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Zechariah 14:1-3

Context
The Sovereignty of the Lord

14:1 A day of the Lord 1  is about to come when your possessions 2  will be divided as plunder in your midst. 14:2 For I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem 3  to wage war; the city will be taken, its houses plundered, and the women raped. Then half of the city will go into exile, but the remainder of the people will not be taken away. 4 

14:3 Then the Lord will go to battle 5  and fight against those nations, just as he fought battles in ancient days. 6 

Zechariah 14:13-14

Context
14:13 On that day there will be great confusion from the Lord among them; they will seize each other and attack one another violently. 14:14 Moreover, Judah will fight at 7  Jerusalem, and the wealth of all the surrounding nations will be gathered up 8  – gold, silver, and clothing in great abundance.

1 sn The eschatological day of the Lord described here (and through v. 8) is considered by many interpreters to refer to the period known as the great tribulation, a seven year time of great suffering by God’s (Jewish) people culminating in the establishing of the millennial reign of the Lord (vv. 9-21). For other OT and NT references to this aspect of the day of the Lord see Amos 9:8-15; Joel 1:15–2:11; Isa 1:24-31; 2:2-4; 4:2-6; 26:16–27:6; 33:13-24; 59:1–60:22; 65:13-25; Jer 30:7-11; 32:36-44; Ezek 20:33-44; Dan 11:40; 12:1; Matt 24:21, 29; 25:31-46; Rev 19:11-16.

2 tn Heb “your plunder.” Cf. NCV “the wealth you have taken.”

3 map For location see Map5 B1; Map6 F3; Map7 E2; Map8 F2; Map10 B3; JP1 F4; JP2 F4; JP3 F4; JP4 F4.

4 tn Heb “not be cut off from the city” (so NRSV); NAB “not be removed.”

5 sn The statement the Lord will go to battle introduces the conflict known elsewhere as the “battle of Armageddon,” a battle in which the Lord delivers his people and establishes his millennial reign (cf. Joel 3:12, 15-16; Ezek 38–39; Rev 16:12-21; 19:19-21).

6 tn Heb “as he fights on a day of battle” (similar NASB, NIV, NRSV).

7 tn The Hebrew phrase בִּירוּשָׁלָם (birushalam) with the verb נִלְחַם (nilkham, “make war”) would ordinarily suggest that Judah is fighting against Jerusalem (so NAB, CEV). While this could happen accidentally, the context here favors the idea that Judah is fighting alongside Jerusalem against a common enemy. The preposition בְּ (bÿ), then, should be construed as locative (“at”; cf. KJV, NASB, NIV, NRSV, NLT).

8 tn The term translated “gathered up” could also be rendered “collected” (so NIV, NCV, NRSV, although this might suggest a form of taxation) or “confiscated” (which might imply seizure of property against someone’s will). The imagery in the context, however, suggests the aftermath of a great battle, where the spoils are being picked up by the victors (cf. NLT “captured”).



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