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Israel Urged to Repent

In the eighth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Zechariah son of Berechiah son of Iddo, saying:(A) “The Lord was very angry with your ancestors. Therefore say to them: Thus says the Lord of hosts: Return to me, says the Lord of hosts, and I will return to you, says the Lord of hosts.(B) Do not be like your ancestors, to whom the former prophets proclaimed, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts: Return from your evil ways and from your evil deeds.’ But they did not hear or heed me, says the Lord.(C) Your ancestors, where are they? And the prophets, do they live forever? But my words and my statutes, which I commanded my servants the prophets, did they not overtake your ancestors? So they repented and said, ‘The Lord of hosts has dealt with us according to our ways and deeds, just as he planned to do.’ ”(D)

First Vision: The Horsemen

On the twenty-fourth day of the eleventh month, the month of Shebat, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Zechariah son of Berechiah son of Iddo: In the night I saw a man mounted on a red horse! He was standing among the myrtle trees in the shadows,[a] and behind him were red, sorrel, and white horses.(E) Then I said, “What are these, my lord?” The angel who spoke with me said to me, “I will show you what they are.”(F) 10 So the man who was standing among the myrtle trees answered, “They are those whom the Lord has sent to patrol the earth.”(G) 11 Then they spoke to the angel of the Lord who was standing among the myrtle trees, “We have patrolled the earth, and the whole earth remains at peace.”(H) 12 Then the angel of the Lord said, “O Lord of hosts, how long will you withhold mercy from Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, with which you have been angry these seventy years?”(I) 13 Then the Lord replied with gracious and comforting words to the angel who spoke with me.(J) 14 So the angel who spoke with me said to me, “Proclaim this message: Thus says the Lord of hosts: I am very zealous for Jerusalem and for Zion,(K) 15 and I am extremely angry with the nations that are at ease, for while I was only a little angry, they made the disaster worse.(L) 16 Therefore, thus says the Lord: I have returned to Jerusalem with compassion; my house shall be built in it, says the Lord of hosts, and a measuring line shall be stretched out over Jerusalem.(M) 17 Proclaim further: Thus says the Lord of hosts: My cities shall again overflow with prosperity; the Lord will again comfort Zion and again choose Jerusalem.”(N)

Second Vision: The Horns and the Smiths

18 [b]And I looked up and saw four horns. 19 I asked the angel who spoke with me, “What are those?” And he answered me, “Those are the horns that have scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem.” 20 Then the Lord showed me four blacksmiths. 21 And I asked, “What are they coming to do?” He answered, “Those are the horns that scattered Judah, so that no head could be raised, but these have come to terrify them, to strike down the horns of the nations that lifted up their horns against the land of Judah to scatter its people.”[c](O)

Third Vision: The Man with a Measuring Line

[d]I looked up and saw a man with a measuring line in his hand.(P) Then I asked, “Where are you going?” He answered me, “To measure Jerusalem, to see how wide and how long it is.”(Q) Then the angel who spoke with me came forward, and another angel came forward to meet him and said to him, “Run, say to that young man: Jerusalem shall be inhabited like unwalled villages because of the multitude of people and animals in it.(R) For I will be a wall of fire all around it, says the Lord, and I will be the glory within it.”(S)

Interlude: An Appeal to the Exiles

Up, up! Flee from the land of the north, says the Lord, for I have spread you abroad like the four winds of heaven, says the Lord.(T) Up! Escape to Zion, you who live with daughter Babylon. For thus said the Lord of hosts after his glory sent me to the nations who plundered you: Truly, one who touches you touches the apple of my eye.[e](U) For I am going to raise[f] my hand against them, and they shall become plunder for their own slaves. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me.(V) 10 Sing and rejoice, O daughter Zion! For I will come and dwell in your midst, says the Lord.(W) 11 Many nations shall join themselves to the Lord on that day and shall be my people, and I will dwell in your midst. And you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. 12 The Lord will inherit Judah as his portion in the holy land and will again choose Jerusalem.(X)

13 Be silent, all flesh, before the Lord, for he has roused himself from his holy dwelling.(Y)

Fourth Vision: Joshua and Satan

Then he showed me the high priest Joshua standing before the angel of the Lord and the accuser[g] standing at his right hand to accuse him.(Z) And the Lord said to the accuser,[h] “The Lord rebuke you, O accuser![i] The Lord who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is not this man a brand plucked from the fire?”(AA) Now Joshua was wearing filthy clothes as he stood before the angel. The angel[j] said to those who were standing before him, “Take off his filthy clothes.” And to him he said, “See, I have taken your guilt away from you, and I will clothe you with festal apparel.”(AB) And he said,[k] “Let them put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him with apparel, and the angel of the Lord was standing by.(AC)

Then the angel of the Lord warned Joshua, saying “Thus says the Lord of hosts: If you will walk in my ways and keep my requirements, then you shall rule my house and have charge of my courts, and I will give you the right of access among those who are standing here.(AD) Now listen, Joshua, high priest, you and your colleagues who sit before you! For they are an omen of things to come: I am going to bring my servant the Branch.(AE) For on the stone that I have set before Joshua, on a single stone with seven facets, I will engrave its inscription, says the Lord of hosts, and I will remove the guilt of this land in a single day.(AF) 10 On that day, says the Lord of hosts, you shall invite each other to come under your vine and fig tree.”(AG)


  1. 1.8 Gk Syr: Meaning of Heb uncertain
  2. 1.18 2.1 in Heb
  3. 1.21 Heb it
  4. 2.1 2.5 in Heb
  5. 2.8 Heb his eye
  6. 2.9 Or wave
  7. 3.1 Heb the satan
  8. 3.2 Heb the satan
  9. 3.2 Heb the satan
  10. 3.4 Heb He
  11. 3.5 Syr Vg Tg: MT I said