Friday, March 24, 2017

Zechariah, part 1




As outlined in my book CROSSING THE SCRIPTURES the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet make perfect match ups to each of the 66 books of the Bible. The sixteenth Hebrew letter, ayin, matches the sixteenth book, Nehemiah, and 22 books later we have Zechariah. It also matches up to ayin (which means “eye”). 👀
If you’re looking for it, and if you know Hebrew, you can find Nehemiah’s name in the first chapter of Zechariah. (Hint: it’s in verse 17.) First of all, Zechariah means “God has remembered”. The first ayin book ended with Nehemiah stating “remember me” and now our second ayin book is named “God has remembered”. Very cool.
This book has more Messianic prophecy than all of the other Minor Prophets combined and is second only to Isaiah in the number of references to Christ. Additionally the New Testament refers to Zechariah more than 40 times. Zechariah is sometimes called the “Book of Revelation” of the Old Testament. The theme of the book is apparent in the opening verse which names Zechariah, his father, Berekiah, and Berekiah’s father, Iddo. The Hebrew meanings of these names are “whom the Lord remembers” “the Lord blesses” “at the appointed time”. God raised up Zechariah to proclaim that God remembers His chosen people and that He will bless them in His appointed time.

Zechariah’s ministry began right between Haggai’s second and third message. Haggai was talking about rebuilding the temple and Zechariah writes about the same thing. He comforted and encouraged the returned remnant to repent of their evil ways, to return to the Lord and to rebuild the temple. Zechariah’s message focused on the future and declared that God would send the Messiah to set up His Kingdom through the annihilation of the Gentile empires and the salvation of Israel.
Chapters 1 through 6 give an amazing visual prophecy. Most of them start with “I lift up mine eyes” though your translation may be “I looked up”. Remember, this is an ayin (eye) book and there is great beauty and intricacy in the original Hebrew. (As a matter of fact, in the other books of the 12 Minor Prophets the word ayin appears 16 times total as compared to Zechariah where it appears 20 times in this one book!) 

Well, this is just a teaser. Next week we’ll look at the visions in Zechariah.