Prophet Zechariah and the End Times-NOW!
God's plan for Judah and Israel!
What does this prophet have to say to the people today? Can his prophesies be reliable? How relevant is his prophesies today when he wrote these?
God's message through Zechariah speaks of the end time destruction of those who try to prevent God's people from doing his Will, it is a message about the great army of God who will come against those enemies and rase them to the ground! It is a message of deliverance and peace throughout the world and it is a message of a coming saviour and King!
Zechariah became a prophet around 520 BC during the period when Cyrus allowed the Jews to return to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple. God called Zechariah to be a voice for Him- a prophet! The purpose was to speak to the nations, but in particular to the Jewish people, who had become despondent during the reconstruction of the temple because of persecution and hostility from the enemy trying to prevent them from completing their work. God informed the Jewish people that he was with them, he gave them hope for the future. Part of Zechariah's prophetic message was to inform the Jews that their was a future Messiah who would deliver them. Zechariah's message was also to the rest of the world!
As a brief introduction to this hub, it is necessary to explain that Israel throughout the Bible Scriptures represent God's chosen people -The Israelites and Jews (as well as the land itself ). Judah represents those who follow Yeshua as the Lion of Judah - their leader! Zechariah is one of the major prophets in the Tanach (Old Testament) and he says a lot to the Jews and Yeshurun (followers of Yeshua). However, he also says a lot to the enemies of the Jews and Yeshurun. So this hub has a real 'End Time' message for all!
We will look at Zechariah chapter 8 starting with verse 3. Yeshua says, "This is what the Lord says; " I will return to Zion and dwell in Jerusalem. Then Jerusalem will be called the City of Truth, and the mountain of the Lord Almighty will be called the Holy Mountain." "
Verse 7 " This is what the Lord Almighty says: "I will save my people from the countries of the East and the West. I will bring them back to live in Jerusalem; they will be my people, and I will be faithful and righteous to them as their God." "
We know this prophesy has come to pass. we know the Jews returned to Jerusalem to rebuild the temple however, their prosperity did not last, their peace did not last as Jerusalem was invaded and the temple plundered by Antiochus 1V 169 BC which led to the revolt of the Maccabees in 165 BC. Then the Romans took over control of Jerusalem. So although the Jews returned to their country, evidence shows this was not related to God's prophesy that we will read about in Zechariah as you will soon find out!
From verse 9 God speaks of how He will prosper his people during this time, he speaks of people not being able to live in safety, because of his/their enemies. Today, we have a replica period where the Jews have returned to their homeland Israel and still there is no peace. Palestinians, Syria, Iran and all the other muslims nations are determined to see the destruction of Israel and the Jews.
Even today Jerusalem has no peace because of the enemies that are constantly bombarding it! But God says in verse 11, " But now I will not deal with the remnant of this people as I did in the past, declares the Lord." In the past the Lord would have angered at his people's rebellion and adultery and punished them, but today he has made a turn around, even though the Jewish people still do not behave as they should (there are many secular - non-observant Jews) God has promised prosperity and blessings for his people. The Lord continues to say how the people and the land will prosper - "the seed will grow well. the vine will yield its fruit, the ground will produce its crops, and the heavens will drop their dew. I will give all these things as an inheritance to the remnant of this people. As you have been an object of cursing among the nations, O Judah and Israel, so will I save you, and you will be a blessing. Do not be afraid, but let your hands be strong." God speaks this same promise to the Yeshurun and he reminds His people to behave according to his commandments, to speak the truth, to be just and do what is right..
Verse 15 " So now i have determined to do good again to Jerusalem and Judah. Do not be afraid. These are the things you are to do: speak the truth to each other, and render true and sound judgement in your courts; do not plot evil against your neighbour, and do not love to swear falsely. I hate this, declares the Lord.
In verse 19, God says to Judah (the people who follow Yeshua ( or he is known as Jesus the Greek name used) ) that they should enjoy and celebrate the festivals i.e Passover (Leviticus 23:5) which takes place in the spring, then the first fruits festival (Shavuot Lev 23: 9) and the feast of ingathering (Succot). [remember the Jewish calender is different to the Julian calender]. These festivals will become joyous events and therefore love truth and peace!
We know that none of this happiness has arrived yet! Many followers of Yeshua(Christ) are yet to come to know the truth of their Jewish roots and their link to these festivals. Praise Hashem though, that many are coming to this understanding and denouncing the pagan elements of the festivals of christmas and easter!
Verse 20 to the end of 8th chapter is very interesting. It mentions how many peoples and nations will come to Jerusalem to seek the Lord Almighty and to entreat him. Ten men will take hold of ONE JEW by the hem of his garment and say "Let us go with you, because we have heard that God is with you." Has that happened yet? Has that prophesy occurred? You could say it occurred when Yeshua walked around Israel, he was often touched and approached and he certainly was a Jew!. But I do not think so, They would not say that God was with him, because they would recognise God was dwelling in Yeshua as part of the triune. So this appears to mean literally a Jewish person and not Christ! Besides that The Lord was saying this and it does not sound like he was referring to himself.
If you have read my other hubs on God's numerical meanings found in the Bible. You will recall the number 8 refers to one of the Triune, in this case ,Chapter 8 was all about Yeshua- I mentioned that 8 directs us to the supernatural and opposite to humanistic (which is the number 6- the number of man). Now we move onto chapter 9 and this number always refers to judgement and leads up to number 10 the number of destruction.
Chapter 9 The Lord tells us in this chapter that he will destroy (bring judgement on) the enemies of Israel and Judah. Verse 3 in particular is significant as he refers to the city of Tyre. Tyre a wealthy city and greatly admired and respected by the Arab world will be destroyed- this occurred in 333 BC by Alexander the Great, then it rose up again and became a trade centre for the Romans. It will probably be known in the very near future as a trade centre for Babylon, if not already! It is probably being built as we read this! How do I know this? Because in verse 4 it says " and she will be consumed by fire. Ashkelon will see it and fear; Gaza will writhe in agony, and Ekron, too for her hope will wither. Gaza will lose her leader and Ashkelon will be deserted. ....and I will CUT OF THE PRIDE OF THE PHILISTINES (Palestinians). It goes on to say in this chapter that God will remove the (unkosher) the Profane from gaza " I will take the blood from their mouths, the forbidden food from between their teeth. those who are left will belong to our God and become leaders in Judah."There is a lot to absorb from this passage of scripture. Firstly, Arabs (including palestinians) have shed a lot of innocent blood and also break God's commandments (as brothers to the Israelites) and eat blood- they also have falsely accused Jews of doing such evil things as drinking blood of children! They and many muslim nations have cursed the Jews! Therefore God says in this scripture that he will remove those who have been involved in such things and they will become nothing. God also says that many of those remaining in the arab lands, will become followers of Yeshua the Messiah and he will make them leaders of the Yeshurun! This is a fact of today - many peoples from Arab nations, ex-muslims, have turned to Yeshua and accepted Him as their savior! in verse 8 Hashem promises to defend His people against enemy forces and says "NEVER AGAIN WILL AN OPPRESSOR OVERRUN MY PEOPLE FOR NOW I AM KEEPING WATCH."
Verse 9: Now we come to a really interesting piece in this chapter- The Coming of Zion's King!
It speaks of Yeshua's first coming as a savior who made his entrance into Jerusalem on a donkey, but the most important futuristic reference is that of Yeshua as the Messiah who will come again as a proclaimer of peace to the nations. He will return as a conqueror of the nations to bring about this peace. Verse 13, "I will rouse your sons O Zion, against your sons O Greece...This refers to the sons of Light (Yeshua's people) and the sons of darkness (the enemies of God and His people). It is the war that is pending now! How do I know this? Read on!
" Then the Lord will appear over them; his arrow will flash like lightning. The Sovereign Lord will sound the trumpet; he will march in the storms (armies) of the south, and the Lord Almighty will shield them. ..." verse 16 " The Lord their God will save them on that day as the flock of his people. They will sparkle in his land like jewels in a crown. How attractive and beautiful they will be!
In the book of Revelation (chapters 8.9.10) we have the seven trumpets (seven being the number of completion). When the 7th trumpet is blown it is the time when Yeshua calls his people to gather together as this is the time when they shall return (from the heavens) to reclaim God's holy land! in chapter 10 verse 7 " There will be no more delay! But in the days when the seventh angel is about to sound his trumpet, the mystery of God will be accomplished, just as he announced to his servants the prophets."The mystery referred to is when God reveals himself to the world ! It also is the time when ALL SHALL SEE YESHUA AND KNOW THAT HE IS THE SON OF GOD! It is the time when scoffers and mockers and the sons (and daughters) of darkness shall know who the sons (and daughters) of God are! It will all be out in the open - clear and obvious to the nations! The atheists, the pagan worshippers, the idolators and the worshippers of satan, will all know the Truth! As they see it all happen in the CITY OF TRUTH!
Revelation 11: 15-19 Revelation 19: 19. 2 Peter 3: -8
In Luke 21, Yeshua speaks of the end times, he lists various things that will happen (have happened already historically) almost all of those things Yeshua prophesied have already taken place except from verse 26 which says " Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. Verse 27. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Verse 28 "when these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near. And all this is to happen within this generation which has been going for 2011 years AD. All other periods and generations have been shorter than this. The post Yeshua period has been the longest generation (period). Therefore this fact alone should suggest to the reader that the time is very near! If you still are not convinced then read on...verse 32 This generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. .. In Matthew 24:13 Matthew writes additional information of Yeshua's teaching i.e. " but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations and then the END will come.As always God forewarns the people of the world, before he brings destruction and retribution, so that all have an opportunity to return to Him through the savior- Ha Meshiach!
" For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.
verse 29 Immediately after the distress of those days (wars, disasters etc) the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory. And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.
Zechariah chapter 10 and 11 speak of false teachers/leaders referred to as shepherds because they are responsible for Yeshua'sflock (of believers- an analogy of sheep following a leader.) However, these leaders are false shepherds their goal is to lead the sheep away from the truth- away from Yeshua. Therefore the people wander like sheep oppressed for the lack of a shepherd. My anger burns against the shepherds, and I will punish the leaders; for the Lord Almighty will care for his flock, the house of Judah... From Judah will come the cornerstone, from him the tent peg,... I will strengthen the house of Judah and save the house of Joseph. I will restore them... I will signal for them and gather them in. ... Though I scatter them among the peoples, ...they and their children will survive and they will return... I will bring them back from Egypt and gather them from Assyria. ...and there will not be room enough for them. ...
Chapter 12:2 I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves. On that day I will strike every horse with panic and its rider with madness, declares the Lord.... on that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem.
Chapter 14:2 I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it, the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city. Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights in the day of battle. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south. ....Then the Lord my God will come, and all the holy ones with him....On that day there will be no light, no cold or frost. It will be a unique day, without daytime or nighttime - a day known to the Lord. ....On that day 'Holy to the Lord ' will be inscribed on the bells of the horses, and the cooking pots in the Lord's house will be like the sacred bowls in front of the alter. Every pot in Jerusalem and Judah wil be holy to the Lord Almighty, and all who come to sacrifice will take some of the pots and cook in them. And on that day there will no longer be a Canaanite in the house of the Lord Almighty.
To conclude: Soon armies will invade Jerusalem and at that point the 7 year period of distress will commence on those who are not covered by the blood of the Passover lamb - Yeshua! Eventually, towards the end of this 7 yr period, Yeshua will intervene, after which peace will be established (the thousand year millennium). Everything in the land of Israel will be holy and there will not be any pagan worshippers within the holy land. And the people will have feasts to celebrate (sacrifices become feasts and celebrations- just as you cook a turkey for a celebration meal and it has to be killed a certain humane way and prepared a certain way so you do not eat blood- in line with the kosher requirements God has presented).