Retirement Package Series
Contributed by Thomas Swope on Jun 18, 2010 (message contributor)
Summary: A study of chapter 11 verses 1 through 17
Zechariah 11: 1 – 17
1 Open your doors, O Lebanon, so that fire may devour your cedars! 2 Wail, O pine tree, for the cedar has fallen; the stately trees are ruined! Wail, oaks of Bashan; the dense forest has been cut down! 3 Listen to the wail of the shepherds; their rich pastures are destroyed! Listen to the roar of the lions; the lush thicket of the Jordan is ruined!4 This is what the LORD my God says: "Pasture the flock marked for slaughter. 5 Their buyers slaughter them and go unpunished. Those who sell them say, 'Praise the LORD, I am rich!' Their own shepherds do not spare them. 6 For I will no longer have pity on the people of the land," declares the LORD. "I will hand everyone over to his neighbor and his king. They will oppress the land, and I will not rescue them from their hands." 7 So I pastured the flock marked for slaughter, particularly the oppressed of the flock. Then I took two staffs and called one Favor and the other Union, and I pastured the flock. 8 In one month I got rid of the three shepherds. The flock detested me, and I grew weary of them 9 and said, "I will not be your shepherd. Let the dying die, and the perishing perish. Let those who are left eat one another's flesh." 10 Then I took my staff called Favor and broke it, revoking the covenant I had made with all the nations. 11 It was revoked on that day, and so the afflicted of the flock who were watching me knew it was the word of the LORD. 12 I told them, "If you think it best, give me my pay; but if not, keep it." So they paid me thirty pieces of silver. 13 And the LORD said to me, "Throw it to the potter"-the handsome price at which they priced me! So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them into the house of the LORD to the potter. 14 Then I broke my second staff called Union, breaking the brotherhood between Judah and Israel. 15 Then the LORD said to me, "Take again the equipment of a foolish shepherd. 16 For I am going to raise up a shepherd over the land who will not care for the lost, or seek the young, or heal the injured, or feed the healthy, but will eat the meat of the choice sheep, tearing off their hoofs. 17 "Woe to the worthless shepherd, who deserts the flock! May the sword strike his arm and his right eye! May his arm be completely withered, his right eye totally blinded!"
In studying this chapter I was moved in realizing how blessed we are of our Holy God. Just think that the moment we step out of bed we are already fighting against three opponents – The world, the flesh, and the devil. We have three strikes against us before we venture forth on our daily activities. To add to this situation I also gave thought towards how hard it is to get ‘saved’. We are so blinded and caught up with self that it is difficult to hear someone share the ‘Good News’ with us. Who desires as a non-believer to all of a sudden want to go to church to find God? Who would, when we were not believers, turn on our televisions and watch some of the Christian programs? Who is going out on the streets and telling people about our Great and Wonderful Savior – our Lord Jesus Christ?
If you are listening to me or reading this message than like me our Holy Father broke through the enemies’ defenses and showed us how filthy we are because of our sins. How doomed we are as a result of not being saved. He then showed us our beautiful Master and King. We have been washed in the blood of the Lord and forgiven of all our sins. We are saved and are going to be forever with our Amazing Holy God forever. However, the fighting is not over while we are still here on earth.. We get misdirected and misled by phony cults, false shepherds, and false prophets.
What happened in the past still occurs in the present. In chapter 11 Zechariah returns to the point on how false shepherds will arise. People will reject the True Shepherd. We see in the first few verses the ultimate result of this happening.
1 Open your doors, O Lebanon, so that fire may devour your cedars! 2 Wail, O pine tree, for the cedar has fallen; the stately trees are ruined! Wail, oaks of Bashan; the dense forest has been cut down! 3 Listen to the wail of the shepherds; their rich pastures are destroyed! Listen to the roar of the lions; the lush thicket of the Jordan is ruined!