Zechariah 8:1 “…the word of the LORD of hosts came, saying…”
This and the phrase thus says the LORD is repeated a great deal throughout the chapter. Not sure if Zechariah was trying to impress God’s authorship to the messages or if he just mentions it each time God told him something.
2-3 “…I am zealous for Zion with great zeal; With great fervor I am zealous for her…I will return to Zion, And dwell in the midst of Jerusalem…”
God makes no bones about how He feels regarding Israel and Jerusalem as a location. He gave the land to Abraham and his descendants forever, and He chooses to set up His base of operations, as it were, in Jerusalem. Anyone who tries to say that Jerusalem belongs to anyone other than Israel is completely and utterly mistaken.
4-5 “…Old men and old women shall again sit In the streets of Jerusalem, Each one with his staff in his hand Because of great age. The streets of the city Shall be full of boys and girls Playing in its streets.”
Total safety for all. People living to great age and children being produced. All moving about without fear.
6 “…also be marvelous in My eyes…”
God cares about what we care about. He is a personal God, not some distant entity indifferent to our concerns.
8 “I will bring them back, And they shall dwell in the midst of Jerusalem…”
Probably an instance of parallelism. He’s bringing them back now from the exile and will one day bring them back from the nations after the nation is destroyed in 70 AD. Or He could be referring solely to the restoration of 1948 AD. How awesome it is to refer to something in our past which was prophesied to occur in the future. We get to see what the people of that time could only imagine.
9-13 “…Let your hands be strong…For before these days…But now…Do not fear, Let your hands be strong”
Be encouraged, do not fear. Before this time, before the exile, God was angry with the people and executed judgment upon them, including no crops or herds, famine, pestilence, and eventually exile. But now He is going to restore all of that. They can get on with the building with the assurance that He is taking care of everything else. Their labors won’t be in vain. They don’t have to worry that it will all be torn down again.
16-17 “‘These are the things you shall do: Speak each man the truth to his neighbor; Give judgment in your gates for truth, justice, and peace; Let none of you think evil in your heart against your neighbor; And do not love a false oath. For all these are things that I hate,’ Says the LORD.”
God is determined to do good for Israel, and this is Israel’s part. Same as before. Be honest, truthful, and care for others.
19 “…The fast…Shall be joy and gladness and cheerful feasts…”
The reasons for the fasting are gone. Those times have been turned into times of celebration.
22 “Yes, many peoples and strong nations Shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem…”
Probably referring to the time of the Millennial reign when all the nations of the earth will come to Jerusalem to worship Christ.
23 “…In those days ten men from every language of the nations shall grasp the sleeve of a Jewish man…”
Very descriptive phrasing of the time. Everyone will want to go to Jerusalem.
I hope you enjoy reading and studying His word. May it accomplish what He desires. Please feel free to comment or post questions. Thanks for reading!
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.