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Lowell Brueckner

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The Second Coming of Christ


It’s quite appropriate on Christmas Day, don’t you think, to look ahead to His second coming? There’s quite a difference! He came as a baby, laid in a feedbox in a stable for animals. He returns with His armies as the King of Heaven, descending upon the Mount of Olives. As His feet rest upon it, the mount splits in two, opening up a valley in the middle, which extends to the east. His people escape from Jerusalem and the world’s forces, led by antichrist.

An expository study of Zechariah, verse by verse,
chapter 12:9-14 and chapter 14:1-5

The Battle of Armageddon (Rev.16:16)

“and they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon”
(Hebrew: Har signifies mountain and the name is Magedon)

Chapter 12

God Himself, creator of man, will deal with him in His time (v.1), joining all nations in the battlefield of Armageddon, under Mount Megiddo in the Valley of Jezreel, 60 miles northwest of Jerusalem. This valley has a tremendous history of battles. An expert declares that he doubts that there is another part of the world, where so many have occurred. Here are some that are mentioned in the Bible: Judges 5:20 y chapter 7; 1 Samuel 31:1-13; 1 Kings 18:40; 2 Kings 23:30; 2 Chronicles 35:20.

This is the scene of the war on the “great day of God”. From there, the battle will spread over a great part of Israel. Zechariah’s account is of the principle and most important part… the attack on Jerusalem (v.2). There, outside the city, blood will flow like a river (Rev.14:20). It may surprise us how many portions of Scripture tell us of this “day of the Lord” (Ps.2:1-9; Is.66:15-16; Joel 3:12-21; Mt.24:29-51; Mt.25:31-46, 2 Thes.1:6-9; 2:8; Rev.14:20; 16:12-16; 19:11-21).

The prophet speaks of world-wide opposition, in which the nations of the earth will no longer tolerate Jerusalem… mainly because in that time, the Jews, who have made a pact with the antichrist, will refuse to worship him. “I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples” (v.3). The difficulties within the city and the “offenses” (such as we hear in the news at this moment… civil rights, war crimes, etc.) become intolerable for the “united nations”. In this prophecy, they will join for the last time against Judah and Jerusalem.

According to the purpose of God, they will join to be destroyed (v.9), and He will come to save His people, who will find themselves in the worst of scenarios; two thirds of them will die (13:8) and one third will be greatly refined and tried (13:9). At that point the will call upon the name of the Lord and thus recognize their Messiah.

The Jews call to Jesus (Zechariah 12:10)

“so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn…”

At the end of the tribulation (the last part of week 70, prophesied en Daniel 9), when all nations come against Jerusalem (v.8 and also 14:2), the Jews will come to believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the promised Messiah. The ‘I’ who speaks (v.10), who will pour out of the Spirit, is the same one who says ‘they will look on Me’, proving two things: that He who speaks is the Angel of the Lord (since 1:11), the Word of God (Jn.1:1), and He is divine, because He pours out the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is poured upon the remnant of Israel with grace and that outpouring will produce supplication. Only the Spirit, testifying of Jesus, can open the eyes of the people, so that they recognize and believe. His first aid for them will be in the interior of their beings. As they receive grace, they will be empowered (v.8, as in 2 Ti.2:1).

Zechariah, who has been quoting the Angel of the Lord, now begins to narrate: “They will mourn for Him”. They will mourn as never before (v.10-14), with profound repentance, looking to Jesus of Nazareth and crying as Anna prayed for her firstborn. Zechariah is expressing a Hebraic proverb (‘as one mourns for an only son’ or ‘like the bitter weeping over a firstborn’), that concerns the dishonor and curse upon the barren women. However this affliction will be even greater, because they remember their rejection… they rejected the Only Son, the gravity of which would cause total despair were it not for faith. Because this is a work of the Holy Spirit, He will also impart faith. Repentance takes place, where it always does, at the foot of the cross, fixing on the pierced Christ (Ps.22:16 with Jn.19:37, Rev.1:7). It will occur when Jerusalem falls to the invading nations. Recognizing Jesus for the first time, enlightened by the Spirit, He will come to their aid (14:3-5).

At Megiddo (v.11, Armageddon) the beloved king, Josiah, died (2 Chr.35:22-27), and the people lamented. It is the Valley of Jezreel, which also bears the name, composed of pagan gods, Hadadrimmon, and as we have already noticed, it is the place of many battles in history. As at the death of Josiah, there will be national grief (v.12-14). Nathan, mentioned in verse 12,  is the ‘son of David’, seldom referred to, but he appears in the genealogy of Jesus, on Mary’s part (Lk.3:31). It is the humbler genealogy, emphasizing His humanity, which does not boast the line of Judah’s kings. It is offered by Luke, the Gentile. Matthew gave us the regal line, as his Gospel described Jesus as the King of the Jews. That is the line of Joseph, the legal father of Jesus (Mt.1:1-16).

In the same way, the most distinguished family of priests, along with the least distinguished, are mentioned (v.13). It means that, from the least to the greatest, they recognized their sin against their Messiah and are greatly afflicted. Even though no documents exist since the temple was destroyed in 70 A.D., God has not forgotten who is who in Israel and down through the centuries, He has protected the genealogical lines (v.14). These are of the remnant of Israel, the third part, who have survived the antichrist persecution.  
 Christ Liberates His People (Zechariah 14:3)

“the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations…”

Chapter 14

In Revelation 19:17-21, an angel calls the carnivorous birds to a feast (it will be a literal feast of buzzards). Joel prophesies of this (Joel 3:2), and calls the place of battle, “the valley of Jehoshaphat”. Jehoshaphat means the judgment of the Lord, because this king won an important battle against a confederation of nations (2 Chr.20:26). Upon this same ground will occur a battle, which is much more important, and all the earth’s nations will be there (v.1-3). Christ Himself will descend from heaven to destroy the nations led by the beast (Rev.19:15, 19-21). Jesus speaks of His second coming in Luke 17:22-37 (and it is described in Rev.19:11-16), comparing it to the days of Noah and Lot, and then adds that on that day some “will be taken”. They asked Him, “Where?” and He responded, “Where the corpse is, there the vultures will gather” (v.37, ESV).

So that the remnant can escape, the Lord will put His feet upon the Mount of Olives, from where He ascended into heaven (v.4, Acts 1:12; Lk.24:50), on the east side facing Jerusalem, where also He sat upon a donkey colt (Lk.19:29,27,41); where He prayed in Gethsemane (Lk.22:39); and where he often resorted. This same mount will part in two. One part will move to the north and the other to the south; a valley will open between them (just as the Red Sea opened). Between them, from Jerusalem on the west and going towards the east, the remnant of Jews, now believers, will flee. From this account, we can know how Jesus will return from the east, as Ezekiel saw in his day (Ez.43:2-5).  

The Kedron Valley, which now lies between Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives, will extend, traversing through the divided mount (v.5). Zechariah reminds them how their forefathers escaped the earthquake in the days of Uzziah (Amos 1:1). It is interesting to note, throughout these prophecies of the last days, that there are precedents in Jewish history. We see them clearly in this lesson and they can be seen in the entire book. The Lord will return, as is described by John in Revelations 19:14, to bring the antichrist and the false prophet to an end. He will then take the temple in Jerusalem and sit upon His throne.

From verse 6 and onward, Zechariah gives a marvelous description of the Millennium. In this little article, we will not study it, but as God permits, we will see it in the future. An now, we conclude this account, noting that Jesus will be king over the entire earth (v.9) and Jerusalem will be the city of peace, capital of the universal kingdom (v.11). Surrounding His throne will be the nation of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and the rest of the families of the Gentiles in the whole world will be worshipers, who will come to celebrate in Jerusalem. 


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