Sermon #68 Zechariah Series
Title: “The Day of the Lord”
Text: Zechariah 14:1-21
Date: Sunday Morning — September 29, 2007
Reading: Isaiah 2:1-22
Tape # Zechariah #68
“Behold, the day of the Lord cometh!” — With those words Zechariah calls our attention to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. These twenty-one verses with which the prophet of God concludes his great prophecy are all about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and those things that shall be accomplished by him in that great day of which the prophets spoke so much (Isaiah 2:12; 13:6, 9; Jeremiah 46:10; Ezekiel 13:5; 30:3; Joel 1:15; 2:1, 11; 3:14; Amos 5:20; Obadiah 1:15; Zephaniah 1:7, 14; Zechariah 14:1). Every time “the day of the Lord” is mentioned in the New Testament, the phrase refers to the glorious second advent of our Lord Jesus Christ, when he shall destroy all his enemies and ours and make all things new (1 Corinthians 5:5; 2 Corinthians 1:14; 1 Thessalonians 5:2; 2 Peter 3:10). But the Old Testament prophets, it seems to me, always use this phrase to describe the whole of our Savior’s work of redemption and grace, from his first advent to and including his second coming, from his incarnation to that day of which Paul speaks in 1 Corinthians 15:24-28.
(1 Corinthians 15:24-28) “Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. (25) For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. (26) The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. (27) For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. (28) And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”
Without question, when Zechariah speaks of “the day of the Lord” in this 14th chapter of his prophecy, he has in his mind’s eye the whole of these last days, this entire gospel age. Some of the things he says here cannot refer to anything other that that which our Lord is doing in this great day of grace. Other things in this chapter clearly refer to that which shall come to pass only when our Lord Jesus comes again in his glorious second advent at the consummation of the age. And there are some things in these verses that clearly refer to both this present gospel day and that great day that is yet to come when our Lord Jesus Christ shall appear in his glory, “in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thessalonians 1:8).
Before we begin, I readily acknowledge that there are things in this prophecy that I do not understand, things that God the Holy Spirit has not yet been pleased to teach me. And those things that I do not understand I will not attempt to explain. That which God has taught me, I declare to you; but, when I have told you all that I know, there will be much that I have not explained. Let me show you 8 things in this chapter.
First, Zechariah speaks of the spoiling of Jerusalem by her enemies in a time of great woe (vv. 1-2).
(Zechariah 14:1-2) “Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. (2) For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.”
It may be that these two verses have reference to the invasion of Jerusalem by the Syrian King Antiochus Epiphanes in 168 BC, when he invaded, occupied and destroyed Jerusalem. His soldiers went into the temple, slaughtered a hog on the altar, and demanded that the Jews eat the hog. Those who refused were butchered. Their tongues were cut out, they were scalped, and their hands and feet were cut off and burned on the temple’s altar.
Zechariah may have reference to the invasion and final destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD by Titus, which our Lord Jesus spoke of in Matthew 24:2-21. Clearly, it was this invasion and destruction of Jerusalem by Titus in 70 AD that our Lord Jesus spoke of in Matthew 22:2-7, when he spoke of God sending forth his armies to destroy those people and burn up their city because they murdered his Son. — The wrath of God came upon the Jews to the uttermost, because they filled up the measure of iniquity, crucifying the Lord Jesus, murdering their own prophets, and persecuting the saints of God (1 Thessalonians 2:14-16).
Which of these historic events Zechariah had in mind when he wrote this prophecy is not certain; but he certainly had in mind a in his mind’s eye a remnant according to the election of grace for whose sake the days of misery were shortened, for he tells us about “the residue of the people” who would not be cut off. — God always has his remnant, “the residue of the people,” who are spared and kept by his distinguishing grace.
If we read Zechariah’s prophecy with a spiritual eye, referring to the great, on-going battle of the ages, between the seed of the serpent and the woman’s Seed, between Christ and Satan, between God’s Church (the true Jerusalem) and Babylon, we have here a blessed promise suited to God’s elect in every age. — Antichrist shall do no harm to God’s chosen. Though his witnesses be slain in the streets, after three days God shall revive them, and the remnant who have been terrified by the apparent power and success of the beast shall rejoice again and give “glory to the God of heaven” (Revelation 11:1-13)
Christ our Defender
Now, look at verse 3, and you will see why I am inclined to think Zechariah is describing our Savior’s first advent here and the great battle that rages through the ages between Christ and antichrist, between Jerusalem (God’s Church) and Babylon (all false religion). The second thing we see here is Christ our Savior intervening as our mighty Defender, as “the Captain of our Salvation.” — “The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name” (Exodus 15:3).
(Isaiah 42:13) “The LORD shall go forth as a mighty man, he shall stir up jealousy like a man of war: he shall cry, yea, roar; he shall prevail against his enemies.”
That is what Zechariah describes in verse 3.
(Zechariah 14:3) “Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.”
These words are spoken for the comfort of God’s saints in times of great woe. When it is time for God to arise, that his enemies may be scattered and those that hate him flee before him, he will arise and have mercy upon Zion. He will awake, as in the days of old. He will come forth from his holy place to the deliverance of his people. The wicked whom he gathers against us in his providence are specifically called his sword (Psalm 17:13). But those who turn upon us shall be turned upon by our God (Psalm 76:1-10).
(Psalms 76:1-10) “In Judah is God known: his name is great in Israel. (2) In Salem also is his tabernacle, and his dwelling place in Zion. (3) There brake he the arrows of the bow, the shield, and the sword, and the battle. Selah. (4) Thou art more glorious and excellent than the mountains of prey. (5) The stouthearted are spoiled, they have slept their sleep: and none of the men of might have found their hands. (6) At thy rebuke, O God of Jacob, both the chariot and horse are cast into a dead sleep. (7) Thou, even thou, art to be feared: and who may stand in thy sight when once thou art angry? (8) Thou didst cause judgment to be heard from heaven; the earth feared, and was still, (9) When God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth. Selah. (10) Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.”
Without question, Zechariah 14:3 refers to the first advent of our blessed Savior, when he made bare his holy arm in the redemption of our souls and makes bare his holy arm by the saving power of the gospel calling out his elect. These things were typified in his miraculous intervention for Israel at the Red Sea, for Joshua, Jehoshaphat and Hezekiah. And that which he has done, he will do for us (Isaiah 52:10; 53:8-54:1; Romans1:15-17; Revelation 20:8-10).
(Isaiah 52:10) “The LORD hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God.”
(Isaiah 53:8-12) “He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. (9) And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. (10) Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. (11) He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. (12) Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”
(Isaiah 54:1) “Sing, O barren, thou that didst not bear; break forth into singing, and cry aloud, thou that didst not travail with child: for more are the children of the desolate than the children of the married wife, saith the LORD.”
(Romans 1:15-17) “So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also. (16) For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (17) For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”
(Revelation 20:8-10) “And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. (9) And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. (10) And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”
The Mount of Olives
Third, in verses 4 and 5, Zechariah speaks of our Lord Jesus Christ standing upon the Mount of Olives. Here, it seems to me, the Spirit of God inspired his prophet to declare our Savior’s mighty works in his first advent, throughout this gospel age and in his glorious second coming.
(Zechariah 14:4-5) “And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south. (5) And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with thee.”
The Mount of Olives is situated at the east of Jerusalem, being separated only by the brook Kedron, and the valley of Jehoshaphat. Here it was that David (typifying the Lord Jesus) went up barefoot and weeping, when he fled from Absalom, just as our Savior went by it when he entered Gethsemane, passing over the same brook of Kedron (2 Samuel 1522-30; John 18:1; Matthew 26:30-46).
You might be surprised to discover that this Mount, so memorable to David, was terribly profaned by Solomon his son. You will remember that when Solomon was old he loved many strange wives who led him into idolatry. He built a high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, upon the very Mount, in the hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Moloch, the abomination of the children of Ammon (1 Kings 11:1-7). Solomon so polluted the Mount of Olives with idolatry that it became known as the Mount of Corruption (2 Kings 23:13). Many years later, the good king Josiah (another type of Christ) destroyed those idols and purged the Mount of corruption (2 Kings 23:12-14).
In the light of those historic facts, it is not at all surprising to see so much of our great Savior’s life and ministry connected with the Mount of Olives.
· Luke tells us that our Lord Jesus “went, as he was wont, to the Mount of Olives” (Luke 21:37). This was the place to which he often came, and his disciples often followed him there.
· You will remember that when the Pharisees sought to kill him, our Savior “went unto the Mount of Olives” to save that poor woman who was caught in the very act of adultery (John 8:1-11).
(John 8:1-11) “Jesus went unto the mount of Olives. (2) And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them. (3) And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, (4) They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. (5) Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? (6) This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. (7) So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. (8) And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. (9) And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst. (10) When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? (11) She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.”
· Our Savior sat down on the Mount of Olives to give us his great Olivet Discourse in Matthew 24 and 25. It was in that great discourse that he spoke of the destruction of Jerusalem, — his glorious second coming, — The parable of the fig tree, — the parable of the wise and foolish virgins, — the parable of the wise and foolish servants, — and the great separation of the sheep and goats in the Day of Judgment.
· After establishing the Lord’s Supper with his disciples, while Judas went out to betray him, the Lord Jesus and his disciples sung a hymn and “went out into the Mount of Olives” (Matthew 26:30).
· Then our blessed Savior went into Gethsemane and from there to Calvary!
· And, forty days after his resurrection, the Lord Jesus ascended to heaven from the Mount of Olives (Acts 1:8-12), receiving power over all flesh from his Father, to give eternal life to his blood-bought people (John 17:2).
The Mount of Olives was called the Mount of Olives because it was covered with olive trees.
· Olive oil was used to light the lamps in the tabernacle and in the temple (Exodus 25:31-37; 1 Kings 7:48-50).
· The priests and kings in Israel were anointed with olive oil (Leviticus 8:12; 1 Samuel 16:13; 1 Kings 1:39).
· The Good Samaritan in our Lord’s parable poured oil and wine into the man left by the wayside (Luke 10:33-34)).
· And our Savior was anointed for his burial with Mary’s precious ointment, a spikenard, a perfume of oil (Matthew 26:12-13).
In all these things oil was used to typify God the Holy Spirit, the Anointing and Unction of grace, poured out upon chosen, redeemed sinners by Christ our ascended King and enthroned Savior, who, standing upon the Mount of Olives as our Redeemer, split the mountain, flooded its valley with grace, and causes his people to flee to the valley of the mountains. There the Lord our God comes with all his saints! — Using the figurative language of verses 4 and 5, Zechariah describes the powerful presence of God and his omnipotent grace in the outpouring of his Spirit upon his elect, which was manifestly done at Pentecost (Joel 1:14-15; 2:1-3, 27-32; 3:13-17; Acts 2:16-21).
(Joel 1:14-15) “Sanctify ye a fast, call a solemn assembly, gather the elders and all the inhabitants of the land into the house of the LORD your God, and cry unto the LORD. (15) Alas for the day! for the day of the LORD is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come.”
(Joel 2:1-3) “Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the LORD cometh, for it is nigh at hand; (2) A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. (3) A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.”
(Joel 2:27-32) “And ye shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the LORD your God, and none else: and my people shall never be ashamed. (28) And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: (29) And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. (30) And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. (31) The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come. (32) And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.”
(Joel 3:13-17) “Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the vats overflow; for their wickedness is great. (14) Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. (15) The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. (16) The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel. (17) So shall ye know that I am the LORD your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more.”
(Acts 2:16-21) “But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; (17) And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: (18) And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy: (19) And I will show wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke: (20) The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come: (21) And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
Perhaps you are thinking, — “Pastor, why should we think Zechariah’s language here is figurative?” I’m glad you asked. Here Zechariah is telling us that this great day of God’s grace, flowing to sinners far exceeds the glory that appeared upon Mount Sinai, at the giving of the law, when the mouutains skipped like rams, and the little hills like lambs (Psalm 114:6). So terrible was that sight, that Moses said, “I exceedingly fear and quake” (Hebrews 12:21). The Lord Jesus Christ, our great Josiah, has taken away both the curse of Sinai’s law and the corruptions of his people by his finished work of redemption. By coming to the earth in our nature, obeying all the will of God, dying as our Substitute, and ascending from the Mount, he has split open the mountain where our offenses abounded and created the mighty river of mercy and grace for our souls in “the valley of the mountains!” — Let the sweet tidings of grace vibrate through the earth! Because Christ has come and finished his work, “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved!”
Yet, Zechariah’s vision reaches even further. It reaches to that day when our Savior shall appear in his glory, descending again to the earth with all his saints (Acts 1:9-12; Jude 14-15; Job 19:25-27).
(Acts 1:9-12) “And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. (10) And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; (11) Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. (12) Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day’s journey.”
(Jude 1:14-15) “And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints, (15) To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against him.”
(Job 19:25-27) “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: (26) And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: (27) Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.”
A Mixed State
Fourth, this day of grace, this last day, the period of time between the first and second advents of Christ, is for God’s people a mixed state of darkness and light.
(Zechariah 14:6-7) “And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark: (7) But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light.”
The light of God’s Word is perfect; but the light given to us is not. We do not have such darkness that we fear that God has forsaken us, or that we are not his. Yet, we do not have the light and understanding we desire. In all things, “we see through a glass darkly” (1 Corinthians 13:12). Yes, “we walk in the light as he is in the light and the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). Yet, we have much darkness (Isaiah 50:10).
(Isaiah 50:10) “Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God.”
Ours is not the darkness of the unbelieving, who walk in sparkles of light, sparkles with which they dazzle themselves; but they are sparkles of light struck from their own hearts of flint that soon go out, requiring them to strike the flint again and dazzle themselves with new sparkles of light (Isaiah 50:11).
(Isaiah 50:11) “Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This shall ye have of mine hand; ye shall lie down in sorrow.”
Still, the experience of God’s people in this world is a mingled state of grace and corruption. We often lie down in sorrow, too; but in “the evening time it shall be light!” The Lord graciously gives light to brighten up the darkness…
· In the evening time of trial.
· In the evening time of soul trouble.
· In the evening time of heavy cares.
· In the evening time of life.
Then, fifth, Zechariah assures us that throughout this day of grace living waters flow out to God’s elect from the Lord Jesus, the Fountain opened for our souls.
(Zechariah 14:8) “And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be.”
The living waters, flowing from the Lord giving life, come to the relief of our darkness and our languishing spirits. Free grace flows in all directions through the earth, as the Lord appoints, both in winter and in summer (Ezekiel47:1-5; Revelation 22:1; John 4:10-14).
(Ezekiel 47:1-5) “Afterward he brought me again unto the door of the house; and, behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the house eastward: for the forefront of the house stood toward the east, and the waters came down from under from the right side of the house, at the south side of the altar. (2) Then brought he me out of the way of the gate northward, and led me about the way without unto the utter gate by the way that looketh eastward; and, behold, there ran out waters on the right side. (3) And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters were to the ankles. (4) Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters were to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters were to the loins. (5) Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over.”
(Revelation 22:1) “And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb.”
(John 4:10-14) “Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. (11) The woman saith unto him, Sir, thou hast nothing to draw with, and the well is deep: from whence then hast thou that living water? (12) Art thou greater than our father Jacob, which gave us the well, and drank thereof himself, and his children, and his cattle? (13) Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: (14) But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.”
Christ the King
Sixth, Zechariah clearly identifies his prophecy in these verses as having reference to this day, telling us that Christ is enthroned as King (vv. 9-15).
(Zechariah 14:9) “And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.”
Truly, Christ is King over all; and he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet (Isaiah 45:20-25).
(Isaiah 45:20-25) “Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save. (21) Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. (22) Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. (23) I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. (24) Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. (25) In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory.”
When the Lord Jesus Christ establishes his throne in the hearts of men, subduing them by his grace, he makes all things new. He takes away all destruction. Jerusalem is safely inhabited; and all her enemies are destroyed (vv. 10-15).
(Zechariah 14:10-15) “All the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place, from Benjamin’s gate unto the place of the first gate, unto the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel unto the king’s winepresses. (11) And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited. (12) And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth. (13) And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour. (14) And Judah also shall fight at Jerusalem; and the wealth of all the heathen round about shall be gathered together, gold, and silver, and apparel, in great abundance. (15) And so shall be the plague of the horse, of the mule, of the camel, and of the ass, and of all the beasts that shall be in these tents, as this plague.”
The Feast of Tabernacles
Seventh, Zechariah speaks of our worship in this gospel day as spiritually keeping the feast of tabernacles (vv. 16-18).
(Zechariah 14:16-18) “And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. (17) And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. (18) And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.”
The feast of tabernacles (Leviticus 23:34) was intended to typify the human nature of Christ. As Israel during that feast dwelt in tabernacles, so God in Christ (the true Tabernacle) tabernacled among us in our nature (John 1:14; Hebrews 8:2). All true worship is the celebration of our great Redeemer, the God-man, our Mediator, the Lord Jesus Christ (Philippians 3:3). And in that great eternal day yet to come, it shall be the same (Revelation 21:1-5).
(Revelation 21:1-5) “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. (2) And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (3) And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. (4) And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. (5) And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.”
Eighth, in verses 20-21, Zechariah brings us to the end, when Christ delivers up the kingdom to God, even the Father.
(Zechariah 14:20-21) “In that day shall there be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD; and the pots in the LORD’S house shall be like the bowls before the altar. (21) Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness unto the LORD of hosts: and all they that sacrifice shall come and take of them, and seethe therein: and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the LORD of hosts.”
Without question, this is applicable to our present state (Romans 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 1 Peter 2:5); but these two verses must have there fulfillment in another world. — Christ is that Holiness without which no man shall see the Lord. He is our Holiness. Everything (everyone) in his kingdom is made holy in him. When the prophet tells us that the Canaanite shall be destroyed out of the land, it is obvious that he is using the word “Canaanite” in a figurative, allegorical way, because Canaan was long ago destroyed.. Zechariah is simply declaring that everything that is unclean, or loves, or makes a lie shall be destroyed (Revelation 21:27).
(Revelation 21:27) “And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”
In heaven’s eternal glory every thing shall be holy, in the holiness of Christ, and all his elect shall be delivered from all corruption. Oh! Blessed, blessed day! O Lord, I pray, Thy kingdom come!
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