Chapter 12 opens with the same formula that began chapter 9: The burden of the word of the LORD. But instead of other nations, this word of the LORD concerns Israel itself… Judah specifically. It looks forward to a day when Judah and Jerusalem will be cleansed of their sin. Listen intently through chapters 12 and 13 as the scenes shift rapidly and terror and grace, fear and mercy, are fitfully interwoven.
Two goals become clear in chapter 14: first, that Jerusalem is not being restored for its own glory, but to be elevated, set aside as “Holy to the LORD;” and, second, that the call will go out to all nations to worship the LORD there. These, again, are interwoven with the chaos of war and plagues that have marked Zechariah’s prophecy thus far. Those who go up to Jerusalem to worship the King will be fed and protected. Those who do not will suffer famine and plague.
Just in these twelve prophets we’ve read a plethora of genres and rhetorical techniques. There was the living metaphor and call to repentance of Hosea, the historical teaching moment of Joel, Obadiah’s and Nahum’s condemnation of foreign powers, Micah’s and Amos’s demands for justice from those in power, Haggai’s conviction that his countrymen are not taking the temple seriously, and the narrative of Jonah’s adventures. No two books in these twelve, or in the whole Bible, really, are exactly the same. Each reflects a nuance of the LORD’s authority, power, and creativity that may or may not be present in others.
Remember that this book, as with the whole Bible, is about the LORD and His character. He is both the primary subject and actor. Through all that you read here remember the LORD’s ultimate purpose, expressed distinctly in chapter 14: When the LORD comes, and sets His feet on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem, The LORD will be king over all the earth. On that day the LORD will be one and his name one.
Our verse for this week is James 4:7: Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Zechariah 12 through 14. Now let’s read it!