Tag Archives: Zechariah

Hard as flint or pierced by the Holy Spirit?

‘They made their hearts as hard as flint and would not listen to the law or to the words that the Lord Almighty had sent by his Spirit through the earlier prophets. So the Lord Almighty was very angry.’ (Zechariah 7v12)
Okay, after a computer glitch on my websites which made it impossible to send out posts to people, we will in the next few weeks complete our study of understanding the term ‘spirit’ as it occurs in the Old and New Testaments in the Bible.
As you remember- but then maybe not – there are three distinctions made in regard to how the term ‘Spirit’ is understood and used in the Bible.
1. Spirit – God’s Holy Spirit  – part of Godhead, hovering over creation and (since Pentecost) living within believers to assist and enable them in their life as they people about God.
2. Spirit – before  the birth of Christ – God’s Spirit is understood to rest on a person (though not enter within them) to guide and direct them in a specific task they have been singles out to do for God.
3. spirit – note the lack of a capital letter – which relates to the human experience  and emotions in which a person describes how their ‘spirit was crushed.’ In other words, not from God but themselves as they detail the high or low they are experiencing as a result of actions happening to them.
In Zechariah 7v12 we see immediately that Zechariah is referencing the distinction between the early prophets who were responsive to God’s Holy Spirit and the state of those  who refused to listen and rejected Him (God).
All of which means we need to be always mindful as to whether we are being obedient to God or doing are own thing. God bless you (and me) as we attempt to walk in that path.
Til next time.

 


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The consequence of truth telling

Then the Spirit of God came on Zechariah son of Jehoiada the priest. He stood before the people and said, “This is what God says: ‘Why do you disobey the Lord’s commands? You will not prosper. Because you have forsaken the Lord, he has forsaken you.”‘(2 Chronicles 24:20)Unlike the last post in which Azariah wins over Asa with his generous offer that although he has been disobedient, God is gracious and there is a way back for him, Zechariah speaks  a message from which there is seemingly no reprieve.
Because you have forsaken the Lord, he has forsaken you’ (v20)
Does Zechariah speak this message without grace because he knows the heart of the person being spoken to and how their hearts are hardened so that they will not respond to God? All we can say is that Zechariah’s approach results in what he probably thought would happen: namely, them plotting against him and soon after that, stoning him to death in the courtyard of the Lord’s temple. (v21-22) Dying, Zechariah utters to Joash the words:
‘May the Lord see this and call you to account’ (v22)
and by the  turn of the year, the army of Aram marches in against Joash; invading Judah and Jerusalem, killing all the leaders of the people who Zechariah had prophesised about. (v23-4). Joash later dies at the hands of his own advisors.
Moral of the story – the importance of obedience and truth telling. Moreover, a readiness to keep in step with the Holy Spirit at cost to ourselves as we secure God’s intended outcomes. For Zechariah, truth telling meant speaking the words that would bring his own death sentence about. For Azariah, telling the truth was a chance to correct a leader who had gone astray from God but was capable of acknowledging his mistake, changing his ways and doing God’s will.

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