Zechariah 14:1-2 continues on Zechariah 13:9 elaborating that one day there will come a renewed relationship between God and all the nations of the earth. The Jerusalem that was described earlier in Zechariah 12:1-9 is now described from a different angle, with a different point of view, and with a different purpose. Zechariah 12 describes God’s coming in terms of grace and salvation, while Zechariah 14 depicts His coming with power and victory over all the nations and over evil.
This is the time known in Jeremiah 30:5-7 as the time of “Jacob’s trouble.” God said that He would “gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem” not only in Zechariah 14:2 but also in Joel 3:1-5. The place will be “the Valley of Jehoshaphat” or, as Revelation 16:13-16 calls it, “Armageddon.” The horrors of this siege are terrible as Zechariah 14:2 describes.
Zechariah 14:3-4 These verses shift the emphasis from a defeated nation to the Lord as their deliverer. This event is foretold in Zechariah 12:8-9. It is also alluded to elsewhere in Scripture. The Messiah Himself will go forth and crush the armies attacking Jerusalem.
And his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives, which will part in two toward the east and toward the west forming a great valley. When Yeshua ascended from the Mount of Olives, He made a promise to return to this very spot (Acts 1:11). This is His Second Coming, when returns to the earth to rule for a thousand years. It may be that this valley will be the Valley of Jehoshaphat.
Zechariah 14:5 – When the Mount of Olives splits in two, the Jewish people will flee through the valley, which is said to reach to “Azel” (Zechariah 14:5); although we don’t know where Azel is. Zechariah said that the people will flee as they fled the destruction of the earthquake in the days of Uzziah, mentioned in Amos 1:1. The Lord will come with His saints parallels Revelation 19:11-16 of the Lord’s return to the earth to make war and to judge the nations. That passage describes that the armies in heaven followed with Him.
The will not do any fighting since the war will already be won. This is the day all of creation has groaned for so long (Romans 8:18-24). Not only will there be physical deliverance, the earth also will be set free from the bondage brought about by Satan.
Zechariah 14:6-7 – The day that this passage speaks will be a unique day a day of neither bright sunlight nor darkness and we don’t know how long that day will be it is a day known only to the Lord. Isaiah had prophesied, “For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be darkened in its going forth, and the moon will not cause its light to shine” (Isaiah 13:10;24:23;Joel 3:14-16;Matthew 24:29).
Zechariah 14:8– This verse speaks of waters that will flow toward the eastern sea and the western sea. The eastern sea is the Dead Sea, and the western is the Mediterranean. The flow will not be dependent on rain as it will flow in both summer and winter. Joel predicted a day like this in Zechariah 3:18.
Zechariah 14:9– Here we are told of the realization of the hope of Israel and the Nations who have come to the God of Israel the day for which believers have prayed and of which poets have written finally will arrives when Yeshua will reign as King of kings and Lord of lords.
The end of the verse is especially meaningful “and his name one.” Man has made gods of the sun, the moon, and idols of wood and stone. Others have made gods of materialism, power, sex, greed, and almost anything else that can be named. When Jesus returns, the days of idolatry will finally be over. The world will focus on the true and living God, the sovereign Lord of all the earth.
Zechariah 14:10-11 – Jerusalem’s beauty will surpass the Garden of Eden, and its stature will be greater than any city in history. While Jerusalem will be lifted up, the land around it will be flattened as a plain, so that the capital of the world can be seen from every direction. The cities of Geba and Rimmon represent the northern and southern boundaries of land given to the tribe of Judah. In that day no matter from which direction people approach Jerusalem, they will be able to see it lifted above all other cities in the land.
Jerusalem in Hebrew means city of peace and at last it will fulfill its meaning when the Lord returns. It will no longer need walls and the people will live there without fear because “the Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6) will be reigning in the City. He will be its protection.
Zechariah 14:12-13– The enemies of Jerusalem will face the plagues of a righteous and just Lord. This verse describes the plagues. As their enemies rise, they will die a horrible death while simply standing in place. The second plague that will come upon the enemies of Jerusalem is described as total confusion so that they will turn on their own people similar to what Gideon’s adversaries heard on the day of Gideon’s victory (Judges 7:22ff).
Zechariah 14:14-15 This passage speaks of the wealth of the nations. In the Zechariah 14:1, the enemies of the Lord and the Jews had defeated the city and were sitting in it, counting their spoils. Now the spoils have been abandoned in the middle of the city and gathered up by those who were defeated. Even the animals that served those armies will be judged.
God will be acknowledged and worshiped by all and the nations will keep the Feast of Tabernacles, also called the Feast of Booths. This was what was being alluded to in Matthew 17, when Jesus was transfigured before Peter, James, and John. They knew a day was coming when God will tabernacle with man and will come to Jerusalem to celebrate His rule. In that day going to Jerusalem to worship will not be a matter of choice.
People will go or face the consequence of a judgment of no rain on their land resulting in a lack of crops. Using Egypt as an illustration, not only will there be no rain, but the plague described earlier will continue. Everything in the city of Jerusalem will point to God’s holiness. Bells on the horses will ring reminding its people of the holiness of all to the lord.
Because God is a holy God, holiness will be the way of life on the earth. Finally, the writer says, that there will no longer be any Canaanites in the house of the Lord. The Canaanites represented idol worship, and all idol worship will be removed. Only true worship will be practiced.
God has not forgotten Jerusalem, nor has He forgotten the Jewish people. This book makes that truth clear. There will be both physical and spiritual deliverance for the nation and land of Abraham’s children. When we began this book Israel was returning to the Land discouraged at the close, we find a redeemed Israel living in a city that has been lifted up to become the capital of the world. The Messiah-King is reigning. God has remembered Israel and in remembering her He has brought blessing to the world and all people who will come to Him.