Zechariah chapter 13, the Bible reads in verse 1, "In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness. And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered, and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land." Before I get into the sermon tonight, we need to establish first of all, what day is He talking about? What time period are we dealing with? It's the same time period that we were dealing with in chapter 12. That's why it starts out with that phrase at the beginning of chapter 13, "In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David." We already established last week that the day that we're talking about or the time period that we're talking about is when Jesus Christ was crucified, basically Christ's first coming, not His second coming.
The proof for that, one of the proofs for that, is that at the end of chapter 12 it talks about looking on Him whom they have pierced, which of course is a reference to Jesus Christ being pierced on the cross by the soldier's spear. But it says in verse 11 of chapter 12, "In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon. And the land shall mourn, every family apart, the family of the house of David apart, and their wives apart, the family of the house of Nathan apart, and their wives apart, the family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart, the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart, all the families that remain, every family apart, and their wives apart."
That could not have an application in the end times because of the fact that those distinctions no longer exist. If we were to go to Israel today and talk to the Jews over there or even to talk to Jews in the United States, they have no idea what tribe they're from. These tribes no longer exist. We asked several rabbis when we were making our film, Marching to Zion, if they knew what tribe they were from or if anyone knows what tribe they're from and they said, "That's been lost. No one knows." They do not have a genealogy that goes back to the time of Christ or that goes back beyond that that could tell them what tribe they're of. Now we know that the kingdom of Judah, which later became the Roman province of Judea, was made up predominantly of three tribes.
It was predominantly the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, and Levi that made up that southern kingdom. Obviously, there were some people from other tribes from the northern kingdom that had come down to the southern kingdom because they wanted to worship the Lord and they knew that the northern kingdom was turning away from the Lord, especially in the days of Hezekiah. They invited other people from other tribes to come down and join their righteous nation and get out of the ungodly nation to the north in Israel and to get into Judah. But predominantly it was made up of those tribes, Judah, Benjamin, and Levi. That's why the apostle Paul talks about the fact that he was a Hebrew of the Hebrews and he said, "I'm of the tribe of Benjamin."
He was of one of the tribes. He knew what tribe he was of, but today you won't find any of the Jews that could tell you, "Hey, I'm of the tribe of Benjamin," "I'm of the tribe of Judah." They don't know. In order for them to segregate themselves and to mourn separately, the house of David apart, which would obviously be part of the tribe of Judah, and then the house of Shimei apart, which Shimei was a prominent figure amongst the Benjaminites, that would have to be back then. That would not be a second coming application. Now there's more proof that chapters 12 and 13 are referring to Christ's first coming. I already went over some of it last week. I'm not going to re-preach that sermon, but also in chapter 13 there is a verse that is fulfilled at Christ's first coming in verse number 7.
It says, "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts. Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered, and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones." Now according to Jesus, this was fulfilled in a couple of places, but one that we could look at is Mark chapter 14. You don't have to turn there. I'll read it for you, but in Mark 14, 27, "And Jesus saith unto them, all ye shall be offended because of me this night, for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered. But after that I am risen, I will go before you into Galilee."
According to Jesus, the scripture in Zechariah is a reference to the fact that when Jesus Christ is smitten, when He's arrested, and when He's beaten, and spat upon, and nailed to the cross, that the sheep would be scattered, that was a reference to the disciples fleeing from Him when He's arrested that night. They all are scattered from Him, and they flee. Then of course Peter pipes up when Jesus brings up this scripture and says, "Well, I'm not going to. Though all men forsake you, I'll not forsake you." He tells him of course that before the cock crow twice that he shall deny Him thrice.
These are some things that just get us to have our bearings in the book of Zechariah. What are we talking about here in chapters 12 and 13? Are we talking about the end times or are we talking about the first coming of Christ, because whenever we're reading the Old Testament, a lot of it is talking about things that were happening back then. Other things are pointing to Christ's first coming. Then other things are going even further into the future to Christ's second coming. For example, at the end of ... I'm sorry, at the beginning of chapter 14, look at verse number 1. We switch subjects in chapter 14 and it says, "Behold, the day of the Lord cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee. And I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle," and on and on.
This is an end times prophecy because we're talking about the day of the Lord. If you read chapter 14, that becomes very clear. It talks about Christ setting His feet upon the Mount of Olives, and it's going to split in two, and this and that, but in chapters 12 and 13 we're not there yet. We're clearly talking about Christ's first coming. A lot of evidence that I just gave you and more. With that understanding of what time period we're referring to, let's go through this chapter. Chapter 13, verse 1, "In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness."
Obviously, we know this fountain that was opened in that time is the blood of Jesus Christ that washes us from our sins, and the Bible says that it's opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. Now obviously, that's not the only people that it was opened to, but Jesus Christ did come to seek and to save that which was lost, and He came to the lost sheep of the house of Israel in His earthly ministry. The Bible says in John chapter 1, "He came unto His own, but His own received Him not. But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name." This is offered unto the house of David, and it's offered to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, but obviously, it's also open to everybody.
The reason that those two are mentioned is because this book of Zechariah is written to those who are living in Judah. He says, "In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness," to purify them from sin, to purify them from uncleanness. That's clearly the blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son, that taketh away the sin of the world. Now look at verse 2. It says, "And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered, and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land."
Now at that time period, when the Bible says, "In that day," it's not always talking about a specific day. It's like when people say, "Back in my day, we used to have work hard." It's just "in that day" can also just mean in that time period, around that time, around the time of these events. When He talks about cutting off the names of the idols out of the land, that they would no more be remembered, and causing the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land, let me ask you this, was that fulfilled?
The answer of course is, yes, because even to this day, the Jews that reject the Lord Jesus Christ, even though they have a wicked, occultic false religion of Judaism where they literally worship the devil and do not worship God the Father, despite what people try to tell you, "Oh, they're worshiping God, the Father," the Bible says, "Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father. But he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also." You can't worship the Father independently of Jesus. "No man cometh unto the Father but by me," Jesus said, but you know what the Jews don't do? They don't worship idols. I mean think about it. When was the last time you saw a Jewish family have graven images in their house that they're bowing down to or praying to?
That's not something that they do. But in the Old Testament, that was a problem in the children of Israel. They were constantly worshiping idols, and God was rebuking their idolatry. Around the time of Christ's first coming, He prophesied that He would cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and He said that they would no more be remembered. That's true. We don't really know the names of all the idols that they worshiped back in those days. We know a few names of the idols that are recorded in the Bible, but if they weren't recorded in the Bible, we'd have no clue. I mean the only false gods that I can name are the ones that are written in the Bible.
Other than that, we don't know the names of those. God cut off those idols to the point where no one was worshiping them anymore. Those religions just completely died, those false religions. He also said that at that time He would cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land. He's saying there aren't going to be any more false prophets because, let's keep reading to get the context, prophets that would prophesy with an unclean spirit is what He's referring to. Look at verse number 3.
"And it shall come to pass, that when any shall yet prophesy, then his father and his mother that begat him shall say unto him, Thou shalt not live, for thou speakest lies in the name of the Lord, and his father and his mother that begat him shall thrust him through when he prophesieth. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied, neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive. But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am an husbandman, for man taught me to keep cattle from my youth. And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends."
What the Bible's talking about here is a religious climate where basically false prophets will not be tolerated, where anybody who tries to lie and be a false prophet though the power of an unclean spirit is going to be put to death. It's not going to be acceptable or tolerated with them, to the point where even if it was someone's own child, they would even have them put to death for being a false prophet. Then the Bible's also saying that those who have been a false prophet in the past will basically be ashamed of that and try to hide the fact that they were ever a false prophet. It talks about how they would be ashamed of the vision that they had prophesied.
"Neither shall they wear a rough garment to deceive. But he shall say, I am no prophet, I am an husbandman, for man taught me to keep cattle from my youth." Now look at verse 6. This is interesting. "And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends." If we just take a plain reading of the scripture here, just taking it for what it says, it's talking about people denying that they're a prophet and saying, "Oh, no, not me. I didn't prophesy in the name of the Lord." Then someone's catching them in a lie, saying, "Okay, well, then what are these wounds in your hands then?"
"Oh, no, no, I've just been dealing with cattle. I'm not a prophet." "Okay, well, then what are these wounds in your hand then?" Then they're basically going to say, "Oh, well, that was just what I was wounded with in the house of my friends." Now you might look at that and say, what in the world is this talking about? Look at Jeremiah. Keep your finger here. Go to Jeremiah chapter 48. Let's learn more about why would a false prophet have wounds in his hands that he's trying to hide, trying to cover up and say, "Oh, no, no, no. Let me tell you how that happened. I was wounded in the house of my friend. I'm not a prophet." Go back to Jeremiah chapter 48, verse 37.
In Jeremiah 48, and we're actually going to back up to verse 35, it says, "Moreover I will cause to cease in Moab, saith the Lord, him that offereth in the high places, and him that burneth incense to his gods." This is talking about the Moabites, who are people who worship false gods. It says in verse 36, "Therefore mine heart shall sound for Moab like pipes, and mine heart shall sound like pipes for the men of Kirheres because the riches that he hath gotten are perished. For every head shall be bald, and every beard clipped upon all the hands," watch this, "upon all the hands shall be cuttings, and upon the loins sackcloth. There shall be lamentation generally upon all the housetops of Moab, and in the streets thereof, for I have broken Moab like a vessel wherein is no pleasure, saith the Lord."
In this scripture He's talking about the fact that when He destroys the Moabites, they're going to be mourning, and they're going to be lamenting, and part of what they're going to be doing is shaving their heads bald, clipping their beads, and in every hand, it says, "Shall be cuttings." In all hands shall be cuttings. Now why would there be cuttings in their hands? Is this a biblical practice? Is this a godly practice? Absolutely not. This is something that the heathen nations did. This is something that the Moabites did because they worshiped false gods. Now go if you would to I Kings chapter number 18. This is that famous story in I Kings chapter 18 where Elijah faces off with the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel.
If you remember, they're both trying to call down fire from heaven. Elijah's calling out to the Lord, and the prophets of Baal are calling out to Baal. They're begging Baal to answer them. When he doesn't answer, they keep on trying. They keep begging, and praying, and crying out to their god. It says in verse 28, I Kings 18:28, "And they cried aloud and cut themselves," but notice it doesn't just say that they cut themselves, it says they cut themselves, "after their manner," meaning this was something that they did as a part of their religion. It was part of their way of worshiping. They would actually cut themselves.
It says, "They cut themselves after their manner," meaning the way that they do it, "with knives and lancets, till the blood gushed out upon them." Now turn if you would to Mark chapter 5 in the New Testament. Matthew, then Mark. Look at Mark chapter number 5. We saw the Moabites who worshiped false gods, when God brought judgement upon them, they mourned, and lamented, and part of that was cuttings in their hands. Then we see the prophets of Baal cutting themselves with knives until the blood gushed out. Look at Mark chapter number 5. It says in verse number 2, "And when he was come out of the ship, immediately there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit."
This man has an unclean spirit, and in verse 5 it says, "Always, night and day, he was in the mountains, and in the tombs, crying, and cutting himself with stones." This is a practice that is demonic. This is a sign of someone who has an unclean spirit, because this man in Mark 5, he has an unclean spirit, meaning that he's demon possessed. He has a devil in him or multiple devils, and he's cutting himself with stones. What are the prophets of Baal doing? Cutting themselves. Who are the prophets of Baal really worshiping? Baal, [Bel, Balia 00:16:56], Beelzebub, these are all referring to Satan. They're worshiping Satan, and part of that is to cut themselves.
We saw the Moabites with their false gods, and when they lament, they cut themselves. Now with that in mind, go back to Zechariah chapter 13, now that we've seen that this idea of cutting yourself is demonic. It says in Zechariah chapter 13 at the end of verse 2, the last phrase there at the end of verse 2, "Also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land." We have an unclean spirit in the prophets, and we have an unclean spirit in the man in Mark chapter 5, so that's where the cuttings in the hands are coming from. Now later they're trying to hide that because they don't want to be put to death for being a false prophet.
At that point they're saying, "Oh, no, these are the wounds with which I was wounded in the house of my friends," basically making an excuse for why they have these cuttings in their hands. Now if you remember, if Jesus' day, they were definitely on a hunt for false prophets because what did they accuse Jesus of being? A false prophet. I mean they crucified Him, and they brought Him before the council. They wanted to put Him to death for blasphemy because He said that He's the son of god. Now of course, Jesus Christ truly was the Son of God. They were wrong, but they were basically looking to put to death anyone who would be a false prophet. They're very strict about this.
It makes sense that God would say in that day that's the way things were in the land of Israel around the time that Jesus Christ came on this earth. Now some people have said that verse number 6 could be prophesying about Jesus, because it's saying the wounds in the hands. We think, obviously, of the fact that Jesus' hands were nailed to the cross and that He had wounds in His hands, and He received them in the house of His friends in the sense that Judas, who He called friend, was the one who betrayed Him. Also, He's in Jerusalem, He's in Judea. He came unto His own, and His own received Him not. That's possible, but if anything, that would be like a more secondary symbolic meaning, because if we actually just read the scripture for what it's saying, it's talking about a guy who's being accused of being a false prophet.
"Oh, you're not a prophet? Then what are those wounds in your hand?" "Well, oh, those are what I received in the house of my friends." Basically he's trying to cover up the fact that he's a demonic false prophet. There could be other symbolism and foreshadowing of Christ, because the Bible is obviously very deep and sometimes has layer upon layer of interpretation. But that's definitely not the primary application of this passage. Now in the next scripture, the next verse, it does bring up something about Jesus. First he's talking about these false prophets that are wearing a rough garment. Look at verse number 4 at the end there.
It says, let's read the whole verse, "And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be ashamed every one of his vision, when he hath prophesied, neither shall they wear a rough garment," to preach the truth? Is that what it says? "A rough garment to deceive." This is clearly about false prophets with an unclean spirit that are teaching lies. It says that they're no longer going to wear a rough garment to deceive. God's going to cut out the false prophets. Now the rough garment, what is this referring to? This could simply be referring to the fact that many of the prophets in the Bible, even true prophets of God, would often live an austere lifestyle where they didn't wear soft clothing or nice clothing.
Remember what Jesus said about John the Baptist. He said, "What went ye out in the wilderness to see, a man clothed in soft raiment?" He said, "That they wear soft clothing are in kings' houses." Men like Elijah, the Bible records them wearing clothing that was basically homemade type clothing, and they're wearing a coat of skins and a leather and girdle about the loins. John the Baptist is eating locusts and wild honey. It's said of Elijah that he's a hairy man, and so forth. That roughness could be that they're trying to impersonate the true prophets of God. Another thing that this could be talking about too, when He talks about wearing a rough garment to deceive, could be just a clothing in sackcloth.
A lot of the prophets would just preach in sackcloth, which is obviously a rough garment. Another thing that this could refer to as well is that some people throughout history, especially people that are involved in doctrines of devils and false religion, have this idea of punishing themselves. Like in the Middle Ages they would wear a hair shirt in order to make themselves uncomfortable and make themselves suffer. You think of the Hindus laying on a bed of nails. You think of the Catholics, for example, whipping themselves and beating themselves. Even to this day, there are Catholics who beat themselves. Tell that to James White. He didn't believe us in the movie when we told him that.
He said, "No, they're not whipping themselves." Just literally two miles from here in the town of Guadalupe, every Easter they have a big thing where they're whipping a bunch of people over there, and they don't allow video cameras to film it. I wonder why not. Maybe because men love darkness rather than light, because their deeds are evil, so they don't allow people to know what goes on down there. In the so called Holy Week or Passion Week or whatever they do down there in Guadalupe where it's Roman Catholic, they literally do floggings and stuff down there. I thank God that by His stripes we're healed, not by our own stripes. We don't have to flog ourselves or flog each other every Easter.
I'd rather just have a ham dinner and pass the gravy than to beat ourselves or beat each other, but that's what they do down in Guadalupe. This isn't just something antiquated. Catholics are doing this kind of stuff today down in Mexico, in the Philippines. Catholics will crawl on their knees and crawl in the dirt, whip themselves, crucify themselves, all kinds of crazy things, and this has been part and parcel of the Catholic religion throughout history, this idea of self-flagellation, beating yourself, tormenting yourself. But this is not a biblical concept. Nowhere does the Bible teach cutting ourselves or whipping ourselves, but those who were demon possessed would often be self-destructive in the Bible, throwing themselves in the fire, and throwing themselves in the water, and cutting themselves with stones.
Now the Bible does teach that we should be willing to suffer for Jesus Christ, but the Bible doesn't teach that we should just suffer for no reason, just punish ourselves and go through pain just as some kind of an exercise to gain us favor in the sight of God. We shouldn't just go through some kind of an exercise, but there are people who believe in this stuff, and it's not of God, this whole thing of just punishing yourself for the sake of punishing yourself. Jesus Christ took our punishment for us. If I suffer for the cause of Christ, it's going to be because the world brings upon me tribulation or trials. It's not going to be because I bring it on myself.
If I end up getting thrown in prison or being beaten or jailed or even killed for the cause of Christ, you know what? So be it. If that be the Lord's will, then blessed be the name of the Lord. But I'm not going to sit there and beat myself. "Ooh, this makes me Godly. This makes me righteous." Think about all the people who sit there and chant all day, and skip a bunch of meals, and beat themselves, and they're going to split hell wide open because they're not accepting the finished work that Jesus did. Their righteousnesses are as filthy rags in the sight of God. False religion often seeks to punish one's self. Instead of accepting Christ as the propitiation for our sins, punish yourself.
Jesus took our punishment. The only suffering we do as Christians is, yes, if we go out and work really hard for the cause of Christ, and if we take a stand, the Bible says, "Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution," but there's nothing wrong with us as Christians eating good meals and sleeping on a soft bed. We don't have to sleep on a bed of nails like a Hindu or on a stone floor like a Buddhist. These religions are demonic. I'm not going to take lessons from them on austerity. It's surprising how many similarities Catholicism has with these type of heathen religions, like Hinduism and Buddhism, with this self-flagellating mentality.
By the way, before the Catholics were doing the monks, and monasteries, and nuns, the Buddhists had already been doing that for 500 years. For 500 years the Buddhists had monasteries. They had monks. They had nuns. They were beating themselves. The Catholics come along and they basically have all that same demonic teaching, and then they just mix in some Jesus and some Bible, but you know what? The thing is still corrupt. It's a false religion. Catholicism is not Christianity. It's a heathen, pagan religion that just is mixed with Christianity. But when you mix the truth with a lie, you just end up with lies in the end. You end up with total corruption.
Today we see people who cut themselves, even in the United States of America, even if they're not part of a religion that openly says, "Hey, cut yourself," or "Hey, beat yourself." I remember when I was in high school, there were all kinds of these Gothic types in school that would cut themselves. People today say, "Oh, this is just normal." They psychoanalyze and explain all the reasons why these people want to cut themselves, and yada, yada. No, it's a spiritual problem because in the Bible, people are cutting themselves for one reason, because they're demonic. Isn't it interesting that the same people who are cutting themselves just happen to be the same people who are into Nine Inch Nails.
The same people just happen to be into Marilyn Manson. The same people happen to be into music that just openly hated and blasphemed Jesus Christ. Obviously, they're opening themselves up to all kinds of demonic influences when they choose to go down that path. It was some of the same people who thought it was cool to hang around at the graveyard at night, the same ones who had cut themselves. It's straight out of the Bible, but the world just fails to recognize this. Even Christians often just turn a blind eye to this and they say, "Oh, so-and-so's cutting themself. Let's get them to a psychiatrist. Let's pump them full of drugs."
No, the person is demon possessed. The person needs to get away from all the demonic music. They need to get Jesus Christ as their savior. That'll fix that problem. That's what I believe, because my belief is coming from the word of God. That's what the Bible teaches is going on. These false prophets, I mean it was just known that they would have cuttings in their flesh in that day that Jesus Christ was on this earth. That was what they did in those days, and I believe that they do similar things now, whether it's whipping themselves, cutting themselves, whatever the case may be. By the way, the New International Version of the Bible, the NIV, says in I Corinthians 9:27 of the apostle Paul, it says, "I beat my body and make it my slave."
Now the Bible doesn't teach anything like that, but this NIV corrupted version changes what the Bible says, which was very logical, where the Bible says, "But I keep under my body and bring it into subjection." What does it mean to keep under your body and bring it into subjection? It means your body's not the boss. You don't want your flesh to be the boss where it says, "Hey, if it feels good, do it" or just let appetites rule you, but rather, your mind and your spirit are in control of the body, and you control the flesh and bring it into subjection. You keep it under. You don't let it take over where the flesh is just leading you. That's what the Bible actually teaches.
The NIV changes that to, "I beat my body" in the 1984 edition of the NIV. Now in the 2011 edition of the NIV, they changed it to, "I'm striking blows to my body." Yes, it's so funny how they change the NIV because of the fact that they just want to sell more copies, so all these churches that have the NIV as their pew Bible in these big rock and roll fun center churches, they basically have to go out and buy all the new one now, throw out the 84 and get the 2011. They can also renew that copyright and make everybody have to replace their Bible in order to keep up with the new version. The 1984 Bible of the NIV is out of print. Now it's all the 2011 edition if you go down and buy an NIV.
One of the biggest things that they did, you can go to their own website where they're talking about how wonderful the 2011 edition is, how it's better than the 1984, is that they made it more gender neutral. That's the number one change that they made. That's what they say. That's not what some foaming at the mouth fundamental Baptist is accusing them of. They say, "Well, it's so much better. It's so much truer to the original because it's more gender neutral." They make it to the point of ridiculousness. They fall all over themselves to get rid of "he," "him," "his." They use the word "they" to refer to one person. I mean think about it. The word "they" is plural, right? I mean help me out here.
Isn't "they" plural? But in the NIV, "they" can be singular because it's a gender ... Instead of "he" or "she," I mean what are they going to say, "it"? Instead, they just say "they" in many places, even in a singular connotation. Not only that, but instead of, for example, the famous verse in Micah where he says, "He hath showed thee, oh, man, what is good and what doth the Lord require of thee but to do justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly before thy God," things like that they'll change in the modern versions to, "He has shown thee, oh human one." That's literally what it says in one of these modern popular versions. "He has shown thee, oh human one.
Imagine how that would ruin the campfire song. "He hath showed thee, oh man, what is good." Does anybody know that song? One person. God bless you. I see that hand. Two people. Yes, "Oh human one." I mean it's just ridiculous. It sounds stupid. Any translator, look, I've done professional translation. My wife has done professional translation from English into German, German into English, and let me tell you something. If you turned in a translation where instead of "Oh, man" you said "Oh, human one," they'd be like, "Don't call us. We'll call you on the next job." You think they would accept that kind of garbage? They'd say, "What did you do, put this in a Google Translate or something? You don't even know what you're doing."
But that's what the NIV does to fall all over themselves to go gender neutral. Yes, that's what we need, right? That's what we need in 2016, with a bunch of queers out of the closet, we need a Bible that's more gender neutral. That's what we need. With all these men transvestite, trans-gender freaks. Freaks is what they are. But no, no, no, let's come out with a gender neutral version. I mean good night, 1611, 400 years of a Bible that says, "he" and "him." Now 400 years later, just around the time that our country is being totally sodomized, let's come out with a gender neutral NIV. Great timing, Zondervan. You tell me that that's a coincidence? There's no way that's a coincidence.
These people are evil and this NIV that teaches, "Hey, I beat my body," 1984 edition or 2011, let's up the ante, "I'm striking blows to my body." The Amplified Version says, "I buffet my body like a boxer." Now I don't know about you, I've never seen a boxer who beats himself. Now maybe it's out there. Charlie, is it out there? I know Charlie trains a lot of boxing. I used to go to the boxing gym every day as a teenager. I went to a kickboxing gym every day for years, and they never said, "All right, everybody, let's land some punches on our own bodies. Let's land some punches on ourselves today (makes punching sounds)." We never did that exercise. That was never part of the training.
That's one of these new versions, I forget which one it is, literally said "landing punches" on our body. See, the devil wants us to destroy ourselves. He wants us to destroy our lives. The devil loves it when people commit suicide, and he loves to see our nation committing like a national suicide. He loves to see churches self-destruct. He loves families and people to self-destruct. He wants us to destroy ourselves. That's why the people who were possessed in the Bible are cutting themselves, whipping themselves, throwing themselves in the fire, throwing themselves in the water, trying to drown themselves, all these horrible things, because the devil wants us to be self-destructive.
God wants us to stand up for the truth, and if we have to suffer, so be it, but He doesn't need us to destroy ourselves to show Him how committed we are to Him. We don't have to actually hurt ourselves in that way. That's what this scripture is referring to. Now let's move on in the chapter here, in chapter 13, verse 7. It says, "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd." Now a minute ago, we were talking about the false prophets who wear a rough garment to deceive, and cut themselves, and have an unclean spirit, and everything else. But then we change gears in verse 7 and it says, Awake, O sword, against my shepherd." Now who's talking?
It says, "Saith the Lord of hosts." Now God is talking about His shepherd as opposed to these false, lying shepherds. It says, "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts, smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered, and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones." Now we talked about how this passage is referring to the fact that Jesus when He was smitten, His disciples fled from Him. Jesus said it is written about this, "Smite the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered." Now it's interesting that it says, "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow."
The Lord God is calling Jesus "the man that is my fellow." Now what does the word "fellow" mean? We often use the word "fellowship." Fellowship is when we have something in common with someone. We talk about coming to church and having fellowship. What we mean is that we're spending time with people that are like us in the sense that we all believe in Jesus, we believe the Bible, and we have that common ground. Whether we're red, yellow, black, white, rich, poor, we have fellowship in the fact, "Hey, we believe in Jesus. We believe the Bible. We love the Lord." That's our fellowship. If I said, "He is my fellow pastor," I'm saying that he is a pastor like me. We have that in common.
If you are an electrician, you might have a fellow electrician or if you're a plumber, a fellow plumber. It's just someone else who is like you or has something in common with you. Jesus is the man that is the Lord's fellow, meaning that He is like unto the Lord. He is the man "that is my fellow," God said, because it says in Philippians chapter 2 that Jesus did not count it robbery to be equal with God. Jesus Christ of course was in the beginning with God and He was God, the Bible says in the book of John chapter 1. It's funny, I was preaching this morning at the community college down here in the religion class, and there was this Muslim girl.
She wanted to stump me, because this is what Muslims will always pull out at you. They'll say this, "Well, show me in the Bible where Jesus said, 'I'm God.'" It's like, "Well, okay, well, here's where Thomas says He's God and then He says, 'Blessed art thou, Thomas, because you've believed.'" "No, that's not good enough. I want to see where He says 'I'm God.'" "Oh, well, here's in the book of Hebrews chapter 1 where it says that Jesus is God. Here's I Timothy 3:16." You show all these verses that say that He's God in the epistles of Paul, verses all throughout the New Testament, but they're like, "No, no, no, I want to see where He said it."
Now this is the foolishness of this thing of where people say, "Well, it has to come out of the mouth of Jesus." Then they'll reject other verses, like a red letter edition is all they're going to go with, the red letters. I've had Catholics do this where you'll show them scriptures in Romans, and then they'll say, "Yeah, but that's Paul, but what did Jesus say?" We have to understand that the word of God is all given ... All scripture is given by inspiration of God, not just the part that physically came out of Jesus' mouth. But I said to this girl, "Well, here's a verse." I showed her the one where Thomas says, "My Lord and my God," and then He says, "You're blessed that you believe that."
That wasn't good enough. Then I said, "Okay, well, do you believe Jesus is the Son of God?" She said, "No, because Muslims don't believe that." I said, "Well, here's in John chapter 10 where Jesus says, 'I am the Son of God.' That's out of the mouth of Jesus Himself saying, 'I am the Son of God.' Now do you believe that?" "No." "Well, then you wouldn't believe it if Jesus said, 'I am God' either because you don't care what the Bible says." But they try to do that just to try to show you, "Hah, I'm going to show you." You're going to show me all the way to hell, because the Koran is a wicked book written by a false prophet who was a literal pedophile.
I mean I literally, I asked, and then there was another Muslim in the class, and I asked this Muslim, I said, "Well, how old was Muhammad when he married Aisha?" What did he say, Tyler? He said, "Four years old." That's what the Muslim said, "Four years old." Oh, that's normal. Now most Muslims I've talked agree that she was six. This guy was real fundamental. Most of them agreed that she's six, and then they all agreed that he consummated the marriage when she was nine. I mean what kind of a filthy, perverted man are these people? 1.6 billion people today are following these lies and this garbage, but this attitude that says, "Oh, well, you know, where did Jesus say 'I'm God'" or "Where did Jesus say 'I'm the Son of God'?"
It's right there in the scriptures when it says, "Unto the Son He sayeth, thy throne, O God, is forever and ever." Yes, I can't point to you Muslims where Jesus said 'I'm God,' but I can point to you where God the Father said, "Unto the Son thy throne, O God, is forever and ever." I mean is that good enough if it's coming out of the mouth of God? By the way, that's not just in the New Testament, because it says actually in the Old Testament in Psalm 45, "Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever," and it's speaking to the Son of God, Jesus Christ, because He was with God, He was God. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, these three are one.
When you read the Old Testament scripture it says, "The Lord said unto my Lord, sit thou on my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool," and Jesus said, "Well, if David calleth Him Lord, how is he then His son," and so on and so forth. The Bible is clear that Jesus is the fellow of the Lord, in the sense that He is like unto the Lord because of the fact that Jesus is God incarnate. Jesus is God in the flesh. That's why Jesus said, "If you've seen me, you've seen the Father." He said, "I and my Father are one." Now I don't have time to preach a whole sermon on the trinity, but the trinity is a biblical doctrine. False teachers are the ones who would say, "Oh, Jesus is not God" or "There's no Father, Son, and Holy Ghost."
No, the Bible's clear. These three are one. Even though the word "Trinity" is not in the Bible, these three are one, that's what trinity means, tri, three, unity, one. These three are one, trinity. That's what the Bible teaches. That's just an interesting point here in verse number 7. "Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts." Here's more proof that Jesus is God. The Bible says, "The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want." Then what did Jesus say in the book of John? "I'm the Good Shepherd. I'm the Good Shepherd." What's He talking about? From the Old Testament that we've heard so much about, the shepherd that leads us in the paths of righteousness for His name sake.
He said, "I'm the Good Shepherd." That's why the Bible says in Hebrews 13 of Jesus, "That great shepherd of the sheep." Jesus is the shepherd. It says, "Smite the shepherd" halfway through verse 7, "and the sheep shall be scattered, and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones." Now let's continue. We know what that's talking about, but look at verse 8. "And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die, but the third shall be left therein." Now all of your TV preacher televangelist type end times prophecy guys, they'll try to pull out this verse and make some whole end times doctrine about it.
But wait a minute. Is that the context that we're talking about here? No, we're talking about the day when the fountain was opened unto the house of Israel for sin and uncleanness. We're talking about the day that Jesus specifically said in verse 7 was fulfilled when His disciples scattered from him, "Smite the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered, and it shall come to pass that in all the land," verse 8, notice verse 8 starts with an "and," we're continuing the same thought, "And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die." Now let me ask you this. Did that already happen or is that some end times thing?
What happened after Jesus Christ was smitten, and crucified, and died on the cross, and was risen again? What happened to that land of Israel? Did they dwell in peace and everything went well? No. God destroyed the nation of Israel. He sent the Roman legion in, and they destroyed it. They destroyed the temple. Jesus said, "Not one stone is going to be left upon another." They did this twice. They came in 70 AD and destroyed the temple, destroyed Jerusalem. They did leave some of the Jews in Jerusalem in 70 AD. They didn't get rid of all of them. But in 135 AD, the Romans came back and got rid of all the Jews, and they literally made it illegal for a single Jew to be found in the city limits of Jerusalem for hundreds of years. Did you know that?
To the point where literally no Jews allowed in Jerusalem after 135 AD, when they came in and crushed another rebellion of the Jews. Oh, many Jews were killed. Many people were killed when the Romans came in and assaulted them, and burned the city, and destroyed the temple. That wall that they're praying to instead of praying to Jesus, that wall is not part of the temple. What did Jesus say? "Not one stone will be left upon another." It's a fact that that wall is part of a Roman fortress. They're bowing down to a Roman fortress instead of Jesus. But that thing has nothing to do with it, the wailing wall, nothing to do with the temple.
The temple was completely wiped out, and Jesus said it. He gave a parable where He talked about people rejecting the Son, and He said He would send forth His armies and burn their city, and give the vineyard to other husbandmen that would bring forth the fruits thereof. He told them, "The kingdom of God shall be taken from you and given to another nation bringing forth the fruits thereof." When He says here, "And it shall come to pass, that in all the land," verse 8, "saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die, but the third shall be left therein," that's a 70 AD application where God punishes them, and they die and get scattered abroad into all nations, and were destroyed from being a nation.
Look at verse number 9, "And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried, they shall call on my name, and I will hear them. I will say, It is my people, and they shall say, The Lord is my God." Now many of the children of Israel back in that day that we're talking about, Christ's first coming, and in the days of the Acts of the Apostles, many of them believed on Jesus Christ and got saved, didn't they? How do we know? What about when the apostle Paul comes back decades later, this is way after Jesus died on the cross but before the Romans have come and wiped them out, what about when the apostle Paul comes back to Jerusalem and they're bragging to Paul, "You see how many of the Jews believe?"
What is it, Acts chapter, what chapter is it? Somebody help me out. I want to just show you that scripture real quick in the closing moments in the sermon. It wasn't in my notes, but I do want to show you this because it's pretty important. Somebody help me out. What chapter is it where they try to get him to take the Nazarite vow and so forth or pretend that he was taking this Nazarite vow, that he wasn't even taking? It's in chapter 21. Let me see if I can this part here. Here we go, verse 20, how about this? "And when they heard it," this is Acts 21:20, "And when they heard it, they glorified the Lord, and said unto him, Thou seest, brother, how many thousands of Jews there are which believe; and they are all zealous of the law," and yada, yada, yada.
There are thousands of Jews that believed at that time. Also, we know that even during Jesus' own ministry, He won many people to the Lord. Multitudes were baptized by John the Baptist. Multitudes more were baptized by Jesus and His apostles in the land of Israel. Not only that, but at the day of Pentecost you have about 3000 people saved. You have about 5000 saved in the next chapter, chapter 3. Obviously, there were a great multitude of Israelites who did get saved but then, but you know what happened when they got saved? They stopped being Jews. Now these Jews in Acts 21, they're messed up because they still think that they have to keep on being Jews.
See, there's all kinds of New Testament scripture though that tells us, in Christ there is not a Jew or Gentile. There is neither bond nor free. They were a little goofed up on that in the early days, a lot of the early Christians. That's why Paul is constantly teaching them and preaching to them about that. He even had to rebuke Peter in Galatians 2. He had to rebuke Barnabas about it because they're mixed up on these things. But over time, those who received the Lord Jesus Christ, they stopped identifying as Jews, and they became mingled with all the nations that they were scattered among. All of us have some Jewish ancestor somewhere just because of the intermingling of mankind, but they stopped calling themselves that because they were Christian.
The name of Jesus Christ is what matters, not Gentile or Jew. That's not something that matters. In Christ there is neither Jew nor Gentile. There is no difference between the Jew and the Greek. The last thing I want to point out to you is in I Peter chapter 2. I Peter chapter 2, because the Bible said in Zechariah 13 that the third part of them would be refined in the fire, and they would call upon His name, and He would hear them. He says, "I will say, It is my people, and they shall say, The Lord is my God." Again, trying to give that an end times application is to just completely ignore the context of chapters 12 and 13, which is clearly Christ's first advent, the first century AD.
Look what the Bible says in I Peter chapter 2 about who are God's people. "Who are the people of the Lord? Who has called upon His name and He'll say to them, You're my people, and they'll say to Him, You're our God." Look what the Bible says in I Peter chapter 2, verse 9. "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people, that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light, Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God, which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy."
How do you become the people of God? By being saved, by believing on the Lord Jesus Christ. When we say "God's people," we're not talking about a nationality. We're not talking about an ethnicity. When we say "God's people," we're talking about the holy nation, the chosen generation, the royal priesthood, which in time past were not a people but have now become the people of God. What makes us the people of God? The New Testament of Jesus Christ. That's what makes us the people of God. The kingdom of God was taken from the physical nation of Israel and given to a new nation, which is not a physical nation but rather it's made up of all believers, which in time past were not a people but now are the people of God.
Through what? Through calling upon His name. When the Lord says in Zechariah 13, "They shall call upon my name, and I'll say to them, I'm your God and you shall be my people," I'm totally misquoting the thing. I don't have it in front of me, but you know what I meant to say. When He says, "They're going to call upon my name," what name is that? That name is Jesus. Now you say, "Well, prove it." Because the Bible says in the Old Testament, "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." It actually says it as, "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be delivered" in Joel chapter 2.
That is quoted in the New Testament as pertaining to that, "If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus and shall believe in thine heart that God has raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved." " For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." Abraham called on the name of God Almighty. David called upon the name of Jehovah. Today there's one name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved, and that is the name of Jesus. When He says, "They shall call upon my name," and we're talking about after Christ died on the cross, we're talking about first century, second century AD when He's punishing the nation, when He says, "They're going to call on my name," the only name that could make them become the people of God, the only name that would make God be their God would be the name of Jesus, because without the Son they'll never have the Father.
Let's bow our heads and have a word of prayer. Father, we thank you so much for this chapter, Lord, in Zechariah chapter 13. Help us to beware of those who wear a rough garment to deceive, Lord, the demonic practices of self-inflicted wounds and cutting yourself, beating yourself. Lord, help us to beware of these false teachings, Lord. Help us to beware of the NIV that would teach this demonic practice. Lord, help us to study to show ourselves approved unto you. Zechariah is a tough book, Lord, but help us to study, and read, and through the Holy Spirit, Lord, help us to understand your word that we might be thoroughly furnished unto all good works, that we might understand the word of God to be able to preach the gospel unto every creature, and to be able to live our lives in a way that would please, and honor, and glorify you. In Jesus' name we pray. Amen.