Saturday, April 2, 2011

Zechariah Chapter 2

For this Bible study on references to Babylon, the last pertinent reference to Babylon in regards to the end times in the Old Testament is found here in Zechariah.

Verse 1-5 “I lifted up mine eyes again, and looked, and behold a man with a measuring line in his hand. Then said I, Whither goest thou? And he said unto me, To measure Jerusalem, to see what is the breadth thereof, and what is the length thereof. And, behold, the angel that talked with me went forth, and another angel went out to meet him, And said unto him, Run, speak to this young man, saying, Jerusalem shall be inhabited as towns without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein: for I, saith the Lord, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her.”

An angel appears to Zechariah. He is holding a measuring line and tells Zechariah that he is going to measure the borders of Israel. (In Ezekiel we are told what the borders of Israel will be during the millennium.) Then another angel meets up with the first and tells him to tell Zechariah that Jerusalem will one day be full of people and animals and be unwalled and safe because the Lord will be her protection in the midst of her. This is the promise that God is giving Israel.This is the kingdom during the millennium that they have been promised. A time when they will live in complete safety for the first time since becoming a nation, and God will be in their midst again, with Yeshua their Messiah on the throne.

Verse 6-9 “Ho, ho, come forth, and flee from the land of the north, saith the Lord; for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heaven, saith the Lord. Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon. For thus saith the Lord of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye. For, behold, I will shake mine hand upon them, and they shall be a spoil to their servants: and ye shall know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me.”

God has just given Israel a promise, but first He tells Israel they will have to flee from Babylon. He says he has scattered them to the four winds, but now is the time for them to deliver themselves and return to Jerusalem. But notice, they are dwelling with the “daughter” of Babylon, which as we have seen in previous verses refers not to ancient Babylon, but modern Babylon. We have already seen in Ezekiel that she is dwelling in Babylon, to be delivered from the sword that is coming upon everyone else. Now is the time when she is to run or come out of Babylon before Babylon gets what is coming to her. “After the glory” or after the glorious redemption of Israel when God redeems her from Babylon and the nations, He will punish the nations who have spoiled her. Now they who have hurt the “apple of His eye”will be spoiled or punished. Now everyone and especially Israel will see and know that the Lord Jesus Christ is God. This is clearly speaking of the Lord's return and God's wrath upon all the nations of the earth. So again we see a passage that indicates that Babylon the Whore is actually going to be a refuge for Israel in the last days. However, there is an appointed time when Israel must flee so that she does not partake of the judgment being poured out on Babylon. Revelation 18:4 “And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”

Verse 10-13 “Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the Lord. And many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day, and shall be my people, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me unto thee. And the Lord shall inherit Judah his portion in the holy land, and shall choose Jerusalem again. Be silent, O all flesh, before the Lord: for he is raised up out of his holy habitation.”

Now God goes back to the promise. He tells Israel to sing and rejoice for He will once again dwell in the midst of her. This is referencing the Lord's Second Coming. Not only Israel will worship the Lord, but all nations will be joined to the Lord during the millennium, and shall be his people. Here is a verse that shows two members of the Trinity. It says that “I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the Lord of host hath sent ME.” The Lord is sending the Lord. God the Father is sending Christ the Son. God will again reestablish His people in the holy land and will set up His throne in Jerusalem in the Temple. Now all of Israel will know and acknowledge their Messiah is Yeshua, the Savior we have all been worshiping for 2,000 years.

Notice this last verse that speaks of being silent before the Lord. We saw that in Revelation at the opening of the seventh seal. Revelation 8:1 “And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. We also see a reference to it in Zephaniah 1:7 “Hold thy peace at the presence of the Lord GOD: for the day of the LORD is at hand.” God is going to get up off His throne and pour out His wrath on the nations, but before He does, the heavens and earth will experience a moment of silence. The calm before the storm. This chapter goes back and forth between reminding the people of the promise He made and what they have to look forward to, the wrath He will pour out on the nations, and their redemption from the nations.

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