Not by Might or by Power (Daily Portion 10217)
Zechariah sees the vision of the golden candlestick and the two olive trees. The olive oil is a picture of the work of the Holy Spirit. God accomplishes His work, not by might or by power, but by the working of His Spirit. The entire vision centers on this truth.
What Does It Say?
- Zechariah beheld a candlestick all of _________ with a ________ upon the top of it, seven _________ on the candlestick, and seven ________ to the seven lamps.
- “Who art thou, O great ____________? Before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a ___________.”
- God declares that the hands of Zerubbabel have laid the ____________ of this house and his hands shall also __________ it.
- Zerubbabel is seen with a ___________ in his hand with those seven which are identified as the _________ of the Lord.
- The two olive trees are said to be the two ____________ ones that stand by the Lord of the whole _________.
What Does It Mean?
- Verses 2 and 3 describe Zechariah’s vision. In it, he sees a candlestick much like the one in the tabernacle. It would have one main base on the ground. This center post would have three branches on each side making a place for seven lamps. These lamps would be oil lamps with wicks. However, this candlestick is much different from the candlestick in the tabernacle. It has a bowl placed on the candlestick but higher than the lamps. This bowl has a reserve of oil and from it are seven pipes or tubes that go to each of the seven lamps and give a continual supply of oil. Then, on either side of the candlestick is an olive tree. In order to keep the bowl from running out of oil, each of these trees has a pipe or tube feeding the bowl with the olive oil (see Zechariah 4:11-12). For this question, draw a diagram that illustrates this vision.
- Zechariah writes at a time when the Jews who were returning from Babylonian captivity had begun rebuilding the temple in Jerusalem. But, because of opposition, they had halted the work. Now, several years later, God sends the prophets Haggai and Zechariah to stir the people again to the task of building the temple. Zechariah 4:7 refers to the placing of the headstone. This is the opposite of the foundational cornerstone, which is the first stone laid for a building. What is the significance of the headstone in this passage? Why is it placed with a cry of grace, grace?
- Zechariah 4:10 refers to “those seven; they are the eyes of the LORD, which run to and fro through the whole earth.” Zechariah 3:9 also refers to the “seven eyes.” There is much disagreement as to the identity of the seven eyes. However, sometimes the best approach to Bible study is to determine what we can know by direct Bible statements. Read the following verses and list the things we can definitely know about the seven eyes of the Lord: 2 Chronicles 16:9; Psalm 34:15; Proverbs 15:3; Revelation 5:6.
What Does It Mean to Me?
- When we serve the Lord today, we need to remember God’s admonition to Zerubbabel, “Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the LORD of hosts” (Zechariah 4:6). What does this verse mean to you? How should it effect the way you serve the Lord? What are you going to do today in response to this truth?
- The temple built by the Jews returning from Babylonian captivity was not nearly as grand and beautiful as the earlier temple built by Solomon (see Haggai 2:3). Old men who had seen Solomon’s temple wept when they saw how short the later temple came to the glory of the former (Ezra 3:12-13). But in Zechariah 4:10, God asks, “For who hath despised the day of small things?” He is referring to those who had unfavorably compared this temple with Solomon’s. What is God saying to them? How can we apply this to our own lives and ministries?