The Provision of God
Zechariah 9:9 – Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud. O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
In chapters 9 and 10 we read of the Lord’s judgement on Israel’s enemies and of his provision of a Saviour and King. The nations that stand against God’s chosen people will fall, so that ‘no oppressor shall again march over them’ (v8). As we know, God used one nation to punish another; Babylon conquered Assyria, Persia conquered Babylon. The destruction of the cities in chapter nine will come by way of Alexander the Great, king of Greece, as foretold by Daniel 200 years before. All these kings who thought they were in control when in reality there was, and is, only one King who rules them all.
The promise of a Saviour was Israel’s future hope, although I am sure that the prophecies often left them a bit bewildered. Why would a great King be riding a donkey? Kings rode mighty horses, so it just didn’t equate. They were used to having leaders who were full of bluster and often arrogant and yet their coming King would be filled with humility. I think it must have been hard for some of them to comprehend this description of greatness and among their many questions was probably, ‘Will he fight for us?’
The answer is, ‘of course He will fight for you’. That has been the message through every prophet – the Lord fights for his own. He also equips his own for the battle:
“Return to your stronghold, O prisoners of hope; today I declare that I will restore to you double. For I have bent Judah as my bow; I have made Ephraim its arrow. I will stir up your sons, O Zion, against your sons, O Greece, and wield you like a warrior’s sword” (9:12,13).
Every child of God is a warrior and we go out every day in the strength of the Lord and the power of the Spirit. Until the King returns, the fight rages on and we need to clothe ourselves every day in Ephesians 6 so that we are able to stand against the schemes of the devil. The sword that we carry is the word of God, which should be by our side at all times. We all know this to be true and yet committing scripture to memory seems to be a fading art. The bible is our best defense and greatest strength in any given situation. More than ever, I believe we need to know the truth of God’s word in order than we can recognise when that truth has been twisted. When we stand firm in Him, he protects us on every side.
Then the LORD will appear over them, and his arrow will go forth like lightening; the Lord of hosts will protect them. On that day the Lord their God will save them, as the flock of his people; for like the jewels of a crown they shall shine on his land. (9:14-16)