Zechariah 6:5
Parallel Verses
New International Version
The angel answered me, "These are the four spirits of heaven, going out from standing in the presence of the Lord of the whole world.

New Living Translation
The angel replied, "These are the four spirits of heaven who stand before the Lord of all the earth. They are going out to do his work.

English Standard Version
And the angel answered and said to me, “These are going out to the four winds of heaven, after presenting themselves before the Lord of all the earth.

New American Standard Bible
The angel replied to me, "These are the four spirits of heaven, going forth after standing before the Lord of all the earth,

King James Bible
And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
The angel told me, "These are the four spirits of heaven going out after presenting themselves to the Lord of the whole earth.

International Standard Version
The angel told me, "These are four heavenly spirits that are going out on patrol after having presented themselves to the Lord of the whole earth.

NET Bible
The messenger replied, "These are the four spirits of heaven that have been presenting themselves before the Lord of all the earth.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The angel answered, "They are the four spirits of heaven. They are going out after standing in the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

King James 2000 Bible
And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four spirits of heaven, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

American King James Version
And the angel answered and said to me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the LORD of all the earth.

American Standard Version
And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four winds of heaven, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And the angel answered, and said to me: These are the four winds of the heaven, which go forth to stand before the Lord of all the earth.

Darby Bible Translation
And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

English Revised Version
And the angel answered and said unto me, These are the four winds of heaven, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

Webster's Bible Translation
And the angel answered and said to me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

World English Bible
The angel answered me, "These are the four winds of the sky, which go forth from standing before the Lord of all the earth.

Young's Literal Translation
And the messenger answereth and saith unto me, 'These are four spirits of the heavens coming forth from presenting themselves before the Lord of the whole earth.
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

6:1-8 This vision may represent the ways of Providence in the government of this lower world. Whatever the providences of God about us are, as to public or private affairs, we should see them all as coming from between the mountains of brass, the immoveable counsels and decrees of God; and therefore reckon it as much our folly to quarrel with them, as it is our duty to submit to them. His providences move swiftly and strongly as chariots, but all are directed and governed by his infinite wisdom and sovereign will. The red horses signify war and bloodshed. The black, signify the dismal consequences of war, famines, pestilences, and desolations. The white, signify the return of comfort, peace, and prosperity. The mixed colour, signify events of different complexions, a day of prosperity and a day of adversity. The angels go forth as messengers of God's counsels, and ministers of his justice and mercy. And the secret motions and impulses upon the spirits of men, by which the designs of Providence are carried on, are these four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from God, and fulfil what the God of the spirits of all flesh appoints. All the events which take place in the world spring from the unchangeable counsels of the Lord, which are formed in unerring wisdom, perfect justice, truth, and goodness; and from history it is found that events happened about the period when this vision was sent to the prophet, which seem referred to therein.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 5. - The four spirits of the heavens. Both the Septuagint and Vulgate render, "the four winds of heaven;" and this is doubtless correct. It was a familiar symbol to the Jews. The winds are often introduced in executing God's will on sinners (comp. Psalm 104:4; Psalm 148:8; Jeremiah 49:36; Daniel 7:2). Which go forth from standing before the Lord (comp. Job 1:6; Job 2:1). The winds are supposed to be God's servants, waiting his pleasure to be sent forth on his errands. The Septuagint and Vulgate translate, "which go forth to stand before the Lord." This denotes merely their usual obedience; but the text implies that the prophet sees them moving from their usual expectant attitude, and hastening forth to do God's commands.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And the angel answered and said unto me,.... In order to grant him his request, and explain the vision of the chariots:

these are the four spirits of the heavens; or, "the four winds of the heavens"; the apostles and ministers of the Gospel may be compared to "the winds", because their ministry is the ministration of the Spirit, which is like wind that blows invisibly, powerfully, and where it listeth; and because in and by it the Spirit breathes life and comfort into the souls of men; and because of the powerful efficacy and penetrating nature of the word preached by them, and their swiftness and readiness to do the will of God: angels are called "spirits" or "winds", Psalm 104:3 they are created spirits, and so differ from God; are incorporeal ones, and so differ from men; and are immaterial and immortal, and so die not: they are spiritual subsistences, and spirits of the heavens, or heavenly spirits; heaven being the place of their abode and residence; and they may be compared to "winds", for their invisibility, wonderful penetration into places and things, their very great swiftness, and prodigious power and strength. The Targum paraphrases the words thus,

"these are the four kingdoms, which are as the winds of heaven;''

and so the same are signified by the four winds in Daniel 7:2 to which they may be compared for their swift and forcible carrying all before them, and for their fickleness and changeableness; and to which, the several parts of the world, into which they went, agree:

which go forth, from standing before the Lord of all the earth: so the apostles of Christ, and ministers of the Gospel, stood before him in his eternal purposes and decrees from everlasting; and went forth, having their commission from him in time; and were sent by him into the several parts of the world he is the Lord of; and by whom they were filled with gifts, grace, and courage, fitting them for their work. Angels also stand before him, ministering unto him; always behold him; are in his presence, and enjoy his favour; and go forth from him, being sent forth by him on various accounts into all the parts of the world; which Jehovah is the Creator, Upholder, and Governor of: moreover, this is applicable to the four monarchies; these stood before the Lord in his vast and infinite mind; in the secret decrees of it, before the world was; and the sending and going forth of them from him show that they were powers ordained of God, who has the government of the whole world in his hands.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

5. four spirits of the heavens—heavenly spirits who "stand before Jehovah" to receive God's commands (Zec 4:14; 1Ki 22:19; Job 2:1; Lu 1:19) in heaven (of which Zion is the counterpart on earth, see on [1177]Zec 6:1), and proceed with chariot speed (2Ki 6:17; Ps 68:17) to execute them on earth in its four various quarters (Ps 104:4; Heb 1:7, 14) [Pembellus]. Or, the secret impulses of God which emanate from His counsel and providence; the prophet implies that all the revolutions in the world are from the Spirit of God and are as it were, His messengers or spirits [Calvin].

Zechariah 6:5 Additional Commentaries
Context
The Four Chariots
4Then I spoke and said to the angel who was speaking with me, "What are these, my lord?" 5The angel replied to me, "These are the four spirits of heaven, going forth after standing before the Lord of all the earth, 6with one of which the black horses are going forth to the north country; and the white ones go forth after them, while the dappled ones go forth to the south country.…
Cross References
Matthew 24:31
And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.

Revelation 7:1
After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth to prevent any wind from blowing on the land or on the sea or on any tree.

Joshua 3:11
See, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth will go into the Jordan ahead of you.

Jeremiah 49:36
I will bring against Elam the four winds from the four quarters of heaven; I will scatter them to the four winds, and there will not be a nation where Elam's exiles do not go.

Ezekiel 37:9
Then he said to me, "Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.'"

Daniel 7:2
Daniel said: "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me were the four winds of heaven churning up the great sea.

Daniel 11:4
After he has arisen, his empire will be broken up and parceled out toward the four winds of heaven. It will not go to his descendants, nor will it have the power he exercised, because his empire will be uprooted and given to others.

Zechariah 1:10
Then the man standing among the myrtle trees explained, "They are the ones the LORD has sent to go throughout the earth."

Zechariah 6:1
I looked up again, and there before me were four chariots coming out from between two mountains--mountains of bronze.
Treasury of Scripture

And the angel answered and said to me, These are the four spirits of the heavens, which go forth from standing before the LORD of all the earth.

These.

Zechariah 1:10,11 And the man that stood among the myrtle trees answered and said…

Psalm 68:17 The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even thousands of angels: …

Psalm 104:3,4 Who lays the beams of his chambers in the waters: who makes the clouds …

Ezekiel 1:5-28 Also out of the middle thereof came the likeness of four living creatures. …

Ezekiel 10:9-19 And when I looked, behold the four wheels by the cherubim, one wheel …

Ezekiel 11:22 Then did the cherubim lift up their wings, and the wheels beside …

Hebrews 1:7,14 And of the angels he said, Who makes his angels spirits, and his …

Revelation 14:6-13 And I saw another angel fly in the middle of heaven, having the everlasting …

spirits. or, winds.

1 Kings 19:11 And he said, Go forth, and stand on the mount before the LORD. And, …

Psalm 148:8 Fire, and hail; snow, and vapors; stormy wind fulfilling his word:

Daniel 7:2 Daniel spoke and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, …

go.

Zechariah 4:10 For who has despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice…

1 Kings 22:19 And he said, Hear you therefore the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD …

2 Chronicles 18:18,19 Again he said, Therefore hear the word of the LORD; I saw the LORD …

Job 1:6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves …

Job 2:1,2 Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves …

Daniel 7:10 A fiery stream issued and came forth from before him: thousand thousands …

Matthew 18:10 Take heed that you despise not one of these little ones; for I say to you…

Luke 1:19 And the angel answering said to him, I am Gabriel, that stand in …

the Lord.

Zechariah 4:14 Then said he, These are the two anointed ones, that stand by the …

Isaiah 54:5 For your Maker is your husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and …

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