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.”
Wito Wa Kumrudia Bwana
11:1 Ezr 4:24; 6:15; Mt 23:35; Lk 11:51; Neh 12:4Katika mwezi wa nane wa mwaka wa pili wa utawala wa Mfalme Dario, neno la Bwana lilimjia nabii Zekaria mwana wa Berekia, mwana wa Ido, kusema:
21:2 2Nya 36:16“Bwana aliwakasirikia sana baba zako wa zamani. 31:3 Yak 4:8; Mal 3:7; Ay 22:2; Yer 25:5; Mik 7:19; Lk 15:20Kwa hiyo waambie watu: Hivi ndivyo Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote asemavyo: ‘Nirudieni mimi,’ asema Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote, ‘nami nitawarudia ninyi,’ asema Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote. 41:4 2Nya 7:14; 24:19; 36:15; Zek 7:7; 2Fal 17:13; Za 78:8; 106:6; Yer 6:17; 17:23; 23:22; Eze 20:18; 33:4; Isa 1:16-17; Yer 3:12; Eze 33:11; Hos 14:1; Mit 3:8-9; Mdo 3:19Msiwe kama baba zenu, ambao manabii waliotangulia waliwatangazia: Hivi ndivyo Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote asemavyo: ‘Geukeni, mziache njia zenu mbaya na matendo yenu maovu.’ Lakini hawakunisikiliza wala kufuata maelekezo yangu, asema Bwana. 5Wako wapi baba zako sasa? Nao manabii, je, wanaishi milele? 61:6 Isa 44:26; Kum 28:2; Dan 9:12; Hos 5:9; Yer 12:14-17; 39:16; 23:20; 44:17; Mao 2:17; Isa 55:1; Mao 1:18Je, maneno yangu na amri zangu nilizowaagiza manabii watumishi wangu, hayakuwapata baba zenu?”
“Kisha walitubu na kusema, ‘Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote ametutenda sawasawa na njia zetu na matendo yetu yalivyostahili, kama alivyokusudia kufanya.’ ”
Maono Ya Kwanza: Mtu Katikati Ya Miti Ya Mihadasi
7Katika siku ya ishirini na nne ya mwezi wa kumi na moja, yaani mwezi uitwao Shebati, katika mwaka wa pili wa utawala wa Mfalme Dario, neno la Bwana lilimjia nabii Zekaria mwana wa Berekia mwana wa Ido.
81:8 Ufu 6:4; Zek 6:2-7; Yos 5:13Wakati wa usiku nilipata maono, mbele yangu alikuwepo mtu akiendesha farasi mwekundu! Alikuwa amesimama katikati ya miti ya mihadasi kwenye bonde. Nyuma yake walikuwepo farasi wekundu, wa kikahawia na weupe.
91:9 Zek 4:1-5; 5:5; Dan 7:16Nikauliza, “Hivi ni vitu gani bwana wangu?”
Malaika aliyekuwa akizungumza na mimi akanijibu, “Nitakuonyesha kuwa ni nini.”
101:10 Zek 6:5-8; Za 91:11; Ebr 1:14Kisha yule mtu aliyesimama katikati ya miti ya mihadasi akaeleza, “Ni wale ambao Bwana amewatuma waende duniani kote.”
111:11 Isa 14:7; Mwa 16:7; Za 102:20Nao wakatoa taarifa kwa yule malaika wa Bwana, aliyekuwa amesimama katikati ya miti ya mihadasi, “Tumepita duniani kote na kukuta ulimwengu wote umepumzika kwa amani.”
121:12 Za 6:3; 40:11; Yer 40:5; 2Nya 36:21; Dan 9:2; Za 103:13; Ufu 6:10; Zek 7:5Kisha malaika wa Bwana akasema, “Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote, utazuia mpaka lini rehema kutoka Yerusalemu na miji ya Yuda, ambayo umeikasirikia kwa miaka hii sabini?” 131:13 Isa 35:4; Ay 15:11; Zek 4:1; Isa 40:1-2; Yer 29:10Kwa hiyo Bwana akazungumza maneno ya upole na ya kufariji kwa malaika aliyezungumza nami.
141:14 Isa 26:11; Yoe 2:18; Zek 8:2Kisha malaika yule aliyekuwa akizungumza nami akasema, “Tangaza neno hili: Hili ndilo Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote asemalo: ‘Nina wivu sana kwa ajili ya Yerusalemu na Sayuni, 151:15 Yer 48:11; 2Nya 28:9; Za 69:26; 123:3-4; Amo 1:11; Isa 47:6lakini nimeyakasirikia sana mataifa yanayojisikia kuwa yako salama. Nilikuwa nimewakasirikia Israeli kidogo tu, lakini mataifa hayo yaliwazidishia maafa.’
161:16 Zek 2:1-2; 8:3; Ay 38:5; Isa 12:1“Kwa hiyo, hivi ndivyo asemavyo Bwana: ‘Nitairudia Yerusalemu kwa rehema na huko nyumba yangu itajengwa tena. Nayo kamba ya kupimia itanyooshwa Yerusalemu,’ asema Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote.
171:17 Isa 14:1; 40:1; 54:8-10; 61:4; Ezr 9:9; Za 51:18; Isa 51:3; Zek 3:2“Endelea kutangaza zaidi kwamba: Hivi ndivyo asemavyo Bwana Mwenye Nguvu Zote: ‘Miji yangu itafurika tena ustawi na Bwana atamfariji tena Sayuni na kumchagua Yerusalemu.’ ”
Maono Ya Pili: Pembe Nne Na Mafundi Wanne
18Kisha nikatazama juu, na pale mbele yangu nikaona pembe nne! 191:19 Amo 6:13; Ezr 4:1; Hab 3:14Nikamuuliza yule malaika aliyekuwa akizungumza nami, “Ni nini hivi?”
Akanijibu, “Hizi ni zile pembe zilizowatawanya Yuda, Israeli na Yerusalemu.”
20Kisha Bwana akanionyesha mafundi wanne. 211:21 1Fal 22:11; Za 75:4, 10; Isa 54:16-17; Zek 12:9Nikauliza, “Hawa wanakuja kufanya nini?”
Akanijibu, “Hizi ndizo pembe zilizowatawanya Yuda ili asiwepo atakayeweza kuinua kichwa chake, lakini mafundi wamekuja kuzitia hofu na kuzitupa chini hizi pembe za mataifa ambayo yaliinua pembe zao dhidi ya nchi ya Yuda na kuwatawanya watu wake.”