Zechariah 9 

Zechariah 9 – preached on 26 Feb 2012

Those who are regular at Ebenezer Church will know that we have been studying the book of Zechariah. 

Ladies and Gentlemen, especially those who are here for the first time, I want you to know that I am preaching to you about Jesus Christ, the Son of God and God Himself. 

And although we are studying the words of Zechariah, I want you to see that Zechariah is telling us about Jesus. 

Here in Zechariah 9, there are 3 things that Zechariah is telling us about Jesus: 

1. Jesus is the ruler of the universe (verses 1-8) 

2. Jesus’ kingdom is not of this world (verses 9-10) 

3. Jesus will preserve and save His people (verses 11-17) 

Let us start with the first thing that Zechariah tells us about Jesus. 

1. Jesus is the ruler of the universe (verses 1-8) 

Imagine we are going to play football. 

And uncle Chin Kah and I were chosen as the captains of the 2 teams. 

And each of us will take turns to select our team members. 

And you all know that uncle Chin Kah plays better football and whoever gets on his team will be the winning team. 

So all eyes will be on him. 

Will uncle Chin Kah choose me? 

Will I get to be on his team? 

These are questions that will be on your mind. 

And if he doesn’t choose me, then for sure my team will lose. 

Enough of football, I hope I got your attention there. 

Here, we are told in the 2nd part of verse 1 “…for the eyes of men, And all the tribes of Israel Are on the LORD.” 

Is God for or against me? 

Who will God grant favour to? 

Will God grant favour to me? 

Is God on my side? 

Why should He be on your side if you are not even obedient to Him? 

I hope you are concerned about the answer to these questions. 

Because they concern your eternal destiny. 

Even the pagan nations in the days of Zechariah were concerned about whether God was for them or against them. 

And in verses 2-4, Zechariah tells us that God is against the land of Hadrach and Damascus. 

God was also against Hamath. 

And He was also against Tyre and Sidon. 

Now, this prophesy of Zechariah took place at around 520BC when the Persian empire dominated the middle east. 

Those pagan nations were prospering at that time. 

Who would have guessed that they would be overtaken? 

Who would believe this puny prophet Zechariah? 

The nations seemed so strong; they appeared to be in control. 

The city Tyre thought it was wise. 

It had built a well-defended city with a tower – verse 3. 

But Zechariah says that the LORD will cast her down. 

And Ashkelon will watch these events with fear. 

And Gaza will be very sorrowful. 

Its king will perish. 

You read these in verse 5. 

And although it appeared that man was ruling the earth, yet it was God, our Lord Jesus, who was ruling all the events of this world from His throne in heaven. 

Unseen by everyone, He was raising up a great warrior called Alexander the Great. 

And in just over 100 years from when Zechariah made this prophesy, Alexander the Great came sweeping across the entire region with His army. 

Now if you are a skeptic, I suggest you carefully study the events recorded in verses 1-8. 

And compare them with what actually happened in human history. 

How could it be that these events were written about more than 100 years before they took place? 

How did Zechariah know about them unless he was divinely inspired? 

2 Peter 1:21 “for prophesy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.” 

And no men can have control over what happens in their life. 

Even more so for events that span beyond their life and generation on earth. 

So who is it who can convey these events so accurately more than a hundred years before they happen? 

Who is it who remains alive to rein in eternity over these events that take place beyond the lifespan of each man? 

I preach to you Jesus, the ruler of the universe, God Himself. 

I preach to you Jesus Christ, the God who revealed these things to holy men of God like Zechariah. 

Hence, this book called the Bible we hold in our hands is therefore called the Word of God. 

All eyes should be on Him our God because you have every reason to fear if you are not on His team. 

There is no hope if God is against you. 

Do you know Him? 

Is He for you or against you? 

You live in His world, you depend on Him for the sun, rain and air that you breathe. 

You exist in His creation; but are you in His kingdom? 

What is the kingdom of God and what is it like? 

This is the second thing that Zechariah tells us about Jesus. 

And he tells us that… 

2. Jesus’ kingdom is not of this world (verses 9-10) 

Earthly kings rule their kingdoms with pomp and pride. 

They are ruthless. 

They conquer and they take. 

They are associated with the high and mighty. 

You need to be of a certain status before you are considered worthy to draw near to them. 

Such was Alexandra the great, the earthly king who would conquer all the nations as prophesied in verses 1-8. 

One record tells us that he made his army march through the Iranian desert just because it was the more difficult route to take in their advance across the middle east. 

That’s what some people call Macho! I guess. 

And almost 75% of his troops died in the process just to prove that Alexandra was great and mighty. 

And at the age of 30, he had conquered more than half of the world at that time. 

Well, there is good reason for him to be called Alexandra the great. 

But great as he is, his life was in the hands of the true ruler and king of this universe. 

And at the age of 32, Alexander the great died of a fever. 

Let this be a lesson to every young man who thinks he has the tenacity to lead. 

Your life is in the hands of God. 

If you show no respect to Him, don’t be surprised that He will not show any to you. 

Now, in stark contrast to Alexander, we are told that Jesus will grace the earth in an entirely different manner. 

Earthly kings are ruthless, but Jesus is just – verse 9 

Earthly kings conquer and take but Jesus will come to speak peace – verse 10 

Earthly kings conquer & take but Jesus will come to give salvation freely to those who will believe. 

Earthly kings rule with pomp & pride. 

But Jesus will come riding on a donkey. 

Zechariah prophesied that Jesus would come to earth to live a life as a Man. 

He would live a life that is sinless. 

He would die on the Cross to fulfil God’s requirement for the payment of the sins of His people. 

Earthly kings are associated with the high and mighty. 

How many of you can personally make a call or go and talk to the prime minister or president? 

But Jesus our King will be accessible to all who call upon His name. 

And again if you are a sceptic, I urge you to cross reference Zech 9:9-10 to Matt 21, Mark 11:7, Luke 19 & John 12. 

You will see the exact reference of these verses here in Zechariah 9 referred to and describing about Jesus. 

How is it that, predicted >400 years ago, all 4 writers of the gospels would cross reference this passage. 

Unless there is an invisible hand who has providentially arranged for all these to happen as they were prophesied. 

Jesus our King has a kingdom that is not of this world. 

“His dominion shall be from ‘sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth.’” – verse 10. 

What does this mean? 

Jesus has a spiritual kingdom where all his people from different races and countries submit to Him as their king. 

Admission to this kingdom is not by what you can achieve in life. 

You don’t have to compete in competitions to prove your worth to be admitted. 

You don’t have to be “great” like Alexander the conqueror.  

But you do have to be humble enough to acknowledge your sin before Him. 

And you have to believe that He and He alone can save you. 

And this may be something that is quite hard to do. 

Because we all proud by nature. 

We are all self-centred. 

We like to look cool in front of our friends and everyone else in this world.

If you don’t believe me, consider this. 

Supposing, we take a group picture together now. 

And have it displayed on the screen. 

The first face that we would look for would be our own face. 

Oh, I did not comb my hair properly? 

Oh, why did I not tuck-in my tummy? – that’s probably me. 

This is just a simple example of our self-centred nature. 

We get offended when others don’t give us the attention we feel we deserve. 

This morning, I ask you to turn your attention away from yourself and turn your eyes on Jesus the real king. 

In Him, you live and breathe and have your being – Acts 17:28. 

But have you ever said thank you to Him for His air that you breathe and the life He gave you? 

I want to tell you that there is a limit to God’s patience to men who are ungrateful. 

Don’t look at the evil rich man on the street and say “why does God not punish him”? 

The Psalmist felt the same initially in Ps 73:3. 

Ps 73:3 “For I was envious of the boastful, When I saw the prosperity of the wicked.” 

Until God opened his eyes when he said in verse 17 of the same chapter… 

Ps 73:17 “Until I went into the sanctuary of God; Then I understood their end.” 

Do you want to be like that evil rich man? 

Wouldn’t it be better to be in God’s kingdom? 

The psalmist says in Ps 84:10 “For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God Than dwell in the tents of wickedness.” 

Would you be humble to acknowledge your sin and be part of the kingdom of God? 

If you would, there is good news for you. 

Because the third thing that Zechariah tells us is that… 

3. Jesus will preserve and save His people (verses 11-17) 

The picture painted by Zechariah in verses 11-17 describes how physical Jerusalem was preserved. 

It was just over 400 years from the time of Zechariah’s preaching. 

There were wars all around. 

But amazingly, Israel survived great onslaught and thrived in the midst of disasters in the surrounding nations. 

Again, it was Jesus, ruler of the universe who providentially protected and preserved His people. 

But just as in many parts of scripture, such physical events were meant to portray a spiritual lesson. 

Verse 11 – because of the blood of your covenant, I will set your prisoners free from the waterless pit. 

Gen 3:15 tells us that “the seed of the woman shall bruise the head of the serpent”. 

That was a promise God made right after the sin of Adam in the Garden of Eden. 

God promised that He will save His people, Jews & Gentiles (who are basically non-Jews) 

Providentially throughout history, He preserved a line in Israel from which Jesus would come into this world. 

And by His death on the cross, Jesus paid the debt of His people’s sin. 

And all over the world, we proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ’s salvation for His people. 

And God’s people will rejoice and respond when they hear this good news. 

God’s people will come into the spiritual Jerusalem, the Church of Jesus Christ. 

And God will preserve His Church even though she faces fierce attacks from the world. 

Verse 14 – the Lord will be seen over them, And his arrow will go forth like lightning.  

Verse 15 – the LORD of hosts will defend them; they shall devour and subdue with sling stones. 

Verse 16 – the LORD their God will save them in that day. As the flock of His people. 

If you are hearing the gospel for the first time, there are some things that may be difficult for you to understand. 

But I want you to know this. 

This prophesy in Zechariah 9 is the word of God. 

The events prophesied have already been fulfilled. 

But the truth it teaches continues to be true. 

This is what we call the principle of continuous fulfilment.  

If I have stirred up your curiosity regarding God’s way of salvation, please do not just remain in that state. 

I urge you to see what else God has to say to you. 

I urge you to know Jesus Christ whom I preach this morning. 

Talk to me after worship today so that I can tell you more about this great king of the universe. 

If you have been in EBENEZER Church for some time but have not professed faith, let me ask you to examine yourself very carefully. 

You cannot deny the truth conveyed in the scriptures. 

You cannot deny the reality of sin, the reality of God and your great need of Jesus. 

What is holding you back from professing faith in the one and only who has sovereign control over life & death? 

It has to be because of what Paul says in 1 Cor 2:14. 

“But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” 

As the Church prays for each of you who have not professed faith, I ask that you pray for yourself as well. 

Pray that God will open your eyes so that you can get into the kingdom of God. 

Pray that God will open your heart to appreciate & love Christian truth rather than feel you are forced to receive it. 

God has His people whom He will preserve and save. 

And by His providence, He will also provide them the opportunity to hear the gospel and believe in Jesus. 

As you are given this opportunity now, do not take it for granted. 

Because just as the door to the ark of Noah had to be shut after the days of grace, you do not know how long the opportunity for repentance will be extended for you. 

Seek God today.  

Pray for yourself even as we pray for you. 

Cry out to God that He will open your eyes. 

And see how He will work out great and wondrous works in our midst. 

So here are the 3 things that Zechariah tells us in Zechariah 9: 

1. Jesus is the ruler of the universe (verses 1-8) 

2. Jesus’ kingdom is not of this world (verses 9-10)

3. Jesus will preserve and save His people (verses 11-17) 

To God be all glory! Amen. 

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By Grace through Faith…..Eph 2:8-9

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