Zechariah 14:11
And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
14:8-15 Some consider that the progress of the gospel, beginning from Jerusalem, is referred to by the living waters flowing from that city. Neither shall the gospel and means of grace, nor the graces of the Spirit wrought in the hearts of believers by those means, ever fail, by reason either of the heat of persecution, or storms of temptation, or the blasts of any other affliction. Tremendous judgments appear to be foretold, to be sent upon those who should oppose the settlement of the Jews in their own land. How far they are to be understood literally, events alone can determine. The furious rage and malice which stir up men against each other, are faint shadows of the enmity which reigns among those who have perished in their sins. Even the inferior creatures often suffer for the sin of man, and in his plagues. Thus God will show his displeasure against sin.And they shall dwell in it - In peace, going forth from it, neither into "captivity," nor in flight Zechariah 14:2, Zechariah 14:5; for God should exempt from curse the city which He had chosen, against which the gates of hell shall not prevail, and He says of the heavenly Jerusalem, "there shall be no more curse" Revelation 22:3. 11. no more utter destruction—(Jer 31:40). Literally, "no more curse" (Re 22:3; compare Mal 4:6), for there will be no more sin. Temporal blessings and spiritual prosperity shall go together in the millennium: long life (Isa 65:20-22), peace (Isa 2:4), honor (Isa 60:14-16), righteous government (Isa 54:14; 60:18). Judgment, as usual, begins at the house of God, but then falls fatally on Antichrist, whereon the Church obtains perfect liberty. The last day will end everything evil (Ro 8:21) [Auberlen]. Men, i.e. many for number, or eminent for worth,

shall dwell in it: as it was type, this was verified, say some, when in league with Bacchides and succeeding kings. But in the antitype, to which Zechariah looks, it is now, as it hath been, fulfilled, and more fully shall be, when the fulness of the Gentiles cometh in.

There shall be no more utter destruction; there may be afflictions and troubles, but no utter wasting of Jerusalem; the gates of hell shall not prevail.

But Jerusalem, the antitype, the gospel church,

shall be safely inhabited; not secure from troubles, but secure enough from total destruction. And men shall dwell in it,.... In great numbers, in much peace and safety, and from generation to generation: Aben Ezra says, Messiah the son of David will now come:

and there shall be no more utter destruction; no wars, nor desolations by them, in a civil sense; there shall be no more killing, as the Targum, Isaiah 2:4 no "cherem", no anathema, in a religious sense; in the old translation it is, "and there shall be no more cursing"; there will be no curse in the Jerusalem state, Revelation 22:3 which words seem to be taken from hence; no cursed thing, nor cursed person, or any curse or anathema denounced against any; no Popish bulls and anathemas, nor any other:

but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited; the inhabitants of it shall dwell securely, without any apprehension of danger, and having no enemies to fear; though, before this safe and happy state, there will be many enemies; and what will become of them is shown in the following verses.

And men shall dwell in it, and there shall be no more utter destruction; but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
11. utter destruction] Lit. curse. ἀνάθεμα οὐκ ἔσται ἔτι. LXX. Comp. Revelation 22:3.Verse 11. - Men shall dwell in it. There shall be no tear of exile and captivity, and no necessity to fly from a victorious enemy (vers. 2, 5). Utter destruction; literally, curse, ban; LXX. and Vulgate, "There shall be no more anathema." The inhabitants shall not incur the curse which is inflicted on transgressors, idolaters, and their cities by the old Law (see Exodus 22:20; Deuteronomy 7:2; Deuteronomy 13:12-15; Deuteronomy 20:17; comp. Ezra 10:8; Isaiah 43:28; Revelation 22:3). Shall be safely inhabited; or, shall dwell safely. Sin being removed, there will be no more occasion for chastisement; and the spiritual Jerusalem shall never be destroyed. In these verses there follows a prophetic address, in which the angel of the Lord describes the symbolical action of the re-clothing of the high priest, according to its typical significance in relation to the continuance and the future of the kingdom of God. Zechariah 3:6. "And the angel of the Lord testified to Joshua, and said, Zechariah 3:7. Thus saith Jehovah of hosts, If thou shalt walk in my ways, and keep my charge, thou shalt both judge my house and keep my courts, and I will give thee ways among these standing here. Zechariah 3:8. Hear then, thou high priest Joshua, thou, and thy comrades who sit before thee: yea, men of wonder are they: for, behold, I bring my servant Zemach (Sprout). Zechariah 3:9. For behold the stone which I have laid before Joshua; upon one stone are seven eyes: behold I engrave its carving, is the saying of Jehovah of hosts, and I clear away the iniquity of this land in one day. Zechariah 3:10. In that day, is the saying of Jehovah of hosts, ye will invite one another under the vine and under the fig-tree." In Zechariah 3:7 not only is the high priest confirmed in his office, but the perpetuation and glorification of his official labours are promised. As Joshua appears in this vision as the supporter of the office, this promise does not apply to Joshua himself so much as to the office, the continuance of which is indeed bound up with the fidelity of those who sustain it. The promise in Zechariah 3:7 therefore begins by giving prominence to this condition: If thou wilt walk in my ways, etc. Walking in the ways of the Lord refers to the personal attitude of the priests towards the Lord, or to fidelity in their personal relation to God; and keeping the charge of Jehovah, to the faithful performance of their official duties (shâmar mishmartı̄, noticing what has to be observed in relation to Jehovah; see at Leviticus 8:35). The apodosis begins with וגם אתּה, and not with ונתתּי. This is required not only by the emphatic 'attâh, but also by the clauses commencing with vegam; whereas the circumstance, that the tense only changes with venâthattı̄, and that tâdı̄n and tishmōr are still imperfects, has its simple explanation in the fact, that on account of the gam, the verbs could not be linked together with Vav, and placed at the head of the clauses. Taken by themselves, the clauses vegam tâdı̄n and vegam tishmōr might express a duty of the high priest quite as well as a privilege. If they were taken as apodoses, they would express an obligation; but in that case they would appear somewhat superfluous, because the obligations of the high priest are fully explained in the two previous clauses. If, on the other hand, the apodosis commences with them, they contain, in the form of a promise, a privilege which is set before the high priest as awaiting him in the future - namely, the privilege of still further attending to the service of the house of God, which had been called in question by Satan's accusation. דּין את־בּיתי, to judge the house of God, i.e., to administer right in relation to the house of God, namely, in relation to the duties devolving upon the high priest in the sanctuary as such; hence the right administration of the service in the holy place and the holy of holies. This limitation is obvious from the parallel clause, to keep the courts, in which the care of the ordinary performance of worship in the courts, and the keeping of everything of an idolatrous nature from the house of God, are transferred to him. And to this a new and important promise is added in the last clause (ונהתּי וגו). The meaning of this depends upon the explanation given to the word מהלכים. Many commentators regard his as a Chaldaic form of the hiphil participle (after Daniel 3:25; Daniel 4:34), and take it either in the intransitive sense of "those walking" (lxx, Pesh., Vulg., Luth., Hofm., etc.), or in the transitive sense of those conducting the leaders (Ges., Hengst., etc.). But apart from the fact that the hiphil of הלך in Hebrew is always written either הוליך or היליך, and has never anything but a transitive meaning, this view is precluded by the בּין, for which we should expect מבּין or מן, since the meaning could only be, "I give thee walkers or leaders between those standing here," i.e., such as walk to and fro between those standing here (Hofmann), or, "I will give thee leaders among (from) these angels who are standing here" (Hengstenberg). In the former case, the high priest would receive a promise that he should always have angels to go to and fro between himself and Jehovah, to carry up his prayers, and bring down revelations from God, and supplies of help (John 1:51; Hofmann). This thought would be quite a suitable one; but it is not contained in the words, "since the angels, even if they walk between the standing angels and in the midst of them, do not go to and fro between Jehovah and Joshua" (Kliefoth). In the latter case the high priest would merely receive a general assurance of the assistance of superior angels; and for such a thought as this the expression would be an extremely marvellous one, and theבּין would be used incorrectly. We must therefore follow Calvin and others, who take מהלכין as a substantive, from a singular מהלך, formed after מחצב, מסמר, מזלג, or else as a plural of מהלך, to be pointed מהלכים (Ros., Hitzig, Kliefoth). The words then add to the promise, which ensured to the people the continuance of the priesthood and of the blessings which it conveyed, this new feature, that the high priest would also receive a free access to God, which had not yet been conferred upon him by his office. This points to a time when the restrictions of the Old Testament will be swept away. The further address, in Zechariah 3:8 and Zechariah 3:9, announces how God will bring about this new time or future.

To show the importance of what follows, Joshua is called upon to "hear." It is doubtful where what he is to hear commences; for the idea, that after the summons to attend, the successive, chain-like explanation of the reason for this summons passes imperceptibly into that to which he is to give heed, is hardly admissible, and has only been adopted because it was found difficult to discover the true commencement of the address. The earlier theologians (Chald., Jerome, Theod. Mops., Theodoret, and Calvin), and even Hitzig and Ewald, take כּי הנני מביא (for behold I will bring forth). But these words are evidently explanatory of אנשׁי מופת המּה (men of wonder, etc.). Nor can it commence with ūmashtı̄ (and I remove), as Hofmann supposes (Weiss. u. Erfll. i. 339), or with Zechariah 3:9, "for behold the stone," as he also maintains in his Schriftbeweis (ii. 1, pp. 292-3, 508-9). The first of these is precluded not only by the fact that the address would be cut far too short, but also by the cop. Vav before mashtı̄; and the second by the fact that the words, "for behold the stone," etc., in Zechariah 3:9, are unmistakeably a continuation and further explanation of the words, "for behold I will bring forth my servant Zemach," in Zechariah 3:9. The address begins with "thou and thy fellows," since the priests could not be called upon to hear, inasmuch as they were not present. Joshua's comrades who sit before him are the priests who sat in the priestly meetings in front of the high priest, the president of the assembly, so that yōshēbh liphnē corresponds to our "assessors." The following kı̄ introduces the substance of the address; and when the subject is placed at the head absolutely, it is used in the sense of an asseveration, "yea, truly" (cf. Genesis 18:20; Psalm 118:10-12; Psalm 128:2; and Ewald, 330, b). 'Anshē mōphēth, men of miracle, or of a miraculous sign, as mōphēth, τὸ τέρας, portentum, miraculum, embraces the idea of אות, σημεῖον (cf. Isaiah 8:18), are men who attract attention to themselves by something striking, and are types of what is to come, so that mōphēth really corresponds to τύπος τῶν μελλόντων (see at Exodus 4:21; Isaiah 8:18). המּה stands for אתּם, the words passing over from the second person to the third on the resuming of the subject, which is placed at the head absolutely, just as in Zephaniah 2:12, and refers not only to רעיך, but to Joshua and his comrades. They are men of typical sign, but not simply on account of the office which they hold, viz., because their mediatorial priesthood points to the mediatorial office and atoning work of the Messiah, as most of the commentators assume. For "this applies, in the first place, not only to Joshua and his priests, but to the Old Testament priesthood generally; and secondly, there was nothing miraculous in this mediatorial work of the priesthood, which must have been the case if they were to be mōphēth. The miracle, which is to be seen in Joshua and his priests, consists rather in the fact that the priesthood of Israel is laden with guilt, but by the grace of God it has been absolved, and accepted by God again, as the deliverance from exile shows," and Joshua and his priests are therefore brands plucked by the omnipotence of grace from the fire of merited judgment (Kliefoth). This miracle of grace which has been wrought for them, points beyond itself to an incomparably greater and better act of the sin-absolving grace of God, which is still in the future.

This is the way in which the next clause, "for I bring my servant Zemach," which is explanatory of 'anshē mōphēth (men of miracle), attaches itself. The word Tsemach is used by Zechariah simply as a proper name of the Messiah; and the combination ‛abhdı̄ Tsemach (my servant Tsemach) is precisely the same as ‛abhdı̄ Dâvid (my servant David) in Ezekiel 34:23-24; Ezekiel 37:24, or "my servant Job" in Job 1:8; Job 2:3, etc. The objection raised by Koehler - namely, that if tsemach, as a more precise definition of ‛abhdı̄ (my servant), or as an announcement what servant of Jehovah is intended, were used as a proper name, it would either be construed with the article (הצּמח), or else we should have עבדּי צמח שׁמו as in Zechariah 6:12 - is quite groundless. For "if poets or prophets form new proper names at pleasure, such names, even when deprived of the article, easily assume the distinguishing sign of most proper names, like bâgōdâh and meshūbhâh in Jeremiah 3" (Ewald, 277, c). It is different with שׁמו in Zechariah 6:12; there shemō is needed for the sake of the sense, as in 1 Samuel 1:1 and Job 1:1, and does not serve to designate the preceding word as a proper name, but simply to define the person spoken of more precisely by mentioning his name. Zechariah has formed the name Tsemach, Sprout, or Shoot, primarily from Jeremiah 23:5 and Jeremiah 33:15, where the promise is given that a righteous Sprout (tsemach tsaddı̄q), or a Sprout of righteousness, shall be raised up to Jacob. And Jeremiah took the figurative description of the great descendant of David, who will create righteousness upon the earth, as a tsemach which Jehovah will raise up, or cause to shoot up to David, from Isaiah 11:1-2; Isaiah 53:2, according to which the Messiah is to spring up as a rod out of the stem of Jesse that has been hewn down, or as a root-shoot out of dry ground. Tsemach, therefore, denotes the Messiah in His origin from the family of David that has fallen into humiliation, as a sprout which will grow up from its original state of humiliation to exaltation and glory, and answers therefore to the train of thought in this passage, in which the deeply humiliated priesthood is exalted by the grace of the Lord into a type of the Messiah. Whether the designation of the sprout as "my servant" is taken from Isaiah 52:13 and Isaiah 53:11 (cf. Isaiah 42:1; Isaiah 49:3), or formed after "my servant David" in Ezekiel 34:24; Ezekiel 37:24, is a point which cannot be decided, and is of no importance to the matter in hand. The circumstance that the removal of iniquity, which is the peculiar work of the Messiah, is mentioned in Ezekiel 37:9, furnishes no satisfactory reason for deducing ‛abhdı̄ tsemach pre-eminently from Isaiah 53:1-12. For in Zechariah 3:9 the removal of iniquity is only mentioned in the second rank, in the explanation of Jehovah's purpose to bring His servant Tsemach. The first rank is assigned to the stone, which Jehovah has laid before Joshua, etc.

The answer to the question, what this stone signifies, or who is to be understood by it, depends upon the view we take of the words עינים ... על אבן. Most of the commentators admit that these words do not form a parenthesis (Hitzig, Ewald), but introduce a statement concerning הנּה האבן. Accordingly, הנּה האבן וגו is placed at the head absolutely, and resumed in על אבן אחת. This statement may mean, either upon one stone are seven eyes (visible or to be found), or seven eyes are directed upon one stone. For although, in the latter case, we should expect אל instead of על (according to Psalm 33:18; Psalm 34:16), שׂים עין על does occur in the sense of the exercise of loving care (Genesis 44:21; Jeremiah 39:12; Jeremiah 40:4). But if the seven eyes were to be seen upon the stone, they could only be engraved or drawn upon it. And what follows, הנני מפתּח וגו, does not agree with this, inasmuch as, according to this, the engraving upon the stone had now first to take place instead of having been done already, since hinnēh followed by a participle never expresses what has already occurred, but always what is to take place in the future. For this reason we must decide that the seven eyes are directed towards the stone, or watch over it with protecting care. But this overthrows the view held by the expositors of the early church, and defended by Kliefoth, namely, that the stone signifies the Messiah, after Isaiah 28:16 and Psalm 118:2, - a view with which the expression nâthattı̄, "given, laid before Joshua," can hardly be reconciled, even if this meant that Joshua was to see with his own eyes, as something actually present, that God was laying the foundation-stone. Still less can we think of the foundation-stone of the temple (Ros., Hitz.), since this had been laid long ago, and we cannot see for what purpose it was to be engraved; or of the stone which, according to the Rabbins, occupied the empty place of the ark of the covenant in the most holy place of the second temple (Hofmann); or of a precious stone in the breastplate of the high priest. The stone is the symbol of the kingdom of God, and is laid by Jehovah before Joshua, by God's transferring to him the regulation of His house and the keeping of His courts (before, liphnē, in a spiritual sense, as in 1 Kings 9:6, for example). The seven eyes, which watch with protecting care over this stone, are not a figurative representation of the all-embracing providence of God; but, in harmony with the seven eyes of the Lamb, which are the seven Spirits of God (Revelation 5:6), and with the seven eyes of Jehovah (Zechariah 4:10), they are the sevenfold radiations of the Spirit of Jehovah (after Isaiah 11:2), which show themselves in vigorous action upon this stone, to prepare it for its destination. This preparation is called pittēăch pittuchâh in harmony with the figure of the stone (cf. Ezekiel 28:9, Ezekiel 28:11). "I will engrave the engraving thereof," i.e., engrave it so as to prepare it for a beautiful and costly stone. The preparation of this stone, i.e., the preparation of the kingdom of God established in Israel, by the powers of the Spirit of the Lord, is one feature in which the bringing of the tsemach will show itself. The other consists in the wiping away of the iniquity of this land. Mūsh is used here in a transitive sense, to cause to depart, to wipe away. הארץ ההיא (that land) is the land of Canaan or Judah, which will extend in the Messianic times over the whole earth. The definition of the time, beyōm 'echâd, cannot of course mean "on one and the same day," so as to affirm that the communication of the true nature to Israel, namely, of one well pleasing to God, and the removal of guilt from the land, would take place simultaneously (Hofmann, Koehler); but the expression "in one day" is substantially the same as ἐφάπαξ in Hebrews 7:27; Hebrews 9:12; Hebrews 10:10, and affirms that the wiping away of sin to be effected by the Messiah (tsemach) will not resemble that effected by the typical priesthood, which had to be continually repeated, but will be all finished at once. This one day is the day of Golgotha. Accordingly, the thought of this verse is the following: Jehovah will cause His servant Tsemach to come, because He will prepare His kingdom gloriously, and exterminate all the sins of His people and land at once. By the wiping away of all guilt and iniquity, not only of that which rests upon the land (Koehler), but also of that of the inhabitants of the land, i.e., of the whole nation, all the discontent and all the misery which flow from sin will be swept away, and a state of blessed peace will ensue for the purified church of God. This is the thought of the tenth verse, which is formed after Micah 4:4 and 1 Kings 5:5, and with which the vision closes. The next vision shows the glory of the purified church.

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