The Lord alone “stretched out the heavens and formed the earth.” He also created humanity and gave us life. Beginning with Adam, Jehovah “formed the spirit of man within him.” God also chose Israel, brought His nation into the land of Canaan, and eventually made Jerusalem the center of His presence in the world. His promises concerning the destiny of His covenant children are uniquely reliable among all those who would venture any opinions regarding the future.
In the final three chapters of Zechariah the Lord revealed that a latter era would be seen “on that day.” What did God intend us to understand by using this phrase? John 19:37 is the key for our right thinking on these matters since it is an inspired quotation of Zechariah’s words: “They will look on Him whom they have pierced.” Because of this verse there can be no doubt that Jesus is the Man referred to here.
The original passage in Zechariah spoke of God Himself facing suffering. The Lord who pledged to pour out upon His beloved children “a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy,” would give these gifts “when they look on Me, on Him whom they have pierced.” With this sure identification of Jesus in Zechariah 12, there can be little doubt that the “Judah” and “Jerusalem” referred to in this same chapter must be that group of believers who would be united to Christ in His church. “The surrounding peoples” standing against God’s assembly refer to the world that has rejected the Savior. The salvation of God’s city, Jerusalem, points to the final vindication of the Lord’s beloved ones “on that day” when He fulfills all His promises of grace and judgment.
From the vantage point of the community that originally heard Zechariah, all of these prophecies concerning the first and second coming of Jesus were part of one distant future “day,” while we live in the middle of these sacred events. The initial arrival of the Messiah has taken place, but the second advent is yet to be fulfilled. The descendant of David through his son “Nathan” (Luke 3:31) has already accomplished so much for us. Because our perfect Mediator lives forever, we have a newly revealed way of approaching God with confidence.
By the message of apostles and ministers of the Word we have heard the truth of the death of Christ, and by the Spirit of the Lord we have repented of our complicity in His sufferings. It was our sin that brought about the cross, and we see His atonement for us as our only hope. Therefore we can confess the truth that we have “looked” on Him whom we have “pierced.” Repentance and faith have become for us a gateway to the bounty of heaven.
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
Our Father, You have created the world. You have redeemed a people for a coming day of new creation. Though there is much tribulation around us, Your eyes are open and You will not forget us. Even if we are in the midst of a crowd of strangers, You will know us at once. You will see us and rescue us, even if everyone to the right and to the left will be destroyed in their sin. You will give us the grace of the full salvation that You have shown to us in the resurrection of the Son of David. He was pierced for us and has become the firstborn among many brethren.