Thirty-seven of the thirty-nine books of the Old Testament had been written when Zechariah began his work as a prophet. What had God not reveal to His chosen nation? What more needed to be said before the close of that part of the Bible? The answer to these questions emphasizes the importance of the words of this prophet.
In the final three chapters of Zechariah, God’s messenger looks to the future to show the Jews that God had some remarkable actions He would take in the New Testament age. It is obvious that these chapters are Messianic because in them God affirms the deity of Jesus and the fact that He would be pierced. “Then they will look on Me whom they have pierced” (Zech. 12:10). Do not overlook the importance of the use of the word “Me” in this prophecy. When that soldier pierced the side of Jesus, he likely did not realize he was fulfilling a prophecy made over 500 years earlier about God being pierced, but John quotes Zechariah’s words as being fulfilled by that action (John 19:34, 37).
This same verse in Zechariah speaks of Pentecost. “I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication.” Joel is not the only OT prophet who foretold the outpouring of the Spirit.
In chapter thirteen, the Messianic aspect of God’s final words to the Jews is seen even more clearly. “In that day a fountain shall be opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for uncleanness” (Zech. 13:1). One cannot read the New Testament without knowing who that Fountain is. Peter said, “You were not redeemed with corruptible things…but with the precious blood of Christ” (1 Pet. 1:18-19). The last book of the New Testament describes those who had washed their robes white and made them clean in the blood of the Lamb (Rev. 7:15). Before God closed the Old Testament, He wanted the Jews to know that someday full redemption would come from the Fountain opened in Jerusalem.
God was just about finished with the writing of the Old Testament prophets. When the final two books were finished, God would stop sending prophets to the Jews for the next 400+ years! For two thousand years that had been prophets, but when Zechariah penned his words all OT prophecy was about to end. Yet, God wanted them to know that the time would come when there would be New Testament prophets to reveal His plan for all mankind. The remarkable thing is that even as He foretold the coming of more prophets, He foretold there would be a day when, having finished their works, there would be no more prophets. “It shall be in that day…I will also cause the prophets …to depart from the land” (Zech. 13:2). More about this next week.