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22 I will overthrow royal thrones and shatter the might of earthly kingdoms.[a] I will overthrow chariots and those who ride them, and horses and their riders will fall as people kill one another.[b] 23 On that day,’[c] says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, ‘I will take you, Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, my servant,’[d] says the Lord, ‘and I will make you like a signet ring,[e] for I have chosen you,’ says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”[f]

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  1. Haggai 2:22 tn Heb “the kingdoms of the nations.” Cf. KJV “the kingdoms of the heathen”; NIV, NLT “foreign kingdoms.”
  2. Haggai 2:22 tn Heb “and horses and their riders will go down, a man with a sword his brother”; KJV “every one by the sword of his brother.”
  3. Haggai 2:23 sn The expression on that day appears as a technical eschatological term in a number of other OT passages (cf., e.g., Isa 2:11, 17, 20; 3:7, 18; Amos 8:3, 9; Hos 2:18, 21).
  4. Haggai 2:23 sn My servant. The collocation of “servant” and “chosen” bears strong messianic overtones. See the so-called “Servant Songs” and other messianic texts in Isaiah (Isa 41:8; 42:1; 44:4; 49:7).
  5. Haggai 2:23 sn The noun signet ring, used also to describe Jehoiachin (Jer 22:24-30), refers to a ring seal worn by a king or other important person and used as his signature. Zerubbabel was a grandson of King Jehoiachin (1 Chr 3:17-19; Matt 1:12); God once pronounced that none of Jehoiachin’s immediate descendants would rule (Jer 22:24-30), but here he reverses that judgment. Zerubbabel never ascended to such a lofty position of rulership; he is rather a prototype of the Messiah who would sit on David’s throne.
  6. Haggai 2:23 tn The repetition of the formula “says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies” in v. 23 emphasizes the solemn and divine nature of the promise.