Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Zechariah, Day 3 Readings

The Faith God Desires and The Remnant Gains the City of God 

Today's first reading is about the attempts of some to regain God's favor while in exile.  Evidently, they fasted for the fifth and seventh months each year.  But God questions whether they understood what God really wanted.  Even in their fasting, they seemed to worry only about themselves, when God wanted them to worry about how they treated others, including widows, orphans, foreigners, and the poor.  These people who have not shown true faith will be punished -- the implication is that God cannot allow them to wrongly think that their "faith" and fasting have led God to restore Jerusalem.

Read Zechariah 7:1-14  (NIV)   (NRSV)   (CEB)
[links to Bible Gateway open in a new window]

The second reading offers the full promise of a restored Jerusalem.  The remnant of the faithful among those in exile will receive God's favor and good fortune.  Despite the fact that it seems impossible, they will become wealthier than the empires that currently control them.  They will reclaim the city of Jerusalem as God's city, where they will live in peace and security.  In fact, people beyond the remnant will become faithful and live in Jerusalem also.

Read Zechariah 8:1-23  (NIV)   (NRSV)   (CEB)
[links to Bible Gateway open in a new window]

Reading the Bible in Its Entirety

If you are planning to read the Bible in its entirety, you should read Zechariah 6-8 today.