Summary: Don't over-estimate what you can do, alone. Don't under-estimate what God can do, through you.
The word of the Lord came to the remnant who had returned to Jerusalem.
• Last week, we read of prophet Haggai challenging to the people to rebuild the Temple of God and restore the worship of God.
• God encourages the people now through Zechariah (contemporary of Haggai). He spoke two months after Haggai – [Read Zech 1:1-6]
Summary of the book: Zechariah encourages the nation to respond to her privileged, covenantal relationship with God by rebuilding the Temple and returning to the worship of God in the light of a glorious future when their Messiah comes and establishes His Kingdom.
Continuing from what we’ve been talking about last Sunday on the building of the Temple of God, I’ve chosen to share from Zech 4:6-10.
• God gave Zechariah 8 messages through 8 visions in one night. The passage we read today is the 5th message: [Read Zech 4:6-10]
The will of God will not lead you to where His strength cannot sustain you.
• When God calls, He enables. If He says move, then He will make a way. If He says do it, He will give us the strength to accomplish it.
• If it is God’s will and God’s work, then ONLY through the power of His Spirit can it be done.
As leader of the remnant, Zerubbabel felt the task daunting.
• This was not the first time he was at it. His hands laid the foundation of the Temple some 16 years ago, but they stopped because of oppositions.
• Their number is small, the people are discouraged and their resources limited.
• Unlike the royal might and power in Solomon’s time, when Solomon had almost unlimited resources at his disposal.
The look of the work-in-progress wasn’t encouraging and the Lord came to encourage him. God assured him it would be completed. The Lord said it!
• And it’s not going to be BY human might or power, if that is what you are thinking.
• It’s not going to be the number, the size, the abilities or the wealth that you have, but BY MY SPIRIT, says the Lord Almighty.
(1) DON’T OVER-ESTIMATE WHAT YOU CAN DO alone
God’s work is done THROUGH our human efforts but not BY our efforts.
• God uses us, but it is not us that accomplish the task.
• If Jesus says in John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” – it means that apart from God, we cannot achieve anything of real significance.
God’s Spirit is the only, absolutely necessary resource upon whom we depend.
• If we are serious about doing God’s will and accomplish something of eternal significance.
• That is why Jesus asked His disciples to wait for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit before they do anything. We need Him.
That probably explains why God sandwiched this message with a VISION of the golden lampstand and the two Olive Trees. [Read 4:1-5 and 11-14]
• The lampstand in the Scriptures generally depicts the church, believers in Christ.
• It’s always burning because of the supply of oil to the lamp, through the two olive trees. It is a constant and unceasing supply of oil.
• What do the two olive trees refer to? Not sure, but from verse 14 they are the anointed ones – likely a picture of Christ and the Spirit.
• What is clear is that the lampstand will always be shining because of the unceasing supply of oil.
The limitations and shortfalls that you are experiencing today are not an issue to God.
• God’s will for our life is not dependent upon our might and power in the first place. It is BY HIS SPIRIT.
• And it means there is no end to what God can do, because nothing is impossible with God.
• If we call Him ALMIGHTY, then He deserves more TRUST. You’ll be fine if you stay connected to the olive trees (vision), and to the vine, Jesus says.
• Connect with God every day, and stop fighting the battles of life with your own strength. You connect each time you pray.
(2) DON’T UNDER-ESTIMATE WHAT GOD CAN DO through you
The Lord says, any challenges you face, any obstacles to MY PLAN, as great as a “MIGHTY MOUNTAIN” (4:7), will be removed. It will become level ground.
• In other words, God will make a way even when there seems to be no way.
• Notice the Lord did not deny the problems or the difficulties. There will be mighty mountains in our lives. But God says we can confront them with HIS POWER.
• The power of His Spirit will ensure that His will be done. No one and nothing can thwart God’s plan for your life.