Zechariah 2

A season when things happen. The old testament has this sense of a plan that seems random from the outside. From the moment Abraham happens to walk one way and not another and sees a burning bush, the story of God’s intervention with the world just happens to god’s agenda, in his time.

This chapter has a sense of things all coming in a rush, and many of the plans of God on show.

A man is despatched to measure the size of the literal Jerusalem, but an angel rushes to tell of a cosmic Jerusalem that has walls of God’s fire and contains people of all nations.

It tells of the Messiah, of God sending god to live among us.

There is retribution coming for the nations who plundered Jerusalem, and justice for his people. But also salvation for all. It is a mighty vision of God’s power, and the season for it is now. “Be still”, it concludes, for god has roused himself from his holy dwelling.

A good response to the power of God.

Daniel 8

What does an average Joe like me draw from such passages?

It is a vision of the near and distant future. In the near future the power of the Italian enmore will give way to the Greek empire, that meaning of the vision of a goat and ran in conflict is given very clearly.

But there is a longer vision, 2300 nights, where worse powers will reign and atrocities will occur. The meaning of that is sealed up and hidden. Naturally this has not stopped various commentators going crazy adding up dates and so forth.

But the message I think is that god stays in control even though his plans may seem to take a very long time. He is in control during our lifetime and after it.

We know from a young age that life pre exists us and carries on after people die. But equally everything we know is defined by the span of years of our existence.

Overriding our concern about climate change, the direction of society, the rise of extreme Islam should be the sense of the fathers control.