|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
6:9-15 Some Jews from Babylon brought an offering to the house of God. Those who cannot forward a good work by their persons, must, as they are able, forward it by their purses: if some find hands, let others fill them. Crowns are to be made, and put upon the head of Joshua. The sign was used, to make the promise more noticed, that God will, in the fulness of time, raise up a great High Priest, like Joshua, who is but the figure of one that is to come. Christ is not only the Foundation, but the Founder of this temple, by his Spirit and grace. Glory is a burden, but not too heavy for Him to bear who upholds all things. The cross was His glory, and he bore that; so is the crown an exceeding weight of glory, and he bears that. The counsel of peace should be between the priest and the throne, between the priestly and kingly offices of Jesus Christ. The peace and welfare of the gospel church, and of all believers, shall be wrought, though not by two several persons, yet by two several offices meeting in one; Christ, purchasing all peace by his priesthood, maintaining and defending it by his kingdom. The crowns used in this solemnity must be kept in the temple, as evidence of this promise of the Messiah. Let us not think of separating what God has joined in his counsel of peace. We cannot come to God by Christ as our Priest, if we refuse to have him rule over us as our King. We have no real ground to think our peace is made with God, unless we try to keep his commandments.
Verse 15. - They that are far off; οἱ μακράν, (Septuagint); comp. Ephesians 2:13, 17. The Jews who had come from Babylon to Jerusalem are a figure of the conversion of distant nations and their offerings to the Church (see Haggai 2:7, and note there). Build in the temple of the Lord. They shall join in building up the spiritual temple, the universal Church of Christ. Ye shall know, etc. (Zechariah 2:9, 11; Zechariah 4:9). The Angel of Jehovah is speaking in Jehovah's name (ver. 9). What takes place in the case of this material temple shall be a token and a prelude of the great fulfilment in Messianic times. If ye will diligently obey. Neither the restoration of the temple nor the advent of Messiah's kingdom was in itself doubtful; but the people's share in the former, and their participation in the blessings of the latter, depended on the preparation of the heart, obedience, zeal, and holiness (Daniel 12:10; Malachi 4:1, 2; John 1:12; 2 Timothy 2:11, 12).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And they that are afar off shall come,..... Into the temple; not the material temple; nor is this a prophecy which was fulfilled in Herod, a stranger, repairing that, as Kimchi suggests; but into the spiritual temple, the church; and is a prophecy of the calling of the Gentiles, who are said to be "afar off", Ephesians 2:12, from God; from having his image on them; from subjection to his law; from the knowledge and fear of him; and from communion with him: from Christ; from the knowledge of his person, righteousness, and salvation by him; from love to him, faith in him, and fellowship with him; from the Spirit of God, and from the people of God, and from any solid hope of eternal life: now these being called by grace, and brought to Christ under the drawings of the Father's love, shall come to his church, and join themselves to his people:
and build in the temple of the Lord; upon the foundation Christ; and be useful in building up others, either by private conversation, or by public preaching the word; it is not said, they shall "build the temple of the Lord"; that is Christ's work; but "build in" it:
and ye shall know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me unto you; that is, the Prophet Zechariah, who was sent to the Jews to declare these things to them; or, as the Targum adds, "to prophesy unto you": which they would fully know, and be assured of, when these things should have their accomplishment:
and this shall come to pass, if ye will diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God; not that the fulfilment of the above predictions depended upon their obedience; but when they should in the latter day obey the Gospel of Christ, or "the word of the Lord" their "God", as the Targum paraphrases it; then this would come to pass, that they should know that the prophet had his mission from the Lord.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
15. they … far off shall … build—The reason why the crowns were made of gold received from afar, namely, from the Jews of Babylon, was to typify the conversion of the Gentiles to Messiah, King of Israel. This, too, was included in the "peace" spoken of in Zec 6:13 (Ac 2:39; Eph 2:12-17). Primarily, however, the return of the dispersed Israelites "from afar" (Isa 60:9) to the king of the Jews at Jerusalem is intended, to be followed, secondly, by the conversion of the Gentiles from "far off" (Zec 2:11; 8:2-2, 23; Isa 60:10; 57:19).
build in the temple—Christ "builds the temple" (Zec 6:12, 13; Heb 3:3, 4): His people "build in the temple." Compare Heb 3:2, "Moses in His house."
ye shall know, &c.—when the event corresponds to the prediction (Zec 2:9; 4:9).
this shall come to pass, if ye … obey, &c.—To the Jews of Zechariah's day a stimulus is given to diligent prosecution of the temple building, the work which it was meanwhile their duty to fulfil, relying on the hope of the Messiah afterwards to glorify it. The completion of the temple shall "come to pass," if ye diligently on your part "obey the Lord." It is not meant that their unbelief could set aside God's gracious purpose as to Messiah's coming. But there is, secondarily, meant, that Messiah's glory as priest-king of Israel shall not be manifested to the Jews till they turn to Him with obedient penitence. They meanwhile are cast away "branches" until they be grafted in again on the Branch and their own olive tree (Zec 3:8; 12:10-12; Mt 23:39; Ro 11:16-24).
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