Zechariah Thirteen

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

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Zechariah 13:1 In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.

a fountain opened. There will be living waters emerging from Jerusalem in that day (Zechariah 14:8), but the fountain mentioned in this verse is “for sin and uncleanness.” It can only refer to the cleansing blood of the Savior (Ephesians 1:7; Revelation 1:5; etc.), which is, for the first time, applied here to the whole nation of Israel. Possibly their national repentance will be couched in the words of Isaiah 52:13-53:12.

Zechariah 13:2 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land.

Zechariah 13:3 And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live; for thou speakest lies in the name of the LORD: and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth.

Zechariah 13:4 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied; neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive:

Zechariah 13:5 But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am an husbandman; for man taught me to keep cattle from my youth.

Zechariah 13:6 And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.

wounds in thine hands. Most expositors say this question is addressed to the “false prophet” discussed in Zechariah 13:3-5, on the assumption that his wounds were somehow caused by mutilation in his occult rituals. This seems unlikely since, in the post-Armageddon context of this section, any false prophets operating during the tribulation period would already have been “cut off” (Zechariah 13:2) and dispatched to the lake of fire along with their masters, the Beast and his False Prophet (Revelation 19:20; Matthew 25:41). Zechariah 12:11-13:5 seem rather to be a parenthetical section inserted between two profoundly moving descriptions of Messiah's wounds (Zechariah 12:10; 13:6), the sight of which will result in Israel's conversion, great mourning and cleansing, accompanied by their purging the land of any remaining idols and false prophets, together with the evil spirits possessing and energizing them.

I was wounded. It seems more appropriate to the whole amazing scene here described to understand these words as addressed to the one on whom they had looked and for whom they were mourning (Zechariah 12:10). Not only had His side been pierced, but also His hands (see Psalm 22:16), and these wounds remained even in His resurrected body (John 20:24-28). With great sadness, He replies that these everlasting wounds had been inflicted at the urging of those who should have been His friends, the leaders of the nation He had come to redeem. This interpretation is strengthened by the fact that the succeeding verse is explicitly applied to the wounding of Messiah.

Zechariah 13:7 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.

smite the shepherd. This verse is quoted in Matthew 26:31 and Mark 14:27, by Christ Himself. He, the Good Shepherd, would give His life for the sheep (John 10:11) but, in the trauma of these world-changing events, His sheep would be scattered for a while. The “sword” would “smite the shepherd,” and they would be scattered for two thousand years, but the time would come when they would return to Him, exactly as Zechariah has predicted.

Zechariah 13:8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.

Zechariah 13:9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.