Zechariah 10

CHAPTER X

The promise of prosperity and plenty in the close of the

preceding chapter leads the prophet to suggest, next, the

means of obtaining them; supplication to Jehovah, and not to

idols, whose worship had already proved a fertile source of

calamities, 1-3.

The rest of the chapter (like the preceding) promises to the

Jews a restoration to their own land under rulers and

governors, victory over their enemies, and much increase and

prosperity; and this in a manner so miraculous, that it is

described, 4-12,

by allusions to the deliverance from Egypt.

NOTES ON CHAP. X

Verse 1. Ask ye of the Lord rain] Rain in the due seasons-1. To

impregnate the seed when sown; and 2. To fill the ear near the

time of harvest-was so essential to the fertility of the land, and

the well-being of the people, that it stands well among the chief

of God's mercies and the promise of it here shows that God designs

to ensure the prosperity promised, by using those means by which

it was promoted.

Verse 2. The idols have spoken vanity] This is spoken of the

Jews, and must refer to their idolatry practised before the

captivity, for there were no idols after.

Therefore they went their way] They were like a flock that had

no shepherd, shifting from place to place, and wandering about in

the wilderness, seeking for pasture, wherever they might find it.

Some think that the idols and diviners were those of the

Seleucidae Greeks, who excited their masters with promises of

success against the Maccabees. Others think that the Babylonish

captivity is foretold; for a determined future event is frequently

spoken of by the prophets as past.

Verse 3. Mine anger was kindled against the shepherds] Bad kings

and bad priests. I will punish the goats; these were the wicked

priests, who were shepherds by their office, and goats by

the impurity of their lives.

As his goodly horse in the battle.] The honourable war horse, or

the horse that carried the general's equipage. In the

unaccountable variation of interpreters on these chapters, this,

among other things, is thought to be spoken of Matthias, and Judas

Maccabeus, who assembled the people from all quarters, as a

shepherd gathers his sheep together; and led them against the sons

of Greece, the Seleucidae Greeks. Others refer every thing here to

times before the captivity.

Verse 4. Out of him came forth the corner] This is spoken of the

tribe of Judah: all strength, counsel, and excellence came from

that tribe. The corner stone, the ornament and completion of the

building; the nail, by which the tents were fastened, and on which

they hung their clothes, armour, &c., the battlebow, the choicest

archers.

Every oppressor together.] Those heroes and generals, by whom,

under God, their foes should be totally routed. Newcome

translates, "Every ruler together." Perhaps all this is spoken of

the Messiah.

Verse 5. They shall be as mighty men] The Maccabees and their

successors.

Riders on horses] The Macedonians, who opposed the Maccabees,

and had much cavalry; whereas the Jews had none, and even few

weapons of war; yet they overcame these horsemen.

Verse 6. I will strengthen the house of Judah] I doubt whether

the sixth, seventh, eighth, and ninth verses are not to be

understood of the future ingathering of the Jews in the times of

the Gospel. See Jer 3:14; 23:6; Ho 1:2; 6:11.

Verse 7. Ephraim shall be like a mighty man] This tribe was

always distinguished for its valour.

Verse 8. I will hiss for them] eshrekah, "I will shriek

for them;" call them with such a shrill strong voice, that they

shall hear me, and find that it is the voice of their redemption.

Verse 9. I will sow them among the people] Wherever they have

been dispersed, my voice in the preaching of the Gospel shall

reach them. And they shall remember me, and they and their

children shall turn again to the Lord, through Messiah their King.

Verse 10. Out of the land of Egypt] I will bring them out of all

the countries where they have been dispersed, and bring them back

to their own land; and they shall be so numerous that they shall

scarcely find there, in all its length and breadth, a sufficiency

of room. If all the Jews that are now scattered over the face of

the earth were gathered together, they would make a mighty nation.

And God will gather them together. As a wonderful providence has

preserved them in every place, so a wondrous providence will

collect them from every place of their dispersion. When the great

call comes, no one soul of them shall be left behind.

Verse 11. And he shall pass through the sea] Here is an allusion

to the passage of the Red Sea, on their coming out of Egypt, and

to their crossing Jordan, when they went into the promised land;

the waves or waters of both were dried up, thrown from side to

side, till all the people passed safely through. When they shall

return from the various countries in which they now sojourn, God

will work, if necessary, similar miracles to those which he

formerly worked for their forefathers; and the people shall be

glad to let them go, however much they may be profited by their

operations in the state. Those that oppose, as Assyria and Egypt

formerly did, shall be brought down, and their sceptre broken.

Verse 12. I will strengthen them in the Lord] I, the God of

Israel, will strengthen them in the Lord-Jesus, the Messiah; and

thus indeed the Chaldee: I will strengthen them,

bemeymre dayai, in or by the WORD of Jehovah, the same personal

Word which we so often meet with in the Chaldee paraphrases or

Targum.

They shall walk up and down in his name] In the name of the

Messiah. Saith the Lord-GOD speaks here, not of himself, but

concerning his Christ. The Jews shall have complete liberty; they

shall appear everywhere as a part of the flock of Christ, and no

difference be made between them and the converted Gentiles. They

shall be all one fold under one Shepherd and Bishop of all souls.

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