The Day Of The Lord Cometh

Zechariah Fourteen


          In Zechariah fourteen we observe that the day of the Lord is coming against Jerusalem. These verses are referring to physical Jerusalem. This fact is based on the description found in Zechariah 14:2. "For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city." These are the things that took place in 70 AD when the Romans destroyed Jerusalem. When Jesus spoke of the destruction of Jerusalem He showed that the remnant would be saved by fleeing from the Jerusalem and running to the mountains. "When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains: Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:  Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes." (Matthew 24:15-18) The expression "in that day" is found five times in this chapter. That expression refers to the last days or the days of the Messiah.


          The Lord would fight against the Roman nation. He would later judge Rome and destroy that wicked nation and give victory to His people. This is the theme of the Book of Revelation. Luke described the destruction of Jerusalem saying, "Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory." (Luke 21:26-27) God's judgment is always tempered with the idea of redemption. Matthew 24 and Luke 21 should be studied in careful detail along with Zechariah 14 as the words and thoughts are so similar. Zechariah 14:7 says, "But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light."  Notice that he points to "one day." Jesus said, "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only." (Matthew 24:36) When these words of prophesy were spoken by Jesus He "sat upon the mount of Olives." (Matthew 24:3) This is a certain tie of Matthew 24 to the teachings of Zechariah 14. Later Christians are called New Jerusalem and they will dwell in safety without fear of destruction. God's people would enjoy safety but there would be a plague against the enemies of His people. Christains must worship Him faithfully or they will face certain punishment. "Holiness to the Lord" must be the goal of every Christian. The only way that we can be a part of God's spiritual Jerusalem is to be holy.


       The day of the Lord comes -- Zechariah 14:1-2: "Dispensationalists" is a term that you need to become familiar with in studying this great chapter. Dispensationalists believe that the nation of Israel is distinct from the church. They do not believe that the Lord's kingdom is the church. The dispensationalists believe that God has made promises to Israel that are yet to be fulfilled. They say that these promises include the land promises, which in the future will result in a millennial kingdom where Christ, upon His return, will rule the world from Jerusalem on a literal throne for a thousand years. They say His kingdom will be a political kingdom. Somehow they feel that Zechariah 14 gives proof to this doctrine. They see in this (1) the destruction of Israel’s enemies, (2) salvation of Jerusalem, and (3) the millennial reign of the Messiah. This theory teaches that this chapter provides a description of the approaching "battle of Armageddon." They say this will happen soon when Christ descends upon the Mount of Olives. Please observe that we have already shown that Zechariah 14 is a reference to the same destruction of Jerusalem as described in Matthew 24 and Luke 21. Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans but the gospel will triumph over all the enemies of the Lord.   


        The Lord fights against the nations -- Zechariah 14:3-9: Zechariah 14 does not and could not have reference to a millennial reign of Christ upon the earth. The second coming of the Lord will end all earthly life as this world will be burned up. "But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up." (2 Peter 3:10) Zechariah 14 cannot refer to the literal return of Christ. In the events of Zechariah 14 some would flee to the valley of the mountains. When Christ comes again the wicked will be destroyed with an eternal hell of fire. (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9) The righteousness will be "caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air." (1 Thessalonians 4:17) Who else could this be that could flee to the mountains? The conclusion must be that this cannot refer to the second coming of Christ. The fight that the Lord would bring against these people would be with the "sword of the Spirit." (Ephesians 6: 7) Jesus will come back in the last day to receive His own, but not to set up a kingdom. His kingdom is the church and it already exists. When the gospel was preached and later when Jerusalem was destroyed it caused a spiritual commotion like the physical things described here. The Gospel light or the living water would go forth from Jerusalem in summer and winter. Summer and winter will end when the Lord returns. (Genesis 8:22) Therefore, the events of Zechariah 14 would be concluded then, not just begin with the Lord's return.


          God fights against Jerusalem's enemies -- Zechariah 14:10-19: Again in this portion of Zechariah 14 it becomes obvious that the reference cannot be the Lord's second coming. Here the Lord is pictured as in their midst with dead bodies at His feet. However at the second coming, "All that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." (John 5:28-29) But some say at that time animals will again be sacrificed and the Feast of Tabernacles will again be kept. The events of the Feast of Tabernacles are described in Numbers 29:12-38. During the Feast of Tabernacles a goat was offered as a sin offering. We know that Jesus is our sin offering. Shall we go back to offering a goat as our sin offering and reject the sacrifice of Jesus? With the death of Jesus the Old Testament Law was abolished completely and forever. (Colossians 2:14) After the captivity in Babylon, Jerusalem was resettled and it became the beginning place for the kingdom of Christ. Isaiah 2:3 said, "And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem." God's truth will be victorious over all error. Neither great beasts of service nor anything else would prevent the spread of the glorious gospel of Jesus Christ. Many who at first opposed Christianity would be converted and they would look to Jerusalem for the model of true worship. If anyone refuses the gospel that issued froth from Jerusalem they will be rejected by the Lord.


          Holiness unto the Lord -- Zechariah 14:20-21: We are involved in a spiritual warfare and our life must focus around the thought, "Holiness unto the Lord." Only those who have submitted unto the Lord will be in His house. The church has been purchased by Jesus and redeemed by His blood. Christians are called unto holiness. We have been called from bondage in a world of idolatry and sin to be free in Christ. Our watchword and our song must be "Holiness unto the Lord." "Holiness" is that quality or state of being pure or godly. In the New Testament the word holiness means that one is (1) physically pure, (2) morally blameless, and (3) religiously set aside for the service of God. The very essence of the nature of God is holiness. "...Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory" (Isaiah 6:1-3) God told Israel, "Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God am holy." (Leviticus 19:2) Then in the New Testament we read, "But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy." (1 Peter 1:15-16) Please submit to God's loving call and receiving the fountain of living waters that makes holy and brings eternal life!


                 God expects sincere worship and moral living from people today. Zechariah told us that the fountain has been opened for the cleansing of our sins. "In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness." (Zechariah 13:1) This fountain that is opened to all is filled with the blood of Jesus. To become a Christian you must hear the gospel (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus (John 8:24), repent of sins (Acts 17:30), confess Christ as Lord (Acts 8:37), and be baptized to be saved. (1 Peter 3:21) After baptism follow Jesus in faithfulness as He leads you home to heaven. (Revelation 2:10)