The Enemies of Israel are the Enemies of God :: By Sean Gooding

The Enemies of Israel
Zechariah Lesson 34, Chapter 14: 6-15

It shall come to pass in that day that there will be no light; The lights will diminish. It shall be one day which is known to the Lord—Neither day nor night. But at evening time it shall happen that it will be light. And in that day, it shall be that living waters shall flow from Jerusalem, half of them toward the eastern sea and half of them toward the western sea; in both summer and winter it shall occur. And the Lord shall be King over all the earth. In that day it shall be—‘The Lord is one,’ and His name one.

“All the land shall be turned into a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem. Jerusalem shall be raised up and inhabited in her place from Benjamin’s Gate to the place of the First Gate and the Corner Gate, and from the Tower of Hananel to the king’s winepresses. The people shall dwell in it; and no longer shall there be utter destruction, but Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.

And this shall be the plague with which the Lord will strike all the people who fought against Jerusalem: Their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet, their eyes shall dissolve in their sockets, and their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths.

“It shall come to pass in that day that a great panic from the Lord will be among them. Everyone will seize the hand of his neighbor and raise his hand against his neighbor’s hand; Judah also will fight at Jerusalem. And the wealth of all the surrounding nations shall be gathered together: Gold, silver, and apparel in great abundance. Such also shall be the plague on the horse and the mule, on the camel and the donkey, and on all the cattle that will be in those camps. So shall this plague be.

The Enemies of Israel
God has been fighting for Israel since her very beginning. He went out with Abraham when he rescued Lot in Genesis 14. He fought with Israel all through the wilderness journey of Exodus through Deuteronomy. God fought with Joshua in the conquests of the Promised Land. He fought with the Judges for 400 years. Men like Gideon and Samson went to war with the power of God upon them. God helped Saul to prevail in many wars. He trampled David’s enemies underfoot for 40 years, and David was able to give Solomon a kingdom that was at peace for the vast majority of the 40 years he was king.

God has also left Israel to their own demise when they turned their backs to Him and despised His blessings. They often went out to battle only to be sorely defeated and destroyed. It would seem that about every 40 years or so in the book of Judges, the nation would have oppression from their neighbors. As a nation, Israel would turn to idolatry, then God would allow the bordering nations to steal their food, their livestock, their women, and kill some of them.

Even in modern times we see the hand of God in the 6-day war of 1967 and then again in 1973 where the nation defeated far superior enemies. God fights for Israel, and when He does, they are undefeated.

Once again, we are looking into the future, to a time at the very end of the Tribulation when the armies of the world have amassed at the gates of Jerusalem with the intent of annihilating the Jews. Israel would already be reeling from almost three and a half years of both spiritual and physical trouble. A little over 3 years before we get to this event, the Anti-Christ, who rules, if not the whole world, for sure the vast majority of it, will break the 7-year treaty that he had made with Israel.

This treaty will allow them to rebuild the Temple and begin the sacrifices once again. He, the anti-Christ, will defile the Temple and set up an idol to be worshipped. Israel will rebel, and all hades will break loose. Plague after plague on the whole world, hunger, disease, natural disasters and stuff that makes a lot of our horror movies look like a Saturday morning cartoon. The earth will be broken; death will be real and rampant, and yet people will still defy God and refuse to humble themselves. We see this in Revelation 16: 10-11,

And the fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and its kingdom was plunged into darkness, and men began to gnaw their tongues in anguish and curse the God of heaven for their pains and sores; yet they did not repent of their deeds.

Wow, we are a hardhearted bunch! God will do all He can to scare us to repentance, since love and grace did not work. He will send pain and suffering, and even that will not work. Man is so stubborn and so full of pride. Look in verse 11 of the verses I just quoted. They will ‘curse God;’ they will know where the suffering is coming from and still refuse to repent.

At some point, the leaders of the world will set their sights on destroying Israel, and they will come full-force on her, and they will trigger a reaction in Heaven that they will regret for eternity.

Rivers of Living Water, verses 6-11

God always has some light in the darkest times. We are told in verse 6 of our text that it will be dark, as it always is before the light comes up. Then on a day that is known only to the Lord, this will happen: There will be an earthquake that flattens a part of Israel. This note mentions the city of Geba. This city is actually in the tribe of Benjamin; so for 6 (six) miles from Jerusalem to Geba and the surrounding areas of the tribe of Judah where Jerusalem is, God will send an earthquake that flattens that mountainous area.

Jerusalem is 3,800 feet above sea level. A secondary result will be that there will be living water that flows from Jerusalem into the Dead Sea. This will bring life to the Dead Sea; this is called the eastern sea in the text.  According to the text, Jerusalem itself will stay elevated (verse 10).

In verse 11, we find that the people of Jerusalem will live in safety. Right now, there are tensions between the Jews and the Arabs around them. There is constant threat of rocket attacks, knife attacks, and on and on. But when this day of the Lord is over, Jerusalem will dwell in safety. God will be their God, Jesus will be Lord over the whole earth (verse 9), and a new era of man’s existence will be ushered in.

The Plague of Death, verse 12

Verse 12 is a scary verse. Some have described what will happen here as a nuclear event. I don’t think so. Jesus does not need the bombs of man to cause this kind of destruction; He is God. Whatever man has invented, God has stuff that makes them look like toys.

We are told in verse 12 that God will send a plague to strike all the people who come against Jerusalem. We can know this is not the same fight as the one in Ezekiel 38; there the Lord turns every man against his fellow soldier, and they kill each other. This time Jesus does the killing with a plague that melts people where they are. This is like watching one of the Mummy movies when the Pharaoh is raised from the dead, and those that see him turn to sand. Well, this will be no movie; this will be millions upon millions of men and maybe women and livestock, according to verses 15, simply melting.

Their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet, their eyes shall dissolve in their sockets, and their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths.

Then we are told that a great panic will come on the people. No wonder! If you see the armies melting around you, you too would be in a panic. Folks, the God pictured here is not the God that is often preached today in many churches – a God of wrath, a God to be feared and one who is powerful and whose anger is not to be taken for granted.

We have ‘sissified’ Jesus. We have Him as some love-struck man, unable to go on without us. Nothing could be further from the truth. Jesus loves us; yes, that is true. Jesus came and humbled himself for us; yes, that is also true. But once He resurrected, He returned to His rightful place at the right hand of God to resume ruling the world. In this capacity He is also an Advocate for the redeemed before the Father.

He is on our side; He is our Friend and He is our Righteousness before God. But HE IS GOD!  Those who forget this do so to their own detriment.

When Jesus steps out of Heaven on this day we are talking about in Zechariah, there will not be one iota of humility in Him, not one gram of weakness and meekness. But that Day, the wrath of the Living God will be seen by the whole world, and they will understand that Jesus is Lord forever. They will not mistake Him for another; they will know exactly who He is. No one will have to introduce Him.

The Spoils of War, verse 14

As a conquering kingdom, the wealth of the defeated nations will come to Jerusalem. All the gold, silver, and clothing in great amounts will come to Jerusalem, and the riches of the world will be hers.

Think of the nations that surround Israel: Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Turkey, Egypt, Jordan, Syria and others. Most of these are oil-rich nations with billions and billions of dollars. These will now be the riches of Jerusalem, and they will control the wealth of the whole world.

This is how Jesus and Jerusalem will enter the Millennial Kingdom: all her enemies defeated and all their riches now in her possession. What a Day that will be!

Are you on the Lord’s side? There is no middle road, no neutral ground. You are either on God’s side or you are His enemy. This is very important for us to know. If you refuse the truth of God, you have chosen the lies of the Devil, and as such, you work for him. You will defy God, you will hate Christians, and you will choose sides.

But we are still under the age of Grace. God has graciously sent His son, Jesus, who died on the cross of Calvary for our sins and to be raised from the dead to offer us eternal life, to offer us the chance to be born again and to be children of God. We stop being His enemies and become His family. Trust Jesus while there is still time; call on Him while He offers a loving hand and offers the complete forgiveness of our sins.

2 Corinthians 6:2 For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.