to Chapter 6
Chapter 6, we conclude the visions, which began in chapter 1,
the eighth vision concludes in the first half of chapter 6. In
a scene similar to Revelation chapter 6, four chariots appear,
drawn by red, black, white and spotted horses. These chariots
are sent by the Lord of Hosts to go throughout the earth. This
concluding vision also brings the reader back to the first
vision, which also included horses red and white, led by the
Angel of the Lord, the pre-incarnate Jesus Christ.
The angel explains the meaning to Zechariah who does not
understand what is taking place. This leads to the next section
the crowning of Joshua the High Priest. Joshua stands as a type
or picture of the coming Messiah, who is also named Joshua
(Jesus). Joshua pictures the dual office of Messiah who will be
both king and priest.
Though the first and second part of chapter 6 do not seem to
logically connect. If we view the first part in an
eschatological context, understanding the vision of the chariots
as a reference to the tribulation period the second part of
chapter 6 logically follows. The tribulation is followed by
the establishment of the Messianic kingdom, where Joshua (Jesus)
the High Priest will reign over the earth as both king and
ZEC 6:1 Then I turned and raised my eyes and looked, and
behold, four chariots were coming from between two mountains,
and the mountains were mountains of bronze.
ZEC 6:2 With the first chariot were red horses, with the second
chariot black horses,
ZEC 6:3 with the third chariot white horses, and with the
fourth chariot dappled horses-strong steeds.
ZEC 6:4 Then I answered and said to the angel who talked with
me, "What are these, my lord?" Zechariah 6:1-4
(1) Then I turned: Zechariah is still in the vision, from the first chapter. He
just seen the two women with wings like storks carry off the
women, called wickedness to the land of Shinar (Babylon)
(Zechariah 5). As the ephah is taken away, Zechariah turns to
see four chariots coming from between two bronze mountains.
word for chariot is hbkrmMerkabah,
this same word is by Israel for its brand of tanks. The chariot
was a vehicle of war, often have a couple occupants and drawn by
a number of horses. A typical chariot might have three people,
one to steer, one with a bow and one with a shield.
Between two mountains: Zechariah sees
the chariots emerge from between two mountains. Mountains
signify kingdoms and powers in scripture, including the kingdom
of God. (Daniel 2:45). The nations are referenced as mountains
in Isaiah 41:15, Jeremiah refers to Babylon as a destroying
mountain. Persia is alluded to as the mountain standing in
the way of Zerubbabel in completing the 2nd Temple.
I am against you, O destroying mountain, Who destroys all the
earth," says the Lord."And I will stretch out My hand against
you, Roll you down from the rocks, And make you a burnt
mountain. Jeremiah 51:25
Mountains of bronze: The mountains are described as tXxnN’chosheth, meaning
copper. From these two mountains of copper, emerge four
chariots from before the Lord of Hosts (vs. 5). Some
commentators view these two mountains as the Mount of Olives
and Mount Moriah, standing near the Temple of the Lord,
God’s throne on earth. Jameison Faussett Brown comments
on the meaning of these two mountains.
the valley of
Jehoshaphat, between Moriah and Mount Olivet [MOORE]; or the
valley between Zion and Moriah, where the Lord is (Zechariah
2:10), and whence He sends forth His ministers of judgment on
the heathen [MAURER]. The temple on Mount Moriah is the symbol
of the theocracy; hence the nearest spot accessible to chariots
in the valley below is the most suitable for a vision affecting
Judah in relation to the Gentile world powers. The chariot is
the symbol of war, and so of judgments.
metal bronze also plays an important role in scripture and the
Temple. The material is used in the tools, equipment of the
Temple. Moses fashioned a Brass or Copper Serpent. The Brazen
Altar in the tabernacle was where sacrifice was burned. Moses
instructs Israel to construct and altar with four horns, and
covers them with bronze.
"You shall make an altar of acacia wood, five cubits long and
five cubits wide-the altar shall be square-and its height shall
be three cubits. 2 "You shall make its horns on its four
corners; its horns shall be of one piece with it. And you shall
overlay it with bronze. 3 "Also you shall make its pans to
receive its ashes, and its shovels and its basins and its forks
and its firepans; you shall make all its utensils of bronze.
altar was the place of judgment, where sacrifices were burned.
The chariots from before the Lord, could demonstrate the
judgment of the Lord going out. The bronze mountains could
symbolize the kingdom of God, sending out judgment to the
nations. This view corresponds Revelation 6, where the four
horses are pictured as judgments going out from the throne of
1 Now I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals; and I heard
one of the four living creatures saying with a voice like
thunder, "Come and see." 2 And I looked, and behold, a white
horse. He who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to
him, and he went out conquering and to conquer. 3 When He opened
the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying,
"Come and see." 4 Another horse, fiery red, went out. And
it was granted to the one who sat on it to take peace from the
earth, and that people should kill one another; and there was
given to him a great sword. 5 When He opened the third seal, I
heard the third living creature say, "Come and see." So I
looked, and behold, a black horse, and he who sat on it
had a pair of scales in his hand. 6 And I heard a voice in the
midst of the four living creatures saying, "A quart of wheat for
a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do
not harm the oil and the wine." 7 When He opened the fourth
seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying,
"Come and see." 8 So I looked,
a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was Death, and
Hades followed with him. And power was given to them over a
fourth of the earth, to kill with sword, with hunger, with
death, and by the beasts of the earth. Revelation 6:1-8
Revelation 6, the colors of the horses represent an aspect of
God’s judgment in the last days. The White Horse
represents a false peace, established by military might. This
false peace erupts into war with the emergence of the Red
Horse, who takes peace from the earth, he has a great sword.
Following the Red Horse, is a Black Horse, having scales
representing a lack of food, and inflation, the consequences of
war. Following the Black Horse is a Pale Horse,
representing death, which follows war and famine, because of
disease, wild animals and war one quarter of the Earth’s
Red horses with chariot
Red horse with Angel of the Lord
White Horse with rider and bow
Black horses with chariot
Red horse with sword
White horses with chariot
Black with rider and scales
Dappled horses with chariot
Pale horse and rider
chariot: The order of
the horses differs from Revelation, in Zechariah the first horse
is the Red.
Hebrew word for red is ~da'adom, From
this word, both the names of Adam and Edom can be
traced. Revelation connects the meaning of red with war. In
Zechariah one, we see the Angel of the Lord riding a red
horse, followed by other horses with angelic riders. They report
to the Angel of the Lord, the status of earth.
second horse in Zechariah, the black one is the third horse in
Revelation, and does not appear in the first vision of horses
Black horses: The
horses’ black color represents an ominous sign, often associated
with mourning or destruction. In Revelation, the rider of the
black horse had scales in his hand. He cried out, "A quart
of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a
denarius; and do not harm the oil and the wine.". The Black
Horse follows the Red in Revelation, which stands for war. Here
the ominous sign is lack of food and inflation as food becomes
scarce following the wars at the start of the tribulation. Oil
and wine foods of luxury are not harmed meaning the poor will
suffer the brunt of the famine following the war.
Whether the meaning of the black horses of Zechariah and the
black horse of Revelation mean the same is not certain.
chariot: The White
horses, third in Zechariah, are first in Revelation.
White horses: White is often associated with the color of purity, peace,
holiness and victory in scripture. White horses appear two
times in Zechariah (Chapters 1 & 6) and two times in Revelation
(Chapters 6 &19). In Revelation 19, Jesus is riding a white
horse, followed by the saints who are also riding white horses,
showing the victory of Christ and the saints over the world.
Revelation 6 however, the rider has a bow and goes out
conquering, his peace, however is false, since it is followed by
war, the Red Horse. For this reason, the white horse in
Revelation 6, is seen as the Antichrist who brings a false
military peace, pictured as a white horse.
chariot: The fourth horse, is dappled, spotted or marked, In Zechariah
one, the horses are speckled (sorrel, reddish, tawny,
bay) while in Zechariah 6, they are grizzeled (spotted or
marked). In Revelation 6, the fourth horse is pale or chloros
Dappled horses: Essentially the term means spotted, but there is not a point of
reference, to draw upon a meaning and its application here.
Speculation might see a mixed state of affairs surrounding
Israel during this period of judgment.
Strong steeds: This term is
applied to either the dappled horses or all the horses since
they are all called strong steeds in verse 7.
(4) The angel who talked: Zechariah now asks the angel who has accompanied him on the
whole journey from chapter 1, what is the meaning of what he
Interpretation of the vision
ZEC 6:5 And
the angel answered and said to me, "These are four spirits of
heaven, who go out from their station before the Lord of all the
earth.ZEC 6:6 "The one with the black horses is going to the
north country, the white are going after them, and the dappled
are going toward the south country."ZEC 6:7 Then the strong
steeds went out, eager to go, that they might walk to and fro
throughout the earth. And He said, "Go, walk to and fro
throughout the earth." So they walked to and fro throughout the
ZEC 6:8 And He called to me, and spoke to me, saying, "See,
those who go toward the north country have given rest to My
Spirit in the north country."
(5) These are:The
accompanying angel, now explains to Zechariah the meaning of
what he is sees.
Four spirits of heaven: The angel
describes these four chariots, with four diverse color horses,
with angel drivers implied but not stated, as being the four
spirits of heaven. The word for sprit xwrRuwach, means
breath, wind. Ruwach
the same term used for the Holy Spirit, and angels. In this
case, it is referring to angels, which stand before the throne
Their station: These angels have a specific function; they are in the
presence of the Lord. These four chariots could be four
judgment angels, represent angels involved in judgment on the
nations. Their emergence from between two mountains of Brass,
means they have come forth for judgment, as the armies of the
Lord. Chariots were instruments of war.
horses: In this verse,
the destinations of three of the chariots are listed, the black
horses go north, followed by the white, and the dappled horses
go south. We are not told where the red horses go.
term is applied to Babylon, even though Babylon is east of
Israel. Invaders because of the terrain would attack from the
North. (See Jeremiah 6:22. 10:22, 23:8, 31:8). The white horses
follow the black into the North Country. The exact meaning is
uncertain, so we can only speculate. If we use, the meaning of
the horses explained in Revelation, it could mean in the
end-times, famine and starvation (black horse) will be followed
by conquest (white horse) in the North Country (Russia).
The countries of Gog and Magog, north of
Israel play a prominent role in the end times, they are
described as being north of Israel, invading the land of
unwalled villages, of a people gathered from many nations. (See
and all its troops; the house of Togarmah from the far north and
all its troops-many people are with you. 7 "Prepare yourself and
be ready, you and all your companies that are gathered about
you; and be a guard for them. "After many days you will be
visited. In the latter years you will come into the land of
those brought back from the sword and gathered from many people
on the mountains of Israel, which had long been desolate; they
were brought out of the nations, and now all of them dwell
safely. Ezekiel 38:6-8
battle of Gog and Magog is an end times battle,
recognized in Judaism as a battle where the Messiah son of
Joseph is slain in battle. The white horse, follows the
black into the north, this could mean the armies of the
Antichrist, presented by the white horse which gives a
false-peace (Revelation 6:2-3) conquers the North Country.
Zechariah, we get a near term fulfillment, which looks forward
to a greater fulfillment in the end times. For example, in
chapter 2, we start out with a vision regarding Jerusalem’s
current state in the days of Zechariah, we end up with a picture
of Jerusalem in the days of Messiah. In chapters 3, we read
about Joshua the High Priest who pre-figures the servant
called the BRANCH.
Here also, the black horse might have near term fulfillment with
Babylon and Persia, as Babylon is called the North Country in
Jeremiah, and defeated by Cyrus the Persian (Isaiah 44:28,
45:1-2) the long term fulfillment being at the times of
Dappled…south county: In Ezekiel, the
south is referred to as Sheba and Dedan (Saudi
Arabia) they are also involved in the end times battle over the
lands of Israel, questioning the invasion of the north. (Ezekiel
38:13) Libya and Ethiopia from the south will also
gather against Israel in that day (Ezekiel 38:5).
steeds: The description of chariot horses in Zechariah’s vision.
To and fro
throughout the earth: This same term
is used in Zechariah 1:11 when the horses are sent to inspect
the earth, and report to the Angel of the Lord on the earth’s
Again, this could a near term meaning applying to the days of
Zechariah, with a long-term fulfillment in view. This verse
refers to the earth, which means the events could be in global
in scale and not just regional.
(8) He called:From
the context of the He, the Lord is calling out to Zechariah
adding to what the accompanying angel is explaining.
North Country: The Lord’s spirit is given rest in the North Countries
judgment. God’s Holy Spirit is vexed in iniquity. God allows sin
because He has mercy on the sinner, but eventually judgment
comes on sin. In judgment the Lord’s spirit is put to rest,
from the vexation of sin.
the eight visions of Zechariah.
Joshua the High Priest
ZEC 6:9 Then
the word of the Lord came to me, saying:ZEC 6:10 "Receive the
gift from the captives-from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, who
have come from Babylon-and go the same day and enter the house
of Josiah the son of Zephaniah.ZEC 6:11 "Take the silver and
gold, make an elaborate crown, and set it on the head of Joshua
the son of Jehozadak, the high priest.ZEC 6:12 "Then speak to
him, saying, 'Thus says the Lord of hosts, saying: "Behold, the
Man whose name is the BRANCH! From His place He shall branch
out, And He shall build the temple of the Lord;ZEC 6:13 Yes, He
shall build the temple of the Lord. He shall bear the glory, And
shall sit and rule on His throne; So He shall be a priest on His
throne, And the counsel of peace shall be between them both." 'ZEC
6:14 "Now the elaborate crown shall be for a memorial in the
temple of the Lord for Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah, and Hen the son
of Zephaniah.ZEC 6:15 "Even those from afar shall come and
build the temple of the Lord. Then you shall know that the Lord
of hosts has sent Me to you. And this shall come to pass if you
diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God."
(9) Word of the Lord: This begins a
new phase of revelations. This completes the first phase of
revelation through Zechariah. Chapter 7 takes place in the 4th
year of Darius. Chapter 1 through 6 take place in the 2nd
year, the eight visions start in the 11th month.
“Word” from the Lord is set apart from the visions, however the
reference to the BRANCH and Joshua the High Priest link it to
chapters 3 and 4 in Zechariah.
the gift: Three captives, whether they were recent arrivals is not
certain. They bring gifts of Gold and Silver, indicating they
were recent arrivals, wanting to help with the Temple’s
rebuilding. The three along with Zechariah go the house of
Josiah, who must have been an artisan or metalworker, who would
create a crown.
(11) Make an elaborate crown: Using the gift of silver and gold Josiah was to construct a
crown or crowns. The word for crown here is hrt[`atarah,
in the Masoratic Text (MT) the word is plural in the Septuagint
(LXX) it is singular. The word here is also not commonly
associated with the High Priest, this term for crown is used in
a royal sense, a priest did not rule , like a king.
The term used
for a priest’s crown was tpncmMitsnepheth translated
Miter. The crown the High Priest wore was made from cloth and
had a gold plate, saying Holy to the Lord (Exodus 28:36-38).
The implication here is the High Priest taking on royal power,
in addition to priestly power.
High Priest wearing the crown, presents the dual office of the
Messiah, who will be both a priest and king. Psalm 110:4
declares he will be a priest after the order of Melchizedek.
The Lord has sworn And will not relent, "You are a priest
forever According to the order of Melchizedek." Psalm 110:4
Messiah will also be king and rule on David’s throne as a son of
David. (Isaiah 9:6-7). He rules as both king and priest. This
dual role as both king and priest was typified in Melchizedek
(Genesis 14, Hebrews 7). Joshua the High Priest is another
picture of the coming Messiah, presenting as both Priest and
Head of Joshua:
After the crown was complete, it was placed on the head of the
High Priest. In the Mosaic Law, the High Priest was not a
monarch, but a representative of the people before the Lord
(12) Speak to
him: Zechariah is now told to speak to Joshua the High Priest. In
chapter 3, during the vision, Zechariah had an encounter with
Joshua, now his encounter with him is in the physical realms as
opposed to the spiritual. Zechariah is to proclaim the Lord’s
message to Joshua (Jehusha).
Man: Joshua the High Priest serves as the model for the Messiah,
in Zechariah 3:8, Joshua is seen distinct from the servant
called the Branch.
now, O Joshua the high priest, thou and thy fellows that sit
before thee: for they are men wondered at: for behold, I will
bring forth my servant the BRANCH. Zechariah 3:8
Joshua the High Priest, has the same name as Jesus, which the
world knows him by today. Just as Joshua and Zerubbabel, as
king and priest, they worked together to build the 2nd
Temple. Jesus Christ, the High Priest after the order of
Melchizedek, will build his Temple and establish His Kingdom.
Joshua the High Priest bore the name of the Messiah who would
also be Joshua the High Priest.
The Branch is the descendent of King David, who will rule as
Messiah on the throne of David. He is called the branch because
he is a stem of David’s line. (See Isaiah 11:1-3, Isaiah 4:2,
Jeremiah 23:5-6) The Branch will rule Jerusalem in the
Millennium as both King and Priest.
"Behold, the days are coming," says the Lord, "That I will raiseto David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign
and prosper, And execute judgment and righteousness in the
earth. 6 In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell
safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE
LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. Jeremiah 23:5-6
He shall build: The Messiah at His first coming began construction of his spiritual
house, the body of believers are the bricks in his temple. (I
peter 2:5). Joshua like the Messiah, is involved in building
the Lord’s house. For this reason, Jews today identify the
Messiah with the one who rebuilds the Temple in Jerusalem.
Messiah in Ezekiel 40-43, called the Glory of the Lord,
will build the Millennium Temple on earth. This Temple will
serve as the throne of Messiah on Earth, during the Millennium.
And He said to me, "Son of man, this is the place of My throne
and the place of the soles of My feet, where I will dwell in the
midst of the children of Israel forever. No more shall the house
of Israel defile My holy name, they nor their kings, by their
harlotry or with the carcasses of their kings on their high
places. 8 "When they set their threshold by My threshold, and
their doorpost by My doorpost, with a wall between them and Me,
they defiled My holy name by the abominations which they
committed; therefore I have consumed them in My anger.
The 2nd Temple, built by Joshua and Zerubbabel was
destroyed the Romans following the rejection of Jesus as Messiah
(Daniel 9:26, Matthew 24:1)
build: The Branch
shall build the Temple of the Lord, and the Branch will bear the
glory. Joshua the High Priest only modeled what Jesus will
fulfill. In Chapter 3, Joshua is covered in filth and is
cleansed by the Angel of the Lord who removes his iniquity
(Zechariah 3:4). He is later clothed by the angel of the Lord
with glory and declared to be sign (Zech 3:8)
Bear the Glory: The Messiah will bear the glory, He is called the Glory of the Lord
in Ezekiel. Joshua the High Priest was only a model or a type.
The High Priest was a picture of the role Jesus would fulfill.
Sit and rule: The Messiah
will sit and rule on the throne, having the office of both
Priest and King.
The throne of Messiah, His throne is eternal, He possess it.
Daniel talking about Messiah, as the Son of Man says all nations
will serve Him and be subject to Him.
"I was watching in the night visions, And behold, One like the
Son of Man, Coming with the clouds of heaven! He came to the
Ancient of Days, And they brought Him near before Him. 14 Then
to Him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, That all
peoples, nations, and languages should serve Him. His dominion
is an everlasting dominion, Which shall not pass away, And His
kingdom the one Which shall not be destroyed. Daniel 7:13-14
Priest on His throne: In the Mosaic Law, the priest and king were separate;
therefore, this is clearly a picture of the rule of Messiah, who
will be both king and priest on His throne.
Counsel of peace...both: As King and
Priest, the Messiah will unify the two anointed positions. He
will council the world and brings peace to the nations. In
Zechariah 4, the two offices of Messiah are presented as two
Olive trees, which drip their oil in to the reservoir feeding
the golden candlestick. (Zechariah 4:11-14). The two witnesses
in Revelation, chapter 11, stand in the office of king and
priest, during the first half of the tribulation. (Rev. 11:4)
(14) Crown (s): The crown constructed was a picture to remind Israel of the coming role
of Messiah, hew would fulfill both roles. This is emphasized in
the book of Hebrews, the dual nature of the Messiah.
In the temple: The Crown was to be kept in the Temple, because the Messiah would be both
King and Priest from the Temple. The purpose was to also remind
the priesthood of the coming role Messiah would play, so they
could expect his coming.
(15)Those from afar: The near term fulfillment being the Jews in Babylon, the
distant fulfillment, the Gentile nations would help in the
construction of Messiah’s Temple.
Build the Temple: The Third Temple, which will be built in the tribulation
period will not be the final temple, the Temple will be
desolated in the tribulation by the Antichrist. The Messiah, the
Glory of the Lord, will construct the Millennium Temple after
the tribulation. The final Temple is the New Jerusalem, made up
of believers from all the nations for eternity. (Revelation
Obey the voice: Through the obedient this will come about, when the nation of Israel
recognizes their Messiah, Jesus Christ, (Yeshua ha’Mashiach)