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Zechariah 6

Sunday Morning Bible Study

October 5, 2014


Do people see Jesus? Is the gospel preached? Does it address the person who is: Empty, lonely, guilty, or afraid to die?  Does it speak to the broken hearted? Does it build up the church? Milk – Meat – Manna Preach for a decision Is the church loved? Regular:  2900 words    Communion: 2500 words

The background to Zechariah, like that of Haggai, is found in the book of Ezra.

After having been captive in Babylon for seventy years, the Jews are given permission to return to Jerusalem and rebuild their Temple in Jerusalem.

When the Temple construction is stopped, it was Haggai and Zechariah who began to prophesy and encourage the people to finish the Temple. (Ezra 5:1-2)

After the people began to build, opposition arose from their enemies, and for a period of 15 years, the Temple construction was halted.

It was then that God raised up two prophets, Haggai and Zechariah, who began to encourage the people to get back to work and make God’s House a priority.

(Ezra 5:1–2 NKJV) —1 Then the prophet Haggai and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophets, prophesied to the Jews who were in Judah and Jerusalem, in the name of the God of Israel, who was over them. 2 So Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel and Jeshua the son of Jozadak rose up and began to build the house of God which is in Jerusalem; and the prophets of God were with them, helping them.
It was under the ministry of Haggai and Zechariah that the work got stirred up again.
The Temple won’t be complete until March 12, 515 BC (Ezr 6:15-18)

The prophecies of Zechariah are given during the years of 520-518 BC.

One of the key distinctions of the book of Zechariah is the amount of prophecy about the coming Messiah.

Except for the prophet Isaiah, there are more prophecies about the Messiah in this book than any other Old Testament book.
One set of scholars list 41 quotes or allusions to Zechariah in the New Testament.

It seems that Zechariah has dated each of his prophecies, like Haggai did.

The first prophecy is 1:1-6
It was given on 08/??/02
The second prophecy is 1:7 – 6:15
Hag.2:10-19 talks about how “uncleanness” defiles everything it touches.

Haggai’s prophecy was given on 9/24/02

In Zec. 3 God talks about Joshua the high priest being “filthy”, but being cleansed.

Zechariah’s prophecy was given 11/24/02

The third prophecy is 7:1 – 14:21
Some suggest that only 7:1-7 are tied to the last date, and the rest of the book is undated.

Back in chapter one we started to look at a series of eight “night visions” (1:7) that Zechariah received from God on a single night.

They all took place on February 15, 519 BC.

This is now the eighth and final vision.

We’ve seen a vision of horses and riders. (1:7-17)
The horns and craftsmen (1:18-21)
The surveyor (ch.2)
Joshua the high priest’s cleansing (ch. 3)
The Olive Trees and Lampstand (ch. 4)

6:1-8 Four Chariots

:1 Then I turned and raised my eyes and looked, and behold, four chariots were coming from between two mountains, and the mountains were mountains of bronze.

:2 With the first chariot were red horses, with the second chariot black horses,

:3 with the third chariot white horses, and with the fourth chariot dappled horses—strong steeds.

:1 I turned and raised my eyes

This is now Zechariah’s last vision of the night.

:1 four chariots

chariotsmerkabah – chariot

In Zechariah’s day, chariots were the top military hardware of the day.

:1 two mountains

mountainshar – hill, mountain, hill country, mount

Mountains are sometimes a picture of kingdoms or kings. (Rev. 17:9-10; Dan. 2:45)

(Revelation 17:9–10 NKJV) —9 “Here is the mind which has wisdom: The seven heads are seven mountains on which the woman sits. 10 There are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, and the other has not yet come. And when he comes, he must continue a short time.
(Daniel 2:45 NKJV) —45 Inasmuch as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold—the great God has made known to the king what will come to pass after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation is sure.”

:1 mountains of bronze

bronzenechosheth – copper, bronze

Bronze is often a picture of judgment (Rev. 1:15; 2:18)

(Revelation 1:15 NKJV) —15 His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters;
(Revelation 2:18 NKJV) —18 “And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write, ‘These things says the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass:

Though the mountains could be symbolic, they could be two actual mountains.

If Zechariah is seeing this vision in Jerusalem (where he is at the moment), then the two mountains would most likely be Mount Zion and the Mount of Olives.
The valley between the two (the Kidron Valley) is also called the Valley of Jehoshaphat, or the “valley of judgment” (Joel 3:2, 12-16; Zec 14:4; Ps. 36:6)

(Joel 3:2 NKJV) —2 I will also gather all nations, And bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; And I will enter into judgment with them there On account of My people, My heritage Israel, Whom they have scattered among the nations; They have also divided up My land.

(Joel 3:12–16 NKJV) —12 “Let the nations be wakened, and come up to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; For there I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations. 13 Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, go down; For the winepress 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 moon will grow dark, And the stars will diminish their brightness. 16 The Lord also will roar from Zion, And utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake; But the Lord will be a shelter for His people, And the strength of the children of Israel.

(Zechariah 14:4 NKJV) —4 And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, Which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, From east to west, Making a very large valley; Half of the mountain shall move toward the north And half of it toward the south.

(Psalm 36:6 NKJV) —6 Your righteousness is like the great mountains; Your judgments are a great deep; O Lord, You preserve man and beast.

The idea is that these chariots are heading out from Jerusalem to accomplish some purpose.

:2 red … black … white … dappled

dappledbarod – spotted, marked

Do these colors have significance?

Some have suggested that the colors mean something – red is symbolic of “blood”, black of “death”, white of “victory”, and dappled as “disease”.
Some suggest these are the same horses mentioned in Revelation 6 – though the colors don’t exactly match.
Or, it could be that this just happens to be what color the horses are.

:1 four chariots

Earlier in Zechariah’s evening, his first vision also dealt with horses (though not chariots).  In that vision, he saw three colors of horses (not four).  (Zec. 1:8)

The colors were not the same identical ones as this vision. (Zech. 1:8)

(Zechariah 1:8 NKJV) I saw by night, and behold, a man riding on a red horse, and it stood among the myrtle trees in the hollow; and behind him were horses: red, sorrel, and white.
sorrelsaruq – sorrel, reddish, tawny, bay
Those horses were sent out to “scout”, to do “recon” of the world.
And now, at the end of the evening, in the final vision, God is not going to send out more “scouts”, but weapons of war – chariots.
Today it would be as if God is collecting intelligence data from satellites, and then deciding to send Viper Helicopters, or F-22 stealth fighters.

:4 Then I answered and said to the angel who talked with me, “What are these, my lord?”

:4 the angel who talked with me

As we’ve seen through these eight visions, Zechariah has been assigned an angelic “tour guide” to help him understand the visions.

:5 And the angel answered and said to me, “These are four spirits of heaven, who go out from their station before the Lord of all the earth.

:5 four spirits of heaven

spiritsruwach – wind, breath, mind, spirit

Some translations read “four winds of heaven”, but I think it’s simplest to take these as four angelic beings.

:5 go out from their station before the Lord

These are four angels being sent out from heaven to bring judgment.

Their “station” is in heaven before God.  This is their “home base” from which they go and come back from.

Because these chariots are going to be sent from mountains of bronze, we see them as instruments of divine judgment on the earth.


God’s Angels

We might not be too happy with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim right now, but they’re not the only Angels in town.
Video:  Angels in the Outfield (starts at 41:00)
Children have guardian angels.
(Matthew 18:10 NKJV) “Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven.
We too have angelic guardians.
(Psalm 91:11 NKJV) For He shall give His angels charge over you, To keep you in all your ways.
The writer of Hebrews tells us,
(Hebrews 1:14 NLT) Therefore, angels are only servants—spirits sent to care for people who will inherit salvation.
David wrote
(Psalm 34:7 NKJV) The angel of the Lord encamps all around those who fear Him, And delivers them.

You are not alone.

:6 The one with the black horses is going to the north country, the white are going after them, and the dappled are going toward the south country.”

:6 the north country

Both the black and white horses are heading north.

In Zechariah’s day, the “north” referred to Babylon.

Though “north” might be strictly northward in terms of what we see on a map, in Bible times “north” also applies to nations like Babylon, which to us would seem like “east”.

That’s because to get to Babylon from Israel in ancient days, you wouldn’t head due east, you would head north along what is called the “Fertile Crescent”.  This is where a traveler would find water and food along his route.  If you headed due east, you would have to travel through a vast desert, something not very desirable in ancient days.

:6 the south country

The “dappled” or “spotted” horses head south.

In Zechariah’s day, the “south” usually refers to the land of Egypt.

What happened to the red horse chariot?

I’m not sure.

In Zechariah’s first night vision, the rider of the red horse was the Angel of Yahweh, or Jesus, and the other horses were giving their reports to Him.

:7 Then the strong steeds went out, eager to go, that they might walk to and fro throughout the earth. And He said, “Go, walk to and fro throughout the earth.” So they walked to and fro throughout the earth.

:8 And He called to me, and spoke to me, saying, “See, those who go toward the north country have given rest to My Spirit in the north country.”

:8 given rest to My Spirit

have given restnuwach – to rest; (Hiph) to cause to rest, give rest to, make quiet

“Noah” gets his name from this word.

The idea of bringing “rest” to God’s Spirit is to calm His anger.

(Zechariah 6:8 NLT) Then the Lord summoned me and said, “Look, those who went north have vented the anger of my Spirit there in the land of the north.”
God’s anger would be calmed because the required judgment would be finished.  The people who have messed with God’s people will have been judged.

The horses heading north to Babylon would bring judgment there.

Three years after this vision, the city of Babylon would rebel against the ruling Persian Empire. The Persians would respond by crushing the rebellion and removing the population from the city.
Some have suggested that this is why God gave this earlier warning in chapter two:
(Zechariah 2:6–7 NLT) The Lord says, “Come away! Flee from Babylon in the land of the north, for I have scattered you to the four winds. 7 Come away, people of Zion, you who are exiled in Babylon!”

:6 north … south

The fact that the horses are going north and south brings to mind one of Daniel’s incredible prophecies (Dan. 11) in which he foresaw several hundred years of kings in the north doing battle with kings in the south.

It was little Israel that was caught in the middle.
It would be like North America being at war with South America.  And every time one continent would attack the other, they would have to pass through little tiny Costa Rica.

Costa Rica is about the same size as Israel.

Because Israel had mountains on east side of its border and the Mediterranean Sea on the west, nations to the north and south had to always pass through it to get to the other nation.

It is possible that this might have a reference to the future “Babylon” during the Tribulation period.
A future “Babylon” will be judged by God – Revelation 17-18.


Protecting Little People

Perhaps one of the points of this last vision is to give encouragement to God’s people that even though they might have thought of themselves as small and insignificant in the scheme of things, in the days ahead that He’s aware of their situation, and He is there to protect and guide them.
God will protect His people.
For the next five hundred years, even though armies will march back and forth over the land of Israel, God’s people somehow survive.
The nation would survive until the coming of the Messiah.

God wanted them to have a chance to see the promise fulfilled.

It’s only after their rejection that they are once again scattered among the nations.

Jesus was not only the Messiah of Israel, but the Savior of the world.

Their survival during those five hundred years brought the rest of us the benefit of salvation because Jesus was born a Jew.

6:9-15 Crowning Joshua

:9 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying:

:10 “Receive the gift from the captives—from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, who have come from Babylon—and go the same day and enter the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah.

:10 Receive the gift from the captives

These fellows were the latest wave of immigrants from Babylon.

They brought gifts to help with the Temple building project.

:10 Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah

HeldaiChelday – “worldly”

TobijahTowbiyah – “Yahweh is good”

JedaiahYedayah – “Yahweh has known”

:10 Josiah the son of Zephaniah

JosiahYo’shiyah – “whom Yahweh heals”

There will be something special that will take place in Josiah’s home.

:11 Take the silver and gold, make an elaborate crown, and set it on the head of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest.

:11 make an elaborate crown

elaborate crown‘atarah – crown, wreath

The word for crown is plural, and could be translated “crowns”, but plural could also carry the idea of a super-duper crown, an “elaborate” crown.

:11 Joshua the son of Jehozadak

JoshuaYehowshuwa’ – “Yahweh is salvation”

This is the fellow we’ve followed throughout Haggai and Zechariah, who was the actual high priest when the captives first returned to Jerusalem with Zerubbabel from Babylon.

Even though Zerubbabel was the governor and the descendant of the kings of Judah, this crown would be given to Joshua the high priest.


Back in Zephaniah 3:8, I made a statement that that particular verse was unique in that it contained all the letters of the Hebrew alphabet.
Now I’ve found that there are actually 26 of these verses.
This particular verse is one of them.

Still, perhaps there is something special about this verse?

:12 Then speak to him, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, saying: “Behold, the Man whose name is the BRANCH! From His place He shall branch out, And He shall build the temple of the Lord;

:13 Yes, He shall build the temple of the Lord. He shall bear the glory, And shall sit and rule on His throne; So He shall be a priest on His throne, And the counsel of peace shall be between them both.” ’

:13 He shall be a priest on His throne

This prophecy is going to combine two types of authority for the Jews.

The throne was where a king would sit and rule over a nation.
Yet this “king” would also be a priest.

From the earliest days, the people of Israel knew that a priest was not to be a king, and a king was not to be a priest.

Once king Uzziah thought he could take on the role of priest and tried to offer incense in the Temple, and he ended up with leprosy (2Chr. 26:19)
The priests tried to stop him, but Uzziah was determined that he could do what a priest did.

(2 Chronicles 26:19 NKJV) Then Uzziah became furious; and he had a censer in his hand to burn incense. And while he was angry with the priests, leprosy broke out on his forehead, before the priests in the house of the Lord, beside the incense altar.

As a result of his proud, rebellious heart, he was struck with leprosy.

(2 Chronicles 26:16–21 NKJV) —16 But when he was strong his heart was lifted up, to his destruction, for he transgressed against the Lord his God by entering the temple of the Lord to burn incense on the altar of incense. 17 So Azariah the priest went in after him, and with him were eighty priests of the Lord—valiant men. 18 And they withstood King Uzziah, and said to him, “It is not for you, Uzziah, to burn incense to the Lord, but for the priests, the sons of Aaron, who are consecrated to burn incense. Get out of the sanctuary, for you have trespassed! You shall have no honor from the Lord God.” 19 Then Uzziah became furious; and he had a censer in his hand to burn incense. And while he was angry with the priests, leprosy broke out on his forehead, before the priests in the house of the Lord, beside the incense altar. 20 And Azariah the chief priest and all the priests looked at him, and there, on his forehead, he was leprous; so they thrust him out of that place. Indeed he also hurried to get out, because the Lord had struck him. 21 King Uzziah was a leper until the day of his death. He dwelt in an isolated house, because he was a leper; for he was cut off from the house of the Lord. Then Jotham his son was over the king’s house, judging the people of the land.

Our Joshua was a priest, and yet he is now given a kingly crown.

How could this be?
It is a prophetic picture.
This is one of the clearest pictures of what Jesus is all about.
Jesus is both a king and a priest.

Jesus is a king, born of the lineage of David.

And yet we know that Jesus is also called our “great high priest”, not after the order of Aaron, but the order of Melchizedek.

(Hebrews 6:20b NKJV) …Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

It is significant that the royal crown is added to the one who is already priest.
Jesus’ first coming was more to fulfill the function of the high priest.

(John 1:29 NKJV) The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!

He died as a sacrifice to pay for our sins.

Jesus’ second coming will be to rule and reign over this earth.

The crown is added to the priest.

Is it a coincidence that the high priest in Zechariah’s day, crowned prophetically with a kingly crown, is named Joshua?
Joshua is the Hebrew name for Jesus.

:12 the BRANCH

BRANCHtsemach – sprout, growth, branch

We’ve already heard of this person called the BRANCH (Zec. 3:8)

(Zechariah 3:8 NKJV) ‘Hear, O Joshua, the high priest, You and your companions who sit before you, For they are a wondrous sign; For behold, I am bringing forth My Servant the BRANCH.

This is one of the names for the Messiah, who would be a “branch” or descendant of King David.  The concept comes from

(Isaiah 11:1 NKJV) There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, And a Branch shall grow out of his roots.

:12 He shall build the temple

Joshua would be a partial fulfillment of this prophecy.

He would be part of the current Temple construction.
Yet he wasn’t a descendant of David (the BRANCH)

There would be another “Joshua”, who would be the actual “BRANCH”.

Jesus would be of the line of David, of the tribe of Judah.
Jesus will build another kind of “Temple”.  I think you can make a case that there four types of Temples that Jesus builds.


Temple Building

His body
John records:

(John 2:18–22 NKJV) —18 So the Jews answered and said to Him, “What sign do You show to us, since You do these things?” 19 Jesus answered and said to them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” 20 Then the Jews said, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?”

The Jews think Jesus is talking about the destruction and rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem…

21 But He was speaking of the temple of His body. 22 Therefore, when He had risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this to them; and they believed the Scripture and the word which Jesus had said.

When Jesus was talking about building a temple here, He was talking about rising from the dead.

The church
Paul said that when the church is gathered, it’s a Temple.
(1 Corinthians 3:16–17 NKJV) —16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.

You don’t want to be among those who “defiles” or harms the temple.

Jesus will build His church.

(Matthew 16:18b NKJV) …and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

Paul talks about our physical bodies as temples…
(1 Corinthians 6:19–20 NKJV) —19 Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? 20 For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.
The Millennial Temple
Not the Millennium Falcon.
When Jesus returns and sets up His kingdom on this earth, He will rule and reign in Jerusalem.
He will also build a massive Temple in Jerusalem (Ezek. 40-48)
Building or Tearing Down?
Jesus is in the business of building Temples, not tearing them down.
So should we.  Another word for “building” is “edification”.
One of the ways that we “build” is through our words.

(Ephesians 4:29 NKJV) Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.

Our words can impact people in negative ways or in positive ways.

Video:  Dove - Legacy

:13 He shall bear the glory

God does not share His glory with anyone.

(Isaiah 42:8 NKJV) I am the Lord, that is My name; And My glory I will not give to another, Nor My praise to carved images.

Yet John recorded that when Jesus came,

(John 1:14 NKJV) And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

Yet in heaven it will be clear to whom glory belongs.

(Revelation 5:12 NKJV) saying with a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain To receive power and riches and wisdom, And strength and honor and glory and blessing!”
Jesus is no ordinary human.  He is indeed God.

:13 And shall sit and rule on His throne

Priests never sat in their ministry.

There was no place to sit in the Tabernacle nor in the Temple.
That’s because their work was never done.

Yet Jesus’ work is finished. (John 19:30)

(John 19:30 NKJV) So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.
He will “sit”.  He is seated at God’s right hand.

:13 the counsel of peace shall be between them both

There will be a peaceful resolution between the two roles of the Messiah, both as priest and as king.

(Zechariah 6:13 NLT) …and there will be perfect harmony between his two roles.’

:14 “Now the elaborate crown shall be for a memorial in the temple of the Lord for Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah, and Hen the son of Zephaniah.

:14 Helem, Tobijah…

These seem to be the same four fellows mentioned in verse 10, though we find out some of them have nicknames…

Heldai is now called “Helem”, and Josiah is called “Hen”.

HeldaiChelday – “worldly”

HelemChelem – “strength” or “dream”

JosiahYo’shiyah – “whom Yahweh heals”

HenChen – “favour”

These fellows bringing their gift will be a prophetic picture.

:14 the elaborate crown shall be for a memorial

The “elaborate crown” or “crowns” are prophetic.  When Jesus returns, John wrote,

(Revelation 19:12 NKJV) His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns…

:15 Even those from afar shall come and build the temple of the Lord. Then you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you. And this shall come to pass if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God.”

:15 from afar …build the temple

These fellows coming all the way from Babylon with their gift were a picture of what would happen in the future.

In Zechariah’s day, the Persians will end up financing the Temple construction (Ezr. 6:8)
Today, Jesus is building the Temple of His church with us Gentiles.
In the future, Gentiles will be a part of building the Millennial temple:
(Haggai 2:7 NKJV) and I will shake all nations, and they shall come to the Desire of All Nations, and I will fill this temple with glory,’ says the Lord of hosts.

I wonder about the work that is going on today, the preparations being made by the Jews to have their Temple rebuilt. I know they receive money from all around the world.

:15 the Lord of hosts has sent Me

We’ve seen this before…

(Zechariah 2:9 NKJV) —9 For surely I will shake My hand against them, and they shall become spoil for their servants. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me.
(Zechariah 2:11 NKJV) —11 “Many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day, and they shall become My people. And I will dwell in your midst. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you.
(Zechariah 4:9 NKJV) —9 “The hands of Zerubbabel Have laid the foundation of this temple; His hands shall also finish it. Then you will know That the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you.

:15 if you diligently obey

There are some blessings that are dependent upon our obedience.

It’s not that the Messiah’s coming was dependent upon their obedience, but that their participation in the Messiah’s blessings will be dependent upon their obedience.
There are some paths of life that are open to us only when we follow through, when we do the things that God wants us to do.


Your part

You have a role in God’s work in your life.
Some blessings are tied to obedience.
There is one point of obedience that is greater than all else.

God wants you to believe and surrender your life to the Lord Jesus.

(John 6:29 NKJV) Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”

Jesus came into the world in order to die for sinners.
He came to pay the price for our sins by dying in our place.
And yet this will have absolutely no value to you if you do not believe and follow Him.

(John 1:12 NKJV) But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: