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Zechariah 13-14

by Chuck Smith

And in that day (13:1)

“In that day, in that day.” Here it is again, “in that day,”

there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and uncleanness (13:1).

Reminds us of that beautiful song, “There is a fountain filled with blood drawn from Emmanuel’s veins, and sinners plunge beneath that flood with all their guilty stains.” But the fountain will be open in Jerusalem as they recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah and as the Lord. They turn their hearts towards Him, because the Spirit of God will open their eyes. And the veil that has been covering their eyes will be taken away, and they will recognize Jesus as Lord, and the fountain for sin opened to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

And it shall come to pass in that day [in that day], saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land (13:2),

Now here is the prediction that, of course, Israel would go back to idolatry. And of course, they do have today not little idols in the sense of carved out images, but they are extremely materialistic, and they do have their shrines of the tomb of Rachel, the tomb of Abraham, the tomb of David and all. Even the Western Wall has become sort of a place of almost idolatry in the sense that they feel that they are closer to God in these particular places. They like to go to these places to feel close to God. They say if you want to be close to God, go to the place where a man of God exists, because God exists with that man. But that, in a sense, is the consciousness of idolatry, because an idol is actually something to remind me of the presence of God. When a person creates an idol, it is always indicative to the fact that he has lost that valuable consciousness of God’s presence. Somewhere deep inside he longs for that which he has lost. So he creates a reminder. “There’s a place, oh there’s where I met God.”

It’s amazing the things that people can, more or less, make religious relics out of. I went to a church one time that had ugly platform furniture. I mean, it looked like it came from the Goodwill. The overstuffed chairs were ripped, and I mean it was just, it was just ugly. Looked like nobody cared. So I announced to the people my intentions, cause I love to get in to build things. I announced my intentions to remodel the platform. “We’re going to get new furniture up here. We’re going to get a new pulpit; I’m going to build a new pulpit.” After the service a woman came up and she was absolutely livid. “Brother Smith, you can’t get rid of that pulpit. Twenty years ago this evangelist was here, and he’s the one that donated the pulpit. And he preached the first sermon from that pulpit, and he cried, and the pulpit was stained with his tears. Oh, so many glorious sermons have been preached from that pulpit. You can’t get rid of that pulpit.” I said, “It’s ugly.” “Oh, but you can’t get rid of it.” Oh, and it was an ugly piece of furniture. So we bought the new platform chairs, and I purchased some veneer plywood, and I built a whole new pulpit around the old one. Leaving the old one there, but I completely…it looked like a brand new pulpit. But still the old one was built into the inside. She came to church, let out a gasp when she saw the new pulpit. I had desecrated the house of God! She was so angry she was ready to leave the church. I said, “Oh no, no, come here. Let me show you something.” I took her behind with the ugly old doors, and everything else, the ugliness was behind it; the people couldn’t see it anymore. But that satisfied her. The old pulpit still there you know. But that’s tragic when people get attached to things.

In the days of Hezekiah the people had begun to worship the brass serpent that Moses had made in the wilderness. It had become an idol. They’d begun to worship it. They were longing for the presence of God that their fathers had in the wilderness. They were longing to see the power of God that their fathers saw in the wilderness, and they began to worship the relic. But Hezekiah broke the thing in pieces, and he said, “Nehushtan, that’s not a thing of God; it’s a thing of brass. Nehushtan, a thing of brass.” He called it what it was. “That pulpit’s not a sacred relic; it’s an ugly piece of old furniture.” Nothing sacred about a relic. Just because at a place the Spirit of God has moved in the hearts and lives of the people doesn’t make it a sacred place. God doesn’t dwell in places, God dwells in the hearts and lives of His people.

We could move outside and worship the Lord outside and be just as close to God as we are inside. We’re not any closer to God here than we are at home. God does not dwell in buildings made with man’s hands. The heavens of heavens cannot contain Him. But a person loses that consciousness of the presence of God and somehow he is longing for that which he has lost. And so he builds a relic, or he takes a relic that reminds him of God’s presence, and he begins to worship near that, or he begins to worship the relic itself, even worse.

But God said, “I’m going to cut off all the idols.”

and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land (13:2).

That is, the false prophets, and the unclean spirit.

And it will come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say to him, Thou shalt not live; for you’re speaking lies in the name of the LORD: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesies. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear the rough garments to deceive: But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am a husbandman; [I am a farmer,] for a man taught me to keep cattle from my youth. [I’m a rancher.] And one shall say unto him (13:3-6),

Now he leaves now the false prophets, and he comes now back to the One who was pierced, “And one shall say unto Him,”

What are these wounds in your hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends. Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn my hand to the little ones (13:6-7).

Now the problem and the question arises, does verse 6 fit with verse 5, or does it fit with verse 7? The author of the Living Bible, which is an interesting interpretation of the Scripture, but an extremely poor translation. It’s one man’s interpretation. Dr. Taylor evidently feels that verse 6 fits with verse 5. I personally disagree with him. I believe that verse 6 fits with verse 7n. He gives, what I consider, an almost blasphemous interpretation of verse 6. “What are these wounds? Oh, these I got when I was in a drunken brawl at my friend’s house.” But I believe that they are referenced to Jesus Christ again, when they, Israel recognizes Him by the wounds in His hands, and they say unto Him, “What are the meaning of these wounds?” and He will answer very softly, very tenderly, “Those which I was wounded in the house of My friends.”

Now verse 7 we know refers to Jesus Christ, because it was quoted in the New Testament when Jesus was arrested and all the disciples forsook Him and fled that the Scripture might be fulfilled which said, “Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.” So that is used in the New Testament to refer to the fact that the disciples all fled at the arrest of Jesus. So we know that that one definitely refers to Jesus Christ, and it is my personal opinion that six fits with seven.

And it shall come to pass, in all the land, saith the LORD, that two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third part shall be left therein (13:8).

So, again, the Jews are going to go through a great holocaust in which two thirds of them will die. Only one third will come through. The antichrist is going to make a covenant with the nation of Israel, but after three and a half years, he’s going to break the covenant as he comes to Jerusalem and declares that he is god, and seeks to show that he is god, and demands to be worshiped as god. And the faithful remnant at that time will flee to the wilderness. The antichrist will then seek to destroy all of the Jews that remain in the land, and two thirds of them will be destroyed; one third shall escape.

And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined (13:9),

That is, they are going to go through the fire of persecution once again in this last seven years. This time is known in the Scripture as the time of Jacob’s trouble, we also call it the Great Tribulation.

and I will try them as gold is tried: and they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, Yahweh is my God (13:9).

So here, those that remain there will be again that glorious grafting back into the tree. The branch that had been cut off will be grafted back again. The unfaithful wife will be received and restored again as God washes her and cleanses her according to the prophecy of Hosea and brings her back unto Himself. Oh, love that will not let me go. Though I stray and turn my back and walk away, yet God will not let me go in His love. But He draws me back to Himself and restores me into fellowship. Oh, how gracious and glorious is the God that we serve. Israel, who has failed, will be brought back again by God and joined to Him after the refining process of the fire.


Chapter 14

Behold, the day of the LORD comes, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle (14:1-3).

So the prediction of this coming day when Jerusalem will be destroyed. Actually, this will be by the antichrist who will come to Jerusalem. He will be heading up a ten-nation European federation. He will come to Jerusalem, first of all, making a covenant, deceiving the people, being declared as the Messiah, and then breaking the covenant after three and a half years, demanding to be worshiped as God. The Jews will rebel. He will take Jerusalem. He’ll cut the people off, and those who have followed the advice of Jesus and have fled to the wilderness will escape. But then the Lord is going to fight against the powers of the antichrist.

And his feet (14:4)

The nations will be gathered, all of the nations against Jerusalem be gathered together in the valley of Megiddo: the kingdom of the north, Russia; the kingdoms of the east, China. Joining together, joining against the European federation. And the final great battle, the battle of Armageddon, fought there in the valley of Megiddo, and at that time the Lord shall come.

his feet shall stand in that day on the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall split in the middle toward the east and towards the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove towards the north, and half of it towards the south (14:4).

So a tremendous cataclysmic kind of a change will take place in the geography there around Jerusalem when Jesus comes, puts His foot on the Mount of Olives, and that whole thing is just going to split half towards the north, half towards the south, and this great new valley formed going down to the Red Sea.

Now as this split takes place, the geological formations are changed, a vast underground reservoir of water, river, underground river, will spring forth from the area of the throne in Jerusalem.  This river will flow forth from Jerusalem going down this valley. Half of it will turn and go towards the Mediterranean Sea; the other half will flow down to the Dead Sea. It will make that whole area along its banks extremely fertile. When the waters come into the Dead Sea, the Dead Sea will be healed. It will no longer be a Dead Sea, but it will be healed, and there will be multitudes of fish in the Dead Sea, and it’ll become a great fishing resort. Along the shores there, the En-gedi, they will dry their fish nets and so forth, the whole scene, geography, will be changed as a result of this probably great, we would call it an earthquake, splits the Mount of Olives right in two.

And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as you fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah the king of Judah: and the LORD my God shall come, and all of the saints with thee (14:5).

“Behold, He cometh with ten thousands of His saints to execute judgment upon the earth.” Paul the apostle said, “And when Christ who is our life shall appear, then shall we also appear with Him in glory” (Colossians 3:4). Revelation, chapter 19, “And he saw Christ sitting upon the white horse, and the armies that came with Him on their white horses, clothed in fine linen, pure and clean.” We are told earlier who those people are clothed in the fine linen, pure and clean--they are the church, the body of Christ. The pure linen is the righteousness of the saints, which is, of course, that righteousness imputed to us by our faith in Jesus Christ.

So the coming again of Jesus Christ for the church. So the Lord is coming, first of all, for His church, to snatch it out of the earth. Then to bring to pass His judgment upon the earth, and upon the inhabitants of the earth for their rejection of His plan of salvation. We will be caught up to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord. We will be invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb. Blessed is he that is invited to the marriage supper of the Lamb, and we, with John, will behold the events of the Great Tribulation from a grandstand view in heaven. But then in chapter 19 when Jesus comes back to the earth to set His foot upon the Mount of Olives to stop the great battle of Armageddon, then we will return to the earth with Jesus, and we will then reign with Him upon the earth for a thousand years as priests, as a kingdom of priests, actually.

So there are those, especially Jehovah Witnesses and all, that so misinterpret prophecy. They say, “Oh, you believe that you’re just going to go up in heaven. You’re going to stay in heaven; you’re going to be in some cloud and fiddling on a harp. And I’m going to be there on the earth, and I’m going to help rebuild the world and so forth.” Well, the Bible doesn’t teach we’re going to be forever in heaven. The Bible does teach we’re going to be forever with our Lord, and of course, where He is, it’s heaven. But when He comes down to the earth it’s going to be heaven on earth. You’re going to see the earth that God intended. You’re going to see the kind of world that God intended that man should live in, a world that is filled with righteousness and peace. The kingdom of God is not meat nor drink, but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. You’ll see the world as God intended it to be, but we’ll be forever with the Lord. When the Lord’s in heaven…hey, we’re His bride; the bride goes with the Groom. So while He’s in heaven, we’ll be with Him. But we’re not going to take a honeymoon down here and Him stay up there. We’ll come back with Him with His saints to reign over the earth. Then when God establishes the new heaven and the new earth, wherever, however, we’ll be right there with Him. Wherever He is, there will we be with Him, forever with our Lord. That’s the promise, and that’s the hope of every child of God. And I love it, and I can hardly wait. Oh, should we really sit and mourn and mope over those that have gone to be with the Lord already? No. You want to sit and mope? Mope of yourself, because you’re still here. But rejoice for them; they’ve got a good head start on us.

And His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, and it’ll split and so forth, and ye shall flee to the valleys, and the Lord shall come with all of His saints.

Verse 6,

And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark (14:6):

In other words, it’ll be sort of a twilight zone, not really clear, not really dark, sort of the twilight. You know, I love the evening twilight; it’s almost my favorite time of the day.

But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at the evening time it’ll still be light (14:7).

So it’s going to be a very interesting astronomical phenomena that will take place. And just how God is planning to work it out, I really don’t know, but it’ll be interesting to find out.

And it shall be in that day, that these living waters (14:8)

That is, they give life to the Dead Sea when they flow into it.

shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them towards the former sea, and half of them towards the hinder sea (14:8):

Half towards the Mediterranean, and half towards the Dead Sea.

 and it will flow all year round. And the LORD shall be King over all the earth: in that day and there shall be one LORD, and his name one (14:8-9).

The glorious Kingdom Age. He will be King over all the earth. “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Oh, how we need to be praying this, especially as we see the deterioration of the kingdoms of man in these days.

And all the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and be inhabited in her place, from Benjamin’s gate unto the place of the first gate, and to the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel unto the king’s winepresses (14:10).

He’s talking about the extension of the city limits of Jerusalem, and they’ve already extended beyond these places.

And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited. And this [is fascinating to me] shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem (14:11-12);

Those who have fought against Jerusalem, God’s going to fight against them. And the plague will be,

Their flesh shall consume away while they are standing upon their feet, their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth (14:12).

I would encourage you to read accounts of the dropping of the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and you’ll find that these are the things that happened. These are the results of a nuclear holocaust, a nuclear bomb. The Lord significantly prophesies that this is the way that people will perish--their flesh consuming away upon their bodies while they’re standing there. In Nagasaki the eye sockets melting, the eyeballs melting and rolling down the cheeks. “Their eyes consume in their holes, their tongue consume in their mouths.”

And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every man from his neighbor, [and the hand shall rise up] and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbor. And Judah also shall fight at Jerusalem; and the wealth of all the heathen round about shall be gathered together, gold, and silver, apparel, in great abundance. And so shall be the plague of the horse, the mule, the camel, the ass, and all of the beasts that shall be in these tents, as this plague. And it shall come to pass, [after this great, horrible battle of Armageddon] that every one that is left of all of the nations which came against Jerusalem, shall even go up from year to year to worship (14:13-16)

Those that are left, not many will survive, but those that are left will go up from year to year to Jerusalem to worship.

the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of the tabernacles (14:16).

The feast of the tabernacles was commemorative of God’s preservation through the long forty-year experience in the wilderness and bringing them into the Promised Land. We will be keeping the Feast of the Tabernacles in the Kingdom Age, for God brought us through the long wilderness. But God will preserve us, God will keep us. We survived from the living water out of the Rock, Christ Jesus!

And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth to Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain (14:17).

So you don’t want to come. All right, you’ll not get any rain on your crops.

If the family of Egypt go not up, and comes not, they’ll have no rain; and there shall be the plague, wherewith the LORD will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of the tabernacles. And this shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all the nations that come not to keep the feast of the tabernacles. And in that day there shall be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD (14:17-20);

I mean bumper stickers everywhere. Glorious day, glorious day, beautiful graffiti. We have a Calvary Chapel in San Pedro, which is a very rough area of town over there. They used to have their building constantly painted with graffiti. They were constantly having to repaint the thing because of all the dirty words and all that were painted on the sides of the building. So the pastor finally went out with a black spray can, began to, after he’d painted the building, put his own graffiti on. Painted on it, “Jesus loves you!” All kinds of things like this on the side of his own building, painted it with this graffiti, and he’s not had problems since.

“In that day on the bells of the horses, ‘Holiness unto the Lord!’”

and the pots in the LORD’S house shall be like the bowls before the altar. Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness unto the LORD of hosts: and all they that sacrifice shall come and take of them, and seethe therein: and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the LORD of hosts (14:20-21).

So the glorious day of the Kingdom Age. A lot could be said…our time has run out, but some night we will spend some time talking about our place in that Kingdom Age during the thousand-year reign. What people will be on the earth, what kind of a control we will exercise over these people, the make up of the population, and so forth at that time, and we’ll go into that some night when we have more time.

Next week, Malachi. The last of the Old Testament, fascinating prophecy. The last word of God before the Messiah. After Malachi, the silence, the silent years until the voice crying in the wilderness, “Make way, the path of the Lord, make straight His path.” John the Baptist. But we’ll get into Malachi, and then the following week moving into the New Testament. May the Lord bless you. May the Lord give you a beautiful week of fellowship with Him as you walk with the Lord in the light of His Word. May He just spread His glory on your way. May you just experience more and more the love of God and the grace of God, as His Spirit works in your heart, the Spirit of grace and supplication. God bless you, and keep you in the name of Jesus Christ.

Chuck Smith

Pastor Chuck Smith began his ministry at Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa, in 1965, with just twenty-five people.