Below is an excerpt from this week’s SS Lesson, and here it provides a classic example of how to incorrectly apply the Scriptures by lifting a verse out of its context, thereby making an extraneous conclusion that cannot be supported by the Chapter or even the surrounding verses! Let’s take a read below, as you will immediately see, the hyper-suggestive statements leading to the passage are intended to cause the reader to conclude that it is speaking about Heaven or the New Earth:
SS Lesson, Dec. 24: But imagine how different it will be in an existence unencumbered by sin and all the limitations it places on us.
“And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends” (Zech. 13:6). What do you think this text is talking about?— http://www.ssnet.org/lessons/20d/less13.html
We are directed to read Zech 13:6 with the preparation that we “will be in an existence unencumbered by sin and all the limitations it places on us,” clearly suggesting New Earth realities, as the succeeding paragraphs also concluded. It is needful, therefore, for us to gain an appreciation for Zech. 13 to determine whether or not the application made in the Lesson is Biblically sound.
Verse 1 speaks of a fountain opened “for SIN and for uncleanness.” This, though, poses a really huge problem for Heaven or the New earth, for obvious reasons–sin is still prevalent amongst God’s people, and thus, they need to be “cleansed”!
Verse 2: God promises to end idolatry and false prophets from among his people. As in v. 1, this poses impossible challenges for Heaven or New Earth realities!
Verse 3: “when any shall yet [continue to] prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live;” [Added]. Here we see that “false prophets were STILL in the earth, requiring their parents to disavow them! Even greater challenges for Heaven/ New Earth!
Verse 4: “in that day, [not after] that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied;” [Added]. Observe here that these false prophets are living contemporaneously “IN that day,” and not before or after. How could this possibly occur either in Heaven or the New Earth? Not possible with Biblical chronology and prophetic realities!
Verse 5: In self-abnegation the “false prophet” will, in that day, declare, “I am no prophet, I am an husbandman;”. This is a real challenge that God would have heaped upon Himself, to have somehow managed to allow even ONE false prophet to slip in for the glory ride to Heaven at Christ’s Second Coming, then to keep him there for 1,000 years, and return him to the New Earth, only to realize that AFFLICTION Has indeed risen up “a Second Time” the very thing He promised would NOT again happen for eternity! Read Nahum 1: 9.
Now for the KEY passage that our Theologians lifted from its context and colored it with a hyper suggestive eisegesis thereby making it a pretext for error! But, let’s read v. 7 first:
“7 ¶ Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the LORD of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.” Zech. 13: 7
The NT is clear that this smitten Shepherd is none other than Jesus Christ, smitten at his crucifixion, thereby causing “the sheep to be scattered.” He is the same ONE that “YHWH” called “the man that is MY FELLOW.” Now, a “fellow” to YHWH has to be his EQUAL and again forces the conclusion that the Shepherd is Christ. So, let’s go back to V. 6, with this knowledge.
Verse 6: “And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.” Obviously, the fact that His “wounds” are seen in his hands presents the truth that this is a post Calvary experience, and while this occurred in a very limited sense with doubtful Thomas and the other disciples, the consummate fulfillment of this verse will occur in the latter days and prior to His Second Coming. Let’s drill down to prove this now, by reading v. 8, 9:
“8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. 9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.” Zech. 13: 8, 9
This experience is IMPOSSIBLE to occur in Heaven or in the New Earth for the very obvious challenges they present, showing that Probation is still NOT yet over, and people are still being “refined” and saved for the kingdom of God, while others are being rejected!
Earlier this week we were provided us a presentation from Dr. Walter Veith in which he was teaching from the book of Zechariah, [https://youtu.be/E4glfJKATtQ ] to which I gave a quick review, and demonstrated that Veith is short-sighted, for he could NOT positively identify the Jerusalem in those chapters of prophecy, and simply glossed over it! The truth of Zechariah is that God will restore Jerusalem to Greatness again, in these last days BEFORE the Second Coming of Christ!
“44 And in the days of these kings [not after] shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.” Dan. 2: 44, [added].
This Kingdom is NOT in Heaven, and certainly NOT the New Earth, but a place of protection, peace and safety for the true Church of God during the Mark of the Beast System, the Great Time of Trouble, and the pouring out of God’s Wrath in the Seven Last Plagues!
At a time when the world is reeling with Pandemic, and Governments have gained the skill at shuttering the Church of God around the world, makes for an easy way for Satan to forestall the preaching of the everlasting gospel into all the world! Christ, knowing the Devil’s plans, has provided a place of refuge for His church, whereby she will operate under His own administration, with Jesus Christ Himself as king! No longer will Caesar be able to dictate the movements that shall be made under the final proclamation of God’s last message of salvation to a lost and dying world. The “Holy Land” shall, in that day, become a city of refuge, an ark of safety for the Righteous of earth. To learn more about this topic, please check out this video study: https://fccdl.in/pJeEuAIK1i. The presentation/study runs for 1-hour and 26 minutes, and the rest is Q&A.
From this quick review of Zech. 13, it should aid in guiding our search to a theological conclusion that is consistent with the ENTIRE theme of the Bible. Obviously, from that we have surveyed in the above paragraphs, it becomes impossible that Zech. 13 can have a New Earth or Heavenly application during the 1,000 years vacation with Y’shuah there! The fact that the chapter opened with the “cleansing” of sins and concluded with “purifying” characters, easily demonstrate that the work of Salvation on earth had not yet been accomplished!
Whenever a doctrine violates even one passage of relevant Scripture, it is a false conclusion and amounts to an unbiblical interpretation! May God grant us more than earthly eyes to understand the “more SURE Word of Prophecy,” as we prepare to meet our King in His beauty, is my prayer. Shalom.