Studies In Zechariah By Brian A. Yeager

"That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth..." (Proverbs 22:21).

Studies In Zechariah

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Zechariah 12:1-13:9

1. In this burdensome prophesy that covers more than half of chapter twelve, would it be accurate to say that Jerusalem was going to be strengthened and protected?
“(1)  The burden of the word of the LORD for Israel, saith the LORD, which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him. (2)  Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. (3)  And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. (4)  In that day, saith the LORD, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with blindness. (5)  And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, The inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the LORD of hosts their God. (6)  In that day will I make the governors of Judah like an hearth of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they shall devour all the people round about, on the right hand and on the left: and Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even in Jerusalem. (7)  The LORD also shall save the tents of Judah first, that the glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah. (8)  In that day shall the LORD defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the LORD before them. (9)  And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem” (Zechariah 12:1-9).

  • With references to Jesus before these passages (Zechariah 11:12-13) and in this context (Zechariah 12:10ff.), parts of this text can be challenging to pin down. So, I will keep my notes general to a degree in some of those areas. Other areas are clear enough and can be tied to details not surrounding Jesus.
  • This chapter starts, like Malachi (Malachi 1:1), with a burden of the word for Israel. Though here in this context, it is that they were going to be a burden for others (vs. 3).
  • With the word “Israel” being mentioned we should note that, among all the children of Israel, there are only two tribes (Ezra 1:5; 4:1; 10:9) left because Zechariah was a prophet long after (Zechariah 1:1; cf. Ezra 5:1 and Nehemiah 12:16) the other ten tribes were taken away (II Kings 17:18-23).
  • The Lord stretcheth forth the heavens (Isaiah 40:22 and Isaiah 44:24).
  • The Lord laid the foundation of the earth (Psalms 102:24-25, Isaiah 48:12-13, and Hebrews 1:10).
  • The Lord formed the spirit within man (Genesis 2:7).
  • Jerusalem to be a cup of trembling when their enemies sieged them (Isaiah 51:17-23).
  • In that day that Jerusalem was a cup of trembling, they would be a burdensome stone and cut in pieces those gathered against them (Micah 4:11-13).
  • In that day that Jerusalem was a cup of trembling, the horses and riders thereupon against his people smitten with astonishment [bewilderment, stupefaction] and the governors of Judah shall say the Lord is their strength and they become like a hearth of fire (Haggai 2:21-23).
  • Judah saved (Psalms 69:35). We know why (Hebrews 7:14).
  • In that day, of Judah being saved, the Lord defends the inhabitants of Jerusalem (Zechariah 9:15-17).
  • The feeble shall be as David (cf. II Samuel 3:1).
  • The house of David as God could have so many meanings. I am not sure. This could point towards Jesus (Isaiah 11:1-5, Jeremiah 23:5-6, Jeremiah 33:14-17; cf. Acts 2:29-30) as the context leans that way (Zechariah 12:10). It could also mean that they would live Godly and thus be like God in purity, conduct, or mercy, or steadfastness, etc. (Luke 6:36, Ephesians 5:1-2, and I John 3:1-3).
  • The angel of the Lord before them could tie this to Jesus too (Luke 1:26-38). It could also mean something else (Exodus 23:20-23).
  • In that day, which still seems less likely to be the time of Christ, those that come against Jerusalem would be destroyed (Isaiah 31:5, Isaiah 54:5-17, and Zechariah 2:5).
  • We know that this is certainly not after the life of Christ on earth, for by the Lord’s design Jerusalem was going to be attacked and the temple destroyed (Matthew 23:34-39).

2. Who comes to mind when reading Zechariah 12:10?
“And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn” (Zechariah 12:10).

  • “And…” seems to continue the points before. However, confusion reigns for me here.
  • Chapter eleven had certain references to Christ (Zechariah 11:12-13).
  • Yet, this appears to be about Jesus (John 19:34-37).
  • Mourning from those that looked upon Jesus at His death (Luke 23:27).

3. What was the mourning “in that day” in Jerusalem compared to?
“(11)  In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon. (12)  And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart; (13)  The family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart; (14)  All the families that remain, every family apart, and their wives apart” (Zechariah 12:11-14).

  • The mourning here was compared to what happened when King Josiah was killed in battle (II Chronicles 35:20-27; cf. II Kings 23:28-30).
  • Yet, there is confusion here. For, there was not widespread mourning for Jesus. Many of the Jews wanted Jesus to be put to death (Matthew 27:15-26 and John 16:20).
  • There was weeping when the temple was being rebuilt (Ezra 3:10-13). There was weeping when the Law of the Lord was taught (Ezra 10:1 and Nehemiah 8:1-9).

4. “In that day”, what would be opened to the house of David?
“In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness” (Zechariah 13:1).

  • Again, confusion is here for me. Could this be a prophesy point to Jesus? Sure, this easily fits Jesus (Matthew 1:21 and John 1:29).
  • Could it refer to something else. Again, it could (Ezekiel 36:22-38).

5. “In that day”, what was going to happen to the false prophet [implied; vs. 3-4], idol, and unclean spirit?
“(2)  And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land. (3)  And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the LORD: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth. (4)  And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive: (5)  But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am an husbandman; for man taught me to keep cattle from my youth” (Zechariah 13:2-5).

  • Not only would idols be cut off, but their names and the remembrance of them (Ezekiel 37:23, Micah 5:12-14, and Zephaniah 1:3-4).
  • This does not fit the first century (Matthew 7:15-20, Matthew 24:11, and II Peter 2:1-3).
  • I am not aware of a time wherein this happened in what we have recorded. I am left to think this happened at some time in the hundreds of years wherein there was no prophet at all (Ezekiel 7:26, Amos 8:11-12, and Micah 3:6-7).
  • There were unclean; false spirits in the O.T. (I Kings 22:21-23).
  • They did not cease after Jesus was alive (Acts 8:7).

6. Who comes to mind when you read Zechariah 13:6-7?
“And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends. (7) Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones” (Zechariah 13:6-7).

  • John 18:35, John 20:24-29, Matthew 26:30-31, and Matthew 26:47-56
  • Turning His hand upon the little ones (Matthew 18:1-14).

7. What did the Lord state about those that were not cut off in the land?
They would be refined and would call on the name of the Lord:
“(8)  And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. (9)  And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God” (Zechariah 13:8-9).

  • This is language of a faithful remnant. It fits all times (Ezra 9:8, Isaiah 10:21-22, Romans 9:27, and Romans 11:1-5).
  • This fits Old Testament language and times (Ezekiel 5:1-17; 39:25).
  • This language fits Zechariah’s prophecies (Zechariah 11:6-9).

© 2022 This study was prepared for a Bible class with the Sunrise Acres church of Christ in El Paso, TX by Brian A. Yeager.