“It shall come to pass that, as you were a curse among the nations, house of Judah and house of Israel, so will I save you, and you shall be a blessing. Don’t be afraid. Let your hands be strong.”Zechariah 8:13
In the time in ministry of Zechariah, Israel and Judah had been taken captive into the nations and had lost their temple in their homeland due to their disobedience. In all of this time, they wondered if God would ever restore their nation. As Zechariah’s prophecies continued to unfold, it was revealed to them that they would return to their land and they would be a blessing and their fortunes would be restored.
Zechariah 8:11-13: “But now I will not be to the remnant of this people as in the former days,” says Yahweh of Armies. “For the seed of peace and the vine will yield its fruit, and the ground will give its increase, and the heavens will give their dew; and I will cause the remnant of this people to inherit all these things. It shall come to pass that, as you were a curse among the nations, house of Judah and house of Israel, so will I save you, and you shall be a blessing. Don’t be afraid. Let your hands be strong.”
This wasn’t just good news, this was amazing and wonderful news! God was planting the seed for the establishment of not just the physical kingdom of Israel, but the eternal kingdom of God on earth.
From the early beginnings of Yeshua’s public ministry, this very concept of the good news of God‘s kingdom was recorded as the first message he preached in the synagogue in his hometown.
Luke 4:16-21 He came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up. As usual, he entered the synagogue on the Sabbath day and stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was given to him, and unrolling the scroll, he found the place where it was written: The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. He then rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. And the eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fixed on him. He began by saying to them, Today as you listen, this Scripture has been fulfilled.
This focus on the amazing news of the revelation of the kingdom of God continued as he went about doing good among all the villages of Israel.
Mark 1:14-15: “Now after John was taken into custody, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the Good News of the Kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand! Repent, and believe in the Good News.””
The nation of Israel had been God‘s demonstration of power to the world. They also became the object lesson of faithlessness and faithfulness. In their faithlessness, they were removed from the land and scattered among the nations. In their faithfulness, they were restored to their land and received the promised inheritance; not just in the physical land, but of the full spiritual riches that God intended for all people through his chosen son, Messiah Yeshua.
Galatians 3:14: “that the blessing of Abraham might come on the nations through Christ Jesus; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
The kingdom of God had moved from the natural into the spiritual, and would be expanded to all nations. This was the amazing news of Yeshua and the early believers! As a spiritual kingdom, it could now be eternal and last from generation to generation without end. This is the kingdom that believers today are a part of, as we seek the God of Israel and as we seek to remain faithful to his Torah, or Word, and his Messiah, Yeshua.
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