Bible Reading: Zechariah 2:1-13
“Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion, for behold, I come and I will dwell in your midst, declares the LORD. And many nations shall join themselves to the LORD in that day, and shall be my people. And the LORD will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land and will again choose Jerusalem.” (Zechariah 2:10-11)
Zechariah lifts his eyes and sees a man with a measuring line in his hand. He asks him, “where are you going?” the man responds, “To measure Jerusalem, to see what is its width and what is its length”. The angel that had been talking to Zechariah called his fellow angel, saying, “Run, say to that young man, ‘Jerusalem shall be inhabited as villages without walls, because of the multitude of people and livestock in it. And I will be to her a wall of fire all around declares the LORD, and I will be the glory in her midst.” (Zechariah 2:4-5).
At that time, Jerusalem, the symbol and centre for God’s people, had become small. All the Jews had been exiled, and only a few had returned. This man’s concern was the people of God. Where was the church? Where was God’s bride? Was God still faithful to His chosen people?
Yet, Zechariah announces encouraging truths. He calls those in exile to return to Jerusalem. God will judge the nations that have plundered His people. God will show His justice to them. However, God’s people are the apple of His eye. They are most precious to Him. God will bring His people back to Jerusalem, and He shall once again dwell amongst them. The Lord will expand His people far and wide with people from many nations so that Jerusalem will be beyond its borders. And God will inherit Judah again to be His portion. He will again choose Jerusalem.
What does this vision all mean, and how does it apply to our lives?
Firstly, God’s eternal plan has always been His kingdom. God’s master plan has always been to bring the people of every nation to repentance. God wants people to return to Him and return to crowning Him as king in their lives. God is working until today in the hearts of you and I and many people so that we can crown Him as king.
Second, all of this is a fore image of Christ. When God says, He will dwell in our midst; God fulfilled this when Christ came and became men. Little do we know just how profound this reality is. God does not reject sinners like you and me. We deserve His ultimate wrath. However, stiff-neck and stubborn as we are, God is willing to humble Himself as a man for us. He is willing to die on the cross for our sins. He is willing to bear God’s wrath upon Himself and give us His perfect eternal life. What love is this?
Third, If God has come to dwell amongst us, we ought to flee from the lands of the north. We must flee from Babylon, a symbol of worldly pleasures and sinful desires. Christ has come to offer forgiveness of sin to all those who believe. We must run to Christ and leave behind all our evil desires. We must surrender our lives fully to Christ. We must cut our bonds with the pleasures of the world. Once we have given all to Christ, we must seek God in repentance daily and put our sinful flesh to death. Christ’s love is immeasurable for us. Yet, we squander it in ignorance and disobedience.
Last, if God is in such control over His kingdom, we ought to be still before the LORD. In humility, let us submit to Him and learn from Him. Jesus says, “my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:30). Let us watch Him work as He has throughout all history and marvel and the glories of His grace.
Lord, thank You for who You are. Thank You that You are a merciful God towards sinful people like us. Thank You that You chose to dwell amongst us and that You are willing to reveal Yourself to us. We are unworthy, and we cannot comprehend Your love. Teach us to obey You and serve You. Teach us to marvel at the work of Your kingdom and teach us to glory at Your wondrous grace. In Jesus’ name, amen.