Bible Track
Search Bible commentaries for key words
Search for Bible Commentaries on scripture passages
This is a chronologically-ordered Bible site with commentary on each passage.
The daily summaries are written by Wayne D. Turner, Pastor of Fayette Bible Church in Fayetteville, Georgia

This is the December 20 reading. Select here for a new reading date:


BibleTrack Summary: December 20
<< Zech 7

For New King James text and comment, click here.

Zechariah 8-14    Listen Podcast

 

The fasts turn to feasts (Zechariah 8)

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.

This discussion of fasting began back in Zechariah 7 (see notes). Here in chapter 8 we get the answer about continued observance of the self-imposed days of fasting.

Verse 19 tells us there were four of these fasts observed by these who had once been exiled. Here they are:

What we see in this chapter is an establishment of celebration for the returning exiles in 535 B.C. Those fasts are turned into feasts instead.

Notice the prophecy in verses 7-8 concerning the regathering of Israel:

Zechariah 8:7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Behold, I will save my people from the east country, and from the west country;
Zechariah 8:8 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.

Here's the question. Do these verses reference the regathering of these exiles which began in 535 B.C., or another regathering later on? Some would suggest that there's a hint in the phrase of verse 7, "from the east country, and from the west country." That phrase could simply indicate how comprehensive the regathering is rather than actual direction. I'm inclined to support the notion that these verses reference the regathering which happened beginning in 535 B.C. as opposed to a future regathering.

Now notice verses 11-12 regarding the establishment of a time frame here:

Zechariah 8:11 But now I will not be unto the residue of this people as in the former days, saith the LORD of hosts.
Zechariah 8:12 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.

That certainly sounds immediate, doesn't it? However, the prophecy definitely goes future in verse 20 with the phrase, "It shall yet come to pass..." Obviously the provisions of verses 20-23 are reserved for the yet-future millennium. They project a future blessing where all the world will worship the God of the Jews that can only point to the Messianic kingdom we now know will be the one-thousand-year reign known to us as the millennium. (See notes on Revelation 20 for details.)

More judgment on some neighboring nations (Zechariah 9:1-8)

1 The burden of the word of the LORD in the land of Hadrach, and Damascus shall be the rest thereof: when the eyes of man, as of all the tribes of Israel, shall be toward the LORD.
2 And Hamath also shall border thereby; Tyrus, and Zidon, though it be very wise.
3 And Tyrus did build herself a strong hold, and heaped up silver as the dust, and fine gold as the mire of the streets.
4 Behold, the Lord will cast her out, and he will smite her power in the sea; and she shall be devoured with fire.
5 Ashkelon shall see it, and fear; Gaza also shall see it, and be very sorrowful, and Ekron; for her expectation shall be ashamed; and the king shall perish from Gaza, and Ashkelon shall not be inhabited.
6 And a bastard shall dwell in Ashdod, and I will cut off the pride of the Philistines.
7 And I will take away his blood out of his mouth, and his abominations from between his teeth: but he that remaineth, even he, shall be for our God, and he shall be as a governor in Judah, and Ekron as a Jebusite.
8 And I will encamp about mine house because of the army, because of him that passeth by, and because of him that returneth: and no oppressor shall pass through them any more: for now have I seen with mine eyes.

Additional Reading
(external link)

The following article discusses a possible future fulfillment of several prophecies about Damascus and other neighbors of Israel:
Tracking Bible Prophecy
The Great Middle East War

Haven't we had enough ransacking of cities? Nope! Not yet! Here's a prophecy concerning some of Jerusalem's neighbors. It is prophesied that hard combat times are still ahead for them. And those hard times would be at the hand of the armies of Alexander the Great. But here's the good news. God's prophet here does not prophesy another bout for Jerusalem. And sure enough, the armies of Alexander the Great passed by Jerusalem several times, leaving Jerusalem untouched. And the other nations mentioned here? Ransacked! Tyre itself fell to Alexander in 332 B.C.

Currently there is some discussion of a "Damascus prophecy" derived from these verses. It is said that Damascus (Syria) must experience a complete destruction prior to the second coming of Jesus Christ. While we do see a reference to Damascus here, Tyre and Sidon are the big prizes in this prophecy - popular port towns through which many goods were passed. Damascus, 50 miles inland, seems to be mentioned as part of the prize. In fact, Alexander the Great went through this region and captured these cities. Regarding Damascus, there's also the inclusion of Isaiah 17:1 (see notes) into this discussion. Isaiah had prophesied that Damascus would be ruined, an event which took place in 732 B.C. at the hands of the Assyrians.

The coming of the future king (Zechariah 9:9-17)

9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.
10 And I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem, and the battle bow shall be cut off: and he shall speak peace unto the heathen: and his dominion shall be from sea even to sea, and from the river even to the ends of the earth.
11 As for thee also, by the blood of thy covenant I have sent forth thy prisoners out of the pit wherein is no water.
12 Turn you to the strong hold, ye prisoners of hope: even to day do I declare that I will render double unto thee;
13 When I have bent Judah for me, filled the bow with Ephraim, and raised up thy sons, O Zion, against thy sons, O Greece, and made thee as the sword of a mighty man.
14 And the LORD shall be seen over them, and his arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord GOD shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with whirlwinds of the south.
15 The LORD of hosts shall defend them; and they shall devour, and subdue with sling stones; and they shall drink, and make a noise as through wine; and they shall be filled like bowls, and as the corners of the altar.
16 And the LORD their God shall save them in that day as the flock of his people: for they shall be as the stones of a crown, lifted up as an ensign upon his land.
17 For how great is his goodness, and how great is his beauty! corn shall make the young men cheerful, and new wine the maids.

This is pretty exciting stuff here! In Matthew 21:1-5 (see notes) Jesus rides into Jerusalem on a donkey - the luxury vehicle of kings. Look at verse 9 here; it was prophesied by Zechariah. The Jews rejected Jesus as their Messiah during the course of the week following that entry into Jerusalem, but one day they will accept, the millennium will have arrived, and Jesus will rule.

 
Identifying the players in Zechariah 9:13
Judah Judah - Southern Kingdom
Ephraim Israel - Northern Kingdom; frequently referred to as Ephraim by the prophets
Zion Jerusalem
Greece Greece (Seleucids)

The struggles mentioned here actually naming Greece (verse 13) came to fruition on the 25th of Kislev, 165 B.C. At this time the Jews successfully defended Jerusalem from the continuing Greek (Seleucid) assaults that had begun under Antiochus Epiphanes IV in 168 B.C. He had installed a Greek idol on the altar of the Temple in 167 B.C. After defeating these Greeks, the Jews then rededicated the temple and initiated a new feast (festival) day that we know today as Chanukkah. This festival day on the Jewish calendar falls very near Christmas each year. While many Bible teachers feel that verses 14-17 belong to a yet-future period of time leading up to the millennium, it seems like a stronger argument that these verses could rather be follow-up verses to the defense of Jerusalem against the Greeks indicated in verse 13.

Good times ahead for Judah and Israel (Zechariah 10)

1 Ask ye of the LORD rain in the time of the latter rain; so the LORD shall make bright clouds, and give them showers of rain, to every one grass in the field.
2 For the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, and have told false dreams; they comfort in vain: therefore they went their way as a flock, they were troubled, because there was no shepherd.
3 Mine anger was kindled against the shepherds, and I punished the goats: for the LORD of hosts hath visited his flock the house of Judah, and hath made them as his goodly horse in the battle.
4 Out of him came forth the corner, out of him the nail, out of him the battle bow, out of him every oppressor together.
5 And they shall be as mighty men, which tread down their enemies in the mire of the streets in the battle: and they shall fight, because the LORD is with them, and the riders on horses shall be confounded.
6 And I will strengthen the house of Judah, and I will save the house of Joseph, and I will bring them again to place them; for I have mercy upon them: and they shall be as though I had not cast them off: for I am the LORD their God, and will hear them.
7 And they of Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine: yea, their children shall see it, and be glad; their heart shall rejoice in the LORD.
8 I will hiss for them, and gather them; for I have redeemed them: and they shall increase as they have increased.
9 And I will sow them among the people: and they shall remember me in far countries; and they shall live with their children, and turn again.
10 I will bring them again also out of the land of Egypt, and gather them out of Assyria; and I will bring them into the land of Gilead and Lebanon; and place shall not be found for them.
11 And he shall pass through the sea with affliction, and shall smite the waves in the sea, and all the deeps of the river shall dry up: and the pride of Assyria shall be brought down, and the sceptre of Egypt shall depart away.
12 And I will strengthen them in the LORD; and they shall walk up and down in his name, saith the LORD.

This chapter gets a little confusing. The false shepherds here may have a prophetical reference to the Maccabean period when the Jews in Jerusalem would struggle against Antiochus Epiphanes IV in the middle of the second century. However, probably these verses refer to the Pharisees and Sadducees of Jesus' day; maybe this is the source of the imagery in John 10 (see notes). It is true that, as a result of false shepherds, Israel rejected Jesus as the Messiah. The references to Joseph and Judah make the distinction between what had been the Northern and Southern Kingdoms. The references to Assyria and Egypt describe the territory to the north and south of Israel where their historical struggles had been fought. The outcome of this chapter is victory once and for all over their enemies at the time of the millennium. This causes me to lean more towards a meaning that prophesies the struggle of the Pharisees and Sadducees against Christ, especially in light of how that position fits nicely with chapters 11 (see below) and 12 (see below).

A reference to the Messiah's first rejection (Zechariah 11)

1 Open thy doors, O Lebanon, that the fire may devour thy cedars.
2 Howl, fir tree; for the cedar is fallen; because the mighty are spoiled: howl, O ye oaks of Bashan; for the forest of the vintage is come down.
3 There is a voice of the howling of the shepherds; for their glory is spoiled: a voice of the roaring of young lions; for the pride of Jordan is spoiled.
4 Thus saith the LORD my God; Feed the flock of the slaughter;
5 Whose possessors slay them, and hold themselves not guilty: and they that sell them say, Blessed be the LORD; for I am rich: and their own shepherds pity them not.
6 For I will no more pity the inhabitants of the land, saith the LORD: but, lo, I will deliver the men every one into his neighbour’s hand, and into the hand of his king: and they shall smite the land, and out of their hand I will not deliver them.
7 And I will feed the flock of slaughter, even you, O poor of the flock. And I took unto me two staves; the one I called Beauty, and the other I called Bands; and I fed the flock.
8 Three shepherds also I cut off in one month; and my soul lothed them, and their soul also abhorred me.
9 Then said I, I will not feed you: that that dieth, let it die; and that that is to be cut off, let it be cut off; and let the rest eat every one the flesh of another.
10 And I took my staff, even Beauty, and cut it asunder, that I might break my covenant which I had made with all the people.
11 And it was broken in that day: and so the poor of the flock that waited upon me knew that it was the word of the LORD.
12 And I said unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver.
13 And the LORD said unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the potter in the house of the LORD.
14 Then I cut asunder mine other staff, even Bands, that I might break the brotherhood between Judah and Israel.
15 And the LORD said unto me, Take unto thee yet the instruments of a foolish shepherd.
16 For, lo, I will raise up a shepherd in the land, which shall not visit those that be cut off, neither shall seek the young one, nor heal that that is broken, nor feed that that standeth still: but he shall eat the flesh of the fat, and tear their claws in pieces.
17 Woe to the idol shepherd that leaveth the flock! the sword shall be upon his arm, and upon his right eye: his arm shall be clean dried up, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened.

This prophecy is a little difficult to place with certainty, but taken with chapters 12 (see below) and 13 (see below), we seem to get a clearer picture. After careful study of the passage and external reference materials, I am relatively confident that Zechariah is referring to the ministry of Christ in the midst of the hypocritical and false leadership of that day. They rejected the Messiah, and the temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 A.D. Verse 13 seems too much like Judas and his 30 pieces of silver not to be so, and Matthew does report that it was a fulfillment of prophecy; this is the only recorded passage from the prophets referencing 30 pieces of silver (Matthew 26:14-16, see notes; Matthew 27:3-10, see notes). So, it would appear that this prophecy is a picture of the times when Christ would walk the earth during his ministry here and the subsequent rejection of his Messiahship by false leadership of Israel at the time. That understanding of this chapter seems to fit nicely with chapter 12 (see below), and continues an idea that began to emerge in chapter 10 (see above).

Israel's future (Zechariah 12)

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.
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.
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.

Since this chapter is an obvious reference to the gathering of the armies of the nations against Israel at the Battle of Armageddon, it is likewise obvious that chapters 10 (see above) and 11 (see below) must be setting up the scenario including the rejection of Christ during his earthly ministry. Chapter 12 directs us to Christ's return in Revelation 19:11-21 (see notes) when Israel will be once and for all delivered. Notice verse 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." And if you're looking for a location where this takes place, you'll find it in verse 11, "the valley of Megiddon." That's right - Armageddon!

Let's notice verse 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." John quotes this verse regarding the piercing of Jesus' side in John 19:37 (see notes).

False prophets and idolatry in the tribulation (Zechariah 13:1-6)

1 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.
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.
6 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.

We know from Matthew 24:11 (see notes), "And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many." These are the tribulation prophets during the first half of the seven-year period. These verses in Zechariah 13:1-6 seem to address these characters.

More about the Shepherd (Zechariah 13:7-9)

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.
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.

In chapter 10, we saw references to shepherds which seemed to match up nicely with Christ's words in John 10 (see notes). The "sword against my shepherd" seems to be a description of the rejection of Christ, the Messiah, prior to the cross. The one-third remnant looks to those Jews who will be saved during the tribulation.

Incidentally, Jesus quotes verse 7 as he addresses the Apostles on the eve of the crucifixion in Matthew 26:31 and Mark 14:27 (see notes).

The turmoil of the tribulation and the millennium that follows (Zechariah 14)

1 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.
3 Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.
4 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.
6 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.
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.
9 And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.
10 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.
16 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.
19 This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
20 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.

In this chapter we see the Lord's second coming, his fighting at the Battle of Armageddon (Revelation 19:11-21, see notes) and his reigning during the millennium to follow. There's an abundance of detailed specifications found in this prophecy regarding this time period. The "hinder sea" of verse 8 is a reference to the Dead Sea. Ezekiel 47:1-12 (see notes) also describes a river that flows from the temple into the Dead Sea. Well...you just can't get around verse 9, "And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one." It's definitely Messianic (millennial) in its context. And verse 11 adds, "Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited." Not only so, but "the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem" (verse 12). And where is the center of activity during the millennium? Why...Jerusalem of course, as we see in verses 16-17, "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. 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." No worship - no rain; it's just that simple!

One more geographical note is in order here. You will notice in verse 4 that the site of the second coming is given, "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." When Jesus ascended to Heaven in Acts 1:9-11 (see notes), it was from the Mount of Olives. At that time, the disciples were told that the Mount of Olives was to be his arrival point at the second coming.


For commentary on another passage, click here.


Copyright 2003-2011 by Wayne D. Turner