Chapters 1-6 contain 8 bizarre visions – consider yourself warned. But don’t skip this stuff – or you’ll be sorry when we get to Revelation. It’ll be regurgitated there…
starts with a warning to behave, and then the first vision. It’s some bizarre story about riders on colored horses, and it means that the lord has returned to show mercy to his people (it’s about bloody time!), and that the temple will be rebuilt. Then Zech sees horns and blacksmiths – and they represent the nations that scattered Israel and the coming revenge against these nations.
And if you think I’m going to spend any more time than this trying to make sense of this guy’s psychedelic dreams, you’re battier than Zech himself. The guy must have been smoking something good.
Zech sees a guy with a ‘measuring line’ in his hand to measure Jerusalem. I hope this isn’t another plumb line! It means that someday Jerusalem will be so full that not everyone will fit inside its walls. But no problem – god will form a protective wall of fire around his chosen people. He will call all the exiles home, and they will live happily ever after in peace and prosperity, etc etc etc
Zech now sees Joshua standing beside Satan and an angel. The lord rebukes Satan, and then Joshua gets clean clothes and a fancy hat and authority over the soon-to-be-rebuilt temple. The scene ends with a servant name Branch, and a jewel, and all the sins of the land will be removed, and then everyone will live happily ever after in peace under their own grapevine and fig tree. And if you think I’m making this crap up, then you haven’t read it yourself!
Now there’s a golden lampstand with 7 oil lamps and 2 olive trees. Sure looks like a menorah to me. The lamps represent the eyes of the lord watching the whole world. Creepy. And this means that nothing will get in the way of completing the new temple, and Zerubabbel (the governor) will lay the cornerstone (he’s got a plumb line in his hand – see, I knew there’d be one in this story somewhere).
This chapter has a flying scroll. The angel claims that it contains a curse which will banish all liars and thieves from the land. Good luck with that! Next is a basket containing the sins of the world. When the lid is lifted, there’s a woman inside (you didn’t think there’d be a man, did you? Wickedness is always associated with women). Then two more women fly on the wind (sounds like witches), pick up the basket, and carry it off to Babylon.
Four chariots are pulled by different colored horses in different directions to patrol the earth. Now we get to the crowning of Joshua. Jews returning from exile will bring silver and gold; it will be shaped into a crown for Joshua, who seems to be the servant named Branch, because he will branch out and build the temple. Then he will rule as both king and priest. Really?? Is that possible? Funny it’s never been suggested before.
Apparently the events in this chapter take place 2 years later. The people are asking whether they still need to mourn and fast for the old temple’s destruction as they have been doing for many years. I guess it’s kind of pointless now that they are home and rebuilding. And god asks them if during the holy festivals, aren’t they eating and drinking just to please themselves anyway???? Haha good question – aren’t we all? Anyway, sounds like the answer is ‘no’ because he goes on about just being good and obeying all the commandments etc, and I guess the implication is that they will live happily ever after.
Boy, this is pretty syrupy. Yahweh has decided that he loves his people after all, and he will return to Mount Zion and everyone will love their neighbor and be prosperous and raise bumper crops and live happily ever after! The end. (Chapter 9 will begin a new section.)
This is what I took away from the first section of Zechariah: