Zechariah 10


‘Ask the LORD for rain in the springtime; it is the LORD who sends the thunderstorms. He gives showers of rain to all people, and plants of the field to everyone. The idols speak deceitfully, diviners see visions that lie; they tell dreams that are false, they give comfort in vain. Therefore the people wander like sheep oppressed for lack of a shepherd. ‘My anger burns against the shepherds, and I will punish the leaders; for the LORD Almighty will care for his flock, the people of Judah, and make them like a proud horse in battle. From Judah will come the cornerstone, from him the tent peg, from him the battle bow, from him every ruler. Together they will be like warriors in battle trampling their enemy into the mud of the streets. They will fight because the LORD is with them, and they will put the enemy horsemen to shame.’ Zechariah 10:1-5

The LORD Will Care For Judah

This chapter begins by God’s people being encouraged to speak to God and ask Him for rain so that their crops would increase. The reason for this was because of all the previous events of conflict which God was going to bring amongst the nations.

Zechariah calls upon his people to pray to God for their every need and as they obey Him, He will give them their needs.

In the past, the Jews were involved in idolatry, which eventually led them away from God. They would pray to their man-made idols to provide for their needs.

The word idol used here in Hebrew is the word ‘teraphim’, which were images of wood and stone, household gods or idols, Genesis 31:19 / Genesis 31:30 / Judges 7:5. They were carved in a such a way they resembled humans, 1 Samuel 19:13, some also took the form of signs of the Zodiac and other instruments of astrology.

In the past, the Jews also pout their trust in diviners, this also led them away from God. They claimed their dreams were of divine nature, but they were false, and as a result God’s people were being offered false hope and comfort from these diviners, Jeremiah 23:13-14.

In the past, the Jews were also led away from God by the shepherds, and leaders, Ezekiel 34:1-31.

Coffman, in his commentary says the following.

‘Although stated in the future tense, this passage refers to something that God had already done to the shepherds and he-goats of Israel; but the use of the future here indicated that the same anger of the Eternal would fall upon any future sins like the ones already punished. Of course, that occurred. When the shepherds and he-goats of the people led Israel in the rejection of their Messiah, the anger of God fell upon them and their city again, Jerusalem being utterly destroyed by the Romans in A.D. 70. That Zechariah certainly had that in mind is evident from Zechariah 12:2.’

God was going to make Judah His ‘victory horse’ through which He Himself would be victorious. Jesus, the Messiah, was the Branch of Judah, who would eventually reign victorious over all things, Genesis 49:10 / 1 Corinthians 15:25 / Philippians 2:5-11 / 1 Timothy 6:15.

Jesus is the Messiah, the ‘chief cornerstone’, Ephesians 2:20 / 1 Peter 2:3-8, He is the nail, or the ‘tent peg’, upon which all depends, He is the battle ‘bow’, and from Him comes every ruler together, John 19:11.

God’s people will be equipped with the power of Christ, that is the Gospel message to convert the souls of many, Romans 1:16. God’s people under Christ will win all their spiritual battles, not with physical weapons but with spiritual weapons, Ephesians 6:10-18.

‘I will strengthen Judah and save the tribes of Joseph. I will restore them because I have compassion on them. They will be as though I had not rejected them, for I am the LORD their God and I will answer them. The Ephraimites will become like warriors, and their hearts will be glad as with wine. Their children will see it and be joyful; their hearts will rejoice in the LORD. I will signal for them and gather them in. Surely I will redeem them; they will be as numerous as before. Though I scatter them among the peoples, yet in distant lands they will remember me. They and their children will survive, and they will return. I will bring them back from Egypt and gather them from Assyria. I will bring them to Gilead and Lebanon, and there will not be room enough for them. They will pass through the sea of trouble; the surging sea will be subdued and all the depths of the Nile will dry up. Assyria’s pride will be brought down and Egypt’s sceptre will pass away. I will strengthen them in the LORD and in his name they will live securely,’ declares the LORD.’ Zechariah 10:6-12

Zechariah now encourages those who are still in captivity to return to the land in preparation for the Messiah to come. Notice God will save the tribes of Joseph, He will restore them and have compassion on them.

These promises all speak of the salvation of souls from sin, the bringing back of the captives in sin to God’s fold, Jeremiah 32:37 / Psalm 44:3. In other words, this will happen when all the tribes of Israel, come to Christ and accept Him as their Messiah.

God says, ‘they will be as though He hadn’t rejected them’, in other words, He’s not going to hold their past sins against them, Hebrews 8:12 / Ezekiel 36:11. God also says because He is their God, He will answer them, Hosea 12:5-6 / Malachi 3:6 / Isaiah 41:17.

Ephraim, that is ‘Ephraimites will become like warriors’, but note the word ‘like’, this isn’t literal. Their hearts will be glad as with wine, and when their children see this they will rejoice in the Lord, Psalm 44:3 / Philippians 4:4 / 2 Corinthians 10:17.

Hailey, in his commentary says the following.

‘The same provision made for Judah’s redemption will have been made for Ephraim’s, and for every man, both would be redeemed from their captors, and both would be redeemed in the Messiah.’

God says He will ‘signal’ for them and gather them in, this is the idea that would signal to them as shepherd signals for his sheep to come, Isaiah 7:18-19. When they come, they will be ‘redeemed’ but with a great price, the precious blood of the Lamb, Revelation 13:8, but many will come, Psalm 105:24.

Dionysius says the following.

‘For the Apostles and others converted from Judaism, had more spiritual children, all those whom they begat in Christ, than the synagogue ever had after the flesh.’

Barnes, in his commentary says the following concerning the ‘scattering’.

‘Such had been the prophecy of Hosea, ‘I will sow her unto Me in the earth,’ as the prelude of spiritual mercies, ‘and I will have mercy on her that had not obtained mercy, and I will say to not-my-people, Thou art My people, and they shall say, my God’. Hosea’s saying, ‘I will sow her in the earth’ that is, the whole earth and that ‘to Me,’ corresponds to, and explains Zechariah’s brief saying, ‘I will sow them among the nations.’

The sowing, which was future to Hosea, had begun; but the purpose of the sowing, the harvest, was wholly to come, when it should be seen, that they were indeed sown by God, that ‘great’ should ‘be the day of Jezreel’, Hosea 1:11.

And Jeremiah said, ‘Behold the days come, saith the Lord, that I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah, with the seed of man and with the seed of beast’, Jeremiah 31:27. The word is used of sowing to multiply, never of mere scattering.’

In other words, this is a reference to the sacred covenant name of God’s New Israel in Christ, the passage refers to the Messiah and his times. Notice also ‘they will return’, this returning doesn’t apply to fleshly Israel’s returning from Babylonian captivity, but to the coming of all men to Christ, having escaped from the slavery of sin, 2 Timothy 2:26.

Whenever you mention the names ‘Egypt’ and ‘Assyria’, they take our minds back to captivity, here they are used as metaphors for captivity to sin.

In other words, just as God delivered them from Egyptian and Assyrian captivities, He would deliver them from their sin. God promises that they will not be hindered, they will be led free just as God helped them through the Red Sea from Egyptian captivity, Isaiah 11:15-16.

McFadyen, in his commentary says the following.

‘When taken in connection with other scriptural passages, Exodus 14 / Isaiah 11:15-16, there are two promises here, ‘Ancient miracles would be repeated to facilitate their journey home’ and ‘They would cross the Red Sea, the sea of affliction, in safety. Amen! And when were the ancient miracles of Moses repeated? When that Prophet like unto Moses, even Christ, appeared and did even more astounding wonders than those of Moses. And how do God’s people cross the Red Sea in safety on the way home? 1 Corinthians 10 reveals that this occurs when people are baptized ‘into Christ.’

The great analogy of the experience of Israel in coming out of Egypt, being baptized in the Red Sea, 1 Corinthians 10, struggling through their wilderness probation, and finally entering Canaan, as a divinely appointed figure of how Christians forsake the slavery of sin, Egypt, cross the Red Sea by being baptized into Christ, endure the tribulation of their earthly probation, Israel’s wilderness, and finally enter heaven, Canaan,–that grand analogy is one of the greatest in the Bible and it shines in this passage.’

Coffman, in his commentary says the following concerning the words, ‘I will strengthen them in the LORD’.

‘The big words in this whole chapter are IN JEHOVAH, here and in Zechariah 10:7. God is not promising to put sinful old Israel back in Canaan, but to put them in Jehovah, in the Lord, in Christ. This is a technical expression which cannot mean anything else except the union of baptized believers in Christ. All of the vain speculations of men about God’s restoring the old secular kingdom of the Jews in Palestine are not merely out of sight here, but flatly contradicted by the passage.’

The meaning of this prophecy is that all of the prosperity of the two kingdoms of the old Israel, wherever they may be scattered throughout the earth, will find the blessing of God, along with all who desire salvation from among the Gentiles as well, and that all of them together, without any partiality or distinction whatever shall be gathered into one fold with one shepherd, that is Christ, in the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, Acts 11:12 / Acts 15:8-9 / Romans 10:12.

Egypt and Assyria’s pride speaks figuratively of all those who would oppose the Lord, in other words, all powers opposed to God and His people shall be defeated.

Go To Zechariah 11


"In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

Matthew 5:16