Zechariah 1:1-3:10 Repentance

      
            REPENTANCE
        Zechariah 1:1-3:10 July 15 2007

    Zechariah began his prophecy with a plea to the
    people of Judah to repent. Their fathers had
    refused to repent, and God had destroyed Jerusalem
    and sent them to exile in Babylon. The prophet called
    on those who had returned to Judah to repent. By
    implication they also were to rebuild the temple .
    Repentance would bring forgiveness and the blessing
    of God’s presence (Zech. 1:1-6)
    Yet God assured the prophet He cared deeply for His
    people and would deliver them and restore their
    prosperity and the city of Jerusalem (Zech. 1:7-17).
    The four craftsmen represented those who defeated
    the heathen powers. (Zech.1:18-21).
    The restored Jerusalem would need no walls because
    the Lord would be a wall of fire around it (Zech.2:1-13).
    God would take away the people’s sins , and they would
    live in peace with one another under the authority of
    the One whom we know as Jesus Christ (Zech.3:1-10).

    1. Accept the Invitation (Zech. 1:1-3)

Zech. 1:1   In the eighth month of the second year of
Darius, the word of the LORD came to the prophet
Zechariah son of Berekiah, the son of Iddo: 1:2   “The
LORD was very angry with your forefathers. 1:3  
Therefore tell the people: This is what the LORD
Almighty says: ‘Return to me,’ declares the LORD
Almighty, ‘and I will return to you,’ says the LORD
Almighty.

    Eighth month of the second year. October-November,
    520 B.C. Haggai also began his prophetic ministry in
     Darius’s second year, on the first day of the sixth
    month on Aug. 29, 520 (Hag 1:1). The word of the Lord.
    A technical phrase for the prophetic word of
    revelation (Zech.9:1; 12:1; Jer 1:2; Eze 1:3; Hos 1:1;
     Joel 1:1; Jonah  1:1; 3:1; Mic 1:1; Zep 1:1; Hag 1:1; Mal
    1:1). also Zech. 6:9. Propht. One called by God to be
    his spokesman ( Exod. 7:1-2;Ezr 5:1; 6:14; Neb. 12:4,16).
    Very Angry with your forefathers. The Lord was angry
    because of the covenant-breaking sins of the Jews’
    preexilic forefathers, resulting in the destruction of
    Jerusalem and the temple in 586 B.C., followed by
    exile to Babylonian. God’s anger should not be explained
    away, for to deny that God has genuine emotions is to
     deprive him of one of the clear marks of personality.
     Return to me. . . and I will return to you( Zech.7:13). If
    the people of Zechariah’s day would change their
    course and go in the opposite direction from that of
    their forefathers (Zech.1:4), the Lord would return to
    them with blessing instead of with a curse (Zech. 16;
    Jer 18:7-10).

    2. Avoir the Judgment (Zech. 1:4-6)

Zech. 1:4   Do not be like your forefathers, to whom
the earlier prophets proclaimed: This is what the
LORD Almighty says: ‘Turn from your evil ways and
your evil practices.’ But they would not listen or pay
attention to me, declares the LORD. 1:5   Where are
your forefathers now? And the prophets, do they
live forever? 1:6   But did not my words and my
decrees, which I commanded my servants the prophets,
overtake your forefathers? Then they repented and said,
‘The LORD Almighty has done to us what our ways and
practices deserve, just as he determined to do.’ ”

    Earlier Prophets. Such as Isaiah (Isa 45:22),
    Jeremiah (Jer 18:11) and Ezekiel (Eze 33:11).
    (Zech. 7:7,12; Jer 25:4-5; 35:15).
    Do they live forever? No, but God’s words through
    them live on to be fulfilled (Zech.1: 6).
    Did not my words. . . overtake your forefathers?
    (Isa 40:6-8; 55:10-11). For the imagery of “overtake”
    ( Deut 28:2) (“accompany” is lit. “overtake”). My
    servants the prophets. (2Ki 9:7; 17:13,23; 21:10; 24:2;
    Ezr 9:11; Jer 7:25 and Eze 38:17; Dan. 9:6,10; Amos 3:7).
    They repented. Apparently a reference to what happened
    to some of the preexilic forefathers and /or their
    offspring during the exile and immediately afterward
    (Ezr 9; 10:1-17; Dan. 9:1-19).

    3. Acclaim the Protection (Zech.2:7-9)

Zech. 2:7   “Come, O Zion! Escape, you who live in the
Daughter of Babylon!” 2:8   For this is what the LORD
Almighty says: “After he has honored me and has sent
me against the nations that have plundered you —for
whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye — 2:9  
I will surely raise my hand against them so that their
slaves will plunder them. Then you will know that the
LORD Almighty has sent me.

    Zion. Jerusalem’s exiles in Babylon. Escape. . . Babylon.
    (Rev 18:4-8). Apple of his eye. ( Deut. 32:10). Hand of
    Power. (Zech.2:9)
    Christians today should praise God for His present and
    eternal protection. Their testimony is a strong
    encouragement for those who do not know Christ to
    come to Him and to experience His protection.

    4. Anticipate the Joy (Zech. 2:10-13)

Zech. 2:10   “Shout and be glad, O Daughter of Zion. For
I am coming, and I will live among you,” declares the
LORD. 2:11   “Many nations will be joined with the LORD
in that day and will become my people. I will live among
you and you will know that the LORD Almighty has sent
me to you. 2:12   The LORD will inherit Judah as his
portion in the holy land and will again choose Jerusalem.
2:13   Be still before the LORD, all mankind, because he
has roused himself from his holy dwelling.”
   
    I will live among you. (Zech.2:11; 8:3; Lev 26:11-12;
    Eze 37:27; John 1:14; 2Co 6:16; Rev 21:3).
    Many nations. In fulfillment of the promise to
    Abraham (Gen. 12:3; cf. Zec. 8:20-23; Gen. 18:18; 22:18;
    Isa 2:2-4; 60:3). That day. The day of the Lord
    (Zech.3:10; Isa 2:11,17,20). Holy Land. This
    designation occurs only here in Scripture.
    The land was rendered holy chiefly because it was
    the site of the earthly throne and sanctuary of the
    holy King, who dwelt there among his covenant
    people. (Ex 3:5). Choose Jerusalem. (Zech.1:17; 3:2).
    Be still before the Lord. (Hab 2:20; Zeph. 1:7). Roused
    himself. To judge (Zech.2:9).

        Summary:

            In the time of Zechariah, God’s people turned
    back to God , His law, and His purposes for them .They
    turned from idols and evil practices to the worship
    of God and to righteous living. For us, repentance
    involves a conscious decision to turn to God and to
    turn from all our sins. This turning involves believing
    God offers salvation through Christ, receiving this
    salvation by faith, and affirming God’s will for our
    lives.
            Saved people also need to heed the call to
    repentance for sins they commit.