THE PROPHECY OF ZECHARIAH HAS BEEN WRITTEN IN 518 B.C.C, IN JERUSALEM
"At that time Jesus said in response:
“I publicly praise
you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and intellectual ones and have revealed them to young children""
According to Jesus Christ, it is God who decides
to whom He reveals the meaning of his Word. In the prophecy of Daniel, it is written that God gives meaning of His Word to "those having insight" (Daniel 12:3,10). To understand the prophecy of Zechariah, we must ask it to God, through his Son Jesus Christ.
If we have good motives, God will give us to understand his mind through His Son Jesus Christ: "For “who has come to know the mind of Jehovah, so that he may instruct him?” But we do have the mind of Christ" (1 Corinthians 2:16). The understanding
of this prophecy is very important because it will allow us to understand how to be prepared before, during, and after the Great Tribulation. The framework of the prophecy of Zechariah is the preservation of the People of God during the Day of Jehovah, and
how God will refine them for everlasting life: “And I will bring the third part through the fire; And I will refine them as silver is refined, And test them as gold is tested. They will call on my name, And I will answer them. I will say, ‘They
are my people,’ And they will say, ‘Jehovah is our God'" (Zechariah 13:9).
As the apostle Paul pointed out, it is not easy to understand the mind of Jehovah, we need the
loving help of His Son Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). To use the expression of the prophecy of Daniel, this search is made of thorough examination (Daniel 12:4b). But as Jesus Christ said, with perseverance and good motives, we can reach to this understanding.
Although the biblical explanations are presented in the most objective method as possible. The reader will sometimes read the verbs "it seems that" or "it would seem", to express a strong probability tinged with prudence and modesty (Micah 6:8). These expressions
also express, that at any time, the understanding of the mind of Jehovah requires adjustments, and rectifications to be made, if necessary, as quickly as possible, while keeping the course towards the research of the truth of God (Proverbs 4:18; John 17:17).
A prophecy is only useful if we understand it in advance. Therefore, it seems obvious that if Jehovah God has put prophecies in His Word the Bible, even in a cryptic way, they are written with the purpose of being understood and to prepare His People for his
"One Day", to survive in view of everlasting life (Zechariah 14: 7). This is the purpose of the current presentation of the biblical explanations of the Prophecy of Zachariah. The explanations will be classified by themes, centered on the prophetic enigmas of Zechariah.
The rider on the red horse among the myrtles
“I saw a vision
in the night. There was a man riding on a red horse, and he stood still among the myrtle trees in the ravine; and behind him there were red, reddish-brown, and white horses.” (…) Then the man who was standing still among the myrtle trees said:
“These are the ones whom Jehovah has sent out to walk about in the earth.” And they said to the angel of Jehovah who was standing among the myrtle trees: “We have walked about in the earth, and look! the whole earth is quiet and undisturbed"”
(Zechariah 1: 8,10,11)
This first prophetic riddle appears to be in act 1 of scene 1, of
a prophetic play, of which there is both the summary and the revealed end of the story, but in an encrypted way. This is why the examination of the book of Zechariah will be done by focusing on the decryption of these biblical enigmas.
The situation seems truly dramatic for these myrtles: they are in an abyss, that is to say in a situation comparable to death or complete inactivity. The horseman among the myrtles is an angel who seems to act benevolently
towards them. This angel with a red horse, is accompanied by other riders of red, reddish-brown and white mounts. These three colors seem to correspond to the three kinds of colors of myrtles: those of red, reddish-brown and white. Why is this myrtle field
in a desperate, near-death situation? What do the colors of myrtles represent? What do the horses represent with the colors of myrtles? What did the horsemen do as they circulated all over the earth so that it ended up being "quiet and undisturbed"?
Reading Zechariah 1:12, we immediately understand what are the myrtles in a desperate situation: "So the angel of Jehovah said: “O Jehovah of armies, how long will you withhold your mercy
from Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, with whom you have been indignant these 70 years?”” (Zechariah 1:12). The myrtles represent "Jerusalem and the cities of Judah". However, this answer raises other questions: the myrtles and the horsemen who
seem to act in their favor have three colors, yet there are only two parts of the answer. Assuming, to find the third element in the book of Zechariah, what colors will they symbolically correspond to? Before looking for the answer in the whole of the book
of Zechariah, we will give a very condensed summary of the biblical history of Israel because there are many historical allusions. The first being that of the "seventy years" of indignation of Jehovah, against these "myrtles" in critical situation.
Jehovah's "Seventy Years" of Invective Against His People
angel of Jehovah said: “O Jehovah of armies, how long will you withhold your mercy from Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, with whom you have been indignant these 70 years?""
In 1513 BCE, God made a covenant with Israel, through Moses, the mediator (Deuteronomy 4:23). From reading the historical biblical books of the
Judges, up to 2 Chronicles, it is evident that the 10 tribes of Israel (after the split), and the tribes of Benjamin and Judah, represented by Jerusalem, did not keep this covenant (Zechariah 1:2-6). To the point, that Jehovah, in the prophecy of Ezekiel 23,
compared them with two prostitutes: Oholah (Samaria) and Oholibah (Jerusalem) (The entire biblical book of Hosea (Oshea), is a similar description of the Israel's marital infidelity towards its owner and husband, Jehovah God). In this chapter, Jehovah vividly
describes the infidelities of these two nations. Therefore, Jehovah God would use their respective "lovers" to punish them severely: Assyria would destroy Samaria and deport its inhabitants (Oholah). Babylon would do the same with Judah and Jerusalem (Oholibah):
they would be destroyed and its inhabitants deported to Babylon for seventy years (Jeremiah 25:11,12). Although coming from the Levant (east), the Babylonian armies are described as coming from the north, which is the easiest route to attack Israel (for Assyria)
and Judah (Jerusalem) (Zechariah 2:6; 6: 6.8 (Babylon); 10:8-12 (Assyria)).
The enigma of the myrtles illustrates the desperate situation in which Judah and Jerusalem find themselves:
in an abyss comparable to final death. The prophecy of Ezekiel chapter 37 regarding the valley-plain covered with human bones, is another description of the plight of Judah and Jerusalem. However, this prophecy announces the general resurrection of Israel,
Judah and Jerusalem, as a nation (Zechariah 9:11-17; 10:8-12). So, given this information, we better understand the meaning of Jehovah's response in Zechariah 1:13-17: “Jehovah answered the angel who was speaking with me, with kind and comforting words.
Then the angel who was speaking with me told me: “Call out, ‘This is what Jehovah of armies says: “I am zealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great zeal. With great indignation I am indignant with the nations that are at ease, because
I felt indignant to a small extent, but they added to the calamity.”’ “Therefore this is what Jehovah says: ‘“I will return to Jerusalem with mercy, and my own house will be built in her,” declares Jehovah of armies, “and
a measuring line will be stretched out over Jerusalem.”’ “Call out once more and say, ‘This is what Jehovah of armies says: “My cities will again overflow with goodness; and Jehovah will again comfort Zion and again choose Jerusalem".
While Jehovah applied an extremely painful discipline, the rest of the prophetic account will show how Jehovah God will exercise mercy on His people. Jehovah God announces that He will ask the
nations which have caused devastation to his people Judah, Israel and Jerusalem, to render an account for themselves before Him.
The four horns of the nations will
render an account before God
“Then I looked up and saw four horns. So I asked the angel who was speaking with me: “What are these?” He
replied: “These are the horns that dispersed Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem""
The horns are the expression of sovereignty, whether of God or exercised by men. The "four horns" seem to allude to the symbolism
of those found on the four corners of the temple altar in Jerusalem, representing Jehovah's sovereignty through the power of the bull's horns (Exodus 27:2). Obviously, the "four horns" which scattered Judah, Israel and Jerusalem, represent
the rival sovereignty of the nations which worked as artisans who wrought the calamity of the people of God (Zechariah 1:20; Psalms 94:20). The book of Zechariah shows, in different ways, how these "four horns" will render an account before God, at the time
of the great tribulation, always against the biblical historical background of Judah, Israel and Jerusalem: "Come! Come! Flee from the
land of the north,” declares Jehovah. “For I have scattered you to the four winds of the heavens,” declares Jehovah. “Come, Zion! Make your escape, you who are dwelling with the daughter of Babylon. 8 For this is what Jehovah of armies
says, who after being glorified has sent me to the nations that were plundering you: ‘Whoever touches you touches the pupil of my eye. 9 For now I will wave my hand against them, and they will become plunder for their own slaves.’ And you will
certainly know that Jehovah of armies has sent me" (Zechariah 2:6-9; 12:7- 9; 14:3).
It seems that Zechariah 1:19, reveals what correspond to the three different colors of the horses,
which act to avenge the myrtles, the people of God. The color red, represents Judah. The color reddish-brown, Israel. The white color Jerusalem. The avenging horsemen of the myrtles, are evidently angels who cause a plague on all the earth, because according
to the prophecy, horses symbolize the plague (Zechariah 14:15). The one who commands this cavalry is red, an archangel (leader of the angels), who watches over the myrtles (Exodus 23:20). This means that the color red (Judah), symbolizes the sovereignty of
God through kingship. The color white (Jerusalem) symbolizes the sovereignty of God through the priesthood. The reddish-brown color, represents Israel as a whole. Zechariah's prophecy explains how God will show His mercy on His present people, before, during
and after the great tribulation, using the historical account of the tribe of Judah, the 12 tribes of Israel and Jerusalem, at the time of his return from exile from Babylon to Jerusalem. The sentence pronounced by the horsemen after having circulated over
all the earth, is the description of the earth after the great tribulation: “We have walked about in the earth, and look! the whole earth is quiet and undisturbed” (Zechariah 1:11).
The four chariots coming from between two copper mountains
"Then I looked up again and saw four chariots coming from between
two mountains, and the mountains were of copper. The first chariot had red horses, and the second chariot, black horses. The third chariot had white horses, and the fourth chariot, speckled and dappled horses"
What represent the two copper mountains? Always taking into account the same historical context and biblical
geography, the angel's explanations help to solve this riddle. The solution seems to be found a little further on in the prophecy: "Jehovah will go out and war against those nations as when he fights in the day of a battle. In that day his feet will stand
on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east; and the Mount of Olives will be split in half, from east to west, forming a very great valley; and half of the mountain will move to the north, and half of it to the south" (Zechariah 14:3,4).
The two mountains represent the two mountains on which Jerusalem is built: to the north, is Mount Moriah, where the temple of Jerusalem was built, and to the south, Mount Zion, where there was
the royal residence of King David. Thus, Jerusalem, through these two mountains, symbolizes the sovereignty of Jehovah God through kingship
(Judah), Mount Zion, and sovereignty through the priesthood, Mount Moriah (Jerusalem). The copper symbolizes the metal with which the utensils were made in the courtyard of the sanctuary temple, particularly the copper altar with the four horns (Exodus 27:2;
2 Kings 16:14).
The "four" chariots seem to be the expression of the sovereignty of God by the war (the chariots) (against the four horns of the nations), during the great tribulation
on the four cardinal points, with a precise symbolism, the fourth circulating on all the earth (Zechariah 6:5-7). The fact that no explanation is given for the presence of the first chariot with the red horses, suggests that it is the same rider who is at
the head, in the riddle of the myrtles (Zechariah 1:7,8 ). The two enigmas are similar, but not completely identical in symbolism.
The great tribulation is described as a planetary sacrifice
made by the four chariots, which appear to represent the four horns of the copper altar (in retaliation against the four rival horns of the nations (Zechariah 1: 18,19)). The symbolism of the planetary sacrifice is confirmed by the book of Revelation where
Jesus Christ is represented as a king high priest, in Revelation 19:11-21 (Verse 13 mentions that his outer garment is stained with blood, which symbolizes his installation as a high priest (Exodus 29:21; Revelation 14:18-20)). This representation of the crowned
high priest king, is corroborated by what it is written in Zechariah: "You should take silver and gold and make a crown and put it on the head of Joshua son of Je·hozʹa·dak, the high priest" (Zechariah 6:11 ; 3:1.8 (high priest)).
The black and white colors of the second and third chariot, do not seem to have a symbolic correspondence throughout the Book of Zechariah. It seems to be a simple indication of two different colors
for two different directions. The black horses, to the north, the whites (which follow the blacks ("going out beyond")), towards the seaside, the west. On the other hand, the indication of the direction of the speckled horses, makes it possible to understand
what this could represent. Staying in the context of the book of Zechariah, let's see what these three mentioned cardinal points (north, west and south) correspond to (Zechariah 6:5-7). The black horses set off north in retaliation against Assyria which attacked
Israel, and against Babylon which attacked Judah and Jerusalem (Zechariah 6:10; 10:11). The white horses heading out to the great sea, in retaliation against Tire, Sidon, and the cities of Philistia. Finally, the speckled, variegated horses, to the south,
Egypt (Zechariah 2:7-9; Zechariah 9:1-8; 10:8-12).
By the way, Revelation 16:16 alludes to this "north", by the expression "Armageddon", which obviously represents the plain of Megiddo,
being the access route from the north, for the armies, to attack Israel, the people of God. This enigmatic expression is the representation of the hostility of all the united nations against the Lamb, the King Jesus Christ, shortly before the great tribulation.
This hostility against the people of God is also illustrated in the prophecy of Ezekiel, by the prophecy of Ezekiel, of Gog of Magog
(chapters 38 and 39). In this case, it is a military coalition to exterminate the people of God, coming from the territories of nations descended from Japheth (coming from the north) and the other from Ham (coming from the south). These prophecies illustrate
the extremely vulnerable situation, close to the extermination of the people of God, shortly before the great tribulation (Zechariah 14:1,2; Ezekiel 39:11,12).
The speckled horses heading
south, Egypt, seem to evoke the skin marks of boils, or worse, bubonic plague which leaves circular spots on the skin. The dappled (the same as speckled) horses are to run all over the earth (Exodus 9: 9; Zechariah 14:12).
The Sprout is Yehoshuah Mashiah
"And say to him, “‘This is what Jehovah of armies
says: “Here is the man whose name is Sprout. He will sprout from his own place, and he will build the temple of Jehovah. He is the one who will build the temple of Jehovah, and he is the one who will assume the majesty. He will sit down on his throne
and rule, and he will also be a priest on his throne, and there will be a peaceable agreement between the two. And the crown will serve as a memorial for Heʹlem, To·biʹjah,
Je·daʹiah, and Hen the son of Zeph·a·niʹah, in the temple of Jehovah.
And those who are far away will come and take part in building the temple of Jehovah.” And you will have to know that Jehovah of armies has sent me to you. And it will occur—if you do not fail to listen to the voice of Jehovah your God’”"
Who is Yehoshuah Mashiah? The most famous person in the world: Jesus Christ (Yehoshuah: transliteration in Greek Iêsous and in Latin Jesus. Hebrew name Mashiah, translated into Greek Kristos (Christ
in English)). The temple rebuilt by the "Sprout" is not an architectural work, but a spiritual work. The new spiritual temple would be made up of several people, including the "Sprout", Yehoshuah Mashiah, the "cornerstone", both king and high priest (Matthew
21:42). When Jehovah God transferred the "Sprout" into the womb of Mary, the Jewish virgin, the angel Gabriel told her this: "And look! you will become pregnant and give birth to a son, and you are to name him Jesus. This one will be great and will be called
Son of the Most High, and Jehovah God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule as King over the house of Jacob forever, and there will be no end to his Kingdom”" (Luke 1:31-33). By comparing the words of the angel Gabriel with the
prophecy of Zechariah 6:12-14, there is no doubt that the Sprout is Yehoshuah Mashiah.
Zechariah's prophecy shows that the "cornerstone" of this spiritual temple, would come through
the offspring of Zerubbabel: "‘Hear, please, O High Priest Joshua, you and your companions who sit before you, for these men serve as a sign; look! I am bringing in my servant Sprout! See the stone that I have set before Joshua! On the one stone are
seven eyes; and I am engraving an inscription on it,’ declares Jehovah of armies, ‘and I will take away the guilt of that land in one day’” (Zechariah 3:8,9; 4: 6,7). This "one stone”, Yehoshuah Mashiah, has indeed become the
royal lineage of Zerubbabel (Matthew 1:12,13; Luke 3:27). Zerubbabel was the one who rebuilt the temple in Jerusalem after the return of the people Israel from their exile to Babylon (Zechariah 4: 8). He is described as the one by whom will come the "top stone"
(Zechariah 4:7). Finally he is described between the two olive trees, the two anointed ones, it seems obvious that he is a prophetic figure of Jehovah God, through whom comes the Sprout, the cornerstone (Zechariah 4).
The angel Gabriel did not mention the function of king-high priest of the Sprout. It is the apostle Paul who would do it later: “As he also says in another place, “You are a priest forever in the manner of Mel·chizʹe·dek.”
(…) because he has been designated by God a high priest in the manner of Mel·chizʹe·dek" (Hebrews 5:6,10; Psalms 110:4). Who was Melkizedek? A king (of Salem) and a priest: "And Mel·chizʹe·dek king of Saʹlem brought out bread
and wine; he was priest of the Most High God" (Genesis 14:18).
The Sprout entered in Jerusalem on Nisan 10, 33 CE, as the heir of God's promise to King David and his offsprings (of which Yehoshuah Mashiah was a part), for a permanent kingship (2 Samuel 7:16; Matthew 1:1-16; Luke 3:23-38)): "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion. Shout in triumph,
O daughter of Jerusalem. Look! Your king is coming to you. He is righteous, bringing salvation, Humble and riding on a donkey, On a colt, the foal of a female donkey." (Zechariah 9:9; Matthew 21:6-10).
As Yehoshuah Mashiah (Jesus Christ) mentioned, when he was on earth this Sprout, the "cornerstone" of this reconstructed spiritual temple would be rejected by the builders, or teachers of the nation of Israel: “Jesus said to them: “Did you
never read in the Scriptures, ‘The stone that the builders rejected, this has become the chief cornerstone. This has come from Jehovah, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? This is why I say to you, the Kingdom of God will be taken from you and be
given to a nation producing its fruits" (Matthew 21:42,43; Psalm 118: 22 ). Yehoshuah Mashiah (Jesus Christ) notified his listeners that henceforth God's special relationship with Israel would end, in accordance with the prophecy of Daniel 9:27a: "And he will
keep the covenant in force for the many for one week; and at the half of the week, he will cause sacrifice and gift offering to cease". This rupture has been announced also in the prophecy of Zechariah chapter 11, because of the contempt of the people of Israel,
towards God and his Son: "So I took my staff Pleasantness and cut it up, breaking my covenant that I had made with all the peoples" (Zechariah 11:10). Depending on the context, the covenant "made with all the peoples" is in connection with the 12 tribes of
Israel, because God has not made a special covenant with all the nations, but only with the 12 tribes of Israel (The Hebrew word "עַם" ('am) translated as "people" can take the meaning (depending on the context) of "tribe" (Strong Concordance H5971)).
For the reasons explained in detail in Matthew 23, Yehoshuah Mashiah (Jesus Christ) said this: "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the killer of the prophets and stoner of those sent to her—how often
I wanted to gather your children together the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings! But you did not want it. Look! Your house is abandoned to you" (Matthew 23:37,38). They sentenced Yehoshuah Mashiah, to death on Nisan 14, 33 CE, in Jerusalem (Matthew 26:66). This contempt for the Father, Jehovah and his Son, Yoshuah Mashiah, is illustrated in Zechariah: "Then I said to them: “If
it seems good to you, give me my wages; but if not, withhold them.” And they paid my wages, 30 pieces of silver. Then Jehovah said to me: “Throw it into the treasury—the magnificent value with which they valued me.” So I took the 30
pieces of silver and threw it into the treasury at the house of Jehovah. Then I cut up my second staff, the Union, breaking the brotherhood between Judah and Israel" (Zechariah 11:12-14: Matthew 26:14; "30 pieces of silver" being the price of a slave (Exodus
21:32)). No wonder Jehovah decided to "break" his special relationship with the 12 tribes of Israel on earth.
"This is what Jehovah of armies says, ‘In those
days ten men out of all the languages of the nations will take hold, yes, they will take firm hold of the robe of a Jew, saying: “We want to go with you, for we have heard that God is with you people”’"
"You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, because salvation begins with the
Jews" (John 4:22). Jehovah God has used his special relationship with Israel to plan the everlasting salvation of all mankind. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are the founders of this nation (Matthew 8:11). The man Jesus Christ, a Jew, is the Main Offspring of Abraham,
through him the nations will be blessed (Galatians 3:16). Even though, this special relationship has ceased with Israel, Jehovah continues to love the Jewish people, like all the nations, which He created because He is not partial: “At this Peter began
to speak, and he said: “Now I truly understand that God is not partial, but in every nation the man who fears him and does what is right is acceptable to him" (Acts 10:34,35; 17:26). Nevertheless, Zechariah's prophecy shows that Jehovah will make an
everlasting mention of Zion, Jerusalem, Judah and Israel, among all nations: "“Shout for joy, O daughter of Zion; for I am coming, and I will reside in your midst,” declares Jehovah. “Many nations will join themselves to Jehovah in that day,
and they will become my people; and I will reside in your midst.” And you will have to know that Jehovah of armies has sent me to you. Jehovah will take possession of Judah as his portion on the holy ground, and he will again choose Jerusalem. 13 Be
silent, all flesh, before Jehovah, for he is taking action from his holy dwelling" (Zechariah 2:10-13; chapter 8; Ezekiel 40-48).
It was Jesus Christ who explained it. Officially, before starting
to preach the "good news", Jesus Christ showed for which categories of humans this news would be "good": "Jehovah’s spirit is upon me, because he anointed me to declare good news to the poor. He sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and a recovery
of sight to the blind, to send the crushed ones away free, to preach Jehovah’s acceptable year." (Luke 4:18,19). So, this news is "good", for the "poor", the "captives", the "blind", the "crushed ones", that is to say, those who really suffer because
of this system of things (compare with Ezekiel 9:4).
Jesus Christ vividly explained why this proclamation is "good" for the poor and a "curse" for others, in the illustration of "the
rich man and the beggar Lazarus" (Read Luke 16:19-31). Lazarus the beggar, represents the people at the time of Christ, as sheep without a shepherd: "On seeing the crowds, he felt pity for them, because they were skinned and thrown about like sheep without
a shepherd" (Matthew 9:36 ). When Jesus Christ began to preach the good news of the kingdom, he brought about a change of spiritual condition, of the people without a shepherd (Lazarus the beggar), and of the shepherds who did not spiritually feed this people
(The rich). These spiritual changes are symbolized by the respective deaths of the beggar and the rich. Thus, the preaching of Jesus Christ had two opposite effects: the divine blessing and approval for the "poor", the "captives", the "blind", the "crushed
ones" and divine curse for the ruling class, then politico-religious (compare Luke 4:18,19 (blessing) and Matthew 23 (curse)). The curse of the good news on Satan's system is symbolized by the plagues of the seven trumpets and the seven bowls in the book of
Revelation (Revelation 8:7 to 15:8 (the plagues of the seven trumpets); Revelation 16:1 at 22:21 (the end) (the plagues of the seven bowls)). By means of the proclamation of the good news, "the woman and the ephah" are sent to Shinar (Zechariah 5:6-8). What
does it mean?
Jehovah God Purifies the Priesthood and His People
he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of Jehovah, and Satan was standing at his right hand to resist him. Then the angel of Jehovah said to Satan: “May Jehovah rebuke you, O Satan, yes, may Jehovah, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke
you! Is not this one a burning log snatched out of the fire?”"
Jehovah is a slow to anger and merciful, He will have mercy to whom He will have mercy (Exodus 33:19; 34:6). It is evident that after 70 years of exile in Babylon, the true worship has undergone a true permeation of Babylonian customs or teachings (Zechariah
1:12). Jehovah showed understanding and mercy towards the high priest Joshuah. Nevertheless, he made sure that the situation did not last indefinitely because Jehovah is a Holy God: “Now Joshua was clothed in filthy garments and standing before the angel.
The angel said to those standing before him, “Remove his filthy garments.” Then he said to him, “See, I have caused your error to pass away from you, and you will be clothed with fine garments.” So I said: “Let a clean turban
be put on his head.” And they put the clean turban on his head and clothed him with garments; and the angel of Jehovah was standing nearby. The angel of Jehovah then declared to Joshua: “This is what Jehovah of armies says, ‘If you will
walk in my ways and carry out your responsibilities before me, then you will serve as a judge in my house and take care of my courtyards; and I will give you free access among these who are standing here’" (Zechariah 3:3-7).
This purification of the priesthood and of the people of God is also symbolized by the measuring of Jerusalem, that is to say, with the purpose to enter into the divine criteria of holiness to reach everlasting life:
“So I asked: “Where are you going?” He replied: “To measure Jerusalem, to see what is her width and what is her length”” (Zechariah 2:2; 3:5-7). Measuring a city like Jerusalem or the temple sanctuary, according to Revelation
11:2, means the obedience to Jehovah God's standards for holiness, both inside and outside the Christian congregation. The fact that the angel, in Revelation 11:2, asks the apostle John to "measure", means thatJesus Christ instructed the elders, the stewards of the Christian congregation to judge or measure, in order to maintain the holiness in the Christian congregation (Matthew 18:18). Jesus Christ foretold that there
would be several centuries of apostasy that would permeate Christianity (Matthew 13:24-30, 37-43). The consequence is that the Christian priesthood, and its teaching has been imbued with Babylonian practices and teachings, such as pagan holidays like Christmas,
Easter (different from the Jewish Passover), All Saints' Day, or even pagan teachings such as the Marian worship, the idolatrous worship of saints, the trinity, the immortality of the soul, fiery hell, the worship of the cross which thrones in many Christian
congregations… All these pagan teachings of Babylonian or Greco-Roman origin, have no place in true worship (John 4:23,24).
While sincere Christians have been ignorant of such
a situation for centuries, it is important that we purify the way we worship God and serve Jesus Christ, gradually removing all forms of unwanted spiritual practices in the eyes of God. This purification of the true worship was illustrated by the enigma of
the woman and the ephah.
The woman and the ephah
saw that the round lid of lead was lifted up, and there was a woman sitting inside the container. 8 So he said: “This is Wickedness.” Then he threw her back into the eʹphah container, after which he thrust the
lead weight over its mouth"
The ephah is a unit of
measurement for quantifying flour or cereals. Obviously, in the enigma, the woman is inside the container made to measure the quantity of flour, with a lead cover on her, in order to be sent directly to Shinar, in Babylon. And it seems, so that she does not
come back, they build a house for her, so that she stays there. Moreover, this woman is called "wickedness", why?
The symbol of the woman could be explained by the kind of worship, namely
to a female deity. This woman could represent this deity, the "Queen of Heaven". In fact, the Israelites who had fallen into apostasy, made bread for this "Queen of Heaven": "The sons are gathering wood, the fathers are lighting the fire, and the wives are
kneading dough in order to make sacrificial cakes to the Queen of Heaven, and they are pouring out drink offerings to other gods to offend me" (Jeremiah 7:18). By the time of Israel's biblical history, before the Babylonian exile, the nation had fallen into
apostasy. The woman and the ephah, is the illustration of this situation in making sacrificial cakes for the "Queen of Heaven". The fact that a lead cover was put on the ephah and the woman was sent to Shinar (the place where Babylon was, the origin of the
false worship), shows that henceforth, Jehovah God would no longer tolerate impregnation. of true worship, through false Babylonian worship, He would send it to Shinar, to stay there (Zechariah 5:9-11).
The "two women with stork wings", who bring "the woman and the ephah", seem to illustrate this principle written in Revelation 22:11: "He that is doing unrighteousness, let him do unrighteousness still; and let the filthy one be made filthy still; but
let the righteous one do righteousness still, and let the holy one be made holy still". The image could be sarcastic towards this deity, of which female angels in her service, with wings of a stork, an unclean animal, would bring her to where she must be,
in Babylon, by building her a house, or a temple to stay there forever (Leviticus 11:19).
The current Christian teachers must remove from their teaching, those with Babylonian and Greco-Roman
origin, which are the trinity, the immortality of the soul, fiery hell, purgatory, the worship of saints, the worship of the cross and rid Christian congregations of all pagan representations… According to Zechariah's prophecy, not doing this will be
considered an act of "wickedness" (Zechariah 5:8; 10:1-3; 13:1-3): "Therefore, if someone knows how to do what is right and yet does not do it, it is a sin for him" (James 4:17).
The two anointed ones
"He said: “These are the two anointed ones who are standing alongside the Lord of the whole earth”"
Zechariah 4:1-10 describes a lampstand which represents Zerubbabel as the
one who would rebuild the temple in Jerusalem, by the force of the spirit of Jehovah: "He then said to me: “This is the word of Jehovah to Ze·rubʹba·bel: ‘“Not by a military force, nor by power, but by my spirit,” says
Jehovah of armies. 7 Who are you, O great mountain? Before Ze·rubʹba·bel you will become a level land. And he will bring out the top stone amid shouts of: “How wonderful! How wonderful!”” (Zechariah 4:6,7).
In Zechariah chapter 4:11-14, the “two anointed ones” seem to be the same as Revelation 11: “I will cause my two witnesses to prophesy for 1,260 days dressed in sackcloth.” These are symbolized
by the two olive trees and the two lampstands and are standing before the Lord of the earth" (Revelation 11:3,4). Thees two witnesses are Moses and Eliyah (Elijah), who appeared in the vision ot the transfiguration of Christ with him (Mark 9:1-8 ).
These two representatives of Moses and Eliyah, are two people, but also two congregations (Lampstands), who organize the worldwide preaching of the good news, in the period just before the great
tribulation (Matthew 24:14). In the book of Zechariah (5:1,2) and in Revelation, this preaching is described as a plague against Satan's system (Revelation 8:7 to 15:8 (the plagues of the seven trumpets); Revelation 16:1 at 22:21 (the end) (the plagues of
the seven bowls)).
Do these two anointed ones represent two real men? There is no indication to the contrary. Anyway, only
Jehovah and Jesus Christ know them (and possibly the both concerned), and at best, they must be recognizable by their respective congregation (Matthew 17:12 "they did not recognize him").
"And it will become one day that is known as belonging to Jehovah"
THE GREAT TRIBULATION WILL TAKE PLACE IN ONLY ONE DAY
careful reading of all the prophetic texts mentioning the "Day of Jehovah" or the "Great Tribulation", it can be said without a doubt that this "day" will only last ONE DAY.
The clearest prophetic text over its duration is that of Zechariah and the book of Revelation, both of which describe Jehovah's Day as one day, or
the only date of a day: "And it will become one day that is known as belonging to Jehovah. It will not be day, nor will it be night; and at evening time there will be light" (Zechariah 14:7,20).
A text from Zechariah regarding the Sprout prophecy, shows that Jehovah will take away the fault of the land in one day (Zechariah 3:8,9). When Jehovah did remove the fault in the land of Israel? On the Day of Atonement, Ethanim, 10 (Tishri): "It will
serve as a lasting statute for you: In the seventh month, on the tenth of the month, you should afflict yourselves, and you must not do any work, whether a native or a foreigner who is residing among you. On this day atonement will be made for you, to declare
you clean. You will be clean from all your sins before Jehovah. It is a sabbath of complete rest for you, and you should afflict yourselves. It is a lasting statute" (Leviticus 16:29-31). These two passages from Zechariah, show that the great tribulation will
unfold in a single 24-hours day.
However, the most explicit text is that of the book of Revelation, where this Day (Ethanim,10 (Tishri)), is connected with a date on the Jewish calendar. In Revelation 11:18, it is written: "But the nations became wrathful, and your own wrath came, and the appointed time came for the dead to be
judged and to reward your slaves the prophets and the holy ones and those fearing your name, the small and the great, and to bring to ruin those ruining the earth" (Revelation 11:18). This text refers to the time of the Great Tribulation, when God "will bring
ruin to those who ruin the earth". However, what is even more interesting, is that verse 19 repeats this time in enigmatic way, connecting the Day of Jehovah with the vision of the ark of his covenant (Ethanim 10, (Tishri)): "And the temple sanctuary of God in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen in his temple sanctuary. And there were flashes of lightning and voices and
thunders and an earthquake and a great hail" (Revelation 11:19).
This verse has two main parts: The first is the vision of the "ark of his covenant", the date of only one day. Indeed,
Jehovah God did not allow to see the ark of his covenant (by the high priest), any day other than Ethanim (Tishri), 10 (Leviticus 16:2,29). The second part of the verse 19, is the symbolic description of the Great Tribulation. The Ethanim, 10 (Tishri), corresponds
to the dramatic celebration of the Day of Atonement. The process of celebration is described in Leviticus chapter 16. It is a dramatic moment, because it describes symbolically, what will happen during the Day of Jehovah, the Great Tribulation. It will be
a day of sadness, because Jehovah had given this instruction regarding this day: "It is a sabbath of complete rest for you, and you should afflict yourselves. It is a lasting statute" (Leviticus 16:31).
The prophecy of Zechariah indicates precisely the attitude to have during the great tribulation by describing this day as being that of wailing: "I will pour out on the house
of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the spirit of favor and supplication, and they will look to the one whom they pierced, and they will wail over him as they would wail over an only son; and they will grieve bitterly over him as they would grieve
over a firstborn son. In that day the wailing in Jerusalem will be great, like the wailing at Ha·dad·rimʹmon in the Plain of Me·gidʹdo" (Zechariah 12:10,11). The wailing "at Hadadrimmon in the Plain of Megiddo", allude to the mourning
decreed in Jerusalem, following the death of King Josiah, at the battle of Megiddo near "Hadadrimmon", against Pharaoh Nechoh. This national mourning decreed in Jerusalem was organized by the prophet Jeremiah (2 Kings 23:29,30; 2 Chronicles 35:24,25).
The third part of humanity will survive the great tribulation
“And in all the land,”
declares Jehovah, “Two parts in it will be cut off and perish; And the third part will be left remaining in it. And I will bring the third part through the fire; And I will refine them as silver is refined, And test them as gold is tested. They will
call on my name, And I will answer them. I will say, ‘They are my people,’ And they will say, ‘Jehovah is our God’”
The word translated from Hebrew "haarèts", translated as "land", depending on the context can take the meaning of "earth" or planet earth, and this is the case
in the context of this prophecy of the great world tribulation ( Zechariah 1:10,11; 5:3; 6:7; 12:3; 14:9,17). In this statement, God divides mankind into three "parts" (H6310 Strong's Concordance: "פֶּה" (peh) "part"). At first, one might think that it would
be "three parts" equal, or three "thirds" (H7992 Strong's Concordance "שְׁלִישִׁי" (sheliyshiy) "a third"). In the Hebrew text, it is a question of the first two parts (peh) and the third (sheliyshiy), according to the context of this sentence, third
"part". So, these three parts of humanity are not necessarily the same number of humans (That is "Three Third"). To know what represent these three "parts" of mankind regarding the biblical context, we must take attention to the dramatic celebration of the
Day of Atonement, Ethanim,10 (Tishri).
Even though Zechariah's prophecy does not directly make the connection between the "Day of Jehovah" and the "Day of Atonement", it does so in an
enigmatic or cryptic way. The prophecy of the Sprout shows that Jehovah will take out the sin of the land in one day (Zechariah 3:8,9; 14:7). When did Jehovah
remove the fault in the land of Israel? In the Day of Atonement, Ethanim (Tishri), 10 (Leviticus 16). That day was a celebration of Jehovah's Holiness: "In that day the words ‘Holiness belongs to Jehovah!’ will be written on the
bells of the horses. And the cooking pots in the house of Jehovah will be like the bowls before the altar'" (Zechariah 14:20 compare with Exodus 28:36,37 and Leviticus 16:4 "The turban" it was written "Holiness belongs to Jehovah"). Therefore, the "three parts"
are the three animals used in the first phase of the atonement sacrifices in this Day, which are to the three "parts of mankind".
Regarding the atonement sacrifices (and not the burnt offerings), there were three animals: a bull and two young goats (Read Leviticus 16). Two among the three animals were to be sacrificed, in an atonement way
(the bull and the first young goat), while the third was spared (the goat for Azazel). Now it is important to know who these three animals correspond to (two sacrificed and one spared):
The second animal, the young goat sacrificed on the day of atonement, represents the second part of mankind who will die during
the great tribulation (Leviticus 16:5,15). The sacrifice of this second animal is represented in a rather terrifying way in Revelation 14:18-20 and 19:11-21 (in this biblical passage glorified Jesus Christ is represented as a king and high priest, as the "Sprout"
For such many people to survive the great tribulation, it seems obvious, that a significant number of non-Christian people will survive
the great tribulation, is this observation consistent with the context of Zechariah's prophecy (as well as Ezekiel's prophecy)? Yes it is.
"Everyone who is left
remaining out of all the nations that come against Jerusalem will go up from year to year to bow down to the King, Jehovah of armies, and to celebrate the Festival of Booths"
This text shows without a shadow of a doubt that Jehovah will have spared an important part of humanity who symbolically "come against Jerusalem"
or would not be part of this holy city (at first time), coming out of the great tribulation. On the other hand in the prophecy of Ezekiel chapters 40 to
48, here is what is written about the Jehovah's reproach against the Levites, a significant part of the great crowd,
who will have survived the great tribulation: "But the Levites who strayed far from me when Israel strayed from me to follow their disgusting
idols will bear the consequences of their error. And they will become ministers in my sanctuary to oversee the gates of the temple and to minister at the temple. They will slaughter the whole burnt offering and the sacrifice for the people, and they will stand
before the people to minister to them. Because they ministered to them before their disgusting idols and became a stumbling block causing the house of Israel to sin, that is why I have raised my hand against them in an oath,’ declares the Sovereign Lord
Jehovah, ‘and they will bear the consequences of their error. They will not approach me to serve as my priests or approach any of my holy or most holy things, and they will bear their shame because of the detestable things that they did. But I will make
them caretakers of the responsibilities of the temple, to take care of its service and all the things that should be done in it’" (Ezekiel 44:10-14).
There is, it seems, a convergence
between this text and Zechariah 14:16, which mentions people who will have survived the great tribulation as they came "against Jerusalem" and the Levites who followed their "disgusting idols" (Ezekiel 44:10). Jesus Christ made an important statement which
shows that sin in error does not always incur spiritual death: “Jesus said to them: “If you were blind, you would have no sin. But now you say, ‘We see.’ Your sin remains"” (John 9:41). Jesus Christ speaks of unintentional spiritual
blindness, the sin of which is not counted. Many people today are in involuntary spiritual blindness, according to this text, many of them could benefit from the mercy of God on the day of the great tribulation.
It is interesting to note, according to this same prophecy of Ezekiel, how the Sons of Zadok are described,
in contrast with the non-priestly Levites: "As for the Levitical priests, the sons of Zaʹdok, who took care of the responsibilities of my sanctuary when the Israelites strayed from me, they will approach me to minister to me, and they will stand before me
to offer me the fat and the blood,’ declares the Sovereign Lord Jehovah. ‘They are the ones who will enter my sanctuary, and they will approach my table to minister to me, and they will take care of their responsibilities to me'" (Ezekiel 44:15,16).
Obviously, the Sons of Zadok who will approach Jehovah as priests, in the spiritual sanctuary, will be faithful and discreet Christians who will have well performed in their Christian ministry in the old system of things, "when the Israelites strayed from
God", and will have survived the great tribulation (Matthew 24:45,46; 25:21,22).
This understanding, at first glance, seems at odds with the vision of the great crowd which survived
the great tribulation and whole, manifesting their faith in the atonement value of Christ's sacrifice (Revelation 7:9,14). This difference is biblically easily resolved by an important information given in the prophecy of Zechariah, regarding this spared third
part of humanity. It is written: "And I will bring the third part through the fire; And I will refine them as silver is refined, And test them as gold is tested. They will call on my name, And I will answer them. I will say, ‘They are my people,’
And they will say, ‘Jehovah is our God'” (Zechariah 13: 9; Malachi 3:2-4). When should this essential refinement take place in order to continue living in paradise? According to Zechariah's prophecy and Revelation (11:19), Jehovah's Day will be
on Ethanim (Tishri) 10. According to Ezekiel's prophecy 39:12-14, there will be a seven months cleansing of the earth, from Tishri (Ethanim), 10, to Nisan, 10 (with the intercalary month of Veadar). It seems obvious that it is in this time, that Jehovah will
"refine his people", in order to prepare it for the coming to earth, of the New Jerusalem on Nisan, 10, following the great tribulation.
The description of the judgment by the King Jesus Christ, in Matthew 7: 21-23
and 25: 31-46, is mainly directed at the Christian congregation, because in the two quotes indicated, the people who have a judgment of condemnation seem to know Jesus Christ (Matthew 7:22; 25:44). The framework criteria for judging all of humanity, Christian
and non-Christian, seem summarized in Jehovah's words in Ezekiel 9:4: "Jehovah said to him: “Go through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who are sighing and groaning over all the detestable things that are being
done in the city”" (Compare with James 4:4). Nevertheless, this destruction and selective preservation of the whole of humanity is also described by Jesus Christ: "Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken along and the other abandoned. Two
women will be grinding at the hand mill; one will be taken along and the other abandoned" (Matthew 24:40,41) (Either one in two, will survive (repeated twice by Jesus Christ)).
Let Us Rejoice In Jehovah's Great Mercy
"I will favor the one whom I favor, and I will show mercy to the one to whom I show mercy"
Thus, will be fulfilled Jehovah's declaration of mercy upon the very many
people, who will come out of the great tribulation: “I will make all my goodness pass before your face, and I will declare before you the name of Jehovah; and I will favor the one whom I favor, and I will show mercy to the one to whom I show mercy”
(Exodus 33:19). The situation will be like the mercy of God toward the unrighteous resurrected ones, who did not fully know the will of God in the old system of things (Acts 24:15).
Christ gave an image of the mercy of God, in the illustration of the "prodigal son", of a Father with the gaze strained towards the return of his son, always ready to forgive and to facilitate the repentance of the sinner in sight of everlasting salvation:
"While he was still a long way off, his father caught sight of him and was moved with pity, and he ran and embraced him and tenderly kissed him" (Luke 15:11-32). Jesus Christ showed that his Father would accept the practical wisdom of humans in order to give
them mercy: "And his master commended the steward, though unrighteous, because he acted with practical wisdom; for the sons of this system of things are wiser in a practical way toward their own generation than the sons of the light are" (Luke 16:1-8). Jesus
Christ showed that His Father would show His mercy at the very last moment, by illustrating the eleventh hour workers (Matthew 20:1-16).
In two of the illustrations, The Prodigal Son
and the Eleventh Hour Workers, Jesus Christ showed that some humans would lament God's mercy toward humans saved at the last moment. Some would think that they have "won" by "works", over many years, a reward far greater than that given to those sinners repented
at the last moment: "When the 11th-hour men came, they each received a de·narʹi·us. So when the first came, they assumed that they would receive more, but they too were paid at the rate of a de·narʹi·us. On receiving it, they began
to complain against the master of the house and said, ‘These last men put in one hour’s work; still you made them equal to us who bore the burden of the day and the burning heat!’ But he said in reply to one of them, ‘Fellow, I do you
no wrong. You agreed with me for a de·narʹi·us, did you not? Take what is yours and go. I want to give to this last one the same as to you. Do I not have the right to do what I want with my own things? Or is your eye envious because I am good?’
In this way, the last ones will be first, and the first ones last”” (Luke 15:25-31; Matthew 20:9-16).
In Zechariah chapters 7 and 8, Jehovah encourages his servants to serve
Him with love and without spiritual formality, without of feelings such as love for God and for mankind: “Say to all the people of the land and to the priests, ‘When you fasted and wailed in the fifth month and in the seventh month for 70 years,
did you really fast for me? 6 And when you would eat and drink, were you not eating for yourselves and drinking for yourselves? 7 Should you not obey the words that Jehovah proclaimed through the former prophets, while Jerusalem and her surrounding cities
were inhabited and at peace, and while the Negʹeb and the She·pheʹlah were inhabited?’” (Zechariah chapter 7; 1 Corinthians 13:1-8). Jehovah God asks for sincerity and love for Him and His principles contained in His Word, the Bible: "The
word of Jehovah of armies again came to me, saying: “This is what Jehovah of armies says, ‘The fast of the fourth month, the fast of the fifth month, the fast of the seventh month, and the fast of the tenth month will be occasions for exultation
and joy for the house of Judah—festivals of rejoicing. So love truth and peace’" (Zechariah 8:18,19).
As the judgment draws near for each of us who will decide our everlasting
future, shortly before the great tribulation, Jesus Christ recommended humility, modesty, and a righteous appreciation of ourselves. Jesus Christ used several illustrations such as that of the repentant tax collector and boastful Pharisee, or the wedding feast
guest seeking the first place, to show the importance of not having too high an opinion. of ourselves, especially when we pray. Regarding this last illustration, here is what it is written: "He then told the invited men an illustration when he noticed how
they were choosing the most prominent places for themselves. He said to them: “When you are invited by someone to a marriage feast, do not recline in the most prominent place. Perhaps someone more distinguished than you may also have been invited. Then
the one who invited you both will come and say to you, ‘Let this man have your place.’ Then you will proceed with shame to take the lowest place. But when you are invited, go and recline in the lowest place, so that when the man who invited you
comes, he will say to you, ‘Friend, go on up higher.’ Then you will have honor in front of all your fellow guests. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted”"(Luke 14:7-11; Romans 12:3).
Therefore, let us rejoice in the mercy of God to "the prodigal sons", "the repentant tax collectors", "the eleventh hour workers", who will survive the great tribulation, while considering us personally
and sincerely , as the last of humans worthy of this mercy of God and of Christ (Luke 18:9-14).