Zechariah 13:7 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.
8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.
9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.
These verses offer hope in that God is in charge and He will judge the wicked. They also are very sobering in that they speak of the severe judgment that will come upon the wicked. God is a holy and just God. He created man for His glory. The sad reality is that man chose to defy God rather than glorify Him.
Adam sinned and we, the descendants of Adam, are born sinners. God has been gracious in giving us His Word. All people can know the truth. Adam’s immediate descendants all had the truth. Over time, mythology was added to the truth. I am told every culture has some kind of a story about Noah’s flood. They may not call it Noah’s flood, but they have some kind of a story of some major catastrophe. We know there are also different stories of how the world came into being. The major story is called evolution. It is a lie from start to finish. It is what is taught in schools. Doctors and nurses are taught evolution when they study anatomy and physiology. It is amazing that doctors and nurses have been able to help many people even though their foundation is wrong. The further along we move in history, the more foolish our doctors and nurses are becoming. Sadly, that foolishness is also in the general population because most people were taught evolution and few people trust in the God of creation.
In our text, God began in verse 7 with His call to judgment. The sword is a weapon of war. It is designed to kill. God the Father is talking here of the judgment upon His Son for the sins of mankind. God spoke of smiting the shepherd. Jesus Christ was killed, (crucified) so that we could be forgiven. The reality is that when Jesus Christ was arrested and killed, the disciples fled. None were there to defend Him. He did not need the defence of man. He came to lay down His life for the sheep. The reality is that when the Shepherd is gone, the sheep are defenceless. The good news is that Jesus Christ did not remain on that cross. They took His dead body down from the cross and buried Him. Three days later He rose again, victorious over sin and death. The “little ones” is a reference to the humble that believe in Him. There were the women like Mary and the men like Peter and the other disciples. They were weak in faith at that time, but they did not reject Him. He rewarded their faith. They saw Him as the resurrected Lord.
In verse 8 we read of the judgment of those alive in the Tribulation time. The Tribulation time will be for all that are alive at that time. However, God’s focus is on Israel. It is referred to as the time of Jacob’s trouble (Jeremiah 30:7). We have mentioned before that the Tribulation time will be a time of unprecedented violence. The antichrist will be the leader of that violence. He will come in as a “peacemaker”. He will soon show who he really is. At the midpoint of the Tribulation, he will defile the temple and will declare himself to be God. He will then decree an all out assault against the Jews and any true Christians of that time. We read that two thirds of those alive at that time will be killed. One third will be left. That will be a massive slaughter.
Right now we continue to hear of those who blame Israel for the killing of many “Palestinians”. Our P.M. continues to make foolish statements regarding the conflict. It is Hamas that is using their fellow Arabs as human shields. They set up their headquarters under a hospital. Israel has been trying to get the civilians out of that area so they can deal with Hamas. Hamas has been doing all it can to keep the people from leaving and then they use the lying media to portray Israel as the bad guys.
War is always terrible. There will be death in war. There will be the death of “innocent” civilians in war. The solution to war is to turn to God in repentance and know His peace. The world is not ready for that at this point. They have an imaginary peace they are seeking after. They will never find it but they are deceived into believing they will. Many “innocent” people are caught up in the mess.
God wrote these warnings several thousand years ago. Yet the majority of people have ignored them and gone about life as if there is no God. They just plod along and hope for the best. That is a foolish way to live.
God warned of this slaughter long before it will take place. We do not know the day of this disaster, but we know it is coming. There are those who reject the Biblical eschatology, but that will not make it go away.
In verse 9 God promised that He would bring the third part through the fire. The fire will be the judgment that will be poured upon humanity at the hands of the antichrist. It will be that fire that will cause the remnant (1/3), to finally turn to the Truth.
You notice here that these will be refined as silver is refined and tried as gold is tried. They will turn to God in repentance and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. The good news is that they will call on God’s name and He will hear them. God is merciful. He does not force Himself upon anyone. He has made Himself known to all people. He has given His Word so that all can be saved. It grieves His heart to see so many people going to hell. It is not His design. Those that will call upon Him will be heard. They will be His people. They will be saved.
That 1/3 will acknowledge the true God as their LORD and God. That is what God wants to hear from every human being. Zechariah was told to write this down as a prophecy for the last days. The message of this prophecy also has application for us today. God wants all people in every generation to be saved. The 1/3 spoken of here is a direct reference to that future time. All will hear the truth then, but only 1/3 will accept it.
Today, God is still offering His salvation to all of mankind. There is no number given as to how many will be saved now. We know it will be few. If you are reading this, but not saved, you can become a part of that few now. Please, don’t put it off any longer. God will hear the repentant sinner’s cry. Don’t come to God trying to bargain with Him. You have nothing to bargain with. He is the Author of life. He has the gift of eternal life. You need that gift. You need to humble yourself and turn to God and receive His gift of eternal life. If you do that, He will change your life. You will never be the same again. His work will begin that moment and continue on through the rest of your earthly life. There is no greater blessing than knowing God’s Truth and Peace in your heart.