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The Lord Comes And Reigns (ch. 14:1 - 21)                                            

                                         

Verse 1 tells us of a plunder that will take place at "the day of the Lord" which I believe is at the end of this age, and Futurists say in the Great Tribulation.  When studying the "day of the Lord" in the Bible you will note that there are two aspects to it.  It is seen as one particular day, that is the day in which Jesus returns to earth. The day of the Lord is also seen in the Bible as the last seven years of this age, also known as the time of Jacob's trouble.    

 

Verses 2 and 3 explains what happens in this day, which I believe is the time of Jacob's trouble.  This isn't the exact day of Christ's return.  It tells us that half of Jerusalem will be taken. The other half will escape.  Women will be raped. This is a very hard time for the people who live in Jerusalem.   So we need to understand that in the Great Tribulation, before Jesus returns, the nations of the world will reach Jerusalem and plunder it.  This is part of the final judgment on Israel that is meant to cause her to fall to her knees in submission to their God. The spoil, that is, that which the nations get from their attack from Jerusalem will be divided among the attacking nations.  There is much debate concerning the war spoken of in Ezekiel 38 and 39.  Is that war this battle?  I can't say for sure.  There is one similarity and that is the reason for the Ezekiel war is to divide the spoil from Israel and Jerusalem, as it states here.  

 

We need to distinguish these words from the words spoken at the end of the last chapter.  Here the text is speaking of Jerusalem, and in the last chapter it was speaking of Israel.  In chapter 13 one third of Israel were spared, here, one half of the population of Jerusalem survived.  This is probably what Paul calls the "remnant of Israel" in Romans 9 through 11.    

 

We should note in verse 2 that it is God that gathers the nations of the world here against Jerusalem, just as He is seen doing in Ezekiel 38 concerning the nation from the north coming down to attack Israel.  God works behind the scenes to cause these things to happen.  This isn't visible to the carnal eye, but it is visible to the spiritual eye.  God is heavily involved in the affairs of our nations.  The secular man can't see it, but for those of us who know our Bible, we do see it clearly.  

 

Verse 2 can't be speaking of 70 A.D. when the Romans leveled Jerusalem to the ground.  There wasn't anything or anyone left then.  The text clearly states that half of those in Jerusalem will escape this attack.   

 

When the text speaks of half escaping, many Futurists believe they escape to Petra which is in Jordon.  We know from other scriptures that Jordon will not fall under the spell of the anti-christ. Some Futurists believe that Jesus will first come to Petra and gather His people before He sets His feet upon Mount Zion.  Others believe just the opposite.   

 

We need to note how horrible of an attack this is.  Houses will be robbed and women will be raped.  When the spoil is taken, that includes the rape of women.        

 

Verse 3 tells us that after this siege of Jerusalem Jesus comes to rescue the Jews and He Himself fights off the nations of the world with the word of His mouth.   But He does not come until Jerusalem has been attacked by the nations of the world. This must happen first.

 

Verse 4 tells us that Jesus will stand on the Mount of Olives.  This verse is often thought of in terms that Jesus comes down from the sky and stands on the Mount of Olives , and the mere touch of His feet causes the earthquake that is mentioned here, but the text doesnít say that.   It merely says that He will stand on the Mount of Olives.  So those who believe that Jesus comes first to Petra say He comes with the Jews to Mount Zion from Petra.   

 

At some point, after Jesus stands on Mount Zion that is east of Jerusalem, the mountain will be split in two, forming a valley between the two haves of the mountain. The valley will run from east to west.  There will be a northern mountain and a southern mountain.

 

Iíve just mentioned that some suggest that Jesus will come to Petra before He comes to the Mount of Olives.  Others suggest that He will come to the Mount of Olives first because of verse 5 where God says that the Jews will flee, that is flee Jerusalem because of the valley He has just made by splitting the mountain in half.

 

We should note that there is a fault line under the Mount of Olives that runs from east to west.  This fault line runs right into where the eastern gate is, the gate that Jesus will some day enter.  

 

Concerning this earthquake, it produces a valley.  If you read Ezekiel 40 through 48 you will note the time of the Millennium where it speaks of a river that flows from under the temple of God through this newly formed valley.  The river will go west to the Mediterranean Sea and east to the Black Sea .   

 

Also in verse 5 it says that on that day God will come with all the holy ones with Him.  I believe the "holy ones" can refer to both angels and saints because the Hebrew words is translated both ways in the Old Testament.  There are sufficient New Testament passages that state both saints and angels will return with Jesus. 

 

Verse 6 and 7 are very interesting.  It speaks of a certain day, and this is a specific day, not a time period.  Itís the day when Jesus sets His feet on Mount Zion.  It will be a day like no other day in history, and what it is really like, only God knows.  The text says that it will ďbe a unique day.Ē  It wonít have a normal day time or night time. When the normal time for evening would come, it wonít be dark.  It will be full of light.

 

In verse 8 we learn that in that day, after Jesus puts His feet on the Mount of Olives, living water will flow out of Jerusalem.  It will flow to the western sea, that is the Mediterranean, and it will flow to the eastern sea, that is, the Dead Sea.  It will produce much needed water to the land itself and make Israel more agriculturally prosperous   

 

One might wonder if this water spoken of here has anything to do with the fountain of water in chapter 13 verse 1 that will cleanse the nation of Israel.  Maybe the Jews will have a massive baptismal service in this water.  I do believe the water in this chapter is real literal water.  The water in chapter 13 might well be symbolic.

 

Verse 9 tells us at this point in history Jesus will be king over all the earth.  The battle against the nations have been won and Jesus will set up His kingdom on earth.  In that day there will be only one Lord, and He will be Jesus. His name will also be one.  There will be no more division among Israel , among the church, or among the nations.

 

Verses 10 and 11 show a Jerusalem that has been rebuilt.  It says that Jerusalem will never be destroyed again.  It will be the capital city of the world.

 

Verse 10 speaks of another geological restructuring, possibly due to the earth quake.  It says that from Gaba, which is about six miles north of Jerusalem, to Rimmon, which is thirty three miles south of Jerusalem, will be like Arabah.  Arabah is the valley where the Sea of Galilee, the Jordan River, and the Dead Sea are found.  It is the lowest place on earth.  Petra, which is on the edge of Arabah is the highest place in the area.  Things don't end there.  Jerusalem will be lifted up, and in context, that is literally raised up.  So, Jerusalem will be literally raised up, spiritually raised up, and politically raised up.  In simple terms Jerusalem will be raised and the land around will be lowered.      

 

Verses 12 and 13 speak of the severe judgment that will come on the people of the nations who fought against Israel.  Literally, they will be rotting in the streets while they are still alive.  They will grasp each others hand, looking for help, but they will find none.  The text says they will be totally panic stricken. 

 

For some Bible teachers, these two verses suggest the  explosion of a neutron bomb.  Neutron bombs destroy all protein but leave things without protein.  Thus you have bodies as described in these verses.    

 

In verse 14 we learn that Israel will aid in some kind of fighting while the wealth of the surrounding nations will be collected for the Jews.

 

Verse 15 says that the plague that will hit the nations of the earth will even hit the animals.   

 

After all the fighting and plagues are over, in verse 16, we learn something about what we have termed "the Millennial rule of Christ" that lasts one thousand years.  It tells us that there will be survivors from the nations that attack Israel, and these survivors will come to Jerusalem once a year to worship King Jesus.  These are clearly Gentile people who apparently have come to know the truth.  They will celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles. This is the feast that is called the feast of ingathering, the gathering of the crops, the harvest celebrated in our September.  The feast that will be celebrated in Jerusalem by the Gentiles will be the feast that denotes the gathering of Godís harvest in salvation. This seems to be the only feast out of the seven Jewish feasts that will be celebrated in these thousand years.

 

Verse 17 suggests that during this thousand years, people will still have freedom of choice. The text says that if anyone, any nation does not come to Jerusalem God will cause the rain to stop falling on their lands.  Jesus is in total control during this time, yet it appears that people will still have the opportunity to disobey with consequences.  This seems to suggest the possibility of national disobedience because the lack of rain is over a large section of land.   

 

For some reason in verse 18 God specifies Egypt.  If Egypt doesnít come up to Jerusalem, they will be smitten with a drought.  Some might think that Egypt is representative of the world here, as it often is in scripture, but I donít think so.  I think itís specifically speaking of the country of Egypt since it is contrasted with the nations of the world.   It might well be because Israel and Egypt have been enemies so often over the years.

 

Verse 19 simply confirms that the punishment for not coming up to Jerusalem to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles is a drought.

 

Verse 20 tells us that on that day, or during the thousand years of Jesusí rule on earth, the inscription ďHoly to the LordĒ will be seen on the bells of horses, and on the cooking pots of Godís house.  This might suggest that at least one means of transportation may be horses, or it might simply symbolize the transportation of the day, whatever that may be.  But it does suggest here that there will be a house of God, a temple in Jerusalem.

 

In verse 21 the text says that every pot in Israel will be holy unto the Lord.  Then the text says that everyone who comes to sacrifice will cook in these pots. This raises a big question.  Will there be animal sacrifices in this thousand year period?  Some say there will be animal sacrifices that look back to the cross.  They are not a sacrifice to forgive sin since the price for forgiveness of sin has already been paid for.  Others say the sacrifices will not include the killing of animals, but will be sacrifices of praise.  I think we need to at least consider the idea that this might well include the killing of animals because there are other passages, for example Ezekiel 40 through 48 that does speak of animal sacrifices.  We must remember, this is the thousand years of Jesusí rule on earth.  It is not the new heaven and new earth that is spoken of at the end of the book of Revelation.  Things will be much different on the new earth.  The thousand years of peace may look more like our life today than the times of the new earth.

 

It might well be that these sacrifices might only apply to the Jews, and not to Gentile believers.

 

The last sentence of Zechariahís prophecy says that on that day there will not be a Canaanite in the house of the Lord.  I think this simply means that there will not be any unbelieving Gentiles in the house of the Lord, in the temple in Jerusalem.

 

The prophecy of Zechariah is now over.  It was meant to be an encouragement to Israel who was finding it hard to put their trust in their God.  The final end to the Jews as Zechariah prophesies is good. It is successful, and the Lord their God will be with them.  Yet before that day comes both the Jews and the rest of the world will go through great trouble.  The trouble will be judgment for the nations of the world and salvation for Israel.

 

One important thing to note for Christians concerning the final restoration of Israel is that their restoration comes about with God's intervention in helping them to come to a heart felt repentance.  Repentance is something that is lacking in the modern gospel.  This should never be.    

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