Category Archives: Zechariah

August 15 – Two Blessings for Each Trouble

With vivid detail, the last of Zechariah’s prophecies points to the Messiah yet to come.   Rejoice, O people of Zion! Shout in triumph, O people of Jerusalem! Look, your king is coming to you. He is righteous and victorious, yet he is humble, riding on a donkey—riding on a donkey’s colt… your king will bring peace to the nations. His realm will stretch from sea to sea… Because of the covenant I made with you, sealed with blood, I will free your prisoners from death in a waterless dungeon.  Come back to the place of safety, all you prisoners who still have hope! I promise this very day that I will repay two blessings for each of your troubles. 

What a promise!  What an awesome King is Jesus! I love how we are blessed to have the New Testament and can read in wonderful detail of the life of Jesus.  He really knows how to bless because He does what He sees His Father do.  Jesus lived to restore whatever needed to be restored in the lives of those who trusted Him.  He died to bring us into a holy relationship with Him and His Father whom He loves.  It has always been and always will be, that whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved, rescued, redeemed, restored.  Thank You, Lord Jesus!

Zechariah 9:9-12 NLT

August 14 – Ask the Lord to Bless

The barren and desolate land of Jerusalem was about to be revived!  Judah and Israel had a bad reputation from the neighboring countries. But God was about to change that around by giving His people what they would need to succeed as they valued justice and mercy.  This was good news.  And good news has a way of traveling.  “This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies says: People from nations and cities around the world will travel to Jerusalem. The people of one city will say to the people of another, ‘Come with us to Jerusalem to ask the Lord to bless us. Let’s worship the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. I’m determined to go.’  Many peoples and powerful nations will come to Jerusalem to seek the Lord of Heaven’s Armies and to ask for his blessing.”

People today are still blessed by a visit to Jerusalem.  Back in 1985 as an atheistic existentialist in the Marine Corps, Russell walked the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem.  And as he walked this road of Jesus’ suffering, he began to think about the man Jesus.  This reflection led to questions, reading, searching, and more questions.  About a year later in the Pacific Northwest, Russell became a follower of Jesus.  Although Russell has not spent much of his life in Washington, I think it’s interesting that both his physical birth and his spiritual birth both took place in that state.

Jesus changed Russell’s life.  Knowing Jesus revolutionizes everything.  He is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.  He is the Prince of Peace.  He is worthy of our praise.  Wherever we are, let us worship the Lord and search out His good blessings in our lives. Maybe even write them down, if that helps us. May the good news of His blessings continue to travel around the world to people of every nation.  Russell is one of my favorite good news teachers and I love learning about the teachings of Jesus from him.

Zechariah 8:20-22 NLT

August 13 – Be a Symbol and Source of Blessing

The prophet Zechariah is blessed by God to deliver an awesome “do-over” for God’s people.  Zechariah boldly proclaimed what God had told him to share and God’s people listened.  The Lord of Heaven’s Army said:  For I am planting seeds of peace and prosperity among you. The grapevines will be heavy with fruit. The earth will produce its crops, and the heavens will release the dew. Once more I will cause the remnant in Judah and Israel to inherit these blessings. Among the other nations, Judah and Israel became symbols of a cursed nation. But no longer! Now I will rescue you and make you both a symbol and a source of blessing. So don’t be afraid. Be strong, and get on with rebuilding the Temple!   I was determined to punish you when your ancestors angered me, and I did not change my mind. But now I am determined to bless Jerusalem and the people of Judah. So don’t be afraid. But this is what you must do: Tell the truth to each other. Render verdicts in your courts that are just and that lead to peace…”

They were allowed to start over, to have a clean slate.  They were blessed to be a blessing, to be a symbol of receiving God’s blessing and then to be a source from which others would be blessed.  This is a familiar theme; let’s live it out as well.  God says His people should not to be afraid to work hard, be truthful, and to look for ways to be peacemakers.  It is His character that He longs to see shining through us.

Zechariah 8:12-16 NLT

August 12 – May God Bless the Temple Again

The Jews needed assurance reestablishing their lives based on following God.  God gave Zechariah eight visions that provided affirmation and affected areas of their lives as a community. During this point in God’s Story, Zerubbabel was the governor of Judea and he is mentioned in the fifth vision that involved the completion of the Temple. Nothing, not even a mighty mountain, will stand in Zerubbabel’s way; it will become a level plain before him! And when Zerubbabel sets the final stone of the Temple in place, the people will shout: ‘May God bless it! May God bless it!’ ” 

They blessed God with their obedience and asked Him to bless the work of their hands as they built the second Temple. Today God’s people are not building an edifice to show loyalty to Him, but with the Holy Spirit living within us, we are the Temple of God.  We do not belong to ourselves.  God paid a high price for each of us.  We have the high calling of honoring God with our bodies, minds and our action.  Thinking about our identity and joyfully realizing that we really do belong to Him, gives us hope. From a sense of belonging we can then pursue a good direction for our actions.  May God bless us as we grow in His ways, building our character on the foundation of His love, forgiveness and peace.  In these days may God’s people pray: God, bless Your Temple, Your people working together were Your Spirit dwells! Amen.

Zechariah 4:7 NLT