December 28th Zechariah 6
10. Four Chariots
1: And I turned, and lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and, behold, there came four chariots out from between two mountains; and the mountains were mountains of brass. 2: In the first chariot were red horses; and in the second chariot black horses; 3: And in the third chariot white horses; and in the fourth chariot grisled and bay horses. 4: Then I answered and said unto the angel that talked with me, What are these, my lord? 5: And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth. 6: The black horses which are therein go forth into the north country; and the white go forth after them; and the grisled go forth toward the south country. 7: And the bay went forth, and sought to go that they might walk to and fro through the earth: and he said, Get you hence, walk to and fro through the earth. So they walked to and fro through the earth. 8: Then cried he upon me, and spake unto me, saying, Behold, these that go toward the north country have quieted my spirit in the north country. 9: And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, 10: Take of them of the captivity, even of Heldai, of Tobijah, and of Jedaiah, which are come from Babylon, and come thou the same day, and go into the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah; 11: Then take silver and gold, and make crowns, and set them upon the head of Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest; 12: And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD: 13: Even he shall build the temple of the LORD; and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both. 14: And the crowns shall be to Helem, and to Tobijah, and to Jedaiah, and to Hen the son of Zephaniah, for a memorial in the temple of the LORD. 15: And they that are far off shall come and build in the temple of the LORD, and ye shall know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you. And this shall come to pass, if ye will diligently obey the voice of the LORD your God.
Zechariah 7 B. Historic Interlude Question re Fasting
1: And it came to pass in the fourth year of king Darius, that the word of the LORD came unto Zechariah in the fourth day of the ninth month, even in Chisleu; 2: When they had sent unto the house of God Sherezer and Regem-melech, and their men, to pray before the LORD, 3: And to speak unto the priests which were in the house of the LORD of hosts, and to the prophets, saying, Should I weep in the fifth month, separating myself, as I have done these so many years?
4: Then came the word of the LORD of hosts unto me, saying, 5: Speak unto all the people of the land, and to the priests, saying, When ye fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh month, even those seventy years, did ye at all fast unto me, even to me? 6: And when ye did eat, and when ye did drink, did not ye eat for yourselves, and drink for yourselves? 7: Should ye not hear the words which the LORD hath cried by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited and in prosperity, and the cities thereof round about her, when men inhabited the south and the plain? 8: And the word of the LORD came unto Zechariah, saying, 9: Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Execute true judgment, and shew mercy and compassions every man to his brother: 10: And oppress not the widow, nor the fatherless, the stranger, nor the poor; and let none of you imagine evil against his brother in your heart. 11: But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, and stopped their ears, that they should not hear. 12: Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the law, and the words which the LORD of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets: therefore came a great wrath from the LORD of hosts. 13: Therefore it is come to pass, that as he cried, and they would not hear; so they cried, and I would not hear, saith the LORD of hosts: 14: But I scattered them with a whirlwind among all the nations whom they knew not. Thus the land was desolate after them, that no man passed through nor returned: for they laid the pleasant land desolate.
1: Again the word of the LORD of hosts came to me, saying, 2: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; I was jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I was jealous for her with great fury. 3: Thus saith the LORD; I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; and the mountain of the LORD of hosts the holy mountain. 4: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; There shall yet old men and old women dwell in the streets of Jerusalem, and every man with his staff in his hand for very age. 5: And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof. 6: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; If it be marvellous in the eyes of the remnant of this people in these days, should it also be marvellous in mine eyes? saith the LORD of hosts. 7: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Behold, I will save my people from the east country, and from the west country; 8: And I will bring them, and they shall dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God, in truth and in righteousness. 9: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Let your hands be strong, ye that hear in these days these words by the mouth of the prophets, which were in the day that the foundation of the house of the LORD of hosts was laid, that the temple might be built. 10: For before these days there was no hire for man, nor any hire for beast; neither was there any peace to him that went out or came in because of the affliction: for I set all men every one against his neighbour. 11: But now I will not be unto the residue of this people as in the former days, saith the LORD of hosts. 12: For the seed shall be prosperous; the vine shall give her fruit, and the ground shall give her increase, and the heavens shall give their dew; and I will cause the remnant of this people to possess all these things. 13: And it shall come to pass, that as ye were a curse among the heathen, O house of Judah, and house of Israel; so will I save you, and ye shall be a blessing: fear not, but let your hands be strong. 14: For thus saith the LORD of hosts; As I thought to punish you, when your fathers provoked me to wrath, saith the LORD of hosts, and I repented not: 15: So again have I thought in these days to do well unto Jerusalem and to the house of Judah: fear ye not. 16: These are the things that ye shall do; Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour; execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates: 17: And let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour; and love no false oath: for all these are things that I hate, saith the LORD. 18: And the word of the LORD of hosts came unto me, saying, 19: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; The fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth, shall be to the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful feasts; therefore love the truth and peace. 20: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; It shall yet come to pass, that there shall come people, and the inhabitants of many cities: 21: And the inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, Let us go speedily to pray before the LORD, and to seek the LORD of hosts: I will go also. 22: Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before the LORD. 23: Thus saith the LORD of hosts; In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.
The next thing that Zechariah sees is a vision of four chariots. These chariots bear a remarkable resemblance to the Four horsemen of Revelation that John saw. Zechariah asks what they mean and he is told that they are four spirits of the heavens and they are sent out from the presence of the Lord. the black horses go north and the white follow them and the last horses go south. Then Zechariah is told that ‘The Branch’ will grow up and he will build the temple of the LORD. He will rule in the temple and he will be a priest on his throne. Next Zechariah finds that a question arises as to whether the children of Israel should celebrate the yearly fast. The answer from the Lord is when you fasted during the captivity did you fast to the Lord? and when you ate and drank did you do that to the Lord? Shouldn’t you come together to hear the word of God? Then the Lord gave instructions to Israel. He said, you judges give righteous judgments, show mercy and compassion to your brother, do not oppress the widow, the orphan or the poor. Do not think up evil against your brother. However the children of Israel turned away from the Lord and put their fingers in their ears and their hearts became like stone. Because of this rejection the Lord sent them judgment. Then the Lord spoke to Zechariah again. The Lord said I am coming back to Jerusalem to Zion. Jerusalem will be called the city of truth and the mountain of the LORD of hosts will be called the Holy Mountain. Old men and women will live in Jerusalem again and children will be heard in the streets playing. The Lord will save Jerusalem from all the neighbouring countries. There will be peace in the Middle east and there will be a great increase in agricultural production. All Israel will fear the Lord. They will speak truth and righteousness. The fasts of Israel will be turned into times of great joy. Many nations will go to Jerusalem to seek the Lord and to pray before the Lord. In those days ten men will take hold of the skirt of a Jew saying we go with you because we have heard that God is with you. Is there a future for Israel? Of course there is.
- What do you think about the four chariots?
- What did the Lord say about the judges?
- What vision of the peace of Jerusalem does the Lord give?