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ch. 6:1-8    ch.6:9-15


Four Chariots (ch. 6:1 - 8)


Verse 1 takes us right into Zechariah’s next vision.  He sees four chariot’s passing through a valley between two bronze mountains.


Verse 2 tells us the colour of the horses that are pulling the chariots.  The first chariot was pulled by red horses, the second by black horses, the third by white horses, and the fourth by dappled, or spotted horses.  It’s next to impossible to understand how to translate the colour of the last horse from the Hebrew into English.  The word “dappled” means “spotted”.  The word “dappled” seems to be the best and most favoured translation.


This vision is clearly prophetic of future events to the day in which Zechariah lived.  Some of the prophecies so far in Zechariah had both a present day significance and a future significance.  Most scholars say this is pure futuristic. 


We see two mountains here. They are bronze mountains.  In Scripture bronze and brass for the most part is symbolic of judgment.   So this vision might well suggest a time of judgment.


The next question asked in our minds is, “what are these two mountains?”  Because mountains often represent Gentile kingdoms in the Old Testament some people suggest that these two mountains may be two Gentile nations.  More commonly accepted is the idea that these two mountains are literal mountains, Mount Zion and Mont of Olives.  They Kydron Valley is the valley between the two mountains.


Some people compare these two bronze mountains to the two bronze feet of the man in Daniel’s vision. (Dan. 10)  This means that the two mountains represent the last great world empire that the anti-christ will rule from at some point. 


We have four sets of coloured horses pulling the chariots.  They are red, black, white, and spotted.  Some people think that these are the same horses that we see in chapter one but I don’t think so because for one thing, the colours don’t match up.  Secondly the chapter one horses were not pulling chariots.


Some suggest, and this is a little more probable, that these are the four horses in Rev. 6.  In both Rev. 6 and here there are red, black and white horses.  Yet the last horse here is spotted while the last one in Rev. 6 is pale.  So Zechariah’s vision might not be referring to Rev. 6 either because the horses don’t seem to match up in their colours either.  Also, the horses in Rev. 6 weren’t pulling chariots.  I don’t think it is. I think it’s simply a separate prophecy.


In verse 4 we see Zechariah once again asking the explaining angel “what are these?”


In verse 5 the angel says that these horses and chariots are the four spirits standing before the Lord.


In various Old Testament passages you see the term “four winds of heaven”. (Isa. 49:36, Eze. 37:9, Dan.7:2 and 8:8)  Rev. 7:1 suggests there are four winds of the earth, from the four corners of the earth.  In Matt. 24:31 Jesus said that He will send His angels to gather the elect from the “four winds”, that is “ four winds of the earth”.  So in my thinking there seems to be four winds in heaven and four winds on earth.  These four spirits might well have something to do with the four winds of heaven.  They might actually be the four winds of heaven. The words winds, breath, and spirit are all translated from the same Greek and Hebrew word.


Since these four spirits are standing before the Lord, that would mean that they are in heaven, not earth.  This might well be another reason why these four spirits are the four winds of heaven.


Note that these spirits stand before “the Lord of the whole earth”.  This phrase is seldom used of God in the Old Testament.  Normally God is referred to as the Lord God of Israel, or Abraham.  Here He is not just the God of Israel, but the God of all the earth.  This then might suggest that the judgment taking place here is on the whole earth, not just on the land of Israel.


In verse 6 we see the black horses and chariot head north, the white horses and chariot head west, and the spotted ones head south. There is no mention of the red horses going anywhere.  There is no easterly direction mentioned here either. Some suggest that these red horses might well have some relationship to Jesus, but I question that. 


The NIV has a foot note concerning the white horses heading west. The alternative reading is “or horses after them”.  This would mean that the white horses actually might have followed the black horses to the north, or simply mean that the white horses went somewhere after the black horses left. Some suggest that this is significant because north and south do have prophetic and spiritual significance in the Bible and the west doesn’t seem to have the same importance.    


Verse 7 tells us that these three horses head out each in their own direction, but in the end, they go out throughout the whole earth. 


Lastly, in verse 8 we see the angel say that the chariot who went to the north, gave rest to God’s Spirit in the north.


It’s hard for me to really know what this vision means.  We would all agree that this is an end time vision, but we might disagree on the details. This might well be the time when Jesus speaks of in Mat. 24:31 when He sends out His angels to the four winds to gather the elect. It’s hard to say, but it is possible. This ingathering is in the time of judgment, that is, world wide judgment as seen in Revelation. 


Verse 8 is difficult as well.  In Scripture the land of the north often refers to Babylon, while the land of the south to Egypt.  Both Babylon and Egypt represent the world, the kingdom of satan.  This might well mean that the angel, and those following him, (we see the plural word “those” here, meaning, more than one angel), bringing peace to the north.  This might mean they bring peace to  Babylon, the nations of the world.  If this is so, then this is speaking of the thousand year rule of Jesus on earth, which will be a time of peace.


This ends the visions given to Zechariah, all in one night.


A Crown For Joshua (ch. 6:9 - 15)


In verses 9 through 11 Zechariah receives a word from the Lord.  This is not a vision, but a direct word.  Apparently certain Jewish men came from Babylon with gold and silver.  This shows me that from time to time there were probably Jews who came from Babylon to relocate or help support the Jews in Jerusalem. 


God told Zechariah to receive the gold and silver they were bringing and make a crown out of it and set it on the head of  Joshua the high priest. 


Just for interests sake, many scholars say that gold in the Bible represents Deity while silver represents blood.


Although the English text doesn’t say this, the Hebrew word for crown can easily be translated in the plural here. 


In verse 12 God tells Zechariah to tell Joshua as he receives the crown on his head that “here is the Branch.”   We’ve seen “the Branch” mentioned earlier in Zechariah and elsewhere.  There is no debate over this.  The Branch is Jesus, the Jewish Messiah.  This tells us something about Joshua and what is happening here.  This actual event took place. The crown was placed on Joshua’s head prophetically.  It spoke of the crown that would be placed on Jesus’ head as seen in Rev. 19:12.  In Rev. 19:12 we note that Jesus had “many crowns”, and this is why I pointed out that the word crown used here in Zechariah is actually in the plural.


Also in verse 12 Zechariah was told to tell Joshua that the Branch would build the temple.  Now Joshua helped in the rebuilding of the temple in 520 AD, but this is not the temple that is being spoken of here.  The temple that is being referred to here is the temple that Jesus Himself will build and it will be in Jerusalem during His thousand year rule on earth. 


In verse 13 we see the Branch ruling, sitting on His throne in this temple.  This clearly speaks of Jesus as He rules during the thousand years of peace.   Jesus will be both king and priest as He sits on His throne in the temple.  Usually the temple only speaks of priests.  It doesn’t speak of kings ruling from it, but not so in the millennial temple.  


When speaking of branches, and especial this “Branch”, we should understand that branches branch out.  They spread out.  They produce other branches.  And this is clear with Jesus the Branch at the end of this age when He rules from Jerusalem in the thousand years.  His rule will branch out over the whole earth.   


The last phrase in this verse says that “there will be harmony between the two”.  What “two” is being spoken of here?  The two that is being spoken of is the king and the priest.  Usually king and priest are two separate people, but not so in this case.  Jesus will be both the civil and religious ruler during this thousand years of peace on earth.


In verse 14 we see that after the crown is placed on Joshua’s head, it will be given to other certain men and placed in the temple as a memorial.  This would be a prophetic memorial of what would some day come on earth in the city of Jerusalem.


Verse 15 says that “those who are far away” will come and help build this temple in Jerusalem.  This tells us that even though Jesus builds this temple, He will have help.  He is obviously the one in charge of this building project.  Who these people are, I’m not sure.  They could either be Gentiles, or they could be Jews who have returned from being scattered throughout the earth.


One thing we should note at this point.  There will be a temple in Jerusalem during the thousand years of Jesus’ rule on earth.  This will be a time period when Jesus will show us all how things were meant to be on earth.  He will have His people, both Jew and Gentile who will help Him rule throughout the earth.  Once this thousand years is over, and the New Jerusalem comes down from heaven, and the New Earth created, there will be no temple, because God Himself will dwell among men and He will be the temple, as seen at the close of the book of Revelation.

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