One of my favorite Easter songs is “Rise Again,” by Dallas Holm. In the last verse of the song, it says,
Say I’m dead and gone.
But you will see that you were wrong.
Try to hide the Son.
But all will see that I’m the one.
‘Cause I’ll come again.
Ain’t no power on earth can keep me back.
‘Cause I’ll come again.
Come to take my people back.
In this passage, we see something of Christ’s return. In verses 1-8, we see the judgment that will come upon the earth and its kingdoms. If we compare this passage to Revelation 6, we see that the white horses represents war; the red horses, violence and bloodshed; the black horses, famine and death; and the dappled horses probably correspond to the pale horses of Revelation, perhaps symbolizing death by plagues. But terrible as these things are, God is in control. Until now, believe it or not, this judgment has actually been held in check by the hand of God. But the time will come when he will fully release it upon all the earth and we’ll experience a time of trouble beyond what we’ve ever known.
But after all this, Jesus will come again, and he is represented here by someone of the same name, Joshua (which as I’ve mentioned before is the Hebrew version of the Greek name Jesus). Joshua, as we’ve seen, was the high priest at the time. But Zechariah was told to make a crown for him and to put it on his head. And as he did, he was to make a prophesy of the one he symbolized, the coming Messiah.
Unlike Joshua, who was merely a priest, and unlike Zerubbabel who was merely a governor (not even a king, though he was of royal blood), one was coming who would be both king and high priest. Zechariah said of him,
It is he who will build the temple of the Lord, and he will be clothed with majesty and will sit and rule on his throne. And he will be a priest on his throne. And there will be harmony between the two. (13)
The temple mentioned here is probably the temple written about in Ezekiel 40-43, not the one Joshua and Zerubbabel were building. And Zechariah says that at the time this new temple is built, Jesus will be the perfect king and priest.
What do we take from all this? Hope. We look at the world around us and see all the trouble surrounding us. We look at our political leaders, and we see people that cannot be fully trusted. The words “honest politician” are seen as an oxymoron. Ministers of Christ don’t always have the greatest reputations either. Many are often scoffed at with all the scandals that we have seen in the church, and people often look for the first sign of hypocrisy in them.
But when Jesus comes, he will reign in righteousness, and his holiness will be beyond reproach. Through him, we will all see what the Father is truly like.
So let us not get discouraged by all the wars, disease, famines, and natural disasters that we see. God is in control. And let us not be disheartened by the corrupt political and spiritual leaders that we see either. Jesus is coming back. So let us focus on him, rather than all these other things. If we focus on these other things, it’s easy to lose hope. But when we focus on him, our hope can never be taken from us.