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Zechariah 1:2-3

2 “The Lord was extremely angry with your ancestors. 3 So tell the people: This is what the Lord of Hosts says: Return to Me”—this is the declaration of the Lord of Hosts—“and I will return to you, says the Lord of Hosts.

Zechariah is a book that takes place after the Babylonian captivity. The people have returned back to Jerusalem, the temple is being rebuilt and life is getting ready to get back to normal. This is a time of celebration and gladness but also a time of disappointment and adjustment. Although they are free and able to get back to normal, things aren’t exactly the same as they were before their captivity. For God, this is a good thing. He wants them to be focused on Him and allow Him to build them back up and become great once again.

Today’s verses show the heart of God and His desire for Judah to return to Him fully. Zechariah reminds them of the anger they had kindled in God and how He was extremely angry with their ancestors because of their actions. The main action He was angry about was the way they forgot, neglected, and turned away from Him. He can’t bless them when they are in that state. God’s message for the people today is this, “Return to me and I will return to you.” It’s not that God went any where, it’s that He can’t bless and use them until they return to Him.

This puts the emphasis on us. We have a free will to choose whether we follow God with our life or we live a life completely for ourself. God’s desire is to give us amazing things and use us in amazing ways, but He will not force it on us. It is our choice. How are you choosing today? Are you choosing to give God your everything and watch Him do wonders through you? Or, are you taking the selfish route and living only for yourself? Take some time today to evaluate your priorities and your focus. Remember, when you return to God, He WILL return to you. He is right there waiting on your return.

Zechariah 9:9

Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion!
Shout in triumph, Daughter Jerusalem!
Look, your King is coming to you;
He is righteous and victorious,
humble and riding on a donkey,
on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

John 12:15

Fear no more, Daughter Zion. Look, your King is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt.

Zechariah is known for its prophecy and really weird visions. Some of the dreams that Zechariah had would probably keep some of us awake for a couple days. Thankfully, Zechariah wrote down these visions and prophecies so that we can learn from the things God had told Him. God directed His hand to give us a story that can and should strengthen our faith in Jesus the Messiah. 

Today’s scripture is one of the verses that begin to show us that Jesus was not merely a man who was good, but He was the messiah that was prophesied in the old testament and confirmed through the Gospels. That means we can be confident in the fact that Jesus was exactly the person that He said He was.

Today’s verse talks about how Jerusalem would one day rejoice greatly and shout triumphantly because their King would come. The Messiah would be their king. He would be the one to set them free, not just from the worldly bondage but the bondage of their sins. Look at how John wrote the scripture from Zechariah when He describes Jesus riding into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. The act of Jesus riding in on a colt and being worshiped as King was prophesied over 500 years before it happened. For those who believed in Jesus they saw this and knew He was the Messiah.

Let these verses be a tool to strengthen your faith in who Jesus is. If He said He was the Messiah and prophecy confirms it, as today’s verses do, we can be confident that the salvation that He has given to us is true as well. We don’t have to live on blind faith. We can be confident in our salvation.

Zechariah 10:2-3

2 For the idols speak falsehood,
and the diviners see illusions;
they relate empty dreams
and offer empty comfort.
Therefore the people wander like sheep;
they suffer affliction because there is no shepherd.
3 My anger burns against the shepherds,
so I will punish the leaders.
For the Lord of Hosts has tended His flock,
the house of Judah; He will make them like His majestic steed in battle.

John 10:11-13

11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired man, since he is not the shepherd and doesn’t own the sheep, leaves them and runs away when he sees a wolf coming. The wolf then snatches and scatters them. 13 This happens because he is a hired man and doesn’t care about the sheep.

The relationship between a shepherd and sheep is very important. The shepherd takes care of the sheep and meets their every need. He leads them to food and water, protects them from those who want to harm them, and He leads them to safe places to live well and protected. The sheep wouldn’t make it in the wild by themselves for very long. 

Today’s verses show us the importance of a good shepherd. God shows us a comparison of the people of Judah being led by false shepherds and being lead by Him, the good shepherd. The false shepherds gave falsehood, empty dreams, empty comfort and no guidance. The people walked around as if they had no shepherd. In other words, the false shepherds were equal to no shepherd. God’s anger was against the leaders that didn’t lead so He promises to punish them. He then shows us that He is the good shepherd who tends to His flock and makes them as comparable to a majestic steed in battle. 

That’s a big difference and honestly a funny picture. Knights riding into battle on the back of sheep. Come on, think about that for a minute, it’s funny.

God’s point with this is shown more so in the book of John where Jesus Himself says, “I am the good shepherd.” The good shepherd lays his life down for His sheep, He protects them and gathers them to Himself. Jesus is all of this and more. In John, Jesus is predicting that He is the good shepherd and would give His life for His sheep. That’s us. He willingly gave His life for each of us so that we could one day spend eternity with Him in Heaven. He is the good shepherd, worthy of our dedication, worthy of being followed, and worthy of all of our love. Look to Him as the good Shepherd and let Him guide you through this crazy life. He will lead you to everything you need, protect you and love you through it all.

Zechariah 11:12-13

12 Then I said to them, “If it seems right to you, give me my wages; but if not, keep them.” So they weighed my wages, 30 pieces of silver.
13 “Throw it to the potter,” the Lord said to me—this magnificent price I was valued by them. So I took the 30 pieces of silver and threw it into the house of the Lord, to the potter.

Matthew 27:9-10

9 Then what was spoken through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled:
They took the 30 pieces of silver, the price of Him whose price was set by the Israelites, 10 and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.

The act of ultimate betrayal and hurt is worth about 30 pieces of silver. At least to a man like Judas. When we hear the term, 30 pieces of silver, we immediately think of the way Judas betrayed Jesus and turned Him over for crucifixion for 30 pretty coins. The value is hard to determine with the information we are given, but we do know that it was enough to by a small field.

Today we see that Zechariah had predicted exactly what would happen to the good shepherd. In our verses from Zechariah, there is a transaction taking place to pay the wages of the good shepherd. He is valued at 30 pieces of silver. This price was given to the shepherd and he was directed by the Lord to throw them to the house of the Lord to the potter. This seems interesting by it’s self but it is amazing when you read about the transaction between Judas and the Priests.

In Matthew you see that the 30 pieces of silver were given back to the priests. They couldn’t take them back into the treasury of the temple because they called them blood money. Judas throws them into the sanctuary of the temple and then goes out and kills himself for what He had done. The priests then took the money and bought the potters field.

How amazing is that. Zechariah told the same story and talked about exactly what would occur 500 years earlier. The prophet Jeremiah said it as well. Once again, the prophecies of the old testament were fulfilled just as they said. Read the whole encounter of Judas and the 30 pieces of silver. See how it compares to Zechariah. Allow this to be one more thing that gives you confidence in who Jesus is.

Zechariah 12:10

10 “Then I will pour out a spirit of grace and prayer on the house of David and the residents of Jerusalem, and they will look at Me whom they pierced. They will mourn for Him as one mourns for an only child and weep bitterly for Him as one weeps for a firstborn. 

We continue to see the prophecies of Zechariah show us that Jesus is exactly who He says He is. Have you ever done something so bad that after it happens you can’t do anything but cry? I’m talking about something that you did and maybe you didn’t fully understand what you were doing, but once you did, you felt so bad about it, all you could do was cry. If that has ever happened to you, take that feeling and multiply the pain and sorrow from it by a thousand. It’s at that point that you will catch a glimpse of how Israel will feel after the second coming of Jesus.

Todays verses show us how Israel will mourn when they realize that Jesus is who He says He is. This is future prophecy and is talking about Israel as a whole. The majority of the Jews in Jesus day, rejected Him as Savior. They were too focused on their religiosity and power that came from it to notice that Jesus fulfilled hundreds and hundreds of prophecies that proved He is the Messiah. 

One day in the future, Jesus will return to the earth for a second time. This time He will not return as the suffering servant that He was the first time, this time He will return as the conquering King. It is at this moment that all of Israel will see how wrong they really are about who Jesus is. They will learn that they rejected and killed their Messiah, just as God said they would. They will realize that they lived apart from God for thousands of years and they will mourn as a parent who lost their only child. 

Their sorrow will be great but pay attention to the beginning of the verse. God will pour out His grace. They will mourn for what they missed, but they will receive the grace of God and turn to Him as Messiah.

Those of us who know Jesus as Savior, have not been blinded by the things of this world and we have the benefit of experiencing that grace everyday. Let’s take time today to thank God for the grace that He has given us and that we were able to receive it and be changed by it. Now take that thankfulness and realize the many people who have not received that grace. Let’s be the ones to go out and tell others about the grace of God that they too can take part in everyday. It is by the grace of God, through faith in Jesus Christ that we are saved. Let’s go and tell others.

Zechariah 13:6-7

6 If someone asks him: What are these wounds on your chest?—then he will answer: I received the wounds in the house of my friends.

7 Sword, awake against My shepherd,
against the man who is My associate—
this is the declaration of the Lord of Hosts.
Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered;
I will also turn My hand against the little ones.

This one hits like a ton of bricks. Another prophecy by Zechariah that happens exactly how He said it would. Once again Zechariah is focused on the shepherd and this time He is focused on what will happen to the Shepherd and what God would allow to happen to the Shepherd.

Remember, Jesus is the good Shepherd. Today’s verses show that someone would ask the shepherd about the wounds on His chest. His answer, “I received the wounds in the house of my friends.” Wow, just wow. Jesus received 39 lashes with the cat of nine tales because of His friends. It was in Jerusalem that Jesus would be beaten, mocked, His beard plucked and a crown of thorns would be placed on His head. He received His wounds in the house of His friends.

Look further into today’s verses. Verse 7 talks about how God would go against this shepherd, He would strike this shepherd and his sheep will scatter. God would turn His hand against them. This is a picture of how God would turn His wrath that was meant for each of us and put it onto Jesus on the cross. The good shepherd would receive the punishment that His sheep deserved and in the moment of that punishment, His sheep would scatter. This is exactly what happened with the disciples of Jesus. They all ran and hid when Jesus was taken, put on trial and put on the cross. They hid as Jesus paid the penalty for their sins.

Once again we can gain confidence in the fact that Jesus is the Messiah. But it’s much more than that. We can remember that we are those sheep that received grace instead of wrath. What are you doing with that grace? Are you taking advantage of it or are you praising God for it with your life? Praise Him! Sing out Hallelujah! Thanks Him! You are forgiven and made pure because the Good Shepherd took your place.

Zechariah 14:8-9

8 On that day living water will flow out from Jerusalem, half of it toward the eastern sea and the other half toward the western sea, in summer and winter alike. 9 On that day Yahweh will become King over all the earth—Yahweh alone, and His name alone.

On that day! What day? The day that Jesus comes back to earth. The Day of the Lord. It’s the day all of the prophets have been pointing to. 

The mention of this in the book of Zechariah, would have made the people excited for what was to come. It would have made them remember all the other promises God had made to them and fulfilled. The only problem is, that they will have to wait for this day to come. 

In fact, we are still waiting for this day to come. Remember in 2 Peter 3:9, Peter says, “9 The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance.” This waiting is a good thing. It gives Gods mercy and grace time to reach out and it gives humanity the time to turn back to Jesus. The Day of the Lord is a day of justice. Meaning wrath will come for the evil and refuge will be there for the good. 

The key thing for us to notice in these verses is that Jesus will be King over all the earth. He already came down as the suffering servant, to provide a way of salvation for us. But, at this point, He is coming down as conquering King and will rule and reign for all eternity.

So what does that mean for us? It means that Jesus is King. The time hasn’t come for us on this earth where He will rule and reign, but that doesn’t change who He is. He is the rightful king of this world and should be the King of our lives. 

Is He King in your life? How are you humbling yourself before Him and seeking out His will? Be in His word, meditate on it and pray. Allow Him to guide you through this life.