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Zechariah 7 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Hearts like Flint

In the fourth year of King Darius, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah on the fourth day of the ninth month, which is Chislev. Now the town of Bethel had sent Sharezer and Regemmelech and [a]their men to [b]seek the favor of the Lord, speaking to the priests who belong to the house of the Lord of hosts, and to the prophets, saying, “Shall I weep in the fifth month [c]and abstain, as I have done these many years?” Then the word of the Lord of hosts came to me, saying, “Say to all the people of the land and to the priests, ‘When you fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh months [d]these seventy years, was it actually for Me that you fasted? When you eat and drink, [e]do you not eat for yourselves and do you not drink for yourselves? Are not these the words which the Lord proclaimed by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited and [f]prosperous along with its cities around it, and the [g]Negev and the [h]foothills were inhabited?’”

Then the word of the Lord came to Zechariah saying, “Thus has the Lord of hosts said, ‘Dispense true justice and practice kindness and compassion each to his brother; 10 and do not oppress the widow or the [i]orphan, the [j]stranger or the poor; and do not devise evil in your hearts against one another.’ 11 But they refused to pay attention and [k]turned a stubborn shoulder and [l]stopped their ears from hearing. 12 They made their hearts like [m]flint [n]so that they could not hear the law and the words which the Lord of hosts had sent by His Spirit through the former prophets; therefore great wrath came from the Lord of hosts. 13 And just as He called and they would not listen, so they called and I would not listen,” says the Lord of hosts; 14 “but I [o]scattered them with a storm wind among all the nations whom they have not known. Thus the land is desolated behind them [p]so that no one went back and forth, for they made the pleasant land desolate.”

Footnotes:

  1. Zechariah 7:2 Lit his
  2. Zechariah 7:2 Lit soften the face of
  3. Zechariah 7:3 Lit abstaining; or dedicating myself
  4. Zechariah 7:5 Lit and these
  5. Zechariah 7:6 Lit is it not you who eat and you who drink
  6. Zechariah 7:7 Or at ease
  7. Zechariah 7:7 I.e. South country
  8. Zechariah 7:7 Heb Shephelah
  9. Zechariah 7:10 Or fatherless
  10. Zechariah 7:10 Or resident alien
  11. Zechariah 7:11 Lit gave
  12. Zechariah 7:11 Lit made heavy
  13. Zechariah 7:12 Lit corundum
  14. Zechariah 7:12 Lit from hearing
  15. Zechariah 7:14 Lit stormed them away upon all
  16. Zechariah 7:14 Lit from passing and from returning
New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation

Zechariah 7 New International Version (NIV)

Justice and Mercy, Not Fasting

In the fourth year of King Darius, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah on the fourth day of the ninth month, the month of Kislev. The people of Bethel had sent Sharezer and Regem-Melek, together with their men, to entreat the Lord by asking the priests of the house of the Lord Almighty and the prophets, “Should I mourn and fast in the fifth month, as I have done for so many years?”

Then the word of the Lord Almighty came to me: “Ask all the people of the land and the priests, ‘When you fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh months for the past seventy years, was it really for me that you fasted? And when you were eating and drinking, were you not just feasting for yourselves? Are these not the words the Lord proclaimed through the earlier prophets when Jerusalem and its surrounding towns were at rest and prosperous, and the Negev and the western foothills were settled?’”

And the word of the Lord came again to Zechariah: “This is what the Lord Almighty said: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another. 10 Do not oppress the widow or the fatherless, the foreigner or the poor. Do not plot evil against each other.’

11 “But they refused to pay attention; stubbornly they turned their backs and covered their ears. 12 They made their hearts as hard as flint and would not listen to the law or to the words that the Lord Almighty had sent by his Spirit through the earlier prophets. So the Lord Almighty was very angry.

13 “‘When I called, they did not listen; so when they called, I would not listen,’ says the Lord Almighty. 14 ‘I scattered them with a whirlwind among all the nations, where they were strangers. The land they left behind them was so desolate that no one traveled through it. This is how they made the pleasant land desolate.’”

New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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