New International Version
"What are you, mighty mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become level ground. Then he will bring out the capstone to shouts of 'God bless it! God bless it!'"
New Living Translation
Nothing, not even a mighty mountain, will stand in Zerubbabel's way; it will become a level plain before him! And when Zerubbabel sets the final stone of the Temple in place, the people will shout: 'May God bless it! May God bless it!'"
English Standard Version
Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain. And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of ‘Grace, grace to it!’”
New American Standard Bible
What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become a plain; and he will bring forth the top stone with shouts of "Grace, grace to it!"'"
King James Bible
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.
Holman Christian Standard Bible
What are you, great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become a plain. And he will bring out the capstone accompanied by shouts of: Grace, grace to it!'"
International Standard Version
Who are you, great mountain? You will become a plain in Zerubbabel's presence, and he will position the capstone, exulting over it, "How beautiful! How beautiful!"'"
"What are you, you great mountain? Because of Zerubbabel you will become a level plain! And he will bring forth the temple capstone with shoutings of 'Grace! Grace!' because of this."
GOD'S WORD® Translation
What a high mountain you are! In front of Zerubbabel you will become a plain. He will bring out the topmost stone with shouts of 'Blessings, blessings on it!'"
Jubilee Bible 2000
Who art thou, O great mountain before Zerubbabel? Thou shalt be reduced to a plain; and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it.
King James 2000 Bible
Who are you, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain: and he shall bring forth its headstone with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it.
American King James Version
Who are you, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain: and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace to it.
American Standard Version
Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain; and he shall bring forth the top stone with shoutings of Grace, grace, unto it.
Who art thou, O great mountain, before Zorobabel? thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring out the chief stone, and shall give equal grace to the grace thereof.
Darby Bible Translation
Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou dost become a plain; and he shall bring forth the head-stone with shoutings: Grace, grace unto it!
English Revised Version
Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth the head stone with shoutings of Grace, grace, unto it.
Webster's Bible Translation
Who art thou, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain: and he shall bring forth its head-stone with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace, to it.
World English Bible
Who are you, great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you are a plain; and he will bring out the capstone with shouts of 'Grace, grace, to it!'"
Young's Literal Translation
Who art thou, O great mountain Before Zerubbabel -- for a plain! And he hath brought forth the top-stone, Cries of Grace, grace -- are to it.'
Parallel CommentariesMatthew Henry's Concise Commentary
4:1-7 The prophet's spirit was willing to attend, but the flesh was weak. We should beg of God that, whenever he speaks to us, he would awaken us, and we should then stir up ourselves. The church is a golden candlestick, or lamp-bearer, set up for enlightening this dark world, and holding forth the light of Divine revelation. Two olive trees were seen, one on each side the candlestick, from which oil flowed into the bowl without ceasing. God brings to pass his gracious purposes concerning his church, without any art or labour of man; sometimes he makes use of his instruments, yet he needs them not. This represented the abundance of Divine grace, for the enlightening and making holy the ministers and members of the church, and which cannot be procured or prevented by any human power. The vision assures us that the good work of building the temple, should be brought to a happy end. The difficulty is represented as a great mountain. But all difficulties shall vanish, and all the objections be got over. Faith will remove mountains, and make them plains. Christ is our Zerubbabel; mountains of difficulty were in the way of his undertaking, but nothing is too hard for him. What comes from the grace of God, may, in faith, be committed to the grace of God, for he will not forsake the work of his own hands.
Verse 7. - Who art thou, O great mountain? The "mountain" is a figurative expression to denote the various difficulties that stood in Zerubbabel's way and impeded the carrying out of his great design. Before Zerubbabel. The Vulgate affixes these words to the former part of the clause, but the accent is in favour of the Authorized Version. Thou Shall become a plain; literally, into a plain! A command. All obstacles shall be removed (comp. Isaiah 40:4; Isaiah 49:11; Matthew 17:20; Luke 3:4, 5). Septuagint, τοῦ κατορθῶσαι (intrans.), "that thou shouldst prosper;" "ut corrigas" (Jerome). He shall bring forth the headstone thereof. "He" is evidently Zerubbabel. He shall commence and put the finishing stroke to the work of rebuilding the temple. Many commentators take this stone to be the one that completes the building, "the topstone." But it may well be questioned whether a building like the temple could have any such stone. An arch or a pyramid may have a crowning stone, but no other edifice; nor is there any proof that such a topstone was known or its erection celebrated. It may be a mere metaphor for the completion of the work. It is better, however, to take it as the cornerstone, to which we know great importance was attached (comp. Job 38:6; Psalm 118:22, etc.). This stone, on which the building rests, Zerubbabel will bring forth from the workshop; as the next verses say, his hands have laid the foundation. That action, already past, is represented as future, the regular commencement of the work under Zerubbabel's direction being intimated, and its happy conclusion promised. Septuagint, Καὶ ἐξοίσω τὸν λίθον τῆς κληρονομίας, "And I will bring forth the stone of the inheritance" - the meaning of which is obscure, though Jerome explains it by considering it an allusion to Christ. With shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it! All the by standers, as the stone is placed, shout in acclamation, "God's favour rest upon it!" (Ezra 3:10). The LXX. seems to have mistaken the sense, rendering, Ἰσότητα χάριτος χάριτα αὐτῆς, "The grace of it the equality of grace" (John 1:16); and to have led St. Jerome astray, who translates, "Et exsaequabit gratiam gratiae ejus," and comments thus: "We all have received of his fulness, and grace for grace, that is, the grace of the gospel for the grace of the Law, in order theft the Israelites and the heathen who believe may receive equal grace and a like blessing." The Targum recognizes here a Messianic prophecy: "He will reveal the Messiah whose Name is spoken of from all eternity, and he shall rule over all the kingdoms."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Who art thou, O great mountain?.... This is said in reference to those who opposed the building of the temple, as Sanballat, and others; or the Persian monarchy, and Babylon the capital of it; a mountain being a symbol of a kingdom, or capital city; so Babylon is called, Jeremiah 51:25 hence the Targum paraphrases the words thus,
"how art thou accounted a foolish kingdom before Zerubbabel!''
and may denote the opposition made to Christ, and to the building of his church, both by Rome Pagan and Rome Papal; Rome is signified by a burning mountain cast into the sea, Revelation 8:8 and may include all the enemies of the church and people of God, as sin, Satan, and the world; who, though they may look like high and great mountains, and make much opposition, and throw many difficulties in their way, yet in the issue will he of no avail; See Gill on Isaiah 49:11. Some Jewish writers (p), by "the great mountain", understand the Messiah, but very wrongly; for he is designed by Zerubbabel in the next clause; but not by the "headstone", as the Targum interprets it:
before Zerubbabel thou shall become a plain; as all opposition and difficulties were surmounted by Zerubbabel in building the temple; so all vanish and disappear before Christ, the antitype of Zerubbabel, in the building up of his church, through the conversion of sinners, and in the protection and preservation of it:
and he shall bring forth the headstone thereof; that is, he, Zerubbabel, shall finish the building of the temple, as in Zechariah 4:9 the headstone being the last and uppermost stone in the building, which is last laid, and completes the whole; and in the spiritual sense designs, not Christ the headstone of the corner, for it is he that is Zerubbabel's antitype, who brings it in; but the last man that will be converted, when the number of God's elect will be completed in regeneration: they are all in Christ's hands, and under his care; before conversion they are secretly his, his hidden ones; in conversion he brings them forth, and makes them to appear what they are; and, when the last of this number is born again, the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven, will be wholly built, and nothing wanting in it; and the work of grace will have the last hand put to it, and be perfect in all. Christ is indeed sometimes called the headstone of the corner, and the chief cornerstone, Psalm 118:22 and he is the principal one in the spiritual building the church; he is the foundation stone, on which the whole is laid; and he is the cornerstone, that joins, knits, and keeps all together; he is both the stability, safety, and ornament of the building; Christ is the first, but not the last stone laid, which this must be: rather the perfection of grace is designed, or the bringing of the work of God to perfection; which may be signified hereby, in allusion to an edifice, which, when the last or top stone is laid, is then completed; and, if taken in this sense, must be understood, not of justifying grace, which is complete at once; Christ's righteousness being a perfect justifying righteousness, and every believer complete in it; but of sanctifying grace, which, though, as to the principle of it, is all wrought together, yet is not at once perfected; it is gradually brought to perfection; there is a perfection of parts, but not of degrees; no man is perfectly holy in himself, only as he is in Christ; but holiness in the saint will be perfected, for without it no man can see the Lord; and this is done at death in every individual believer; and then follows a state of sinless perfection; and the last measure of grace given, which perfects the work, may be called the headstone, the crowning, finishing part: and this wilt be brought in by Christ, the author and finisher of faith; who is a rock, and his work is perfect; he is able to do it; and who so fit, as he who is full of grace? and who so proper, as the master builder, and Head of the church? this grace, which perfects all, is in Christ; he brings it out from himself, in whom it has pleased the Father all fulness should dwell: but it is best of all to interpret the headstone of the last of the elect of God, and redeemed of the Lamb, that will be called by grace; who has this name, not from any superior excellency in him to any of the other lively stones, laid in the spiritual building; but because he is the last that is put there; and which shows, that not one of those God has chosen, and Christ has redeemed, shall be lost; it is the will of God, and it is the care of Christ, that none should perish, but all should come to repentance, to the glory of his rich grace; or otherwise the building would not be complete, nor the church the fulness of him that filleth all in all. The Targum indeed paraphrases the words of Christ,
"and he shall reveal his Christ, whose name is said from eternity, and he shall rule over all kingdoms:''
and mention being made of a capital and principal stone, in this vision of the candlestick, may put one in mind of the stone the Jews (q) speak of, which was before the candlestick in the temple, which had three steps, and on which the priest stood, and trimmed the lamps: and this will be attended
with shoutings, crying, Grace, grace unto it; as the people of the Jews shouted, when the first stone was laid in the foundation of the temple, Ezra 3:11 so it is here intimated that their acclamations would be very great when the last stone would be brought in, and the building finished; which they would ascribe to the grace, favour, and good will of God to them: so likewise, as the work of conversion is wholly owing to the grace of God, an abundance of which is displayed in it; when it is finished in the hearts of all the Lord's people, and the last man designed to be called by it is converted, and so the spiritual building of the church finished; this will be attended with the shouts of angels, who rejoice at the conversion of every sinner, and much more when all the elect are gathered in; and the acclamations of all the saints, for the marriage of the Lamb, will now be come, and the church be ready, as a bride prepared for her husband; see Revelation 19:6. The repetition of the phrase, "grace, grace", denotes that the work of conversion in all the saints, from the first to the last, is only owing to the grace of God, and not to any merit, motive, and condition in man; that they are saved and called, not according to their works, but according to the purpose and grace of God, his abundant mercy, free favour, and great love; and that this grace is exceeding abundant, which is displayed in the conversion of a single individual; and how large and copious must it be, which is given forth to them all. It is also expressive of the vehemency of those that use the phrase; and shows that they have a deep sense of it on their hearts; and are warmed, and glow with it; and cannot sufficiently express their admiration of it; and strive to magnify it to the uttermost of their power, being sensible of their obligations to God for it, and what gratitude is due to him on account of it: and this will be the cry of every saint in glory, throughout the endless ages of eternity; nor will the least sound be heard that is jarring, or contrary to it; all will be of one mind, and in one tone, and strive to outdo each other in exalting the free grace of God in the highest strains, with the greatest fervency of soul, and with the loudest acclamations, and those continually repeated.
(p) Tanchuma in Yalkut Simeoni in loc. (q) T. Bab. Menachot, fol. 92. 1. & Tamid, fol. 30. 2. Maimon. Beth Habechira, c. 3. sect. 11.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
7. All mountain-like obstacles (Isa 40:4; 49:11) in Zerubbabel's way shall be removed, so that the crowning top-stone shall be put on, and the completion of the work be acknowledged as wholly of "grace." Antitypically, the antichristian last foe of Israel, the obstacle preventing her establishment in Palestine, about to be crushed before Messiah, is probably meant (Jer 51:25; Da 2:34, 44; Mt 21:44).
bring forth the head-stone—Primarily, bring it forth from the place where it was chiselled and give it to the workmen to put on the top of the building. It was customary for chief magistrates to lay the foundation, and also the crowning top-stone (compare Ezr 3:10). Antitypically, the reference is to the time when the full number of the spiritual Church shall be completed, and also when "all Israel shall be saved" (compare Ro 11:26; Heb 11:40; 12:22, 23; Re 7:4-9).
Grace, grace—The repetition expresses, Grace from first to last (Isa 26:3, Margin). Thus the Jews are urged to pray perseveringly and earnestly that the same grace which completed it may always preserve it. "Shoutings" of acclamation accompanied the foundation of the literal temple (Ezr 3:11, 13). So shoutings of "Hosanna" greeted the Saviour in entering Jerusalem (Mt 21:9), when about to complete the purchase of salvation by His death: His Body being the second temple, or place of God's inhabitation (Joh 2:20, 21). So when the full number of the saints and of Israel is complete, and God shall say, "It is done," then again shall "a great voice of much people in heaven" attribute all to the "grace" of God, saying, "Alleluia! Salvation, and glory, and honor, and power, unto the Lord our God" (Re 19:1, 6). Ps 118:22 regards Him as "the head-stone of the corner," that is, the foundation-stone. Compare the angels acclamations at His birth, Lu 2:14. Here it is the top-stone. Messiah is not only the "Author," but also the Finisher (Heb 12:2). "Grace" is ascribed "unto it," that is, the stone, Messiah. Hence the benediction begins, "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ" (2Co 13:14).
Zechariah 4:7 Additional Commentaries
The Gold Lampstand
…6Then he said to me, "This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel saying, 'Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the LORD of hosts. 7What are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become a plain; and he will bring forth the top stone with shouts of "Grace, grace to it!"'" 8Also the word of the LORD came to me, saying,…
When the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the LORD, the priests in their vestments and with trumpets, and the Levites (the sons of Asaph) with cymbals, took their places to praise the LORD, as prescribed by David king of Israel.
With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the LORD: "He is good; his love toward Israel endures forever." And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.
For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.
the mountains leaped like rams, the hills like lambs.
Why, mountains, did you leap like rams, you hills, like lambs?
Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain.
"I am against you, you destroying mountain, you who destroy the whole earth," declares the LORD. "I will stretch out my hand against you, roll you off the cliffs, and make you a burned-out mountain.
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OT Prophets: Zechariah 4:7 Who are you great mountain? Before Zerubbabel (Zech. Zec Zc) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools