Zechariah

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Meaning: Yahweh remembers.

(1.) A prophet of Judah, the eleventh of the twelve Minor Prophets. Like Ezekiel, he was of priestly extraction. He describes himself (Zech 1:1) as "the son of Berechiah." In Ez 5:1 and Ez 6:14 he is called "the son of Iddo," who was properly his grandfather. His prophetical career began in the second year of Darius (B.C. 520), about sixteen years after the return of the first company from exile. He was contemporary with Haggai (Ez 5:1).

His book consists of two distinct parts, (1) chapters 1 to 8, inclusive, and (2) 9 to the end. It begins with a preface (1:1-6), which recalls the nation's past history, for the purpose of presenting a solemn warning to the present generation. Then follows a series of eight visions (1:7-6:8), succeeding one another in one night, which may be regarded as a symbolical history of Israel, intended to furnish consolation to the returned exiles and stir up hope in their minds. The symbolical action, the crowning of Joshua (6:9-15), describes how the kingdoms of the world become the kingdom of God's Christ.

Chapters 7 and 8, delivered two years later, are an answer to the question whether the days of mourning for the destruction of the city should be any longer kept, and an encouraging address to the people, assuring them of God's presence and blessing.

The second part of the book (ch. 9-14) bears no date. It is probable that a considerable interval separates it from the first part. It consists of two burdens.

The first burden (ch. 9-11) gives an outline of the course of God's providential dealings with his people down to the time of the Advent.

The second burden (ch. 12-14) points out the glories that await Israel in "the latter day", the final conflict and triumph of God's kingdom.

(2.) The son or grandson of Jehoiada, the high priest in the times of Ahaziah and Joash. After the death of Jehoiada he boldly condemned both the king and the people for their rebellion against God (2Chr 24:20), which so stirred up their resentment against him that at the king's commandment they stoned him with stones, and he died "in the court of the house of the Lord" (2Chr 24:21). Jesus alludes to this deed of murder in Mt 23:35, Lk 11:51. (See Zacharias.)

(3.) A prophet, who had "understanding in the seeing of God," in the time of Uzziah, who was much indebted to him for his wise counsel (2 Chr. 26:5).

Besides these, there is a large number of persons mentioned in Scripture bearing this name of whom nothing is known:

(4.) One of the chiefs of the tribe of Reuben (1Chr 5:7).

(5.) One of the porters of the tabernacle (1Chr 9:21).

(6.) 1Chr 9:37.

(7.) A Levite who assisted at the bringing up of the ark from the house of Obededom (1Chr 15:20ff).

(8.) A Kohathite Levite (1Chr 24:25).

(9.) A Merarite Levite (1Chr 27:21).

(10.) The father of Iddo (1Chr 27:21).

(11.) One who assisted in teaching the law to the people in the time of Jehoshaphat (2Chr 17:7).

(12.) A Levite of the sons of Asaph (2Chr 20:14).

(13.) One of Jehoshaphat's sons (2Chr 21:2).

(14.) The father of Abijah, who was the mother of Hezekiah (2Chr 29:1).

(15.) One of the sons of Asaph (2Chr 29:13).

(16.) One of the "rulers of the house of God" (2Chr 35:8).

(17.) A chief of the people in the time of Ezra, who consulted him about the return from captivity (Ez 8:16); probably the same as mentioned in Neh 8:4.

(18.) Neh 11:12.

(19.) Neh 12:16.

(20.) Neh 12:35ff.

(21.) Isa 8:2.


This entry includes text from Easton's Bible Dictionary, 1897.

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