Zechariah — an Overview
September 18, 2022
Several years ago, when the girls were in high school, I attended a conference in Washington D.C. Raye Jeanne and I thought it would be a great opportunity for a family trip, especially since we are a little bit nerdy and like things like historical sites and museums. So we arrived one afternoon and I immediately went to my conference and they immediately went to Union Station and bought bus passes for the week and began touring the landmarks of interest to them.
I had a break from my conference on Saturday afternoon, so in about 6-8 hours, they packed all the highlights from their week into one quick tour for me. It was a whirlwind. I’m the guy that likes to read every plaque in every museum. That day was a succession of children grabbing my arm and saying, “Come on, dad, let’s go… we don’t have time to waste…keep moving…”
We did pause at a few spots, including the Lincoln Memorial. The size of the monument surprised me, and it was gratifying to contemplate how God used this one man to provide freedom for so many in our country. The memorials that were particularly impactful, though, were the war memorials — the Viet Nam Memorial and the Korean War memorial. The soberness was overwhelming. Name after name and row after row of soldiers who gave their lives to protect freedom. Many other sites in the city were noisy and bustling. There were many people at these memorials — and it was quiet. There was a heaviness there.
Memorials are designed to provoke a variety of emotions, but one of those is to burn in our minds, “I can’t forget. I must remember. This event is too significant to let it slip from our minds.” But those things often do diminish don’t they? The busyness of days and years push those memories from our minds and they fade.
Because of the frailty and fallibility of our minds, we are prone to think that God also has the same limitations of memory. Certainly Israel seemed to think so. In one particular circumstance, after the nation had been in captivity in Babylon/Medo-Persia for 70 years, the nation began returning to the land of Israel. Quickly the foundation for a reconstructed Temple was poured, and then opposition arose.
And forgetting the promises of God (and essentially assuming that God had also forgotten), the nation became fearful and did no work on the Temple for nearly 20 years. The foundation lay as a testimony to Israel’s fear and unbelief.
Into that forgetfulness, God brought a series of men, including two prophets, to exhort and encourage the Israelites of God’s promise and care for His people. One of those prophets, Zechariah, is going to be our focus for the rest of this year and into the new year. Our goal is to cultivate a mindset of confidence not just in God’s power, but in His remembrance of His promises to care and act for His people.
The book of Zechariah encourages and exhorts us to be hopeful because,
In His sovereignty, God remembers and will fulfill His promises to His people.
This morning, we want to consider four keys to understanding the book of Zechariah:
- The Historical Context of Zechariah
- How Israel Got in its Predicament
- The Man for the Predicament, Zechariah
- Lessons from Israel’s Predicament
- The Purpose of Zechariah
- The Theme of Zechariah
- The Message of Zechariah
- Zechariah is Eschatological
- Zechariah is Soteriological
- Zechariah is Messianic
Download the rest of this sermon on Zechariah (an overview).
The audio will be posted on the GBC website by tomorrow.