“But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light. And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one. All the land shall be turned as a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem: and it shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place, from Benjamin's gate unto the place of the first gate, unto the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel unto the king's winepresses.”
There is just so much…
We live in a world where there is just so much pain and hurt, so much chaos and hardship, we look around and we see suffering and agony, those who live amidst torture and torment, knowing only the anguish of the soul and the longing cries of the spirit. Hostages and prisoners, captives and slaves to the dark forces of this world they yearn once more to know peace and comfort, to know that their cries are heard, and that their plight shall be contended with.
It’s hard, in a world capable of so much evil, where innocent lives are ruled over by bitter and brutal tyrants and wicked men of unrighteousness, amidst their dark, encompassing brutality, to believe that there will come a day when the Lord shall return in all of His glory to put to flight the evil ways of iniquity. We may want to believe it, we may crave it, feeling the desire to see His justice done as sin is put to flight and the light of His love shatters the darkness of this world, yet it seems so far distant, so far off, that we wonder if it will ever come.
For Zechariah it had to be a far distant feeling too…
Exiled from the home of their fathers, given unto them by the Lord, they had now found themselves in the distant lands of the Persian Empire. They had seen the fall of Jerusalem, their once proud capitol, and the destruction of the temple built by the great King Solomon.
Yet even his name, “God has remembered” testified to God’s great love and the tender mercy that He had for His children.
Even as they found themselves ruled by foreign masters, now dwelling in foreign lands the Lord God Almighty, the God of Abraham and Isaac, the God of Moses who would lead them from the hands if the Egyptians, would contend with their cause, hearing their cries and seeing their plight. He would not leave them to their anguish, lost amidst a world they little understood, and could not comprehend. He would not abandon them nor would He forsake them, and His promises would hold firm for them, a blessed assurance of His compassion for them.
Through His will and His desires He would lead them once more to the lands of their ancestors to once more reclaim their homes. But more than that, He would give unto them, through the words of His prophet, a promise that there would come a day when He come in glory to put captivity to flight, to push out unrighteousness and wickedness, that all may know that the Lord God of Israel reigns from Heaven, and that the affairs of man, no matter where they done or how much darkness encompasses them, could not hide from Him or the light that He shone upon the world.
As He was then, so He is now…
A God of Deliverance He would send His only Son to lead captivity captive and ransom those held hostage by the power of sin, death and the Devil. Through Christ the dark bondage of our slavery to iniquity was shattered and we are brought to the Lord, to stand before His judgment seat redeemed children of grace.
If this is possible then what is impossible for the Lord God Almighty? If such a great task is capable by His hand, then how much more capable is He of the smaller tasks that only seem so great amidst our worldly wisdom?
We have a blessed comfort in the Lord. He is a God of tender mercy and great compassion, a God who stands beside His children in all things and through all things. Ever faithful, ever vigilant His promises are trustworthy and true, and through them all things are made possible. There we know that there is no captivity so great, no slavery so dark that it cannot be shattered by the Lord. His judgment and His righteousness are at hand, standing with His children through all the agony and anguish, all the struggles and challenges of this world.
Trust therefore in the Lord, turning to the comfort and peace of His Holy Spirit, knowing that He shall be there beside His children, shining His grace and mercy, offering His love and compassion unto them. In righteousness He shall come and He shall set them free from even the darkest of turmoils that grip them.
Trust in Him as the prophets and the apostles, the saints and the disciples have, knowing that through Him all things are possible, and that righteousness shall come to break through even the heaviest chains that grip and bind. He is devoted and true to His word and there His love shall always shine through.
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.