Tanak Foundations-Concepts in Zechariah-Chapter 9

The ninth to the fourteenth chapters will be apocalyptic in nature and full of prophecy. They will have the same thrust, dealing with the enemies of Israel and what happens to them, along with blessings to Israel. This chapter is going to deal with three areas, Lebanon, Syria, Tyre and Sidon and the Philistine area. Israel has the same security concerns today, and these prophecies will have a future fulfillment.

v 1…The burden (a prophecy, God doesn’t want things to come to this) of the word of the Lord is against (not good) the land of Hadrach (a territory of which Damascus, Hamath, Tyre, Sidon and Philistia were a part of and near to Israel) with Damascus as its resting place (where the wrath will “rest” because Yehovah sees the heathen world as well as Israel), for the Lord (Yehovah) has an eye upon the men (adam), and upon all the tribes of Israel.”

v 2…And Hamath also, which borders on it (next to Damascus); Tyre and Sidon, though they are very wise (for doing the following),

v 3…For Tyre built herself a fortress (half mile out in the the sea, with 150 foot walls) and piled up silver like dust, and gold like the mire of the streets (plenty of it and thought it was safe there according to worldly wisdom, but it will be of no help).

v 4…Behold, the Lord will dispossess her (take the city) and cast her wealth into the sea; and she will be consumed with fire.

v 5…Ashkelon will see and be afraid (at the destruction of Tyre and knowing the threat turns to them). Gaza too will writhe in great pain; also Ekron, for her expectation has been confounded (they expected Tyre would withstand an enemy, and stop them from going south). Moreover, the king will perish from Gaza (government fell), and Ashkelon will not be inhabited (this was done with Alexander the Great).

v 6…And a mongrel race (Hebrew “mamzer” meaning not the rightful heir) will dwell in Ashdod, and I will cut off the pride of the Philistines (the city of Gath is not mentioned with the other four Philistine cities. Gath was passed over, as in Amos 1.6-8; Zeph 2.4 and Jer 25.20; and they occur in the same order as in Jeremiah, whose prophecies Zechariah had in mind. Gath was somewhat inland and may have been out of the path of Alexander as he moved his army down the coast).

v 7… And I will remove their blood from their mouth, and their detestable things from between their teeth (their sacrificial idolatrous meals because idolatry will be abolished). Then they also will be a remnant for our God (serve the Lord), and be like a clan (“aluph” meaning a leader over a 1000), and Ekron like a Jebusite (original inhabitants of Zion who came to Yehovah and the Torah after David conquered them, like Araunah-2 Sam 24.16; 1 Chr 21.15).

v 8…But I will camp around my house (protect the Jewish people and the Temple while the nations are under judgment) because of an army (military power), against those who go to and fro; and no oppressor will pass over them any more, for now I have seen with my eyes (the oppression under which they groan).

v 9…Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king (Messiah; this was fulfilled by Yeshua in what is called “the triumphal entry” into Jerusalem and the Temple on Nisan 10, four days before Passover, when the congregational lamb was chosen and presented in the Temple for sacrifice on the 14th. Yeshua presents himself as the lamb, also declaring that he is the Messiah based on the eschatological expectation of this verse. Nisan 10 will also be the exact halfway point of the Birth-pains when the false messiah presents himself as God and demands to be worshipped and the two witnesses are killed. The Jewish people will flee into the wilderness for 1260 days, from Nisan 10 to Tishri 10, or Yom Kippur) is coming to you; he is just and endowed with salvation, humble and mounted on a donkey (speaks of humility and an idiom for “a king” because they used donkeys-Judges 10.4; 12.14; 1 Kings 1.33-44; 2 Sam 15.2, 18.9; and “no more war” because horses will not be used; it also refers to the “old, stubborn nature”), even on a colt, the foal of a donkey (speaks of the new nature, second generation).

v 10…And I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim (the ten northern tribes) and the horse from Jerusalem (two southern tribes); and the bow of war will be cut off (the kingdom will not be established by worldly power). And he (Messiah) will speak peace to the nations (to bring their wars to an end) and his dominion will be from sea to sea (from the sea at one end of the world to the sea at the other end), and from the River (Euphrates was the eastern border of Israel) to  the ends of the earth.

v 11…As for you also, because of the blood of the covenant with you (my promise to you in Exo 24.8 at Sinai-the Torah), I have set your prisoners free from the waterless pit (a pit, dungeon of exile).

v 12… Return to the stronghold (where the rock is, a place cut off and fortified where one can stand, the opposite of a pit), O prisoners who have the hope (Israel has the hope of redemption through the covenant); this very day (in spite of of all the threats right now) I am declaring that I will restore double to you (like Job, who was a picture of the Jewish people).

v 13…For I will bend Judah as my bow, I will fill the bow with Ephraim (Judah and Ephraim are a bow and arrow in Yehovah’s hand).  And I will stir up your sons, O Zion, against your sons, O Greece (the sages saw this verse as applying to the Hasmoneans and the Maccabees resulting in Chanukah. God was going to give victories over the Greeks, but this also means they will have power over any kingly power. But it has a greater fulfillment in the Birth-pains when “replacement theology” will be the basis for the religion of the false messiah, which will be Christianity, whose basis is Greek thought. On the other hand, Hebrew thought is the basis for the Torah and the Scriptures).  And I will make you like a warrior’s sword.

v 14…Then the Lord will appear over them (coming from heaven to fight for Israel), and his arrow will go forth as lightning, and the Lord will blow his trumpet (the signal for battle) and will march in the storm winds (attack with a terrible violence) of the south (the south had violent storms; prophetically Teman/Midian is where Sinai is. Yeshua will return to this area, march north to Jerusalem from the southeast-Deut 33.2; Judges 5.4-5; Hab 3.7; Isa 63.1; Matt 24.27).

v 15…The Lord of hosts (Lord of the armies) will defend them (as a shield) and they (Judah and Ephraim) will devour (the flesh of their enemies), and trample on the sling stones (that had been thrown at them; they are harmless) and they will drink (the blood of the enemy; an idiom meaning “utterly destroy” their enemies), and be boisterous as with wine (as if intoxicated); and they will be filled like a sacrificial basin (with the blood of their enemies), drenched like the corners of the altar (after the blood is poured out. The priests would pour out the blood at the NE and SW corner, hitting two sides at once. These terms are giving the idea that they will have a bloody victory. Zechariah is using Temple terms because it was on their mind and they knew the concepts).

v 16…And the Lord their God will save them in that day (an idiom for “when the Messiah comes”) as the flock of his people, for they are as the stones of a crown (not worthless, like the sling stones, but “living stones”-1 Pet 2.5) lifted up like a banner (the verb “mit’naws’sot” is connect to “nes” meaning sign or miracle) over his land.

v 17…For what comeliness and beauty will be theirs! Grain will make the young men flourish (make it grow), and new wine the virgins (material prosperity will proceed from the grace of God).

Posted in Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Tanak, Verse-by-Verse Bible Studies

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