The Word Made Fresh
1Then I looked up and saw a man standing there holding a measuring line. 2I asked, “Where are you going?”
He answered, “To measure Jerusalem and determine its length and width.”
3Then the angel who had spoken to me was joined by another angel who came forward to meet him. 4This other angel said, “Run and tell that young man that Jerusalem will have so many people and animals it will be settled like the unwalled villages, 5but the LORD says, ‘I will be like a wall of fire around it and I will be the shining light within it.’
6“Now get up and run from the lands of the north,” says the LORD. “I have scattered you around like the four winds of heaven. 7You who live with daughter Babylon, get up and escape to Zion!” says the LORD. 8And after the LORD sent me I was given these words concerning the nations that plundered you: “Indeed, anyone who harms you harms the apple of my eye. 9Look! I am going to raise my hand against them, and they will become plunder for their own servants. Then you will know that the LORD Almighty has sent me.”
10Sing and celebrate, my daughter Zion! “I will come and settle among you,” says the LORD. 11“Then other nations will join themselves to the LORD and be my people. I will live among you.”
Then you will know that the LORD Almighty has sent me to you. 12The LORD will inherit Judah and claim them as God’s own in the holy land, and once again Jerusalem will be chosen.
13Be silent before the LORD, all you people, for God has arisen from the sacred temple!
1-5: The third vision has Zechariah eavesdropping on a couple of angels. The first is measuring the city. The second says there will be so many people coming to the city that it will overflow its walls; even so, God will protect them.
6-13: Zechariah has God urging the exiles to escape from wherever they are to return to Zion. The once powerful nations that subdued Judah and Israel will be subdued by God. He calls the people to rejoice over God’s salvation and foresees the day when they will again be claimed as God’s own people. Moreover, God pledges to once again dwell in their midst, attracting other nations to Jerusalem that are seeking to become God’s people.
God never gives up on us, even going to the extreme of dying on a cross to redeem us from our sin and self-centeredness. In the centuries before Christ, Israel went through successive periods of faith and faithlessness. God never gave up on them, and we can rest assured that God is determined to offer us every opportunity to be the people of God.