Happy Lord's Day, everyone. I do hope you get a chance to get outside and enjoy the nice weather.
I just finished reading the Book of Zechariah as part of my personal devotions. I completed the fourteen chapters in seven days.
I learned from introductory notes* that the prophet Zechariah wrote the book during the sixth century before Christ. The Jews had been back in Palestine from their exile for about fifteen years, and were in the midst of rebuilding their temple. Zechariah’s contemporary, Haggai, wrote more on the subject of the rebuilding efforts; Zechariah himself wrote encouragement and prophecies about the future of Jerusalem.
A few verses/passages that stood out to me:
"Therefore say to them, Thus declares the LORD of hosts: Return to me, says the LORD of hosts, and I will return to you, says the LORD of hosts." - 1:3Here is a promise: God promises to receive any who return to Him. To "return," in this context, is to repent, the conscious act of turning away from sin and turning to God.
Also, I noticed the triple use of the name "LORD of hosts." I remember hearing in a sermon that "hosts' is an archaic term for "armies." (Think "the heavenly hosts" in the Christmas story and at the Battle of Armageddon.)
"Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the LORD of hosts." - 4:6bThe context here is the unfinished temple; completion of the task can only be an act of God. "Might" and "power" in this context refer to military strength that God’s people often employed to achieve God’s work. Only by God’s Spirit (i.e., the Holy Spirit) can enable God’s people (both of the Old Testament and in the Church Age) to accomplish God’s work.
Chapter 7 I like; it talks about the issue of the attitude behind service. Verse 5:
…"When you fasted and mourned in the fifth month and in the seventh, for these
seventy years, was it for me that you fasted?"
Service rendered in the name of God needs to be for God’s glory. Such an attitude is more often than not difficult to hold, but it is precisely the attitude that God seeks to turn towards Himself, with the actions to follow.
The second half of the book contains prophecies about the Last Days and the subsequent Kingdom where God and His people will be together is blessed fellowship.
This is Rubio, over and out.
*For personal devotions and study, I use the Reformation Study Bible, containing the text of the English Standard Version. All Scripture quotations in this post are taken from the same.