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Bible Commentaries

Bell's Commentary on the Bible

Zechariah 4

Verses 1-14

  1. 5th VISION, THE LAMPSTAND & OLIVE TREES! (Ch.4)
    1. SPIRIT SUPPLIED! (1-6)
    2. Our picture is that of a giant 7 branched Menorah with olive trees at both ends, dripping their oil into the bowls to supply the power needed for the light to burn.
    3. Oil in scripture speaks of the Holy Spirit(& power). Show Menorah
      1. He is the vine(inside stem of menorah); You are the branch(branches coming off the vine); He is the light of the word(bowl, top center); You are the light of the world(other bowls). The oil is the H.S. “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you,” (1 Jn.2:27)
      2. This candlestick is different from the temple menorah in that it has 7 pipes to each lamp, thus assuring an ample supply of fuel to keep the lights burning.
    4. (6) If you “build for God” you need to know the source of spiritual stamina…the Spirit supplies!
      1. Might means military might.
      2. Power refers to an individual’s strength.
        1. The caution is not to trust in your own strength & wisdom.
        2. Nor, the worlds resources.
        3. But only putting full dependence upon the power of God!
      3. Zech. reminds Zerub. of that reservoir of resource in this vs.
      4. It is the temptation of this pragmatic age to presume that technique is the secret of evangelism, the secret of teaching, the secret of church growth, the secret of witnessing, the secret of worship.
    5. Every Christian possesses the Spirit of God… “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.”
      1. But, even though you have the H.S. residing in you, He may not be presiding over you!
      2. Thus the need for the repeated infillings. “And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit”
      3. We are to be filled…meaning “controlled”. - The H.S. should continually control & dominate the life of the believer.
      4. The prohibition here was speaking to the religious worship of Dionysus which was well known to the ancient world. (Di·o·ny·sus (dì´e-nì¹ses) noun Greek & Roman Mythology. The god of wine and of an orgiastic religion celebrating the power and fertility of nature. Also called Bacchus.)
        1. The worshippers felt that they were united, indwelled, & controlled by Dionysus who gave them special powers & abilities.
      5. Dr. Martyn Lloyd Jones was a brilliant physician who became a pastor & ministered for 40 yrs. in Westminster Chapel, London.
        1. He wrote… “Drink is not a stimulus, it is a depressant. It depresses 1st & foremost the highest centers of all in the brain. They are the 1st to be influenced & affected by drink. They control everything that gives a man self-control, wisdom, understanding, discrimination, judgment, balance, the power to assess everything; in other words everything that makes a man behave at his best & highest. The better a man’s control, the better man he is…but drink is something which immediately gets rid of control; that indeed is the 1st thing it does.”
      6. Legend - According to legend when Noah entered the ark he took along a vine. He had been a gardener before he built the ark, and when he settled again on the land after the deluge, he planted the vine once more and returned to his old occupation. As he worked in the garden, Satan came to him and said: "If you will let me help you, I can show you how to make grapes grow on the vine tomorrow." "That," said Noah, "is something worth seeing." Satan helped Noah plant the vine. Then Satan took a lamb, a lion, a monkey and a pig and watered the plant with their blood. That is why, after the first glass of wine, one becomes gentle as a lamb; after the second glass of wine, as daring as a lion; after the third glass one is apt to make a monkey of himself; and after the fourth glass of wine, a man becomes drunk and behaves like a pig.
      7. We are to be filled…meaning “controlled”. The H.S. should continually control & dominate the life of the believer.
        1. [1] IT IS A COMMAND!-Not a suggestion,we aren’t free to ignore it.
        2. [2] IT IS A PLURAL COMMAND! - To the whole world.
          1. NONE of us are to get drunk; ALL of us are to be filled w/the Spirit;It is not for the FEW or ELITE!
        3. [3] IT IS A PASSIVE COMMAND! – “Let the H.S. fill you”, there is no ritual or formula!
          1. We must turn from any known sin. - We must open ourselves to God’s Word. - We must yield to the Spirit!
        4. [4] IT IS A PRESENT TENSE COMMAND! - It is not once for all, but continuous.
          1. Gatorade Cap - “Life is a sport…Drink it up!” - No, “There’s Life in the Spirit, Drink Him Up!”
    6. Big Mountains & Small things! (7-10)
    7. (7) Mountains to plains!
      1. He was facing mountains of discouragement; mountains of opposition; mountains of poor crops; mountains of unstable economy; mountains of people not obeying the word of God!
      2. Not too different today!
      3. We need the Holy Spirits Power!
        1. Vance Havner wrote, “We say we depend on the H.S., but actually we are so wired up w/our own devices that if the fire does not fall from heaven, we can turn on a switch & produce false fire of our own. If there is no sound of a rushing wind, we have the furnace all set to blow hot air instead. God save us from a synthetic Pentecost!”
    8. (9) Notice God works, but usually not w/o our work!
      1. Compare “but by My Spirit”(6); & “the hands of Zerabbabel”(9).
      2. The human & the heavenly! - [It is a both/and situation!]
      3. As one put it, “A supernatural source is our greatest resource, but ordinarily that supernatural source’s only recourse is to operate through us.” (Jim Townsend; pg.78)
    9. (10) Who has despised the day of small things?
      1. God loves using small things:
      2. He used small shepherd boy against big goliath.
      3. A small stone against a gigantic forehead(or 6-head).
      4. He used a small rod in Moses’ hand.
      5. He used a small lunch to feed a multitude.
      6. He used a small amount of mud to heal a blind man.
      7. He used a small jawbone to defeat an army of 1000.
      8. God loves using small things!
        1. Don’t despise your small talents; your small time; your small treasures!
      9. We didn’t just decide one day to fly to the moon - On March 16, 1926, on a farm, Dr. Robert Goddard and a couple of friends launched the world's first successful rocket. It rose 41 feet in the air, flew for two and one-half seconds, and landed 184 feet from the launch pad. But it was a beginning.
        1. Despise not "the day of small things".
      10. A man came to a construction site, where stonemasons were working. The man said to one, "What are you doing?" The stonemason said, "You can see, I'm chipping a stone." The man walked over to another mason and said, "What are you doing?" He answered, "I'm building a wall." The man walked over to a third mason and said, "What are you doing?" This mason answered, "I am building a cathedral." - All three were doing the same thing, but what a difference perspective makes!
    10. (14) The 2 anointed ones – speaking of Joshua & Zerubbabel.
      1. “As the 2 olive trees, Joshua & Zerub. received the empowering Spirit of God & kept the light of Israel’s work & witness burning.” (Warren Wiersbe; pg.107)
      2. See also Rev.11:4.
    11. The Servant the Branch came to save! - The Lord empowers his own by His Spirit!
    12. Zechariah ministered to discouraged people attempting to accomplish a difficult task.
      1. When you find yourself ready to give up remember Gods assurances:
      2. [1] He gives us power! (1-6){oil}
      3. [2] He removes obstacles! (7){unbelief makes mountains out of mole hills; Faith in God makes mountains into plains!}
        1. "Behold, I will make you(Israel) into a new threshing sledge with sharp teeth; You shall thresh the mountains and beat them small, And make the hills like chaff.” Is.41:15
        2. Jesus said, “if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.”
      4. [3] He gives promises! (9)
        1. God finishes what He starts!
        2. Phil.1:6 “being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ;”
        3. The temple project was delayed for many years, but God eventually helped them finish it.
      5. [4] He rejoices over our work! (10)
        1. To the eyes of men the Temple project was a small thing(Hag.2:3); but to the eyes of God, it was a source of great joy.
        2. Like when our kids make us something & they say, “well it not the best but…” (we are very pleased by it)
        3. Do your best to please God, & allow Him to be the final judge.
          1. “Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men's hearts. At that time each will receive his praise from God.” 1 Cor.4:5
Copyright Statement
These files are the property of Brian Bell.
Text Courtesy of Calvary Chapel of Murrieta. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Zechariah 4". "Bell's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/zechariah-4.html. 2017.