Words on Christmas

12/23/2016

Zechariah 11

4 The Eternal my God has this to say:

Eternal One: Take care of the flock headed for slaughter.

6 Because of this I promise that I, the Eternal One, will no longer show pity to the citizens of this land. Instead, I will hand each one over to his neighbor, each one over to his king. Those power mongers will oppress them and abuse the land, and I will do nothing to free the sheep.

(Zechariah is a prophet 520 years before Jesus. God let him perform true shepherd for the people who doomed to be punished for the rebellion to God. )

7 And so I became the shepherd of the sheep headed for slaughter because of the poorest sheep. I took two staffs in my hand—one I named Favor of God and the other I named Unity of the People. With those I took care of the sheep. 8 In the span of one month, I expelled three shepherds who cared nothing for the sheep. I had become tired of the way they have cared for my flock, and they have cared nothing for me.

(Favor of God and Unity of the People, how wonderful. Three incompetent shepherds were destroyed in short span of time. However, good shepherd was rejected and ignored.)

Zechariah (to the sheep): 9 I will watch over you no longer. Those who are meant to die will die. Those who are meant to perish will perish. Whoever is left behind will devour his neighbor!

10 Then I took my staff named Favor of God, and I snapped it in half, dissolving the covenant I had made with all the people. 11 On that very day when the covenant was broken, the sheep traders watching me knew it was the word of the Eternal One.

Zechariah (to the sheep traders): 12 If you think it is right, give me what I have earned. If you don’t, then keep it for yourselves.

They took 30 pieces of silver, the price set as my wages, the price of a slave.

Eternal One (to Zechariah): 13 Throw it to the one who makes pots—the great price they thought I was worth.

And I did as He told me. I took the 30 shekels of silver—the princely price of my valuable service—and gave them to the potter in the Eternal’s temple. 14 Afterward I broke my other staff, Unity of the People, which severed the bond between the people of Judah and Israel.

(30 shekels of silver is the price to compensate a slave who was killed by mad bull according to Mosaic law. “princely price” serve as irony, as well as prefiguration. For prince of the princes, Jesus was sold out by Judas for exactly the same price. Judas later killed himself in the temple and the money went to the potter)

Eternal One (to Zechariah): 15 Take up once again the tools of a shepherd, this time a foolish shepherd, 16 because I am going to raise up in this land a new breed of shepherd: one who does not care for the perishing, search for the young, heal the injured, or feed the hungry. This new shepherd will feast on the fat from his own flock, tearing their hoofs from their flesh.

(God said, “I am the good shepherd”. God send his prophet and anointed to deliver His messages, guide people in the right direction, protect them to live in His favor. However, when times and times His messages were rejected and mocked, God has to leave them with the wicked shepherds who exploit and abuse them.

Jesus said on the cross, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.”

different from the shepherd play of Zechariah, with precious blood of Jesus, God’s only son, unspoken wonderful gift for the world, unfathomable love, God always leave a door open for repentance and salvation.

History is a mirror for the past and a window for the future.

In the season of Christmas, quiet our hearts before the Lord, to ponder His name, rest in His peace, gather strength in His greatness….

as David chanted,

Psalm 62

5 My soul is quiet and waits for God alone. My hope comes from Him. 6 He alone is my rock and the One Who saves me. He is my strong place. I will not be shaken. 7 My being safe and my honor rest with God. My safe place is in God, the rock of my strength. 8 Trust in Him at all times, O people. Pour out your heart before Him. God is a safe place for us.)

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