Zechariah chapter number 3, the bible reads "And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; even the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee: is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment."
First of all, if you would flip over to the book of Jude because there are several things in these couple of verses that we just read that are actually also found in the book of Jude. Obviously, the book of Jude is referring back to this passage in some ways, but if you would first of all look at the book of Jude verse number 9, the bible reads "Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee."
Now right away, it should stand out as back in Zechariah chapter 3, the thing that is said unto Satan by the angel of the lord is "The Lord rebuke thee." It's a totally different situation, it's not the situation where Michael the archangel is contending with the devil about the body of Moses, that's a different situation, but in both cases, we see the response being "The Lord rebuke thee." What is it saying here in Jude verse number 9? "Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not," now what does "Durst not" mean? It means he did not dare, he dared not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke thee, but these," and who are the these? Wicked false prophets, evil people.
"But these speak evil of those things which they know not: but what they know naturally, as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves." Now go back just a couple of pages to the left in your bible and look at 2 Peter chapter 2 because 2 Peter chapter 2 is parallel with Jude and covers the same subject. 2 Peter chapter number 2, it says in verse number 11, "Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might," so the bible is saying that angels are greater in power and might than human beings are. "Whereas angels, which are greater in power and might, bring not railing accusation against them before the Lord. But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption." What's this chapter about?
Look at the beginning of verse 1 there. "But there were false prophets also among the people." What this tells me is that these pastors and preachers who will rail against the devil and rail against demons are actually false prophets according to the bible. The bible warns us here about false prophets who speak evil of things that they don't understand and they bring railing accusations against the devil, whereas even angels, the angels of the lord like Michael the archangel, for example, did not dare to bring against them a railing accusation but rather said "The Lord rebuke thee." When Michael the archangel's faced with the devil, he said "The Lord rebuke thee," okay?
What am I talking about? This is big in the Pentecostal Movement. Who's heard this before, this thing of "I rebuke you, Satan, in the name of ..." this kind of thing where they yell at the devil or like Billy Sunday was famous for having boxing matches on stage where he'd say "Come on, devil! I will fight you right now," just this kind of circus and showmanship. I've also heard people just blame things on the devil, like I was at a church service one time and they were trying to play some weird, touchy, feely, Christian music on a CD that was supposed to tug at our heartstrings and they put in the CD and the CD started skipping, and they said "That's the devil. The devil doesn't want you to hear that CD."
That right there is speaking evil of things that you don't understand and that's just bringing a railing accusation. Look, CDs are the most fragile, stupid invention ever invented. I hate CDs because they get all scratched up and damaged and everything. You look at them wrong and they get a scratch in them, but it's like "No, it was the devil. The devil didn't want you to hear that song." No, the devil wants you to turn off your stupid CD player and preached us out of the bible, but he's playing us canned music in church and I'm sure the devil has just a major ministry of going around and the devil wants to shut down all this canned music in churches. See how ridiculous that is? You really think that the devil paid a visit to that liberal watered down church just to scratch up that CD so that we couldn't listen to some touchy, feely gospel song on canned music?
This is a railing accusation, this is people speaking evil of the things that they know not, and there's a whole movement of the demon of alcoholism, the demon of pornography and the demon of this, and people go in into great detail about the names of all these demons and rebuking them and casting them out, and honestly, this is not biblical, and in fact, the bible warns about people who bring these kind of railing accusations and try to do battle with the devil and all this kind of stuff. You don't even see Jesus doing battle with Satan. You see him resisting the temptation, you see him quoting scripture unto Satan, and the bible does say "Resist the devil and he'll flee from you," but we should take these scriptures to heart.
2 Peter chapter 2 in the New Testament, Jude in the New Testament is telling us not to bring railing accusations against devils, demons or even the devil himself. Isn't that what it says? Even angels dare not do that, but just say "The Lord rebuke thee," and in Zechariah, we see an example of that, but not only that, flip back a few pages to the right again to where you were in Jude. Let me show you another reference in Jude that ties in with Zechariah chapter 3. It says in the book of Jude at the end there, verse number 22, "And of some have compassion, making a difference: And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh," so the bible here is talking about us getting people saved, that's winning people to Christ, and notice how it says "Others save with fear."
Now what does that mean "Save them with fear?" I believe that that means that we preach to them the truth of hell. We warn them about hell, we warn them about the wages of sin being death, and basically, people are going to be saved because the bible says "By the fear of the Lord, men depart from evil," and obviously, the reason that I got saved was because I didn't want to go to hell. Who got saved because they didn't want to go to hell? Look around the room. You're not alone. That's people that are saved with fear, people that are being pulled out of the fire. A lot of people, when you talk about soul winning, which is a biblical term that we derived from Proverbs 11 verse 30 where it says "The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise."
When we talk about soul winning, what we mean by that is when we go out and we just knock on doors and just go up and down the highways and hedges, up and the down the street, just talking to as many people as we can and just telling them how to be saved. Just going out and preaching the gospel to every creature, which is known as the great commission. Now most churches have caused this to be the great omission because it's something that they don't do, and in fact, when we show up on soul winning to a door, people will often think that we're the Mormons or the Jehovah's false witnesses because of the fact that they're just so not used to seeing a Christian show up at their door with the true gospel with the King James bible in their hand, telling them that salvation's by faith in Jesus. They're used to the cults coming to them.
Mormonism's a cult, Jehovah's Witnesses are in a cult, and naturally, they're used to coming to them and preaching lies. Shame on us as Christians, we don't have the reputation. They ought to say "Oh, here come the Baptist. Here comes Faithful Word ... " I'm sure they do say that around here, but nationwide, it ought to be that the Baptist have that reputation, but many people aren't doing this, but when you start talking about soul winning, and let me tell you, I'm a big believer in soul winning. I love soul winning. I think soul winning is the reason why our church exists in many ways. We're here to be trained and equipped and edified and taught so we can go out and do the work of the lord.
God said "Go work today in my vineyard," and that vineyard is a harvest of souls that need to be saved, but when you start preaching about soul winning, those who are lazy and those who are just pure evil where they're just the enemies of soul winning, they don't want you to go soul winning. For whatever wicked reason in their heart, they don't like the fact that you're going out soul winning. They'll often come out with this kind of stuff. "We don't save souls. You don't win anybody's soul. Jesus is the only one that can save. You didn't get anybody saved," and you'll even say this statement. "I got someone saved," and they'll object to that. Who's had somebody object to that when you said "I got someone saved?" "What, you got someone saved?"
What does the bible say? It says right here, "Others save with fear," but then they tell you "Oh, you can't save anyone." Then why did God say "Others save with fear?" Why did the apostle Paul say "I become all things to all men that I might, by all means, save some of them." Why did he say that if we can't save souls? They say "Well that's not what he meant." That's not what I meant either. You can use the exact same terminology that Paul used. Paul says "I saved some," and then we're like, "I saved someone." "Shame on you. How dare you say that. Give God the glory," but we're not trying to take the glory from God here. Obviously, Jesus is the savior. Obviously, without him, we can do nothing. Obviously, he gets all praise and all glory and all power goes unto him, but wait a minute, the bible says for us to go out and save people. This is a commandment.
Listen to these words from Jude. "Others save with fear." Save them. Save these people. Why? Because they're lost, because they're dying, going to hell, they need someone to save them. Jesus is the savior but we point them to the savior, so in that sense, we're saving them, but people get all scared when you talk like that. What does the bible say? There's even more scripture than that. Romans 11:14 says "If by any means I may provoke to emulation them that are of my flesh, and might save some of them." Then there's another scripture that talks to a woman who has an unsaved husband and says "For how knowest thou, oh wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband?"
The bible does use that terminology, so it's perfectly right for a Christian to say "I got someone saved," but you know why people are whining about that whole "I got someone saved" or "I saved someone?" You know why people whine about that? Because they never get anybody saved, so they're jealous that they actually are a zero and a failure and a loser, so then they see someone who's actually doing the work for the Lord and say "Hey, I got somebody saved." A born again child of God with the holy spirit inside them that's actually right with God when they hear someone say "I got someone saved."
You know what they do? They rejoice. They rejoice and say "Man, that's great that you got someone saved. Praise the Lord. Hallelujah," but yet the wicked, the lazy, the slothful servant, he says "How dare you use that terminology." The bible's terminology in Jude? The bible's terminology in 1 Corinthians? The bibles terminology in Romans 11:14? These people are grasping at straws, and "Oh, only Jesus can save." What, are you Cavinist? You think Jesus goes around and saves everybody by himself? No, the bible says that he's committed unto us, the ministry of reconciliation, and it says "We beseech you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God."
Jesus Christ said, "As long as I'm in the world, I'm the light of the world," but Jesus is no longer in the world and he says you're the light of the world. He has ascended up to the father and he is committed unto us, the ministry of reconciliation, we beseech them in Christ's stead. Since he's not here, we are sent and we say "Be reconciled to God," and I'm telling you, it's a red flag when people are negative about soul winning. That shows that something is seriously wrong in that person's heart. Either they're not saved or they're very backslidden to have this negative attitude towards soul winning. Usually, they're not saved when they're really negative about soul winning because it's of the devil.
Obviously, God wants us to go out and preach the gospel, Jesus sent out his disciples 2 by 2, it says in Acts 5:42, "Daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ," how could you be against that unless you're just evil, unless you're just not saved, unless you just hate the gospel or hate people getting saved or unless you're just a prideful, arrogant jerk who doesn't have the normal, natural reaction of hearing about somebody getting saved of just rejoicing and being happy instead of being envious in your heart. How wicked. When somebody gets saved, there's rejoicing amongst the angels in heaven. Shouldn't we be rejoicing also instead of saying "How dare you use the bible's terms. Use my terms. He made a commitment to Christ. No, I'll use the bible's term. He got saved. We saved him, we pulled him out of the fire.
If you pull somebody out of the fire, wouldn't they say "You saved me?" What are we told to do? "Others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh." Now it's interesting that when he brings up pulling them out of the fire, he brings up the garment spotted by the flesh. Go back to Zechariah 3 with that in mind and see how the New Testament cast light on the Old Testament. Look at Zechariah chapter 3 verse 1. "And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him."
Again, let me give you the context of the book of Zechariah. Zechariah is being written at the time when the children of Judah have been captives in the land of Babylon. Now they've come back from captivity and the temple is being rebuilt and the wall is being rebuilt, okay? There are 2 prophets that are preaching to them and encouraging them in their work. Those prophets are Zechariah and Haggai. There are 2 books of the bible that covers this subject. Those 2 books are Ezra and Nehemiah, and there are 2 great leaders of the people during this time and those 2 men are Joshua and Zorobabel. Joshua is the high priest and Zorobabel is the governor, okay? He is the ruler politically, Joshua is the ruler spiritually, Zechariah and Haggai are 2 preachers that are preaching the bible during that time. Ezra and Nehemiah are other leaders at that time.
Let's look at the bible here. Joshua, the high priest. What's this book about? It's about encouraging Joshua and encouraging Zorobabel and encouraging the people in their work, that's what Ezra says about these books, but also, obviously, it's profitable for Doctrine in all ages including 2015 because much of this chapter and much of the book of Zechariah in general is about Jesus because the bible says "To him give all the prophets witness that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins," that's what all the prophets are about and Zechariah is no different.
The bible says here that Satan is at the right hand of Joshua, resisting him. Now why is Satan standing at the right hand of Joshua to resist him? Because Joshua's a great man of God, and by the way, this is not the Joshua from the book of Joshua. If so, you need that CD on the overview of the whole bible, if you think it is. Big difference, all right? This is a different Joshua. This Joshua is the high priest, he's a man of God, God's using him right now so it makes sense that Satan is at his right hand to resist him. When Jesus walk this earth, who showed up to tempt Jesus? Satan himself, and if you remember, when the apostle Paul was on this earth doing a lot of great works for God, there were 7 sons of Sceva and these guys were called "Exorcists."
They wanted to go into business, they thought they were like the Ghostbusters or something. They're basically going to go into business like a devil caster outer. They're trying to be an exorcist, okay? This 7 sons of Sceva, they go out and they try their hand at casting out devils because how hard could it be? They just said "Oh well, there's power in the name of Jesus, let's go do it," so these guy show up and there's a guy who's possessed of devils in the book of Acts, and they show up and they say "We adjure thee by Jesus whom Paul preacheth," and this guy says "Jesus I know and Paul I know, but who are you?" He grabs them and just starts beating the snot out of them and he beats them so bad, they run out of the house naked and wounded. He beats them, rips their clothes off them, and they run out bleeding and naked, he tears them up.
They ended up basically having fools made of themselves, and this kind of goes back to what we're talking about earlier, this thing of railing accusations against the devil and this ... I don't want to go all back into that again, but the bottomline is that that devil possessed man, he said "Jesus I know and Paul I know," so the great soul winning, the great preacher Paul was known of the devil. Why? Because he was doing great works for God, and so of course he's going to be known. Who's the devil's enemy? He's going to stand to resist those that are doing the greatest works for God, so Joshua is an important leader of God's people at this time, so it makes sense that Satan's going to be at his right hand to resist him, and so we need to understand that when we go out and do great works for God, we should expect the devil or a devil to attack us. We should expect opposition from the devil.
Should we start rebuking the devil and bring in a railing accusation? No. We should basically just understand that this is something that's going to happen, and we should expect that when we try to do good things for God, that bad things will happen to us because the bible says "All that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution," so we don't want to be a Christian who starts to live for God and then as soon as bad things happen, we run away scared with our tail between our legs. We don't want to be that kind of a Christian. We need to be steadfast in the faith, and the bible says "Think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you."
He's saying we should expect tribulation, we should expect persecution, and we should expect, if we're going to be a man as great as Joshua here leading God's people, that Satan's going to be at our right hand to resist us from time to time, and the bible tells us "Submit ourselves therefore to God, resist the devil and he'll flee from us," so he's resistng us and we're supposed to resist him, okay? Let's keep reading. "He shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him," so the angel of the Lord is there to strengthen him. The angel of the Lord is there to defend him, and by the way, the bible says in Psalm 34, "The angel of the lord encampeth round about them that fear him." God has many angels.
You've heard of a "Guardian angel," that's actually biblical because the bible does teach that angels are sent to be ministers unto them that that will believe and the bible does talk about angels ministering unto Jesus when he was in temptation, and so when we realize that Satan might be at our right hand to resist us or one of his many minions, we need to realize also that the angel of the Lord is also right there with us. "The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him," so we've got the devil resisting us but we also have the angel of the Lord there to strengthen us. We need to realize that God is with us and that God's angels will protect us.
That is biblical, but you say "Why don't we talk much about angels and demons? The reason we don't talk in great detail about these things is because the bible doesn't give us great detail on these things and we're not supposed to just talk about things that we don't understand, the bible says, so we shouldn't delve in to this thing of just going into all this angelology and demonology because of the fact that those are things that are too high for us. They're on a different level and we just need to worry about keeping the commandments of God and just realizing that there is a spiritual battle that's going on, the devil and his angels are real, the Lord and his angels are real, and we just need to realize that that conflict is going on and that there is a spiritual battle and that prayer will affect the spiritual battle.
These are the things that we need to realize, but we need to not get too wrapped up into getting all the names for all the demons and studying into this, and I'm sure YouTube is replete with demonology videos and angelology, but we need to be aware of that. The bible warns us about both, so what does the bible say here? "The Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan." The reason why, you might look at that and think that that's kind of odd, that the Lord says "The Lord rebuke thee, Satan" because you're thinking like why is he talking about themselves in the third person, right? But when you study the Old Testament, you'll notice that a lot of times, when the bible talks about the angel of the Lord speaking, "Angel" means "Messenger," the messenger of the Lord, so often, what the bible will do, it'll say "Hey, the angel of the Lord came and spoke with Gideon," for example."
Then instead of saying whatever that angel talks, "Then the angel said, then the angel said," it'll just say like "The Lord said unto Gideon" because of the fact that it's the Lord's words that are being spoken through that angel. It would be like if I sent brother Dominic as my messenger and I said "Hey, would you go tell my wife X, Y, and Z," and then he goes and tells her, right? Then she says "Well this is what my husband told me." Wouldn't that make sense? It would make more sense than saying "This is what Dominic told me" because Dominic was not the author of the message, he just carried the message, he's just the messenger. It's God that spoke to Gideon even though he did it by means of the angel.
Now other people will take an interpretation of this and say "Well, the angel of the Lord here is Jesus." I've heard a lot of people say every time the angel of the Lord is mentioned in the Old Testament, it's actually an Old Testament incarnation of Jesus. I'm not saying that that's a bad view or that that's not possible because in some cases, it does appear that way when you read, but I personally, when looking at this passage and looking at the Gideon passage, I would lean more toward that it's the Lord speaking through his angel, which is why the angel says "The Lord rebuke thee," but the other interpretation's valid also, it doesn't really change any doctrine or anything, but I'm just saying that's what I think this is saying because if you look at all the instances.
It says "The Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan; even the Lord that hath chosen Jerusalem rebuke thee," watch this, "Is not this a brand plucked out of the fire?" What did it say in Jude? "Others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire." The angel is saying of Joshua that he is a brand plucked out of the fire meaning he is one who has been saved, right? Then it says in verse 3, "Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel." What did it say in Jude? "Others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh," so again, we can see a lot of parallels between what we see in Jude and what we see here in Zechariah 3.
"Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel. And he answered and spake unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee, and I will clothe thee with change of raiment." Get the picture here. Joshua, in this vision that Zechariah has, he sees basically the world through spiritual eyes what we don't see in the physical realm. We don't see any of these things, we don't see the devil, we don't see the angel of the Lord, we don't see the battle that's going on, but it's there, it's happening.
Zechariah is shown these things in a vision and he sees Joshua the high priest, and he sees Satan at his right hand resisting him, and he sees the angel of the Lord standing before him, and Satan is rebuked by the angel of the Lord who says "The Lord rebuke thee, O Satan. This is a brand plucked out of the fire." Basically, what he's saying is that he's off limits unto you. I'm here to protect this guy from you, he's a guy plucked out of the fire, he's saved. Now Joshua, in the vision, is clothed in filthy garments and the angel says that he should be given clean, new garments, and when he receives the clean, new garments, the clean, new clothing, he says that his iniquity is passed from him, his sins are gone, okay?Now this pictures salvation because all throughout the bible, this is used as a metaphor of salvation.
For example, there's that great parable in the book of Matthew where they're all called to the great wedding feast of the son, the son being the son of God, Jesus, and they were all called unto that marriage supper of the lamb, and if you remember, many are called but few are chosen. There's a guy at the wedding feast and he's not wearing a wedding garment, do you remember that? They confront this guy at the wedding feast in Jesus' parable and say "Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. And he says take him and bind him hand and foot, and cast him into outer darkness." If you crash a wedding that you're not invited to, you're not going to be cast into outer darkness.
I remember, my brother went through a phase where he did this a couple of times where he would show up at a wedding that he wasn't invited to and just eat the cake and just enjoy the wedding, so it's kind of a fun thing. We did that type of stuff when we were teenagers. It seems a little harsh being cast into outer darkness, right? Just for crashing the party, but here's why he's cast into outer darkness, because it's a parable. It's actually about salvation. Having the wedding garment on represents being saved. Not having the wedding garment, you're not saved, okay? What do those filthy garments represent? Remember what it says in Isaiah 64:6? "We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags." Very famous verse in the bible that tells us that our righteousnesses are as filthy rags.
That's why the bible says in Philippians 3 that "We should be found in him, not having our own righteousness, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith." When God looks at us through spiritual eyes, when we're not saved, we have all our good works that we think are going to get us to heaven, all the good deeds that we've done or we've turned from all sins and we're living a good life and we repented of this sin, we repented of that sin and we've joined the church, baptized, and we give money and we help people, God looks at that and just sees us in filthy garments.
When we believe on Jesus Christ as our savior, not having our own righteousness, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith, then he looks down at us and he sees that robe of righteousness which is actually the righteousness of Jesus that is imputed unto us. When Jesus died on the cross, all of our sins were imputed unto him and he died for our sins, and when we believe on Jesus, not only does he take our sins away, he didn't just remove the filthy garments and leave him unclothed, but rather he replaces it with a robe of righteousness which represents the righteousness of Jesus being imputed unto us, so our sins are gone and Christ's righteousness is imputed unto us.
It's put on our account and we are declared righteous in the sight of God, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy, he saved us by the washing of regeneration and renewing of the holy ghost. In Revelation 19, if you would turn there, the bible talks about that marriage supper of the lamb. Remember the parable we talked about in Matthew? "Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment?" He's speechless, he's cast out into outer darkness for not having on the wedding garment, obviously representing his eternity in the lake of fire in outer darkness, but here we have in Revelation 19 that marriage of the lamb.
Verse number 7 of Revelation 19, "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints," but don't misread that, my friend. The righteousness of saints is not our own righteousness, it's the righteous which is of God by faith. Not having my own righteousness which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. That robe of righteousness represents being saved, it represents salvation, and the great thing about salvation, if you would go back to Zechariah chapter 3, is that our iniquity has passed from us.
The bible says "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life," and the bible says that our iniquity has passed from us. The bible says "As far as the east is from the west, so far has God separated us from our sins." He said "There are sins of iniquities, well I remember no more." This is what salvation is. It's all through faith, it's not by works. Our works are the filthy rags. Those are being replaced by the robe of righteousness in Zechariah chapter 3. It says in verse 5, "And I said," this is Zechariah speaking, "Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the Lord stood by."
The mitre is basically his hat and in the Old Testament, the priests would wear a hat. That was part of the garment because if you remember, God had special priest garments made specifically for Aaron and his sons to wear and these garments involve linen breeches which are pants that basically would stretch from the loins and to the thighs, basically what we would consider like a knee length pair of shorts. He would wear that and then he also had a shirt and a robe and a hat and a breastplate. There was a whole getup involved, but what's interesting is that in the Old Testament, when these priests would minister, they would wear a hat. They would wear this thing known as the mitre. Here, when he was getting his garments changed out, Zechariah basically says "Hey, don't forget to swap out the mitre. Give him a fair mitre on. If you're going to change the clothes, change the hat also."
What's interesting about this is that there's a movement out there today that's known as the "Head covering Baptist" or "Head covering movement" and it's a movement that teaches women that they have to wear head coverings, basically like the Muslims will wear head coverings or like a Catholic nun will wear a head covering. There's a movement out there to try to get Christians to wear head coverings, and they'll try to say "Oh, the early Christians, there's examples of this archaeology that somebody wore head covering," but here's the thing about that.
It's a total twisting and a misreading of 1 Corinthians chapter 11 because in 1 Corinthians chapter 11, when it talks about a woman should not pray or prophesy having her head uncovered, but then it goes on to say that her hair is given to her for covering, and it basically equates uncovered with short hair or no hair and it equates covered with long hair, and it's basically saying that a man should have short hair and a woman should have long hair. Now they'll try to say "No, no, no, if you go back to the Greek and ... Actually, the hair is not the covering," even though if you read in 1 Corinthians 11, it's crystal clear that that's what it's about, but they'll say "Well, the hair is a covering but they need another covering," and then they'll point to the fact, "Well, Christ rejecting orthodox Jews wear head coverings." Case closed.
They also wear eye coverings. Every time they read the bible, they do it blindfolded. That's what the bible says that in the reading of the Old Testament, the veil is upon them and that when their heart turns to Christ, the veil is removed. That's why Jesus said "You are blind leaders of the blind and you will both fall in the ditch." Who did he say that to? Rabbinic Judaism? Who did he say that to, the Pharisees? Here's the proof, because the bible says that "Not even nature itself teach you that if a man have long hair, it's a shame unto him, and if a woman have long hair, it's a glory unto her. Doesn't nature itself teach you?" A few verses before that in 1 Corinthians 11, you know what he says? He says "Judge in yourselves: is it comely that a woman pray having her head God uncovered?"
Basically, what the bible's teaching us over and over again in 1 Corinthians 11 is that this is something that's just taught by nature itself. We intuitively know that men are supposed to have short hair and that women are supposed to have long hair, but let me ask you this. If we're to listen to this head covering crowd and it's actually about wearing head coverings or hats or bonnets, then let me ask you this. Why would we intuitively know that a man should not pray or prophesy having his head covered when the Old Testament ministers were told to cover their heads? Stop and think about that. The Old Testament preachers and prophets and especially the priesthood, which the Levites taught to people, they're told to do it in hat. "Put a mitre on his head."
Aaron had a mitre on his head, so does it make any sense to say, "Well, man are supposed to preach and pray with their head uncovered," and then he puts a hat on them in the Old Testament? That makes no sense, does it? I think that these people just having thought this sermon, I tried to explain it some of them and it just went over to their, but it's actually not that complicated, but see, what they tend to do, though, they only focus on the women.
It's like a weird thing where they just, "The women have to wear these head coverings," but see, if they're going to interpret it that way, then you'd have to say "Men can't cover it. Men can't preach or pray with a hat on," right? Because if you're going to say "Well the woman, she has to have this covering to pray or prophesy," then if you interpret it that way, because it says that the man should be uncovered, so if you're going to interpret that as a hat, then he can't wear a hat. Then why did Jesus put them on hats in the Old Testament? Why is Joshua being put in hat here to minister unto the Lord? It makes no sense, so don't get sucked into this head covering movement, head covering baptist.
The covering that you need, ladies, is long hair, and the covering, men, that you need to lack is long hair, so I just want to point that out here, this is one of the many examples of the Old Testament where men of God have a hat on as part of their ... Obviously, I'm not wearing the priestly garments here because we're not in the Old Testament. Jesus is the high priest so I don't need that outfit, he's wearing it, okay? Let's keep reading here. I'm a pastor but I'm not the high priest. I'm a priest and so are you. He's made us all kings and priests unto God and his father. We believe in the priesthood of the believer as Baptists, but what does the bible say here in verse number 6?
"And the angel of the Lord protested unto Joshua, saying, thus saith the Lord of hosts; If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house." Now notice, he didn't say "If you walk in my ways and keep my charge, then you'll get saved." Is that what he said? "Hey, if you keep my charge and walk in my ways, you'll get a robe of righteousness." No, you already have that. That was given to him by grace through faith, not of works as any man should boast. That's why the word also is there. That's why he says "Then thou shalt also judge my house. In addition to having a clean garment, in addition to being saved and regenerated, if you keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by."
In order to be a leader, you have to keep the commandments of God in order to be greatly used by God and to rule God's house or judge God's house, even in the New Testament, you're supposed to be one who is walking in the fear of the Lord. Obviously, no one's perfect, but the bottomline is you do have to live up to a certain standard to hold that position. Now the bible here though is saying also, because you're already saved just by believing, but he says to Joshua, "If you walk in my ways and keep my charge, then you'll also be a ruler of my house." That's what he's saying there. He says "I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by." These men that stand by, the other men, are other leaders of God's people. That's why he says in the next verse, Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee."
Those are the others that walk among thee as to standby. He's saying these other guys, your fellows. He says "Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, thou, and thy fellows that sit before thee: for they are men wondered at." Now what does it mean "Mean wondered at?" It means that these are that are greatly admired. Think about people that you've wondered at in your life. What does it mean to wonder at someone? It means that basically, you stand in awe of them, you're blown away by them. In today's vernacular, we probably say you're impressed by them. You're just really amazed at them, so what he's saying when he says "They are men wondered at," he's saying they're men that other people look up to. They're heroes unto other people.
I heard a sermon preached one time. Actually, I preached a sermon like this but I appreciate it after I heard another sermon like this called "Men wondered at," and it was a sermon about all the different people that we wonder at and the heroes that we have, and now some people really have the wrong heroes and they wonder at the wrong people. To many people, the NFL are men wondered at. To many people, Hollywood actors and actresses are men wondered at. You say "How can an actress be a man?" In Hollywood, it happens, okay? There are a lot of rock and roll singers that are men wondered at. Look. I'm not going to ask for a raise of hands who's ever been to a rock concert, but they're men wondered at.
Literally, these singers and these bands, they'll come up close to the crowd and put out their hand like this, right? People are just like fighting just to touch that hand, they're never going to wash that hand again. They'll take some shirt off and throw it in the crowd, and you know how people idolize. They literally call it "Idol." There's even a show about it, right? "American Idol." What does that mean, "American Idol?" It means that they worship singers. That's even beyond just wondering at them, they're actually worshiping them. There are a lot of heroes in this world that people should have, but the question is who should be our heroes? It should be godly men and women.
Joshua and his fellows were men wondered at and God's warning them, "Look, you're men wondered at. People are looking at you, don't let them down because people are looking up to and if you blow it, then they're going to fall with with you. Many people will stumble at that." Now watch what he says. He says "You and your fellows that sit before you, for they are men wondered at," end of verse 8 there, for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the Branch." When he says "I'm going to bring forth my servant, the Branch," let's figure out who that is, okay? Flip back to Isaiah 11. We're going to do this in chronological order of God laying out this doctrine. Now remember, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, they actually appeared in that order in history, meaning that Isaiah prophesied before Jeremiah, and Jeremiah prophesied before Ezekiel, okay?
The major prophets are in order and then the minor prophets are also in chronological order, which is why we find Zechariah toward the the very end of the minor prophets because we're in the days of Ezra and Nehemiah, very end of the story of the Old Testament, so therefore, this is going way back in time, hundreds of years before Zechariah's written and this is a scripture that Joshua would've been familiar because they all knew of the writings of Isaiah, so it says in Isaiah 11 verse 1, "And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord;
And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the Lord: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth: with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked." Who is this? Jesus. Then it says in verse 6, "The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb," it gets in to the millennium, the millennial reign of Christ, time of peace on earth for 1,000 years that Christ will bring at his second coming. The servant, the Branch is Jesus. He's the root and the offspring of David. It's an interesting term, "The root and the offspring of David." He's both. He's the creator, he's the root. "Before Abraham was, I am," Jesus said.
He's the root but he's also the offspring of David because he, humanly speaking, he's descended from the son David, so that what it means by "The Branch," okay? We saw the millennium tied in with that. We also this list, and count with me with the list. Verse 2. "The spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him," let's count, "The spirit of wisdom," 1, "And understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, and the fear of the Lord," so we see here 7 spirits. The spirit of the Lord is mentioned at the beginning, then the spirit of wisdom, the spirit of understanding, the spirit of counsel, the spirit of might, spirit of knowledge, spirit of the fear of the Lord, so it's the 7 spirits of God that are listed there, and they are resting upon him, okay?
Flip over to Jeremiah now, chapter 23, and the reason I bring that up is because in Zechariah chapter 3, right after it says "My servant, the Branch," it says "For behold the stone that I have laid before Joshua upon one stone shall be seven eyes." Seven eyes on one stone, well in Revelation 5 verse 5 it says that the lamb had seven horns and seven eyes which are the seven spirits of God, so the book of Zechariah can seem really cryptic. "The stone with the seven eyes and the branch," but here's the thing. If you compare scripture to scripture, it's all there. All of it's covered. I don't even have time to go to all the references. It's all interwoven through the whole bible, but look at Jeremiah chapter 23.
It says in verse 5, and again, this is later than Isaiah. "Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. In his days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is his name whereby he shall be called, The Lord Our Righteousness," so what's our righteousness? What's the righteousness of saints, what's that robe of righteousness? It's the Lord. It's Jesus.
It's his salvation, and again, it says " Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that they shall no more say, The Lord liveth, which brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; But, The Lord liveth, which brought up and which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country," talking about out of Babylon, "And from all countries whither I had driven them; and they shall dwell in their own land." That was fulfilled in the days of Zorobabel, Joshua, Zechariah, et cetera. Now flip over to one more place on this, Jeremiah 33, so 2 pages to the right in you're bible. Jeremiah 33, and this is a really interesting passage. I don't want you to miss it. I skipped some other stuff in the sermon because I want to make sure I get to this because this is really interesting. Look at Jeremiah 33 verse 15.
"In those days, and at that time, will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David," so notice, the Branch is always associated with being the son of David, the branch of David, the offspring of David. It says "He shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land. In those days shall Judah be saved," same thing we just saw, "And Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The Lord our righteousness." Sound familiar? "For thus saith the Lord; David," watch this, this is key, "David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel." What does that mean? There will always be a son of David to sit on the throne of Israel. Isn't that what it says? Let's keep reading.
"Neither shall the priests the Levites want a man before me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice," watch this, "To do sacrifice continually. And the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah, saying, thus saith the Lord; If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; Then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant." Let me just say, and we don't have time to go there for the sake of time, but over and over and over again, the promise is made to David that his seed will sit on that throne forever. Over and over. That's what's being referred to. He's saying "Look, I will never break that promise to David and the sun and moon will stop shining before I would ever break that promise to David." Everybody get that?
That promise is repeated, if you know your bible, you know that promise repeated over and over and over an over again. He says "Then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers. As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant, and the Levites that minister unto me." Stop and ask yourself this question, okay? Is there a son of David ruling on the throne over in Israel right now? No. Okay. Are the Levites right now over in Israel offering sacrifice unto God continually? Okay, so basically, there's 2 options then. Either God broke his promise, and that's not possible because the sun still came up today and went down the other day.
Either god is a liar and God broke his promise or else this is fulfilled in Jesus because Jesus is the son of David. Flip over to Genesis 49. Genesis chapter 49, this is when Jacob is speaking to his 12 sons about the last days, and the last days, biblically, is defined as the New Testament, but if you would look at Genesis chapter number 49, look at the blessing to Judah in verse 10. "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah." The tribe of Judah is whose tribe? David's tribe, and Jesus is the line of the tribe of Judah, but Judah is the tribe of David. The bible says "The sceptre," what is the sceptre? It's what a king reigns with. "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet." "Between his feet" is talking about the physical reproduction there. He's saying "He is going to have a physical descendant sitting on that throne. The sceptre shall not depart from Judah."
When did the sceptre show up at Judah? When David sat on the throne. He was the first king of the tribe of Judah because Saul was at the tribe of what? Benjamin. "The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come," and again, I don't have time to go into it, Shiloh is talking about the Messiah. Shiloh is Jesus, okay? It says, "Aand unto him, unto Shiloh, unto Jesus shall the gathering of the people be. Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass's colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk." That's all about Jesus. Jesus rode the ass's colt, Jesus said "I'm the true vine, I'm the vine, my father's the husbandman." Jesus had a garment dipped in blood, Jesus had eyes like a flame of fire, Jesus fulfilled all this.
The bible says "The sceptre is not going to depart from Judah until the messiah comes, until Jesus comes." Now listen to me. What in the world could a Christ rejecting Jew do with these scriptures? Because their god has forsaken them for the last 2,000 years. Where's David on the throne? Has the sceptre departed from Judah? Oh yeah. First of all, they didn't have a throne, they didn't even have a country, they didn't even have anything in that place until the 20th century, so where was it at? I sure don't see the Levites offering burnt offerings. They don't do any sacrifices. Why? Because Shiloh came. Because Jesus is the son of David. You know why the sceptre never departed from David's House? Because Jesus is the son of David and Jesus is the king. Jesus is the king of kings right now. They don't recognize him, but we do.
Jesus is the king of kings. He is that line of the tribe of Judah with that sceptre and Jesus is the burnt offering once and for all, okay? The bottomline is that if you're a Christ rejecting Jew, you would have to basically say "Well, God broke the promise in Jeremiah and all the other times that he said that there would always be a king descended from David upon that throne." Now I have a feeling that what the synagogue of Satan is going to cook up in the end times is they're basically going to say "Oh, see? We've got a king of the tribe of Judah." They'll pull out somebody and put them on that throne and he's going to be the Antichrist. "Oh, here he is, here's our God."
Then you know what they'll do then? They'll pull out the Levites and start offering burnt sacrifices again, right? Because it talks about in 2 Thessalonians how the Antichrist will cause the offering and the oblation to cease. How can you make it cease if it is not happening? Why? Because it's going to start up again. They're going to rebuild the temple and they're going to start offering burnt sacrifices again over in Israel, because their whole thing right now is like "Oh, we can't do it because we don't have the temple. Oh, we can't do it because we don't have the temple, we got to wait, so when they get the temple, then they're like "Okay, we can do it again."
Let me tell you something. That is the biggest fraud because God didn't say "Oh, we're going to pause it for like 2,000 years, and then there's going to be one of David's sons sitting on that throne again. Oh, we're going to pause it for 2,000 years, then we'll start having burnt sacrifices again." Do you think it's a coincidence that the burnt sacrifices just happen to end in the century when Jesus came? That's just a coincidence, right? Just a coincidence that the sacrifices just happen to end with the same generation of people that were alive and rejected Jesus, it ended in their generation, but see, the Jews don't want you to notice that how they just happen to stop doing animal sacrifices right when Jesus was the lamb which taketh away the sin of the world.
Just like Jesus was prophesied, he would be that final sacrifice, but they don't want to recognize that and they don't want to recognize that they don't have a king of Judah anymore, but how can they say that when Jesus would be the only way that this can even be true? Look. Either the New Testament is true and the Old Testament is true or they're both a lie because you know what? You can't say "I believe the Old Testament but not the New Testament," then you're a fool because the bible says right here that there's going to be a king in throne of David all the time. Who was that king? Who was that ruler? Go to Zechariah chapter 3. That ruler's name was Zorobabel, and you'll know this from Matthew chapter 1, if you know that genealogy where it's so and so begot so and so, right?
It says "Josias begat Jechonias and his brethren, about the time they were carried away to Babylon: And after they were brought to Babylon, Jechonias begat Salathiel; and Salathiel begat Zorobabel," so that kingly line of the kings of Judah's unbroken. In fact, you say "Were they reigning? Was he reigning for those 70 years? What about that pause?" Even in captivity, he was lifted up. Joachim was lifted up in the captivity. At the very end of the book of Jeremiah, it talks about he's lifted up and given dignity as king and so forth. He was still recognized as the king of Judah, and Salathiel in Matthew 1 is Old Testament Shealtiel, and Zorobabel is somebody that we're going to talk more about in the next few chapters of Zechariah. Look down at your bible there, Zechariah chapter 4.
It says in verse 6, "Then he answered and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of the Lord unto Zerubbabel, saying, Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord of hosts," and again, the rest of the book is going to continue to encourage Zorobabel. Who's Zorobabel? The son of David. Who's Zorobabel? The man who's ruling with the sceptre. Why? Because Jesus hadn't come yet for a more hundred years, so there had to be that sceptre in the tribe of Judah.
Now let's quickly finish up here. Verse 9, "For behold the stone that I have laid." What's that stone that the builders rejected that became the head of the corner? Jesus. Seven spirits of God that the branch had? Jesus. Isaiah 11:1 and 2, the lamb of God in Revelation 5 with seven horns and seven eyes which are the seven spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. It says "Ipon one stone shall be seven eyes: behold, I will engrave the graving thereof, saith the Lord of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day. In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, shall ye call every man his neighbour under the vine and under the fig tree." You study that statement "Under the vine and under the fig tree," it's a reference to the millennial reign of Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ will show up, he will remove the iniquity of that land in one day, and in that day shall ye call every man his neighbor under the vine and under the fig tree. That means Jew, gentile, you name it because there is no Jew and gentile in Christ. Everybody's going to be our neighbor in that day, in the millennial reign of Christ. This is a really deep chapter. There's way more I could preach. We barely even scratched the surface. This is a really interesting chapter, this is one of the busiest chapters in the book of Zechariah. A lot going on, I hope that it got you interested where you'll do more study and read more and keep going over this, but I just wanted to hit the highlights tonight just to show you how much a chapter like Zechariah 3, tucked away in the minor prophets of the Old Testament, is all about Jesus and soul winning. Isn't that interesting?
So much application today in the New Testament. The whole bible is about Jesus. Let's bow our heads and have word of prayer. Father, we thank you so much for this chapter, lord, and the wonderful teachings that are found there. It is a really interesting chapter, lord. Help us to take comfort in knowing that the angel of the lord encampeth around about them that fear him, help us to resist the devil that he might flee from us, help us to cling to your promises, lord, and realize that you are the king of kings and lord of lords, and that you are the lion of the tribe of Judah, you're the root and offspring of David, you're the branch.
You are the one that should, in all things, have the preeminence, lord, and I pray that lord, many of these blinded, Christ rejecting Jews, lord, would be saved before it's eternally too late, lord. I pray that many of them would be saved, lord. They're so blinded, but help us reach a few of them, lord, if we can. In Jesus' name we pray, amen.