The role of Zerubbabel (Zech 4:6-4:7)

“Then he said to me.

‘This is the word of Yahweh

To Zerubbabel.

Not by might,

Not by power,

But by my Spirit.’

Says Yahweh of hosts.

‘O great mountain!

What are you?

Before Zerubbabel,

You shall become a plain.

He shall bring out

The top stone

Amid shouts of

‘Grace!

Grace to it!’”

The angel who had been talking to Zechariah explained that the word of Yahweh was going to come to Zerubbabel, the man appointed by King Cyrus of Persia.  Zerubbabel was going to be successful, but not by his might and power, but by the Holy Spirit of Yahweh.  The great mountain would become a plain before Zerubbabel, the governor of Judah.  He was going to bring out the top stone of the mountain to cheers of grace to all.

Micah was the exception (Mic 3:8-3:8)

“But as for me,

I am filled

With power,

With the Spirit of Yahweh.

I am filled

With justice.

I am filled

With might.

I declare

To Jacob

His transgression,

I declare

To Israel

His sin.”

Micah was the exception to these false prophets.  He was filled with the power of the Holy Spirit of Yahweh.  He was filled with justice and might.  He was willing to declare to Jacob his transgressions.  He was willing to declare to Israel his sins.  Micah was not afraid to speak out and challenge the people of northern Israel and southern Judah.

King Nebuchadnezzar is the head of gold (Dan 2:37-2:38)

“You!

O king!

The king of kings!

The God of heaven

Has given you

The kingdom,

The power,

The might,

The glory.

He had given

Into your hands

Human beings,

Wherever they live,

The wild animals

Of the field,

The birds of the air.

He has you

As ruler

Over them all.

You are

The head of gold!”

Daniel then explained that the head of gold was none other than the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar himself, the king of kings. The God of heaven had given him his kingdom, power, might and glory. In flattering terms, Daniel pointed out that humans, wild animals, and birds all came under the king’s rule.

The true boasting in glory (Jer 9:23-9:24)

“Thus says Yahweh.

‘Do not let the wise

Boast in their wisdom!

Do not let the mighty

Boast in their might!

Do not let not the wealthy

Boast in their wealth!

But let those who boast,

Boast in this!

They understand me.

They know me.

I am Yahweh.

I act with steadfast love.

I act with justice.

I act with righteousness in the earth.

In these things,

I delight.’

Says Yahweh.”

Yahweh warns, via Jeremiah, that the wise should not boast in their wisdom. The mighty should not boast in their might. The wealthy should not boast in their wealth. If they want to boast it should be in understanding and knowing Yahweh. He should be their boast, because he acts with steadfast love, justice, and righteousness. Yahweh delights in those things.

The petition to the Father (Isa 63:15-63:16)

“Look down from heaven!

See!

From your holy habitation!

See!

From your glorious habitation!

Where is your zeal?

Where is your might?

Where is the yearning of your heart?

Where is your compassion?

They are withheld from me.

You are our Father.

Abraham does not know us.

Israel does not acknowledge us.

You!

Yahweh!

Are our Father!

Our Redeemer!

From of old is your name.”

The prophet wants to remind Yahweh, who is in his holy glorious heavenly dwelling, to look down on him. He questions him about his zeal and might as well as his heart and compassion. Why was Yahweh holding back from him? Yahweh was his father, even though Abraham and Jacob/Israel would not know and acknowledge him. Yahweh was his father and redeemer from the good old days.

A thanksgiving salvation hymn (Isa 12:1-12:3)

“You will say on that day.

I will give thanks to you!

O Yahweh!

Though you were angry with me,

Your anger turned away.

You comforted me.

Surely God is my salvation.

I will trust.

I will not be afraid.

Yahweh God is my strength.

He is my might.

He has become my salvation.

With joy

You will draw water

From the wells of salvation.”

Isaiah says that on the day when the great reunion takes place, there should be a hymn of thanksgiving. They all should give thanks because Yahweh had been angry with them, but now was comforting them. God was their deliverer so that they should trust him and not be afraid. Yahweh was their strength, their might, and their salvation. Thus they should draw water from the wells of salvation.

The power of God (Wis 11:21-11:26)

“It is always in your power

To show great strength.

Who can withstand the might of your arm?

Because the whole world is before you

Like a speck that tips the scales.

It is like a drop of morning dew

That falls upon the ground.

But you are merciful to all.

You can do all things.

You overlook people’s sins.

Thus they may repent.

You love all things that exist.

You detest none of the things

That you have made.

You would not have made anything

If you had hated it.

How would anything have endured,

If you had not willed it?

How would anything not called forth by you

Have been preserved?

You spare all things.

They are yours. O Lord!

You love the living!”

This is like a great prayer to God, who has power and strength. No one is able to withstand the might of his arm. The whole world (ὅλος ὁ κόσμος) is like a speck or a drop of morning dew before him. This is reminiscent of the folk spiritual song He’s got the Whole World in his Hands. God is also merciful to all. He overlooks people’s sins so that man can repent (ἀνθρώπων εἰς μετάνοιαν). He loves (ἀγαπᾷς) all things, but he detests none since he made everything. If God hated anything, it would not endure. If he did not will it, it would not happen. He has preserved all things, since all belongs to the Lord who loves all (πάντων) living things.