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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
Zechariah 4

 

 

Verses 1-14

Zechariah 4:1-14 Zechariah 1:1 to Zechariah 3:10 tells what great things God is going to do. The fourth chapter tells how God is going to do them, "by my Spirit."

Zechariah 4:1-14Zerubbabel leading Jews from captivity to Jerusalem is a type of Jesus coming to build church and eternal city of God.

Zechariah 4:1 And the angel that talked with me came again, and waked me, as a man that is wakened out of his sleep,

Zechariah 4:2 And said unto me, What seest thou? And I said, I have looked, and behold a candlestick all of gold, with a bowl upon the top of it, and his seven lamps thereon, and seven pipes to the seven lamps, which are upon the top thereof:

Zechariah 4:2 — "And I said, I have looked, and behold a candlestick all of gold, with a bowl upon the top of it" - Comments- In Revelation 1:20, the candlesticks symbolized the church, which is the body of Christ. The seven candlesticks in Revelations would represent both the Temple and the New Testament Church.

Revelation 1:20, "The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches."

Also, note:

1 Corinthians 6:19, "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?"

Zechariah 4:2"and his seven lamps thereon" - Comments- This represents seven spirits ( Revelation 4:5).

Revelation 4:5, "And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God."

Zechariah 4:6 Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts.

Zechariah 4:6"This is the word of the LORD unto Zerubbabel" - Comments- BDB says the Hebrew name "Zerubbabel" means "sown of Babylon." He was a descendant of David ( 1 Chronicles 3:19) who led many Jews from captivity back to Judah ( Ezra 2:2), a leader with the high priest Joshua ( Ezra 4:2-5)

1 Chronicles 3:19, "And the sons of Pedaiah were, Zerubbabel, and Shimei: and the sons of Zerubbabel; Meshullam, and Hananiah, and Shelomith their sister:"

Ezra 2:2, "Which came with Zerubbabel: Jeshua, Nehemiah , Seraiah, Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispar, Bigvai, Rehum, Baanah. The number of the men of the people of Israel:"

Ezra 4:3, "But Zerubbabel, and Jeshua, and the rest of the chief of the fathers of Israel, said unto them, Ye have nothing to do with us to build an house unto our God; but we ourselves together will build unto the LORD God of Israel, as king Cyrus the king of Persia hath commanded us."

Ezra 5:2, "Then rose up Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and began to build the house of God which is at Jerusalem: and with them were the prophets of God helping them."

Zechariah 4:6 — "Not by might, nor by power" - Word Study on "might" - Strong says the Hebrew word "might" ( חַיִל) (H 2428) means, "a force, such as an army, wealth, virtue, valor, strength."

Word Study on "power" - Strong says the Hebrew word "power" ( כּׂחַ) (H 3581) literally means, "force," and figuratively it mean, "capacity, means, produce," and it comes from an unused root meaning, "to be firm, vigor."

Comments- The king of Persia had made a decree for them not to build. This was the most powerful voice on earth at that time.

Zechariah 4:6"but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts" - Comments- Note the following examples of how God wrought by His Spirit.

1. Ezra 1:1 - God stirred up the spirit of Cyrus to restore Jerusalem and to build the temple.

Ezra 1:1, "Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying,"

2. Ezra 5:1-2 - After the work ceased, God helped them by sending the words of the prophets.

Ezra 5:1, "Then the prophets, Haggai the prophet, and Zechariah the son of Iddo, prophesied unto the Jews that were in Judah and Jerusalem in the name of the God of Israel, even unto them."

Haggai 1:14, "And the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest, and the spirit of all the remnant of the people; and they came and did work in the house of the LORD of hosts, their God,"

Haggai 2:4-5, "Yet now be strong, O Zerubbabel, saith the LORD and be strong, O Joshua , son of Josedech, the high priest; and be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the LORD, and work: for I am with you, saith the LORD of hosts: According to the word that I covenanted with you when ye came out of Egypt, so my spirit remaineth among you: fear ye not."

Zechariah 4:6 Scripture References- Note a similar verse:

Psalm 127:1, "Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain."

Note the strength of God"s spirit:

Isaiah 31:3, "Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses flesh, and not spirit. When the LORD shall stretch out his hand, both he that helpeth shall fall, and he that is holpen shall fall down, and they all shall fail together."

Zechariah 4:7 Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it.

Zechariah 4:7"and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings" - Comments- The NBD says that this stone may refer to the a large stone laid in the foundation, or to the last stone laid in an arch, or the final stone on the top corner of a building. Jesus is chief cornerstone. Jesus is head of the church. Zechariah 4:7 represents the adversary trying to hinder the building of the church of Jesus Christ.

Psalm 118:22, "The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner."

Acts 4:11, "This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner."

Ephesians 2:20, "And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;"

1 Peter 2:7, "Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,"

Zechariah 4:7"crying, Grace, grace unto it" - Comments- The pronoun "it" refers to the Temple. Today, God's house is the Church. God gives His children grace, hence, "Grace to you," ( Romans 1:7).

Romans 1:7, "To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ."

The foundation of the second Temple was finished in Ezra 3:11. The Temple was finished in Ezra 6:15-18.

Ezra 3:11, "And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the LORD because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid."

Ezra 6:15-18, "And this house was finished on the third day of the month Adar, which was in the sixth year of the reign of Darius the king. And the children of Israel, the priests, and the Levites, and the rest of the children of the captivity, kept the dedication of this house of God with joy, And offered at the dedication of this house of God an hundred bullocks, two hundred rams, four hundred lambs; and for a sin offering for all Israel, twelve he goats, according to the number of the tribes of Israel. And they set the priests in their divisions, and the Levites in their courses, for the service of God, which is at Jerusalem; as it is written in the book of Moses."

Zechariah 4:7Comments- Note the power of the spoken word of faith:

Matthew 21:21, "Jesus answered and said unto them, Verily I say unto you, If ye have faith, and doubt not, ye shall not only do this which is done to the fig tree, but also if ye shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; it shall be done."

Zechariah 4:8 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

Zechariah 4:9 The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also finish it; and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you.

Zechariah 4:9 — "The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house" - Comments- Note:

Ezra 3:8-10, "Now in the second year of their coming unto the house of God at Jerusalem, in the second month, began Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and the remnant of their brethren the priests and the Levites, and all they that were come out of the captivity unto Jerusalem; and appointed the Levites, from twenty years old and upward, to set forward the work of the house of the LORD. Then stood Jeshua with his sons and his brethren, Kadmiel and his sons, the sons of Judah, together, to set forward the workmen in the house of God: the sons of Henadad, with their sons and their brethren the Levites. And when the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the LORD, they set the priests in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites the sons of Asaph with cymbals, to praise the LORD, after the ordinance of David king of Israel."

The temple had begun, but only the foundation had been laid before the decrees from their adversaries stopped the work ( Ezra 4:1; Ezra 4:4; Ezra 4:24).

Ezra 4:1, "Now when the adversaries of Judah and Benjamin heard that the children of the captivity builded the temple unto the LORD God of Israel;"

Ezra 4:4, "Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building,"

Ezra 4:24, "Then ceased the work of the house of God which is at Jerusalem. So it ceased unto the second year of the reign of Darius king of Persia."

However, the result of passages like these in Haggai and Zechariah is that the people began to build by faith, not by sight (circumstances).

Ezra 5:2, "Then rose up Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and began to build the house of God which is at Jerusalem: and with them were the prophets of God helping them."

Zechariah 4:9 — "his hands shall also finish it" - Comments- The Temple was finished in the sixth year of Darius in 515 B.C. ( Ezra 6:15).

Ezra 6:15, "And this house was finished on the third day of the month Adar, which was in the sixth year of the reign of Darius the king."

It had to be by faith despite the circumstances, and it was by God's Spirit stirring up people to work and overcoming their adversaries. ( Ezra 5:2; Ezra 6:1-11)

Zechariah 4:9"and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto you" - Comments- Zechariah is saying that this is the evidence, or proof, that God has sent him to Zerubbabel, Joshua , and people ( Deuteronomy 18:22).

Deuteronomy 18:22, "When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him."

Paul also had evidence that God had sent him to the Gentiles ( 1 Corinthians 2:4, 1 Thessalonians 1:5).

1 Corinthians 2:4, "And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man"s Wisdom of Solomon , but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:"

1 Thessalonians 1:5, "For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake."

Zechariah 4:9Comments- Zerubbabel represents Jesus. Jesus laid the foundation, His Gospel, and He will finish it, the task of building His church ( Philippians 1:6). When God does the work, you know it is of Him.

Philippians 1:6, "Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:"

Zechariah 4:10 For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth.

Zechariah 4:10"For who hath despised the day of small things" - Comments- Only the foundation had been laid for the Temple, so it was not very impressive. Who has despised, or not rejoiced at, the building of the Temple? ( Haggai 2:3, Ezekiel 3:12-13)

Haggai 2:3, "Who is left among you that saw this house in her first glory? and how do ye see it now? is it not in your eyes in comparison of it as nothing?"

Ezra 3:12-13, "But many of the priests and Levites and chief of the fathers, who were ancient men, that had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice; and many shouted aloud for joy: So that the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people: for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the noise was heard afar off."

Zechariah 4:10 — "for they shall rejoice" - Comments- In Zechariah 5:1-4 rejoicing turns into God"s indignation. Isaiah 66:14 mentions rejoicing ( Zechariah 4:10) and indignation ( Zechariah 5:1-4).

Isaiah 66:14, "And when ye see this, your heart shall rejoice, and your bones shall flourish like an herb: and the hand of the LORD shall be known toward his servants, and his indignation toward his enemies."

Zechariah 4:10 — "and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven" - Comments- Webster defines a plummet is a plumb line or a plumb bob, and used by masons in building a masonry wall. A plumb bob consists of a line fastened to a narrow board at one end, and to an egg-shaped piece of lead at the other end, and hang down along the wall for vertical alignment, with the weight of the lead keeps the line straight; or, a plumb line may be drawn and pulled side ways to align a masonry wall horizontally.

The reference to the plummet means that Zerubbabel will be at work building the Temple, specifically the walls. The wall of the Temple was to be sixty cubits (90 ft.) high ( Ezra 6:3), which is the height of a 9-story building.

Ezra 6:3, "In the first year of Cyrus the king the same Cyrus the king made a decree concerning the house of God at Jerusalem, Let the house be builded, the place where they offered sacrifices, and let the foundations thereof be strongly laid; the height thereof threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof threescore cubits;"

God is building a perfect house. His measuring stick (tape measure) is Justice, and His plumbline is Righteousness.

2 Kings 21:13, "And I will stretch over Jerusalem the line of Samaria, and the plummet of the house of Ahab: and I will wipe Jerusalem as a man wipeth a dish, wiping it, and turning it upside down."

Isaiah 28:14-17, "Wherefore hear the word of the LORD, ye scornful men, that rule this people which is in Jerusalem. Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us: for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves: Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place."

Amos 7:7-8, "Thus he shewed me: and, behold, the Lord stood upon a wall made by a plumbline, with a plumbline in his hand. And the LORD said unto me, Amos , what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them any more:"

Ephesians 2:20, "And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;"

Ephesians 4:1-16 - Unity

If it is not straight and in line, He uses a wrecking bar to remove the crooked lumber. God is the inspector. He inspects our hearts daily. His stamp, or seal, of approval is the Holy Spirit ( Ephesians 1:13). God has already bought and purchased the materials, which is the church, bought with the blood of Jesus Christ. When God finds a crooked board, meaning one of His children, He makes an effort to straight it out, but if it cannot be straightened (no repentance), then God will remove it even though it is already nailed in place.

Ephesians 1:13, "In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,"

Zerubbabel represents Jesus ( Haggai 2:23). Zerubbabel was sent to build the Temple in Jerusalem. Jesus was sent to build or establish the Church here on earth.

Haggai 2:23, "In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, my servant, the son of Shealtiel, saith the LORD, and will make thee as a signet: for I have chosen thee, saith the LORD of hosts.

Scripture References- Note:

Amos 7:7-8, "Thus he shewed me: and, behold, the Lord stood upon a wall made by a plumbline, with a plumbline in his hand. And the LORD said unto me, Amos , what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them any more:"

Zechariah 4:10Comments- The NLT says, "Do not scorn this small beginning." This small beginning is like the Kingdom of God and the Parable of the Mustard Seed, since they began small (note Daniel 2:34-35).

Daniel 2:34-35, "Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces. Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth."

Zechariah 4:11 Then answered I, and said unto him, What are these two olive trees upon the right side of the candlestick and upon the left side thereof?

Zechariah 4:12 And I answered again, and said unto him, What be these two olive branches which through the two golden pipes empty the golden oil out of themselves?

Zechariah 4:12 Comments- Jesus is the Branch ( Zechariah 3:8; Zechariah 6:12).

Zechariah 3:8, "Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH."

Zechariah 6:12, "And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD:"

Zechariah 4:13 And he answered me and said, Knowest thou not what these be? And I said, No, my lord.

Zechariah 4:14 Then said Hebrews , These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the Lord of the whole earth.

Zechariah 4:14Comments- One of the anointed ones was Joshua , who stands by (or in the presence of) the Lord of the whole earth ( Zechariah 3:6).

Zechariah 3:6, "And the angel of the LORD protested unto Joshua , saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house, and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by."

Joshua represents Jesus ( Zechariah 3:8; Zechariah 6:12) and Zerubbabel represents Jesus ( Haggai 2:23) as High Priest and King of Kings, who intercedes and judges.

Zechariah 3:8, "Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH."

Zechariah 6:11-13, "Then take silver and gold, and make crowns, and set them upon the head of Joshua the son of Josedech, the high priest; And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD: Even he shall build the temple of the LORD and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both."

Haggai 2:23, "In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, will I take thee, O Zerubbabel, my servant, the son of Shealtiel, saith the LORD, and will make thee as a signet: for I have chosen thee, saith the LORD of hosts."

In Revelation 1:20 Jesus stood in midst of the seven candlesticks. He is the Olive tree and the Anointed One.

Revelation 1:20, "The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches."

 


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Zechariah 4:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/zechariah-4.html. 2013.

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