Bible Survey of Zechariah

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1 Journey through the Old Testament Bible Survey of Zechariah Zechariah & Lamentations Who Is The Prophet? He was a priest and a prophet. (Zechariah 1:1) He was a young man (Zechariah 2:4) His name means God remembers. His father s name Berekiah - means, God blesses. His grandfather s name Iddo - means his time. String them together - God remembers to bless in his time. Jewish tradition suggests that he was a member of the great Synagogue, responsible for the collection and preservation of the canon of Scripture. Matthew 23:35 tells us that Zechariah was murdered between the temple and the altar. When Did He Preach? 536 the remnant returns 535 the foundation of the temple is laid 520 Haggai and Zechariah are called by God to encourage the people to complete the work. 516 the temple is completed. What Did He Preach? He preached encouragement to a discouraged people, in the midst of discouraging times. He called them to open their eyes of faith to see the unseen. How Did He Preach? Apocalypse. An apocalypse the removal of something that hides, it is an unveiling. Zechariah then is an unveiler he is unveiling that, which was hidden, that which was unseen so that the people can be encouraged. Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 1 of 8

2 The message of the book is fourfold: 1. God is still at work 2. God calls his people to himself 3. God has a plan and is working in the history of the world 4. God is faithful to his covenant promises. Division of the Book: 1. Zechariah s Eight Visions (Zechariah 1:1-6:8) 2. Zechariah s Four Messages (Zechariah 7-8) 3. Zechariah s Two Burdens (Zechariah 9-14) 1.0 Zechariah s Eight Visions (Zechariah 1:1-6:8) The visions begin with an invitation: 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. 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. (Zechariah 1:3, 4) We need to return to the Lord because he is all powerful, and he is at work in this world, even though we may not immediately see it. Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 2 of 8

3 The Vision Scripture Reference Meaning (Zechariah 1:7-17) The Vision Of The Red Horse And The Angel Of The Lord The valley is known. The one watching over the people is The Vision Of Four Horns And Four Craftsmen The Vision Of The City That Cannot Be Measured The Vision Of The Adversary And The Advocate The Vision Of The Golden Lampstand And The Olive Trees The Vision Of The Flying Scroll The Vision Of The Woman In The Basket The Vision Of The Four Chariots (Zechariah 1:18-21) (Zechariah 2:1-13) (Zechariah 3:1-10) (Zechariah 4:1-14) (Zechariah 5:1-4) (Zechariah 5:5-11) (Zechariah 6:1-18) The four horns of power are known. The four saving craftsmen are The city is known. The surrounding presence of God is The adversary is known. The advocate is Zechariah 3:8 is a messianic prophecy referring to the Messiah as a branch, a servant and a stone. But note that the key to this passage is that the messiah will be the priest who takes away the sin of the land. The people as the light of God is known. The source of the light is Not by might nor by power but by My Spirit says the Lord Almighty. (4:6) The source of the power is The presence of evil is known. The work of God that cleanses is The wickedness is known. The work of God to banish wickedness is revealed The chaos is known. The work of God to establish order is revealed Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 3 of 8

4 The crowning of Joshua points forward to the greater priest who will wear the crown of David (Zechariah 6:9-15) 12 Tell him this is what the LORD Almighty says: Here is the man whose name is the Branch, and he will branch out from his place and build the temple of the LORD. 13 It is he who will build the temple of the LORD, and he will be clothed with majesty and will sit and rule on his throne. And he will be a priest on his throne. And there will be harmony between the two. (Zechariah 6:12-13) 2.0 Zechariah s Four Messages (Zechariah 6-7) They begin with the phrase, The word of the Lord Almighty came to me Some faithful Jews were still fasting in remembrance of the fall of Jerusalem every year during the fifth month. Nebuchadnezzar defeated Jerusalem in the fifth month (2 Kings 25:8; Jeremiah 52:12) So they ask, If Jerusalem is going to be rebuilt why continue to fast? Zechariah responds with four messages saying, Live with the eyes of faith. Zechariah says you can be strong and work because you can see with the eyes of faith the source of your strength it is God himself Zechariah s Two Burdens (Zechariah 9:1-14:21) 3.1 The Messiah Will Be Rejected But God has a plan and will send his Messiah, a king who will bring salvation and who will come riding on a donkey He will be a shepherd (Zechariah 11) who will be rejected by the people (Zechariah 11:12) 3.2 The Messiah Will Reign (Zechariah 12-14) Group Questions: 1. When do you find it difficult to see God at work in your life? What people/things/attitudes help you to see God at work around you? Pray. Personal Questions 1. Ask God to open the eyes of your heart to see God at work in your life and our church. 2. How do you think your attitude would change if you knew that God was at work in your life? Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 4 of 8

5 Journey through the Old Testament Bible Survey of Lamentations Zechariah & Lamentations Introduction: This is a lament over the fall of Jerusalem in 586 BC Notice Jeremiah s pastoral heart. See, O Lord how distressed I am! I am in torment within, and in my heart I am disturbed, for I have been most rebellious. (Lamentations 1:20) My eyes will flow unceasingly without relief, until the Lord looks down from heaven and sees. (Lamentations 3:49) Since he is God s representative we can say that this is God s reaction. He too is weeping at the state of his people. Structure of the Book The book is written in acrostic form. Each chapter has 22 verses, one for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet. Chapter 3 has 66 verses because the acrostic is repeated 3 times. (Three verses for each letter) This form helped in memorization but more importantly the form points to the fullness of Judah s destruction and it gives full expression to grief. We need to learn from Lamentations it s okay to express one s grief and there is a day when grief comes to an end. Each chapter begins with a picture image of the city Most chapters (except chapter 4) end with a prayer. Chapter 3 is the crescendo of the whole book. It is the pivot. Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 5 of 8

6 The City of Jerusalem is: 1. Compared to a weeping widow mourning in solitude (Lamentations 1) 2. Pictured as a veiled woman mourning in the midst of ruins. (Lamentations 2) 3. Represented by a weeping prophet mourning before god the judge (Lamentations 3) 4. Represented as gold, dimmed changed degraded (Lamentations 4) 5. Represented in a penitent prayer. (Lamentations 5) 1.0 The City Of Jerusalem Compared To A Weeping Widow Mourning In Solitude (Lamentations 1) How deserted lies the city, once so full of people! How like a widow is she, who once was great among the nations! She who was queen among the provinces has now become a slave. (Lamentations 1:1) See how far Jerusalem has fallen. Her fall was astounding. (Lamentations1:9) Why? From on high he sent fire, sent it down into my bones. He spread a net for my feet and turned me back. He made me desolate, faint all the day long. My sins have been bound into a yoke, by his hands they were woven together. They have come upon my neck and the Lord has sapped my strength. He has handed me over to those I cannot withstand. (Lamentations 1:13, 14) The prayer at the end acknowledges guilt, I am in torment within, and in my heart I am disturbed for I have been rebellious. (Lamentations 1:20) That s intercessory prayer. Taking on the sins of the people to himself. Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 6 of 8

7 2.0 The City Of Jerusalem Is Pictured As A Veiled Woman Mourning In The Midst Of Ruins. (Lamentations 2) The suffering is extensive, even affecting the children. Children and infants faint in the streets of the city. They say to their mothers, Where is bread and wine? As they faint like wounded men in the streets of the city, as their lives ebb away in their mother s arms. (Lamentation 2:11b-12) Why? The visions of your prophets were false and worthless; they did not expose your sin to ward of your captivity. The oracles they gave you were false and misleading. (Lamentations 2:14) The Lord is in control but the people don t see it. God is calling the people back to himself. 3.0 The City Of Jerusalem Is Represented By A Weeping Prophet Mourning Before God The Judge (Lamentations 3) Notice the crescendo 22 Because of the LORD s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 24 I say to myself, The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him. (Lamentations 3:22-24) Think of how God is faithful. He is faithful to discipline (Psalm 119:75). He is faithful to forgive (I John 1:9). He is faithful to sympathize (Hebrews 2:17-18; 4:14-16). He is faithful to deliver (I Corinthians 10:13). He is faithful to hold on to us to eternal life ( I Timothy 1:15; 1 Thess. 5:23-24). We can trust God with our lives because we know that he is faithful. Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 7 of 8

8 4.0 The City Of Jerusalem Is Represented As Gold, Dimmed Changed Degraded (Lamentations 4) They were worth their weight in gold but now they are considered clay.(lamentations 4:2) They ate delicacies. But now children beg for bread. (Lamentations 4:4,5) Their princes had lily white skin, but now they are blacker than soot. (Lamentations 4:7,8) Why? But it happened because of the sins of her prophets and the iniquities of her priests, who shed within her the blood of the righteous. (Lamentations 4:13) 5.0 The City Of Jerusalem Is Represented In A Penitent Prayer, Pleading With The Lord For Restoration (Lamentations 5) Joy is gone from our hearts; our dancing has turned to mourning. The crown has fallen from our head. Woe to us, for we have sinned. (Lamentations 5:15) Remember Jeremiah s faith and his willingness to identify with his people. Their sin has become his sin and taking on that sin he stands and intercedes on their behalf. It is a beautiful action Jesus would call it laying down one s life for his friends. Winter 2011 Scarborough Chinese Baptist Church Page 8 of 8

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