The visions of chapters 5 and 6 regard the containment of sin and the distribution of God’s government throughout the earth. Joshua is crowned priest-king who shall build the temple of the LORD and shall bear royal honor, and shall sit and rule on his throne. If it helps, try to avoid the temptation to plumb the depths of meaning of each symbol, and instead attend to the broader implications that Zechariah is witnessing.
In chapters 7 and 8 the LORD answers a question of the people of Bethel: “Should we weep and abstain in the fifth month as [we] have done for so many years?” The LORD’s initial response is another question: “Was it for Me you fasted? And when you eat and when you drink, do you not eat for yourselves and drink for yourselves?” He reminds them of what He commanded Isaiah 200 years ago, that what He demands is that His people “Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another…”
This goes deeper in the next chapter, when the LORD presents a picture of what Jerusalem could look like, an image that is more peace-filled than we have seen. Listen to the variety of details that denote tranquility – from the way people will sow and reap peace, to the varieties of security that will exist, to the calm and safety of the streets themselves. No longer will Jerusalem be a byword of cursing among the nations, for “Thus says the LORD of hosts: In those days ten men from the nations of every tongue shall take hold of the robe of a Jew, saying, 'Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you.'"
Our verse for this week is Colossians 3:23: Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.
Zechariah 5 through 8. Now let’s read it!