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Bible Commentaries

Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary

Zechariah 7

Verses 11-12


‘They refused to hearken … they made their hearts as an adamant stone.’

Zechariah 7:11-2 Kings :

I. I can ‘refuse to hearken’ to God in Jesus Christ. What an awful power is this with which my will is invested!—It is perfectly true that, in all instances of salvation God is the supreme and efficient Agent. He seeks the soul. He awakens in it the sense of fear, of shame, of restlessness, of longing. By His Word and His Spirit He enlightens it in the knowledge of Christ. He bends and breaks its stubbornness, its disobedience, its self-satisfaction. He persuades and enables it to embrace Jesus Who is offered to it in the Gospel.

But, none the less, the soul is free to resist and reject Him. Beyond question, it can ‘refuse to hearken.’ There is a mighty Redeemer and a sufficient redemption, but I must, for myself, appropriate it and Him. There are the wings of the Shechinah; but I must, for myself, hide underneath their shadow. God will not compel me to be saved against my own desire and resolve. He asks for a ‘willing people’ in the day of His power.

II. What does God require of me?

(1) The true word. Execute true judgment! He says; and it is a command not simply for the magistrate, but for every one. I must hate all falsehood. I must neither depreciate or exaggerate. I must not speak in tones of seeming courtesy, while I am hiding hatred in my heart. The thing that is, the verdict that ought to be given, the characterisation which errs neither by wilful excess nor by wilful defect: that is what my lips must declare.

(2) The kindly deed—this also God asks. And the charitable thought too. Let none of you, He enjoins, imagine evil against his brother in your heart. Ah, my Lord, Thy law is very searching and spiritual. It pierces deep. It takes cognisance of my motives and wishes and unspoken desires. Thou dost weigh the feelings and qualities of my soul in Thy balances. Let me remember it; and create Thou in me the clean heart, and renew the right spirit.

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Bibliographical Information
Nisbet, James. "Commentary on Zechariah 7". Nisbet's Church Pulpit Commentary. 1876.