7 In the fourth year of [the reign of] King Darius [of Persia], the word of the Lord came to Zechariah on the fourth day of the ninth month, which is Chislev (Dec 7, 518 b.c.). 2 Now the people of Bethel had sent Sharezer and Regem-melech and their men to seek the favor of the Lord, 3 speaking to the priests who belong to the house of the Lord of hosts and to the prophets, saying, “[Now that I am returned from exile] shall I weep in the fifth month [mourning the destruction of the temple], and fast as I have done these many years [in Babylon]?” 4 Then the word of the Lord of hosts came to me (Zechariah), saying, 5 “Speak to all the people of the land and to the priests, saying, ‘When you fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh months these seventy years [that you were in exile], was it actually for Me that you fasted? 6 When you eat and when you drink, do you not eat for yourselves and do you not drink for yourselves [to satisfy your own needs]? 7 Should you not hear the words which the Lord proclaimed by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited and prosperous along with her cities around her, and the South (the Negev) and the foothills were inhabited?’”
8 Then the word of the Lord came to Zechariah, saying, 9 “Thus has the Lord of hosts said, ‘Dispense true justice and practice kindness and compassion, to each other; 10 and do not oppress or exploit the widow or the fatherless, the stranger or the poor; and do not devise or even imagine evil in your hearts against one another.’ 11 But they refused to listen and pay attention and turned a stubborn shoulder [stiffening themselves in resistance] and stopped up their ears. 12 They made their hearts [hard] like flint, 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 scattered them with a storm wind among all the nations whom they have not known. Thus the land was desolate after they had gone, so that no one passed through or returned, for they [by their sins] had made the pleasant land desolate and deserted.”
You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more
You must be logged in to view your newly purchased content. Please log in below or if you don't have an account, creating one is easy and only takes a few moments. After you log in your content will be available in your library.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your free trial.
Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy. You’re already logged in with your Bible Gateway account. The next step is to enter your payment information. Your credit card won’t be charged until the trial period is over. You can cancel anytime during the trial period.
Click the button below to continue.
Step 1 - Create an account or log in to start your subscription.
You’ve already claimed your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus. To subscribe at our regular subscription rate of $3.99/month, click the button below.
Upgrade, and get the most out of your new account. An integrated digital Bible study library - including complete notes from the NIV Study Bible and the NKJV MacArthur Study Bible - is just a step away! Try it free for 30 days.