The Lord Wants His People to Return to Him
1A message from the Lord came to Zechariah the prophet. Zechariah was the son of Berekiah. Berekiah was the son of Iddo. It was the eighth month of the second year that Darius was king of Persia. Here is what Zechariah said.
2The Lord who rules over all was very angry with your people of long ago. 3And now he says to us, “Return to me. Then I will return to you,” announces the Lord. 4“Do not be like your people of long ago. The earlier prophets gave them my message. I said, ‘Stop doing what is evil. Turn away from your sinful practices.’ But they would not listen to me. They would not pay any attention,” announces the Lord. 5“Where are those people now? And what about my prophets? Do they live forever? 6I commanded my servants the prophets what to say. I told them what I planned to do. But your people refused to obey me. So I had to punish them.
“Then they had a change of heart. They said, ‘The Lord who rules over all has punished us because of how we have lived. He was fair and right to do that. He has done to us just what he decided to do.’ ”
A Vision of a Horseman Among Some Myrtle Trees
7A message from the Lord came to Zechariah the prophet. Zechariah was the son of Berekiah. Berekiah was the son of Iddo. The message came during the second year that Darius was king. It was the 24th day of the 11th month. That’s the month of Shebat.
8I had a vision at night. I saw a man sitting on a red horse. He was standing among the myrtle trees in a valley. Behind him were red, brown and white horses.
9An angel was talking with me. I asked him, “Sir, what are these?”
He answered, “I will show you what they are.”
10Then the man standing among the myrtle trees spoke. He said, “They are the messengers the Lord has sent out. He told them to go all through the earth.”
11They brought a report to the angel of the Lord. He was standing among the myrtle trees. They said to him, “We have gone all through the earth. We’ve found the whole world enjoying peace and rest.”
12Then the angel of the Lord spoke up. He said, “Lord, you rule over all. How long will you keep from showing your tender love to Jerusalem? How long will you keep it from the towns of Judah? You have been angry with them for 70 years.” 13So the Lord replied with kind and comforting words. He spoke them to the angel who talked with me.
14Then the angel said, “Announce this message. Say, ‘The Lord who rules over all says, “I am very jealous for my people in Jerusalem and Zion. 15And I am very angry with the nations that feel secure. I was only a little angry with my people. But the nations went too far and tried to wipe them out.”
16“ ‘So the Lord says, “I will return to Jerusalem. I will show its people my tender love. My temple will be rebuilt there. Workers will use a measuring line when they rebuild Jerusalem,” announces the Lord.
17“ ‘He says, “My towns will be filled with good things once more. I will comfort Zion. And I will choose Jerusalem again.” ’ ”
A Vision of Four Horns and Four Skilled Workers
18Then I looked up and saw four animal horns. 19I spoke to the angel who was talking with me. “What are these horns?” I asked.
He said, “They are the powerful nations that scattered Judah, Israel and Jerusalem.”
20Then the Lord showed me four skilled workers. 21I asked, “What are they coming to do?”
He answered, “The horns are the powerful nations that scattered the people of Judah. That made Judah helpless. But these four skilled workers have come to terrify the horns. The workers will destroy the power of those nations. Those nations had used their power to scatter Judah’s people.”
1大流士王二年八月，耶和华对易多的孙子、比利迦的儿子撒迦利亚先知说： 2“耶和华曾对你们的祖先大发怒气。 3因此，你要告诉百姓，万军之耶和华说，‘你们要归向我，我就回到你们那里。这是万军之耶和华说的。 4不要像你们的祖先一样。以前的先知曾呼唤他们要听从万军之耶和华的话，改邪归正，停止作恶，他们却置若罔闻，不予理会。这是耶和华说的。 5现在你们的祖先在哪里呢？那些先知能活到永远吗？ 6然而，我吩咐我仆人——众先知的训言和律例岂不应验在你们祖先的头上了吗？后来他们悔改了，说，万军之耶和华按着我们的所作所为报应了我们，正如祂所言。’”
7大流士王二年十一月，即细罢特月二十四日，耶和华的话传给了易多的孙子、比利迦的儿子撒迦利亚先知。 8我在夜间看到异象，见有人骑着一匹红马，站在谷中的番石榴树林间，后面有红马、棕马和白马骑士。 9我就问：“主啊，这是什么意思？”那位跟我说话的天使说：“我会告诉你这是什么意思。” 10站在番石榴树林间的那位对我说：“这些是耶和华派来巡视大地的。” 11其他骑士向站在番石榴树林间的那位耶和华的天使报告说：“我们已经巡视了大地，到处都安宁平静。”
14那位天使对我说：“你要宣告，万军之耶和华说，‘我对耶路撒冷，对锡安充满了火热的爱。 15我对安逸的列国充满愤怒，因为我只是对我的子民稍微不满，列国却大肆祸害他们。’ 16因此，耶和华说，‘我必怀着怜悯的心回到耶路撒冷，我的殿必在那里重建，必有准绳丈量耶路撒冷。这是万军之耶和华说的。’ 17你还要宣告，万军之耶和华说，‘我的城邑必再次繁荣昌盛，耶和华必再次安慰锡安，拣选耶路撒冷。’”
18我又举目观看，见有四个角。 19于是，我问与我说话的天使：“这是什么？”他回答说：“这些是驱散犹大、以色列和耶路撒冷的角。” 20耶和华又让我看见四个工匠。 21于是我问：“他们来做什么？”他说：“这些角驱散了犹大，以致无人能抬头，但这些工匠是来威吓列国，并打掉他们用来攻击和驱散犹大的角。”