Zechariah 12, God Has A Plan
1. God Is Able To Accomplish His Plan (v1)
2. God Has A Plan To Deal With Nations (v2-4)
3. God Has A Plan To Defend Jerusalem (v5-9)
4. God Has A Plan To Bring Repentance (v10-14)
Zechariah 12, God Has A Plan
Zechariah 12, God Has A Plan
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As we look at Zechariah Chapter 12, this evening I've titled the Message God has a plan. Here in Zechariah we have the prophecies of this man who was amongst the people of Israel. After they had returned back from Babylon, he was part of that group that returned back from Babylon, part of the rebuilding of the temple that was going on in 520 BC is when he prophesied. Along with Haggai and it was during the time, if you want. Look back, you can look at Ezra chapter five and six and the work of the temple that was going on, but you might remember when the the work of the temple began. It started fast and then stopped for a long time. For many years. The work of the temple was halted and God had been calling his people back. To the rebuilding, he gave them a few years off and the the building of the temple and pausing the work and causing them to be unable to do. The work, but but now he's been speaking to them and calling them back to the building of the temple, and they've been resistant to the call. They've been ignoring the call, and so the Prophet, Haggai, and the Prophet Zechariah come on the scene with the word of the Lord to call the people back and say, look, you live in really nice houses. You've got, you know all of your own. Stuff and your own priorities taken care of, but the House of the Lord is, you know, laying in rubble and and you need to come back to this work that God has called you. Too, and so this was Zechariah's primary ministry as he was along with Haggai calling the people back to do that work that God had called them to do. But thus far they had been resisting and ignoring that call in their lives. But Zechariah goes on to also prophecy. Many other things, not just calling them back, and so he spoke to them right there in that day, called them, and revealed the word of the Lord to them. But he also revealed so many things about the future that would take place for the nation of Israel and the things that God had in store for them. Things that have in some part been fulfill. Failed, but also many things that are yet to be fulfilled, even as we read these things today. The Book of Zechariah has often been called the revelation of the Old Testament, because there is so much prophecy here about those end times and and you can see that here in our chapter in Zechariah, Chapter 12 in verse. Three, it says it shall happen in that day. And the phrase there in that day is really a key phrase. It's used over and over again, it's. Used repeatedly in the book of Zechariah 16 times. In the final chapters, 1213 and 14, it's used seven times here in Chapter 12. It's setting the context for us. It's not just three words that are random and kind of collected together, but but it's in that day. It's a specific day, a specific time. Period that is being set for us. Setting the context for the time period that he is addressing, which is the tribulation period. This freeze in that day is strongly related to the other freeze speaking about the same time frame the day of the Lord in that day, and the day of the Lord often use hand in hand and interchangeably in the prophecies about these things, and so we're talking about these end time events and this. Layout that I've shown you often about where we are in the church age right now. Looking forward to the return of Jesus for his church in the rapture of the church, but after that takes place then we understand it to to be that there will be 7 years of tribulation like the world has never seen before. And this tribulation period is part of that day. It's part of the day of the Lord, the day of the Lord, and that day also includes the the Millennium. At the end of the Tribulation period, when Jesus comes back and puts an end to the battle that's about to take place at Armageddon and he binds Satan for 1000 years. He rules and reigns upon the earth. That's why it's called the Millennium because he rules and reigns for 1000 years and so that portion. As well, is part of that day and the day of the Lord. It's an era, really. If you think about it that that it is this time period that God is referencing when he says in that day and in the day of the Lord. And then of course after that we enter into eternity. And so this is what Zechariah is prophesying about. He's talking about these future things. We're looking at the Tribulation period. We're looking at the millennial Kingdom as we work our way through Zechariah today and tomorrow. It's it's really strongly focused in that time frame, and so God sets the context for us. To remind us and to let us know that. He has a plan. Zechariah wanted the people of Israel to know that God had a plan for them that no matter what happened and you need to understand there was a lot that was going to happen. Between Zechariah's days, he's prophesying these things and the fulfillment of these things they were going to be conquered again. They just come back from Babylon, right? But in a couple 100 years, they're going to be in subjection to Rome. Eventually they're going to be under siege from Rome. They're going to be destroyed by Rome dispersed again. Just as they were dispersed before by Assyria and Babylon, so so there's a lot that's going to happen to them. And and the Lord wanted them to know I've got a plan there. There's all these things that. Are going to. Happen leading up between the time of Zechariah to the time of Jesus. There was a. Lot of turmoil there in the land of Israel. As there was the the battles of the Greek Empire, and then the division of the Greek Empire and and how that took place, and then the now the taking over by the Roman Empire, there was all these things. The Maccabean revolt happens. You know, after Zechariah, before Jesus and and. So there's all these things that happened. This new temple that was. Is is desecrated by one of the the leaders? I'm not going to try to pronounce it off the top of my head because I'm going to butcher, but you can kind of look into those things and and follow this and understand that the the Lord wanted to give his people something to hold on to, as all of these events were going to transpire. That that he did have a plan that he was working. All of these things together toward a purpose and a good future for the nation of Israel. And I think it's important to think about that too, as we think about this today. You know, it's very often. Easy for us to look at prophecy. You know I have this diagram that I keep showing. I put it up there regularly and often and everything and and. And it can. Give the impression sometimes that we have it all figured out. We know exactly when it starts. When it ends, all the events that happen in and what all the events that are leading up to it. How it's all going to be fulfilled and we can very. Boldly pronounced. You know this is exactly what the mark of the beast is going to be, and this is exactly the relationship of the rapture to the beginning of the Tribulation period. We've got it, you know all figured out and worked out. And so for sure, you know that we understand that these things that are happening in the Middle East, you know, must be the precursor to these things, and we're about to unfold. But but I think it would be good for us to understand that as Zechariah prophesied these things, there was going to be all kinds of history that would transpire. For the fulfillment of these things, because they still haven't been fulfilled and and there is the possibility that there. Is still a. Lot of history to be fulfilled before these things are fulfilled. But it doesn't make them less true. God's still working towards these things, but but even if you know we're convinced that we haven't figured out, I heard a. An Israeli teacher share one time, he he. He is Jewish, but he is believed in Jesus and so he has, you know, come to faith in the Lord. But but he was commenting on how we often, you know, are so convinced that we have it all figured out. So he gave an illustration. He said, look? If the nation of Israel was completely conquered. And dispersed again today. Spread out, conquered. It seemed like they could never come back. It seemed like they were all destroyed. Like if the Holocaust happened again, or you know something like that. If the if the nation of Israel was no more tomorrow. That wouldn't defeat any of the things that God has proclaimed. We're so convinced you know, this must be the the the final scenario. And and maybe it is, but at the same time we we need to understand there's there's a lot that God's doing it. And and through all of it. We don't have to have it figured out. We don't have to have all of the answers and and it's maybe fun and entertaining to think through all of those possibilities and and work out those ideas. And, you know, imagine what could be and what might be. But the real thing that we need. To know is that God has a plan. No matter what happens, no matter what transpires, and even if everything unfolds completely differently than we've always thought and imagined. We we can. Hold on to this anchor that God has a plan that that's the anchor that God gives to his people. Here in Zechariah, chapter 12, I want you to know guys. There's a lot that's going to happen. But I have. A plan and I'm going to workout through all. Of these things. Some good things for the nation of Israel? Well, we're going to walk, walk through four points looking at this idea of God's plan for the Nation of Israel, and I consider some of this for ourselves as well. Of course, point #1 looking at verse one. First we need to be reminded God is able to accomplish his plan. Verse one again says the burden of the word of the Lord against Israel. Thus says the Lord, who stretches out the heavens, lays the foundation of the earth and forms the spirits of man within him. Here is God begins to prophecy through Zechariah in chapter 12. He first of all sets the stage for us. This is referred to as the burden of the word of the Lord. The weight that was put upon Zechariah and Zechariah is. Compelled by the weight of God's word upon him, it is the burden of the word of the Lord that the the compelling of Zechariah to share what God is saying and declare. This is the word of the Lord. This is what God has said. This is not. Zechariah's speculations or ideas or hopes or dreams, this is a very serious message from. The Lord and so prophecies were often called and referred to this way. It was the burden of the Lord or the burden of the word. Of the Lord. This this heavy thing placed upon Zechariah's heart to speak on behalf of Israel or behalf of God to Israel. But but before he gets into the actual message, he says, let me remind you. About who I am thus says the Lord. Who stretches out the heavens? But says before I talk to you about my plans, I want you to remember I'm the guy who stretched out the heavens. You look up into the night sky and you see all of the planets and the stars you you see the the infinite expanse there that is and you need to be reminded and understand. I'm the one who stretches it out. I forget the exact Psalm, it just came to me on the top of my head so it's, you know, I didn't look it up ahead of time, but I remember that there's a song that talks about the Lord stretching out the heavens like a curtain, and I just I just picture of the shower curtain right like it's not real hard. I don't think you Labor intensely to open up and close the shower curtain. Maybe you do, that's why you don't shower enough and you should. Really start to. Work on that, but but you know like it's just. It's no big deal. You close the curtain, it's just no. Good deal in in a similar way, God stretches out the heavens like a curtain. He just goes. It's not a big deal. He's not, you know, grunting and groaning to stretch out all of the heavens. Even as we you know, are endeavoring to see further and further into space and go further and further. In you know our ships and equipment and things and measuring and and photographing and researching. We're we're going farther and farther, but so, like not even close. This getting near to really make any real progress. In reaching the end of the heavens, but the Lord is the one who stretches out the heavens. Thus says the Lord, who stretches out the heavens. Who lays the foundation of the earth. This is the Lord who set the earth. In its place. One of the amazing things about God's creation is you can take any pursuits. Any study of any specific part, and you can spend a lifetime investigating and researching and learning and not come to the end of it not know all about it, not understand it completely. That's true of the heavens. That's true of the earth. There is so much in God's creation. There's so much depth and intelligence. There that we after thousands of years of study and collaborating together, and you study this and you study this and then we'll compare notes and we'll try to figure things out. You know, as we increase our information we also come face to face with the reality. Many times we still know hardly anything about anything. There is so much. More it's the Lord who laid the foundation. Of the earth. He brought it into existence. He set it in its place, the perfect spot in the rotation around the sun. The perfect you know all of the characteristics that were necessary for us to experience life on this earth as God has created it. He's the one who set all of that together. He is the one. Who lead the foundation of the earth. And then he also says, thus says the Lord, who forms the spirit of man within him. God is the one who has created us and given us life, not just the physical form but the spirit of man. He is the one who has given us that unseen part, that internal part, that spirit of man within us is the formation of God. And again it's another. Area of study. You can look at biology. You can look at anatomy. You can study those things and just be amazed and in awe. Of who God is. And so God sets out these three examples, and he says, look, here's how you can know all of the things I'm About to tell. You I am able to accomplish those things. Because I'm the one who stretched out the heavens, I'm the one who set the earth in its place, and I'm the one who gave you life from the very beginning. Pastor Thomas Constable says by describing Yahweh as the creator of the heavens, Earth, and mankind. Zechariah reminded his audience of God's authority and ability to accomplish what he predicted in this three chapter Oracle. That's 12. 13 and 14 of Zechariah Yahweh is the master over all things celestial, terrestrial, and human. The Lord is the master over all things. And so he is able to accomplish his. Plan as unlikely as it might seem. As impossible as the situation might feel. God is able to accomplish. It well point #2 as we work our way through verses 2 through 4. God has a plan to deal with nations. God has a plan to deal with nations versus 2 through 4 says, behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples when they lay siege against Judah. And Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples, all who had heaved away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are. Gathered against it. And that day says the Lord, I will strike every horse with confusion and its rider with madness. I will open my eyes on the House of Judah, and I will strike every horse of the peoples with blindness. God has a plan to deal with. The nations now again we're talking about in that day, as it says in verse three it shall happen in that day, setting the context for that tribulation period. This is the specifics. Now God has plans for the nations that are existing and happening right now God is working out his will and his plan in that. But Zechariah is specifically targeted. On that tribulation period that millennial Kingdom and and in that time there is going to be great persecution against Israel. When the Antichrist rises to power, at first there's going to be peace. There's going to be looking like a, you know, a lot of answers are being given and peace has finally been figured out and problems are being resolved. But there is also going to be this focus and hatred and attack on Jerusalem on the people of God, the people of Israel. And so God is going to work in the midst of this, even when all of the nations align themselves ally themselves against Israel. God is saying I have a plan to deal with them. And so he says in verse two I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness. To all the surrounding peoples. And perhaps we already see the beginnings of this in the just the idea that Jerusalem has the attention of the world. Jerusalem is not really a major city, it has a decent sized population, but. Compared to other major cities around the world, there's many more cities that you would look at and think that deserves to be in the headlines regularly every day, and you know every week whatever that that it should be, you know those major players that are making the headlines, but it's interesting there is a. So a little bit of a. The mystery around. Why is this such a stumbling stone for so many people? But there's always news there. There's always conflict there. There's always challenges there. God says, I'm going to make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples. That's only going to intensify. It's only going to increase more and more Jerusalem will be the focus and attention and it will be the the the point of conflict for Israel, her neighbors, and the whole world around. And so, as you see, Israel and Jerusalem in the headlines be amazed at how much attention is there when you recognize. And maybe it's a a good exercise for you to do if you haven't done this before lately to try to compare some of the the stats and the data that. The Nation of Israel. The whole nation. About the same size square miles, if I if my memory is right and so you can double check it later, but the county of San Bernardino is about the equivalent of the nation of Israel. If my memory is correct, like we're not talking about a huge portion of land, we're not talking about, you know, really. Incredible place in that way. It's significant for spiritual reasons because the enemy has his eyes on defeating the plans of God, and the nations are under the. Sway of the. Enemy, but the Lord is working out his plan. And so he. Has made Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness. It's not the enemy's plan that's being fulfilled here. Sure, the enemy has plans and the Lord may allow him to run with those plans a little bit and use those plans for his own purposes. But but it's the Lord's plan that's being fulfilled, and his plan is for Jerusalem to become a cup. Of drunkenness now cup in the scriptures as many times used by God as an illustration for judgment. You can see this as an example in Psalm chapter 70. In the hand of the Lord, there is a cup, and the wine is red. It is fully mixed and he pours it out. Surely it's dragged shall all the wicked of the earth drain and drink down, and the idea of this cup picture is that pouring out of judgment and and the drinking of it all the way down to the dregs, that's all the residue that that sits in the bottom. That it's the very last drop of judgment will be poured out upon the. Wicked is the idea there. And so Jerusalem is that to the world by God's design, by God's making that the world is focused on and fixated on Jerusalem. And God is going to use that to bring about judgment upon all of these nations that are coming against his people. And and he is going to accomplish his purposes in the midst of that, and bring judgment upon them. They are his cup of drunkenness. Again, he sets the context in verse when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And so there's a a clear picture here. There's going to be an attack on Israel. There's been many. But there's still more to come. The timing of this, the exact you know thing that God is referencing here, we cannot say for sure, but we can say for sure God's able to accomplish his plan. There will be another siege against Judah and Jerusalem. Perhaps this is the same attack that is referenced by Ezekiel and Ezekiel, Chapter 38 and 39, and there it speaks about the. This alliance between these nations that join together to come against Israel and how there is a miraculous victory that God provides in the midst of that, and so perhaps it is that same battle, some would see it that way. Some would would say that it's. More a reference to the Battle of Armageddon, or it could be another battle that we don't know about. But regardless of when it happens when it happens when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem, God says in verse three I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples. This is going to take place. There's going to be the attention and and fixation. On getting rid. Of the people of Israel and getting rid of the Jewish people. But but God says I'm going to make Jerusalem a heavy stone. So they can't get rid of it as they try. You know, it's almost like Thors hammer, you know everybody gathering around to try to lift it right or. Excalibur pulling it out of the stone, right? The same kind of idea there that that Jerusalem nations are going to plot and plan and try to figure out. How can we get rid of Israel? What attack will be successful? Will it be military? Might will be economic. Will it be, you know, some other kind of attack against them? There's going to be these attempts. But God is going to make Jerusalem a heavy stone so that it can't be moved. As much as people try. To move it, verse three goes on. To say all who. Would heave it. Away will surely be. Cut in pieces, though all the nations of. The earth are gathered against it. Whoever would want to remove Jerusalem from its place. God says, surely. They will be cut in pieces, but that's the idea that people want to get rid of. Jerusalem nations want to remove Jerusalem to wipe Jerusalem out to take Jerusalem away. And God says, like, even if all of the nations of the Earth. Unite against Jerusalem. They will only hurt themselves. This is the reality, of course. Always when it comes to God's plan, we always hurt ourselves resisting God's plan. Whether it's us as an individual or all of the people of the earth. You get you know 7 million people 7 billion people united together in arms against Jerusalem and still they will not prevail against God's plans. They will be cut.
Verse four and that day says the Lord, I will strike every horse with confusion and its rider with madness. God says I'm going to provide some divine protection and this attack is going to fail. Every horse will be confused. Every rider is going to go crazy now. There's some interesting discussions that could be had around this verse, because again, these things are not yet fulfilled. They will be. Filled and it's not typical for us to think about battle today in the context of a horse and a rider like we understand, that's how battles used to be fought. But that's not really Modern Warfare, and so there's some discussion about this. Is Zechariah using the idea of a horse and rider to figuratively represent? The war that will go on and so maybe it represents tanks and you know infantry and drones and fighter jets. And you know, maybe the horse and rider actually represents all of the modern technology represented in warfare. That's a possibility. But another possibility too, as you conjure up many different ideas about how the future could unfold. It actually could be literal that we could kind of revert back to the the old methods in war because of a turning back of technology. So if there is. You know some type of issue with technology. Atomic bombs, you know. For example, knockout electronics and those kinds of things, and so there there could be a reality here that it literally is a horse and rider, and they're attempting after great destruction to still overthrow Jerusalem and the horse and rider are. Confused and gone mad. Verse four, he goes on to say I will open my eyes on the House of Judah and will strike every horse of the peoples with. God has a plan to deal with the nations if they all unite together. If they come up with some incredibly deep and hidden secret conspiracy, it doesn't matter. God has a plan he's going to deal with them and bring justice to them. They will drink the cup of his wrath. And they're rebellion against him. There's no getting around. That well, moving on to verses 5 through 9, we get point #3 and that is that God as he planned to defend Jerusalem. This goes hand in hand with the previous point of course, but here in verse five it goes on to say, and the governors of Judah shall say in their heart. The inhabitants of Jerusalem are my strength and the Lord of hosts their God, and that day I will make the governors of Judah like a fire pan in. The woodpile and like a fiery torch in the sheaves, they shall devour all the surrounding peoples on the right hand and on the left. But Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place. There's going to be a work that God does. In that day. And and it's specific to Jerusalem, the city of Jerusalem is mentioned by name 11 times here in Zechariah Chapter 12. So we can understand we're not thinking about, you know some. Hypothetical thing we're not thinking about. Some made-up city we're not thinking about. You know, some alternate scenario or some metaphor like God's talking about Jerusalem. Literal actual Jerusalem, where it sits on the map. This is going to be the center of attacks and. Persecution and there's going to be much threat to it, but. God and his plan is going to. Workout a defense. And so even when nations try to throw away that stone, try to get rid of it, try to to to get it out of the way and wipe it out. God is going to enable and strengthen Jerusalem. To endure those attacks, and so the governors of Judah are going to recognize the inhabitants of Jerusalem, are my. Strength in the Lord. It's it's not so much the geography that God is concerned with, it's the inhabitants. It's the people that God is concerned about and that he is going to be protecting there in the city of Jerusalem. So God says, I'm going to make the governors of Judah like a fire pan in the woodpile. The idea here is that all of the nations, all of the plots and plans of enemies, they're going to be like stubble, and the governors of Judah will just. Be able to. Light them up. They're going to be enabled and equipped. To bring a great fire upon the enemies of the Lord, the surrounding peoples will be devoured on their right hand and on their left they're going to be enabled to be very effective in defeating their strategies and their plans and their weapons and and all of the things that are. Thrown against them. And so verse six tells us that. Jerusalem will be inhabited again in her own plea. These Jerusalem the people are going to be brought into Jerusalem. The people are going to live in Jerusalem and verse 7. It says the Lord will save the tents of Judah first, so that the glory of the House of David and the glory of the inhabitants of Jerusalem shall not become greater than that of Judah and that day. The Lord will defend the inhabitants of. Now again, this is interesting because. For many years after Zechariah prophesied these things, the Jewish people did not inhabit Jerusalem. And so you know it's kind of hard to imagine yourself back in those days, but back before 1948, when the people of Israel were not a nation and not inhabiting Jerusalem. They would have read this scripture a lot differently than we do, right? They would have struggled with this and there are no you know, inhabitants of Jerusalem and and they would have wondered are is God gonna bring the Jewish people back into the promised land? You know and will they inhabit the the city of Jerusalem? Some people in those days believed that that would take place and some did not. And so they said, well, this must be some kind of. Allegory, and so let's, you know, pull out some other meaning on it. But but today we can look at. And say, no God did bring the people back in the land. But but here's again the the point I would just throw a little word of caution. I'm not suggesting that this is, you know, what I'm. Believing, but but at the same time it's a possibility. The people of Israel could be out of Jerusalem again and then brought back later at some point for this to be fulfilled. Like it's going to be fulfilled one way or another, but but we need to understand that it's not always the way that we imagine it, but in that day the Lord will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem. Now what's interesting about this is how is God going to defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem? First State tells us the one who is feeble among them in that day shall be like David. I think this is really interesting again, and a characteristic we often see in God's plan. God is going to accomplish his plan to defend Jerusalem by involving. The weak people. He's going to take the weak people of Jerusalem. And he's going to make them each of. Them to be like. David, who is a mighty warrior. God, he could just supernaturally do things on his own and not involve anybody. But time and time again, we see. Here's how God works. He takes the weak, the unexpected, and he equips them. He enables them, and he empowers them. To be part of the fulfillment of his plans. Amazing how God works. Versit goes on to say the House of David shall be like God and the Angel of the Lord before them. There seems to be a reference to that time in Second Kings Chapter 19, where the Angel of the Lord went out against the Assyrian army. 185,000 of the the Syrian Army were cut down in one night, and so they arose the next morning and there were all the corpses, all dead and one night there. The majority of their. Army was destroyed by the Angel of the Lord and and so Zechariah is saying the Lord is saying through Zechariah. This is how the people of Israel are going to be again, that there is going to be this kind of victory. This kind of battle. This kind of defeats for the enemies of Israel and Jerusalem. I'm going to enable my people to fight in supernatural ways verse nine. It shall be in that day that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. God says whoever is coming against I have it out for them. Pastor Warren. As we pointed out throughout history, every nation that has. Sought to do this has been defeated and destroyed. We can look ahead and understand as all of the nations unite together to come against Israel and Jerusalem. Then they will fail as well, because God has a plan to defend Jerusalem. Those are his people and he will defend them and defeat any attack against them. God accomplishes his plans. Partially by involving weak people, now you look at Ezekiel 38 and 39. There's if that's the same attack that's being referenced. You know there's other things that are going on. It's not just that that that physical battle that's happening. There's there's a supernatural work. There's a supernatural defect. Hands but also God is involving people and giving them supernatural strength, supernatural wisdom, and enabling them to fight their battles to have great victory. That's how God works. That's why Paul says in Corinthians you know that we look around. There's not many mighty, not many noble, you know, God. Doesn't choose to use the strong he chooses. Primarily to use. The weak and. Enable them to do things that are well beyond their capacity so that he gets the glory and they get to be part of his incredible work. Well, we're going to finish it up. .4 in verses 10 through 14, God has a plan to bring repentance. That's plans for Israel and Jerusalem are not just physical, not just military, not just political. But you could. Even understand his primary plan is this one. Here in verses 10 through 14 he has a plan to bring repentance and restoration to the nation of Israel between him. And then verse 10 says I will pour on the House of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the spirit of Greece and supplicate. Then they will look on me. Whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for him as one grieves for a first born. And that day there shall be a great morning in Jerusalem, like the morning at Haddad, Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo. Pastor Warren Wisby points out here. Our Lord's ultimate goal is more than their national preservation for their spiritual restoration is uppermost in his heart. He wants to reveal himself to them and establish the kind of relationship that was impossible in previous centuries because of their unbelief. Here we see the Lord prophecy about this restoration between the people of Israel and God, and the reuniting of their fellowship. Together, that happens as an outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Verse 10 tells us I will pour on the House of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the spirits. Of grace and supplication. This is going to be a work of the spirit of God. Not by might, nor by power that's earlier in Zechariah, but by my spirit. That's that's how God accomplishes his work. That was true for Zerubbabel. Back in Zechariah Chapter 4, and how the temple was going to be rebuilt. But it's also true in the future, and his plans for Israel. This restoration this work is going to be accomplished. By the working of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the people of Jerusalem and Israel, but but also it's a spirit of grace and supplication. There's going to be. The people of Israel. Will not deserve. For God to work in their lives in this way. In the same way that you and I don't deserve. For God to work in our lives. And everything that we have is by the grace of God. Everything that we have in God, and all the promises of God towards us. They're they're by the grace of God, and there is going to be an outpouring of the spirit of grace. And supplication the answering of prayers. There's going to be a time where God is starting to answer prayers by pouring out his Holy Spirit and bringing grace to his people. And at that time. As all of those things collide, the Holy Spirit, the grace of God, and the prayers of the Saints, verse 10 then they will look on me whom they pierced. Then there will be an awakening. There will be eyes opened and they will realize that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, the one whom they pierced. The Apostle John references this and quotes from this in John Chapter 19. There when Jesus was upon the cross. As he was hanging there. There was an urgency for those who were on the cross to be. Killed so that they could have that finished before the feast of Passover was fully underway, and so they went and broke the legs of the two criminals beside Jesus. But when they came to Jesus, they found that he was already dead. But just to make sure the soldier thrust the spear into his side. So his bones weren't broken. That fulfills the script. But also his side was pierced and John says. This is that John 1934, one of the soldiers pierced his side with the spear and immediately blood and water came out. He was seen and has testified his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth so. That you may believe. For these things were done that the scripture should be fulfilled, not one of his bones shall be broken. And secondly, another scripture says they shall look on him whom they pierced. He quotes here from Zechariah chapter 12. Verse 10 says look this one that was pierced is Jesus on the cross. And in the future, the nation of Israel is going to recognize that Jesus on the cross, the one who has pierced, is the Messiah that God had promised, and there's going to be this revival that takes place as the Jewish people as a whole begin to embrace the Lord Jesus as. Their Messiah. The nation as a whole. In Jesus as they rejected Jesus as their Messiah, there was individuals disciples who received Jesus as their Messiah, but as a whole the nation rejected Jesus as their Messiah. And the people of Israel continue. The Jewish people continue as a whole their. Individual cases where Jewish people believe in Jesus and receive him and understand him. To be the Messiah. The Jewish people reject Jesus. Until this time and then they will look on. Suddenly there will be this occasion for them to have their eyes open and and so understand. Put all of this. Together, these are not just random things that are just. God says, you know, these are events that are going to happen, and in no particular order, and no particular significance, no. God is making Jerusalem a heavy stone that no one can move. And allowing nations to rise up and come against them. He is coordinating all of these things to bring it to this point where they will finally be able to have their eyes opened and see the one whom they pierced. God knows what they need in order. To open their eyes and be saved. And so he is bringing about exactly what is needed. I think it's always encouraging to remember this as we pray for those that we love, that we want their eyes to be opened. To the Lord. To remember that the Lord. Knows them much better than we do, and he knows exactly what they need to have their eyes opened. If it's going to be battles or miracles, if it's going to be debates or whispers, if it's going to be. Somebody else? Or someone that we know or our own selves that's involved. God knows exactly what is necessary. And he's not willing that any should perish. He he is. Working out and doing the best that he can. Again, only thing that he's not doing is forcing people to believe, but everything else. He knows exactly what is needed. The exact amount of trouble and affliction. The exact amount of grace and mercy to show the exact amount of testimony to give and scriptures to reveal. And you know things for them to experience. So that their eyes might be opened. Unto the Lord. God has a plan to bring repentance. Short of forcing people, there will be those in the nation of Israel who. Do not repent. But it will be different because God will have worked out his circumstances. And now of their own volition with their free will they will have their eyes open and they will see. That Jesus is the one whom they pierced. And and God is working that same kind of way in the people around us as well. Well, in that day it goes on in verse 10 to tell us that they will mourn. They're going to mourn greatly. They're going to mourn for him as one mourns for his only son, and grief for him as one grieves for a first born. That the immediate response to recognizing that Jesus is the Messiah is going to be one of incredible and intense grief. There, but there'll be. Great mourning, it says in verse 11. This intense morning now morning is not always bad. Sometimes morning is the thing that we need the most. Because it. Brings about repentance. Paul talks about this in 2nd Corinthians 7. Writing to the Corinthians, he's like I made you sorry, and I'm not sorry that I made you. Sorry, because I I. I saw you. I witnessed that godly sorrow. And the godly sorrow was good for you. So that you might not suffer loss. And that godly sorrow. Produced repentance, leading to salvation, so it's not to be regretted. But there is a different kind of sorrow that the world gives, and that produces death, and so mourning is not inherently wrong. But there is a worldly sorrow. There is a godly sorrow. At this time the people of Israel and Zechariah 1210. They will have a godly sorrow that brings about repentance. Paul goes on in Second Corinthians, Chapter 7, verse 11. It's a very important verse. To describe then what that repentance looks like and see the radical change the radical turn around the godly sorrow produced. All of this pursuit. Of restoration and reconciliation healing. So check out second Corinthians 711. When you get a chance, but this morning is what produced that. It's what brought about that real repentance. It's what will bring about that real repentance for the people of Israel. In that day. Now the next few verses go on to describe for us this morning, even in greater detail, and it really illustrates for us that this morning that will go on again. It will be intense, but there's going to be an individual Ness to this morning. Verse 12 says, and the land shall mourn every family by itself. The family of the House of David by itself and their wives by themselves, the family of the House of Nathan by itself and their wives by themselves. The family of the House of Levi by itself and their wives by themselves. The family of Shimai by itself and their wives by themselves. All the families that remain. Every family by itself. And their wives by themselves. Over and over, it's by themselves the family by themselves, the wives separate by themselves that the idea being painted here is that there is going to be this individual iness. It's going to be happening collectively and many people are going to be experiencing this, but it's not, you know, a stadium event. Where everybody is mourning altogether, there is going to be that personal individual work in all of these people's hearts. So that they're experiencing the same thing at the same time, not because they're just part of a group that you know everybody is experiencing that, or doing that, but because the Lord has touched each heart individually. Pastor Thomas Constable put it this way. This would not be a national media event. Staged by the. Leaders of Israel to make a show that individuals everywhere throughout the nation would sincerely voice. Their remorse. It's not going to be just that we 2000 years ago or more, you know, rejected Jesus, and so he was crucified. It's not just going to be we. Throughout our 2000 years of history after Christ have rejected Jesus, it's going to be me. I rejected Jesus up to this point in my life and I have been. Refusing to believe in the Messiah that was provided for me, there's going to be that individual work in the heart of God's people that brings them. To a godly sorrow. In Grace it's the spirit of grace. Remember this right, not the spirit of condemnation. It's the spirit of grace. That is going to open up their eyes in that time. To produce a godly sorrow that brings forth repentance. God has a plan. To make this happen. It's hard to imagine perhaps for many. In the nation of Israel, for many who are immersed in the the the things of Israel, the Jewish culture. But this is going to happen. God has a plan to make it happen and he is able remember going back to first one. God is able. He's the one who stretches out the heavens. He's the one who set the foundation.
Of the earth.
He is able. To accomplish his plan. And so he's going to deal with nations he's going to defend Jerusalem in this time of chaos and craziness, and battle like we've never known or understood before. And God's going to work all of that to bring about a revival and repentance for the nation of Israel. This is great encouragement for us as we understand how God works. We maybe not are not Jewish, right, but? We understand still we learn principles of how God works and how he is evil to work out his purposes and accomplish the the repentance that is needed or all the circumstances to align in order for someone to have their eyes open and an awakening to the Lord. You can see all there throughout this that God has an individual focus even as he's dealing with these huge subjects for thousands of years in advance. In verse one he reminds us he is the one who forms the spirit of man within him. Even from the very beginning I stretch. Out the heavens. And I personally form and fashion and create each and everyone. Of you. God has an individual focus. And God is working in our lives. He's dealing with unbelief, dealing with unbelievers around us. He has a plan to defend us. As his followers. But he also has a plan to bring us to repentance. He has a plan to bring others around us to repentance and and something that we need to know. As we wrap up. This year and head into the New Year. Something we need to know. Repentance is always without exception. In every case, it's always better the sooner. You do it. The sooner the better, when it comes to repentance. Always in every case. Without getting into the details in Zechariah chapter 13. The prophecy continues. It's not another prophecy. It's a continuation of Chapter 12. But there in the later verses of Chapter 13 you see that 2/3. Of the people are going to die in the midst of the battles and things that are going on. And it. Can be a little bit surprising, but we need to be reminded of it. Yes, they're going to be the weak who are enabled to be like David and have great victories in that day. But there's also going to be the unrepentant and rebellious. And 65 percent. 66 percent 2/3. Of the people will die in that time. Only a third. You wouldn't necessarily think of that as great victory, right? If you were just thinking about it, like if you looked at your bank account tomorrow and there was only 30% there of what you thought was there the day before, right? Like that would be like yes victory. I didn't lose at all like no. No, that's that's not counted as a victory, right? All of these individuals. That will be affected by this that are. Part of the 2/3. There there's been opportunity to repent all along and God's been working out the plan for them to be able to repent all along, but. In their resistance they are going to be lost. And 2/3 will die in this day in this time as a result of all of this. That happens, but God is going to use all of that to bring about a national repentance for the people. All the the point I'm just trying to make is we always heard ourselves resisting God's plans. And so if there's anything we're holding on to as we end this year and start the new year like it's a good opportunity that helps us in our mind to like think in those terms sometimes, like let's let it go this year. And I don't mean indulge for the last couple of days. I'm just saying like let's let's let this year be the year that we ended those things. And let's start the new Year fresh and a life of repentance. A life of grace. A life of submission to God and his plans. Because we only hurt ourselves. When we resist God's plan. Pastor Warren Wisby says repentance isn't something we work up ourselves. It's a gift from God as we hear his word and recognize his grace, God will pour out the spirit upon Israel and that people will realize their sins and call out to God for. When we desire repentance. We need to understand it's not a work of the flesh. It's not an endeavor for us to work really hard or be super disciplined. Repentance itself is a gift of God. It's a working of the Holy Spirit and the grace of God. Our responsibility. Is to hear his voice. To hear his word. To submit to what he says and receive his grace. And by his spirit. He will transform and bring about the repentance that we need in our hearts. God has a plan for your repentance. For the repentance of those around you. For the repentance of the nation of Israel, he's going to be working that out. Don't fight against it. Don't resist it. But this year close out all of that resistance to God's plans and let's enter into the new year in full submission to the plan of God. Lord, we thank you for your word and the encouragement that it brings to our hearts. We thank you, God, that you. Are so big and incredible and we can trust in you completely Lord. You stretched out the heavens. You laid the foundation of the Earth Lord. There is no problem, no challenge, no difficulty. For the nation of Israel. Or for our own selves. That is greater or more challenging for you, Lord, it's. It's all small when we understand and remember how great you are. And so, God, I pray that you would. Help us to trust you. To stop resisting your word. To stop resisting your call to stop resisting the things that you've said. Lord and to bring ourselves into submission. Help us to stop hurting ourselves by resisting trying to. Throw away that rock. That you have permanently placed there. Helpless Lord To hear you at your word to receive your grace and your Holy Spirit. And I pray God, that you would transform us. That we would be your people. Who walk with you? Who know you? Who bring about mighty victories. In your power and by your grace. We pray this in Jesus name.