the Will of God. The Church is the spiritual seed of the house of David.
Verse 2 Today in Israel there are no more stone idols, images that are worshiped by Jews. Not even by the scattered Jews and Israelites. This is in contrast to the Roman Catholics who worship saints and their images. Also in South America there is a lot of worship of "saints" with demons and spiritism behind it. Sacrifice of animals, even babies, children and people. Yes, even by "believers". All this will be eradicated in the 1000-year Kingdom. All false prophets and people with an unclean spirit. I, Jesus Christ, will remove it from the land when I reign on earth.
Unclean spirit: satan and his fallen angels, the demons. Those who mislead people in horoscopes, card reading, yoga, Pilate, spiritism, etc.
Verse 3 First the father and mother, according to Deut. 13:6-11, will kill the false prophet. This evil must not continue to live on, because the lies(s) are spoken in the name of the Lord. This liar will be pierced with the sword. He spoke a word that was NOT from God and deceived the people. A very bad crime.
Let this be a lesson for today's prophets. They have to be sure that the word they speak, is indeed from God. First of all, with a check against the Bible, no contradiction. For believers, the test is that EVERY PROPHECY MUST BE FULFILLED, NOT A SINGLE ONE EXCEPTED.
Verse 4 If the false prophet opens himself to God, he will be ashamed. Coming to the conclusion that he is a false prophet, because his prophecy did not fulfil. Then he will take off his hairy mantle. The hairy mantle dates from Elijah and continued until John the Baptist, as a sign of abstinence from the worldly life of pleasure, food and drink (no wine).
Verse 5 Amos (7:14-15) was a herdsman, but was appointed by God as a prophet. The opposite here, the false prophet admits not to be a prophet of God, but declares to be a herdsman, a man who tills the field. Learned from childhood to work the field or to herd the flock.
Lesson for those who do not proclaim the truth, their admission of guilt and public proclamation that they have perverted the Word of God. And as yet proclaim the truth and set it straight. And accept disciplinary punishment (verse 6).
Verse 6 The friends of the false prophet must exercise severe discipline. Expressed here with wounds and blows, the man was bound and beaten. Apparently the false prophet's parents had not killed him (Deut. 21:18), but gave his friends an opportunity for correction.
Think of Jesus being bound and flogged by the Roman soldiers. Bound (nailed) to the Cross, accused of false prophecy and blasphemy, sentenced to death by His own people (friends). The wounds of Jesus were visible after His resurrection from death.
The church should first speak privately with the person for correction, then the church council and if that does not help, public proclamation should follow in the church. If nothing helps, unfortunately the decision to deny access to the church should follow. The Apostle Paul even went as far as surrendering to Satan, because they did not repented of their strayed way (1 Corinthians 5:4-5, 1 Timothy 1:20).
Verse 7 Here is the prophecy about the Shepherd Jesus. The man who stands next to me: Jesus is the companion of God the Father. From eternity Jesus was with His Father. He and the Father are one. Jesus is also the companion of the believer for whom He gave His life on the cross. The sword (the spear) went against Jesus. Without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness (Hebrew 9:22). The sword of righteousness, Jesus was sinless, without guilt, but the penalty of sin had to be fulfilled. The penalty for man's sin was taken over by Jesus.
Strike the Shepherd, Jesus was beaten in the face during his interrogation by the priests, beaten on the cross. The sheep scattered, in Gethsemane the disciples run away at the captivity of Jesus in the night. The Christians who were scattered after the resurrection of Jesus to Judea, Samaria, Greece, Italy, Asia and all over the world. The sheep Jews and Israelites are scattered all over the world.
A good explanation of "I will turn my hand against the little ones" I have not found. It is unclear who "the little ones" are. The little ones are the priests, Pharisees and scribes who condemned Jesus? God's hand turned against them? The unbelieving Jewish people in 70 AD. were driven out of the land and scattered around the world?
Verse 8 In 70 AD. the Roman army slew at least two-thirds of the Jewish people. One third fled all over the world and remained. Some commentators see this one-third as the Church. But I do not agree with that when we look at verse 9.
Verse 9 As an interpretation of verse 8, one sees the Church that has been persecuted, martyred already in the time of Emperor Nero and through the ages. This purifies the believer and in the Great Tribulation they will pass through the fire (torture and persecution, refusing the mark of the Beast) to be saved through the fire. Silver and gold are refined by the fire and burn all defilements, leaving pure silver and gold. Thus illness, difficult circumstances, persecution brings the purification of the Christian to come closer to God and to work out the sanctification of the Christian. The Christians they will call on the Name of Jesus. And Jesus Christ will say: They are My people; and they say: The Lord is my God.
But I believe that while the above is true, a literal interpretation is needed: It concerns the Jewish and Israeli people. The remnant of God's people will be refined by God in the Great Tribulation. The Two Witnesses and the 144,000 sealed ones come out of God's people. The Jews and Israelites shall call on the name of God, and all Israel shall be saved, and they shall say, The Lord is my God.
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Verse 1 Many commentators do not take this chapter literally but spiritualize it to the Jews who convert to Christianity. I see absolutely no reason for this. This is the Old Testament written for and with prophecies for the Jews and Israelites. When the day of the Lord comes is known only to God. Looking at the contents of this chapter, I think it talks about the day when Jesus Christ comes back for the Jewish people as the Messiah.
Verses 1-5 I do not have a good explanation for these verses. Looking at the text, I think it speaks of the end of the Great Tribulation, for this has not happened in the past history of Israel and is yet to be fulfilled. Half of the city will move away (made possible by the Mount of Olives splitting in two?).
The Mount of Olives played an important role in Jesus' life on earth. From this mountain He often preached, spoke that not one stone of the temple shall be left upon another, and from this mountain His Ascension took place (Acts 1:12). He will come again on this mountain. Not for the Church but for His own people: the Jews and Israelites as the Messiah and King of the Jews. Before then, verses 2 and 3, it will be a terrible time where women are raped and assaulted, houses plundered.
This will not pass unpunished by God, and the Lord will fight against the advancing nations. This is probably about the battle of Armageddon, Revelation 16:16 and Revelation 19:19-21. It speaks of Jesus coming with His saints (in harmony with verse 5 here). Opinions differ on who are the saints. Some say they are the angels of God. My opinion may ALSO be the angels of God (Matthew 24:31), but I am thinking primarily of the Bride of Jesus: the Church, the Christians who were taken at the Rapture of the Church. Revelation 19:19 says to make war against Him (Jesus) and against His army. His army comes with Him from Heaven, so those are the Christians who are taken at the Rapture of the Church. Those who resided in Heaven during the Great Tribulation.
Possibly the inhabitants of Jerusalem flee because the great battle of Armageddon is about to take place with the nations, and between Satan and demons on one hand and Jesus with the saints (the Church on white horses (Revelation 19:19) accompanying Jesus) on the other hand.
The fault line is in the Mount of Olives, so this split to the east and west is not surprising. The Mount of Olives is an obstacle to the flight from Jerusalem and splits into a great valley, a refuge for the people? The valley of the mountains will reach as far as Asel. There is no known place of Asel in Israel. Asel means silence, rest. So possibly indicating the length of the valley, where the refugees find peace and protection, possibly east of Jerusalem.
Israel has been hit by earthquakes 10 times in the last 20 years with the African and Arabian plates converging in the Jordan Valley, which extends westward. In 1964, the fault line in the Mount of Olives was discovered during the construction of a hotel.
The earthquakes in the days of Uzziah are not found in the Old Testament, only in Amos 1:1 we find a reference to an earthquake. According to Fl. Josephus (Antiquities IX, 10, 4) this earthquake occurred when Uzziah desecrated the temple (2 Chron 26:16-20), if so it may be in the year 749 B.C. Uzziah reigned from about 779 to 738 BC. Archaeological excavations by the Israel Antiquities Service in the national park of the City of David revealed a layer of destruction from the time of Uzziah. Inside were shattered vessels, including bowls, lamps, cooking utensils, storage and supply jars, which were crushed when the walls of a building collapsed. Investigators said no signs of fire were found. This would show that it was not a deliberate event, but a natural event, an earthquake.
Verses 6 and 7 There is no clear explanation of these verses. Assuming that this is the battle of Armageddon and the battle between Satan and Jesus, we can consider that the battle darkens the night and day. But towards evening the victory of Jesus draws near and it gets lighter. Matthew 24:29 says that immediately after the tribulation of the days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its brightness, and 24:30 then the Son of man will appear.
It is the penultimate battle between Satan and Jesus. The last time will be after the 1000-year Kingdom of Jesus Christ, when satan is released one more time. Here is the fight between the Beast, the dragon, the false prophet, Satan and his fallen angels against the Lord Jesus Christ and His saints. A battle already decided in the Bible and the Lord Jesus Christ will win the battle.
Verse 8 In accordance with Ezekiel 47 and Revelation 22, living water will flow from the city of Jerusalem. Today, underground water already flows from Jerusalem to the Dead Sea. It will be an eternal stream, in summer as well as in winter. Half to the east (Dead Sea), half to the west (Mediterranean Sea), it is for all the peoples of the earth. Jerusalem is 32 miles (51 km) from the Mediterranean Sea and 23 miles (37 km) from the Dead Sea.
Verse 9 After this victory follows the 1000-year Kingdom of Christ, in which the Lord Jesus Christ will be the only One. God the Father is still in Heaven, only after Satan is released at the end of this Kingdom and defeated again, will the New Earth come where Jesus and God the Father will live in the New Jerusalem. That is still the future here. Here it is the Name of Jesus that is the only One. He is King of kings.
Verse 10 Geba was the northern border of Judah (2 Kings 23:8) and Rimmon of Simeon (Joshua 15:32) the southern border. The Benjamin Gate (Sheep Gate) was to the North, the Chananel Tower to the Southeast, the Corner Gate to the West.
Verse 11 Under the reign of the Lord Jesus Christ there will be no more curse. Then there will be peace and blessing. Just judgment by Him and His subjects (the Christians who rule with Him).
Verses 12-14 During the battle (of Armageddon) the Lord will smite the surging nations with a plague. Their eyes shall rot and without eyes one cannot fight. Each will lay hold on the hand of his fellow, and the hand of the one will be raised against the hand of the other. And their wealth will be left for the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
Verse 15 As explained before (Gogue), there will be none of the current weapons that we know today. The peoples will ride on horses, mules and camels. Their eyes also rot and become blind and will turn against each other.
Verse 16 Apparently there are nations that have survived the battle. Or is it the remaining inhabitants of the nations who have come against Jerusalem? It is clear that not all inhabitants of these countries all go to Jerusalem to worship the Lord Jesus Christ, but their envoys, government representatives.
The Feast of Tabernacles, which lasts seven days and no work is to be done on the eighth day, is a reminder of the 40-year stay in the desert after Israel's exodus from Egypt. This festival is celebrated annually in Israel and the whole family stays in a tent for seven days.
Verses 17-19 Just as today peoples who are against Israel are not blessed by God, so this will be in the 1000-year Kingdom. Their land will receive no rain, it will be the plague of the Lord. Their lands may become arid like the desert, like the Sahara. Without food and water. Depending on other countries. It is a direct punishment from the Lord for their disobedience.
This surprises me, because in my opinion the countries of the earth are ruled by kings, that is, by Christians who rule in the Kingdom of Christ. They are appointed by the Lord Jesus Christ. Why do not they go up to Jerusalem to worship their Lord?
Verses 20-21 We know the bells from the bells that were attached to the priestly robe and announced the coming of the priest. The bowl was used at the altar of burnt offerings to collect the blood of the sacrificial animals and sprinkle it out.
Canaanites are the descendants of Canaan, son of Ham and grandson of Noah. The inhabitants of Canaan are also called Canaanites in the Bible, whether they are descended from Canaan or not. From Canaan descended the Jebusites, the Amorites, the Girgashites, the Hittites, the Hivites, the Arkites, the Sinites, the Arvadites, the Tsemarites, and the Hamathites. They shall no longer be a trader in the house of the Lord.
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