BE STILL BEFORE THE LORD
Great King of Heaven, I kneel before you today. You are my Creator, my Lord, and my Savior. I bless your name.
Read ZECHARIAH 2
A Man With a Measuring Line
2 [a]Then I looked up, and there before me was a man with a measuring line in his hand. 2 I asked, “Where are you going?”
He answered me, “To measure Jerusalem, to find out how wide and how long it is.”
3 While the angel who was speaking to me was leaving, another angel came to meet him 4 and said to him: “Run, tell that young man, ‘Jerusalem will be a city without walls because of the great number of people and animals in it. 5 And I myself will be a wall of fire around it,’ declares the Lord, ‘and I will be its glory within.’
6 “Come! Come! Flee from the land of the north,” declares the Lord, “for I have scattered you to the four winds of heaven,” declares the Lord.
7 “Come, Zion! Escape, you who live in Daughter Babylon!” 8 For this is what the Lord Almighty says: “After the Glorious One has sent me against the nations that have plundered you—for whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye— 9 I will surely raise my hand against them so that their slaves will plunder them.[b] Then you will know that the Lord Almighty has sent me.
10 “Shout and be glad, Daughter Zion. For I am coming, and I will live among you,” declares the Lord. 11 “Many nations will be joined with the Lord in that day and will become my people. I will live among you and you will know that the Lord Almighty has sent me to you. 12 The Lord will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land and will again choose Jerusalem. 13 Be still before the Lord, all mankind, because he has roused himself from his holy dwelling.”
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
‘Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings.’1
Anti-Semitism is on the rise, ranging from abusive name-calling to hate-fueled murder. The lessons of the Shoah (Hitler’s extermination of 6 million Jews) have sadly not been fully learned. Zechariah’s third vision tells us what God thinks of this: since the Jews are ‘the apple of his eye’ (v 8), God will not leave unpunished the oppressors of his ancient people. He has promised them good and will fulfill this. Let Christians remember the Lord’s vow to Abraham: ‘I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse’.2 We must remember God’s warning to their abusers such as Babylon (vs 7–9).
Abraham was also told: ‘all peoples on earth will be blessed through you’.3 Zechariah’s vision confirms this by presenting the future Jerusalem as a city without walls, protected by a divine ring of fire. The absence of walls implies that the megacity will be wide open to welcome Gentiles from many nations who will become God’s people as much as the Jews themselves. What a wondrous fulfillment of the promise to Abraham!
Greater still, the Lord declares: ‘I will live among you and you will know that the Lord Almighty has sent me to you’ (v 11). So the Lord sends himself! Surely this refers to the Messiah we know as Jesus, who draws individuals from all nations to God? Born a Jew, it is through him that Abraham will bless all peoples! Zechariah presents us with a vision of a huge cosmopolitan, multiracial population living in the ‘holy land’ (v 12, a term used only twice in the Bible4) under Christ’s future kingly rule. Whether interpreted literally or metaphorically, this awesome truth demands that we ‘Be still before the Lord’ (v 13) and contemplate his glory.
Christ’s resurrection and second coming are teachings often forbidden to Christians in lands where they are persecuted. Consider why this is so – and praise God for these great truths!
Dear God, I am excited to think of you on the move in the world, but also on the move in my life. My heart’s desire is to cooperate with you. Your will be done!
1 Ps 17:8 2 Gen 12:3a 3 Gen 12:3b..4 Ps 78:54