The Good News According to Zechariah
by Ps Ng Zhiwen
We have come to end of the first section of Zechariah (chapters 1 to 6). How was the journey been? Are you getting deep, getting real and getting sent?
Two things seem certain to me: First, we cannot fully grasp the message of Zechariah until we have heeded the first call – Return to me, says the LORD of hosts, and I will return to you, says the LORD of hosts (Zechariah 1:3). It is a personal word from the LORD to each of us. And if we have not grasped the full implication of what this means… well, we will learn more about that as we journey on through the book.
The second thing is this: we cannot fully grasp the message until we have groaned with the same anguish of that angel who prayed – ‘O LORD of hosts, how long will you have no mercy on Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, against which you have been angry these seventy years?’ (Zechariah 1:12). That is the anguish of one who has witnessed national tragedy in every way.
This hit home for me earlier this week. Up in our church chapel, I heard a brother in Christ from another land speak of the crisis of hope that had afflicted his nation. Someone had asked him what God’s redemptive purpose for his nation was, and all he could reply was to lament the abject failure of his nation – economic collapse, people against people, disaster after disaster, and the troubles of the church. There at that moment, he could not speak of redemption. He could not see anything good come out of his nation.
In my mind, I thought: This is the kind of situation that the message of Zechariah speaks to! The prophecies lift our eyes to look beyond the present crisis, and behold the glorious vision that the LORD has for His people (His church) and His kingdom. Where hope seems nowhere to be found, the prophecies (God’s Word) give hope.
Back to that event in the chapel: After hearing that brother’s sharing, the people in the chapel gathered around him and prayed for him and for his nation. And then two Singaporeans were presented to him – they were committed to go as missionaries to serve in that nation later this year! Two may not seem to be much, but I’m learning from Zechariah not to despise the ‘day of small things’ (4:10). Greater things are yet to come.
If your life seems like it’s being filled with rubble and trouble; If (or rather, when) the church seems beset with desolations and despair; Lift up your eyes and see what God is doing. Come and stand amazed at His handiwork which will surely come to pass – King Jesus will return. His once-broken people will be great and glorious. Now that is really good news.