The Crowning of the High Priest!
Scripture reading for September 30th: Zechariah 5-6
Our goal during these devotions on God’s word is to see Jesus Christ in every book of the Bible. Zechariah, other than Isaiah, has more references to the coming of Jesus and His ministry than any other prophet. In today’s reading we have more of the eight visions that God gave Zechariah to encourage the workers who were rebuilding the temple and city of Jerusalem. Eight is the number of ‘new beginnings’, by the way, and is significant to those aware of numbers in Scripture. Even the number would be encouraging to those beginning again on the temple!
Zechariah has already mentioned the ‘Branch’ who was symbolized by Joshua, the High Priest. This ‘Branch’ would come and be fully obedient to God and take away the sins of the nation in a single day. (Zechariah 3:8-9) The High Priest symbolically did this on the Day of Atonement each year. He got to go behind the veil of the Holy of Holies and sprinkle the blood of a lamb on the mercy seat. His offering of blood was for the sins of the nation. (Leviticus 16:15-17)
In today’s reading, Zechariah sees another vision of powerful horses going throughout the earth. (Zechariah 6:1-6) One of the horses goes toward the North and brings back a report of rest being brought to God’s Spirit. Zechariah then is told to take silver and gold from the returned exiles, make a crown, and set it on the head of Joshua, the High Priest. He was to say to him: “Here is the man whose name is Branch, and He will branch out from His place and build the temple of the Lord. It is He who will build the temple of the Lord, and He will be clothed with majesty and will sit on His throne. And He will be a priest on His throne and there will be harmony between the two.” (Zechariah 6:12-13)
As we reflect on this vision in light of the life and current ministry of Jesus Christ, we see that the ‘Branch’ is again a picture of Jesus Christ who was and is both priest and king! He holds both offices without any conflict! He is our “High Priest” before God, there interceding for us. (Romans 8:34) He is the “King of Kings” who is coming in power to claim His bride, the church, and punish His enemies. (Revelation 19:11-16)
We can be encouraged by these ancient visions today because of the revelation of the Holy Spirit through the word of God. Jesus, our Priest and King, is praying for us today. He has given us the Holy Spirit and we have overcoming power to share with the lost world the good news of His coming again. We are watching for His return as King of Kings and Lord of Lords! Our faith and faithfulness will crown Him when He comes! (Revelation 4:9-11)