The Message

Zechariah 6

Eighth Vision: Four Chariots

1Once again I looked up—another strange sight! Four chariots charging out from between two mountains. The mountains were bronze.

2-3 The first chariot was drawn by red horses, the second chariot by black horses, the third chariot by white horses, and the fourth chariot by dappled horses. All the horses were powerful.

I asked the Messenger-Angel, “Sir, what’s the meaning here?”

5-7 The angel answered, “These are the four winds of heaven, which originate with the Master of the whole earth. The black horses are headed north with the white ones right after them. The dappled horses are headed south.” The powerful horses galloped out, bursting with energy, eager to patrol through the earth. The Messenger-Angel commanded: “On your way! Survey the earth!” and they were off in every direction.

Then he called to me and said, “Look at them go! The ones going north are conveying a sense of my Spirit, serene and secure. No more trouble from that direction.”

A Man Named Branch

9-12 Then this Message from God came to me: “Take up a collection from the exiles. Target Heldai, Tobiah, and Jedaiah. They’ve just arrived from Babylon. You’ll find them at the home of Josiah son of Zephaniah. Collect silver and gold from them and fashion crowns. Place one on the head of Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and give him this message:

12-13 “‘A Message from God-of-the-Angel-Armies. Be alert. We have a man here whose name is Branch. He will branch out from where he is and build the Temple of God. Yes, he’s the one. He’ll build the Temple of God. Then he’ll assume the role of royalty, take his place on the throne and rule—a priest sitting on the throne!—showing that king and priest can coexist in harmony.’

14 “The other crown will be in the Temple of God as a symbol of royalty, under the custodial care of Helem, Tobiah, Jedaiah, and Hen son of Zephaniah.

15 “People will come from faraway places to pitch in and rebuild the Temple of God. This will confirm that God-of-the-Angel-Armies did, in fact, send me to you. All this follows as you put your minds to a life of responsive obedience to the voice of your God.”

New International Reader's Version

Zechariah 6

A Vision of Four Chariots

1I looked up again and saw four chariots. They were coming out from between two mountains. The mountains were made out of bronze. The first chariot was pulled by red horses. The second one had black horses. The third had white horses. And the fourth had spotted horses. All the horses were powerful. I asked the angel who was talking with me, “Sir, what are these?”

The angel answered, “The four spirits of heaven. They are going out to serve the Lord of the whole world. The chariot pulled by the black horses is going toward the north country. The one with the white horses is going toward the west. And the one with the spotted horses is going toward the south.”

The powerful horses went out. They were in a hurry to go all over the earth. The angel said, “Go all through the earth!” So they did.

Then the Lord called out to me, “Look! The horses going toward the north have given my Spirit rest in the north country.”

A Crown Is Given to Joshua

A message from the Lord came to me. His angel said, 10 “Get some silver and gold from Heldai, Tobijah and Jedaiah. They have just come back from Babylon. On that same day go to Josiah’s house. He is the son of Zephaniah. 11 Use the silver and gold to make a crown. Set it on the head of Joshua the high priest. He is the son of Jozadak. 12 Give Joshua a message from the Lord who rules over all. He says, ‘Here is the man whose name is the Branch. He will branch out and build my temple. 13 That is what he will do. He will be dressed in majesty as if it were his royal robe. He will sit as king on his throne. He will also be a priest there. So he will combine the positions of king and priest in himself.’ 14 The crown will be given to Heldai, Tobijah, Jedaiah and Zephaniah’s son Hen. The crown will be kept in the Lord’s temple. It will remind everyone that the Lord’s promises will come true. 15 Those who are far away will come to Jerusalem. They will help build the Lord’s temple. Then his people will know that the Lord who rules over all has sent me to them. It will happen if they are careful to obey the Lord their God.”