Zechariah 1-7 Bible in Basic English

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A Call to Return to the LORD

1 1  In the eighth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo the prophet, saying, 2  The Lord has been very angry with your fathers: 3  And you are to say to them, These are the words of the Lord of armies: Come back to me, says the Lord of armies, and I will come back to you. 4  Be not like your fathers, to whom the voice of the earlier prophets came, saying, Be turned now from your evil ways and from your evil doings: but they did not give ear to me or take note, says the Lord. 5  Your fathers, where are they? and the prophets, do they go on living for ever? 6  But my words and my orders, which I gave to my servants the prophets, have they not overtaken your fathers? and turning back they said, As it was the purpose of the Lord of armies to do to us, in reward for our ways and our doings, so has he done.

The Vision of the Horses

7  On the twenty-fourth day of the eleventh month, the month Shebat, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo the prophet, saying, 8  I saw in the night a man on a red horse, between the mountains in the valley, and at his back were horses, red, black, white, and of mixed colours. 9  Then I said, O my lord, what are these? And the angel who was talking to me said to me, I will make clear to you what they are. 10  And the man who was between the mountains, answering me, said, These are those whom the Lord has sent to go up and down through the earth. 11  And the man who was between the mountains, answering, said to the angel of the Lord, We have gone up and down through the earth, and all the earth is quiet and at rest. 12  Then the angel of the Lord, answering, said, O Lord of armies, how long will it be before you have mercy on Jerusalem and on the towns of Judah against which your wrath has been burning for seventy years? 13  And the Lord gave an answer in good and comforting words to the angel who was talking to me. 14  And the angel who was talking to me said to me, Let your voice be loud and say, These are the words of the Lord of armies: I am greatly moved about the fate of Jerusalem and of Zion. 15  And I am very angry with the nations who are living untroubled: for when I was only a little angry, they made the evil worse. 16  So this is what the Lord has said: I have come back to Jerusalem with mercies; my house is to be put up in her, says the Lord of armies, and a line is to be stretched out over Jerusalem. 17  And again let your voice be loud and say, This is what the Lord of armies has said: My towns will again be overflowing with good things, and again the Lord will give comfort to Zion and take Jerusalem for himself.

The Exiles Summoned

2 1  And lifting up my eyes I saw four horns. 2  And I said to the angel who was talking to me, What are these? And he said to me, These are the horns which have sent Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem in flight. 3  And the Lord gave me a vision of four metal-workers. 4  Then I said, What have these come to do? And he said, These are the horns which sent Judah in flight, and kept him from lifting up his head: but these men have come to send fear on them and to put down the nations who are lifting up their horns against the land of Judah to send it in flight. 5  And lifting up my eyes, I saw a man with a measuring-line in his hand.

6  And I said to him, Where are you going? And he said to me, To take the measure of Jerusalem, to see how wide and how long it is. 7  And the angel who was talking to me went out, and another angel went out, and, meeting him, 8  Said to him, Go quickly and say to this young man, Jerusalem will be an unwalled town, because of the great number of men and cattle in her. 9  For I, says the Lord, will be a wall of fire round about her, and I will be the glory inside her.

10  Ho, ho! go in flight from the land of the north, says the Lord: for I have sent you far and wide to the four winds of heaven, says the Lord. 11  Ho! Zion, go in flight from danger, you who are living with the daughter of Babylon. 12  For this is what the Lord of armies has said: In the way of glory he has sent me to the nations which have taken your goods: for anyone touching you is touching what is most dear to him. 13  For at the shaking of my hand over them, their goods will be taken by those who were their servants: and you will see that the Lord of armies has sent me. 14  Give songs of joy, O daughter of Zion: for I come, and I will make my resting-place among you, says the Lord. 15  And a number of nations will be joined to the Lord in that day, and will become my people; and I will be living among you, and you will see that the Lord of armies has sent me to you. 16  And Judah will be the Lord's heritage in the holy land, and Jerusalem will again be his. 17  Let all flesh be quiet and make no sound before the Lord: for he is awake and has come from his holy resting-place.

The Prophet's Vision of Joshua the High Priest

3 1  And he let me see Joshua, the high priest, in his place before the angel of the Lord, and the Satan at his right hand ready to take up a cause against him. 2  And the Lord said to the Satan, May the Lord's word be sharp against you, O Satan, the word of the Lord who has taken Jerusalem for himself: is this not a burning branch pulled out of the fire? 3  Now Joshua was clothed in unclean robes, and he was in his place before the angel. 4  And he made answer and said to those who were there before him, Take the unclean robes off him, and let him be clothed in clean robes; 5  And let them put a clean head-dress on his head. So they put a clean head-dress on his head, clothing him with clean robes: and to him he said, See, I have taken your sin away from you. 6  And the angel of the Lord made a statement to Joshua, and said, 7  These are the words of the Lord of armies: If you will go in my ways and keep what I have put in your care, then you will be judge over my Temple and have the care of my house, and I will give you the right to come in among those who are there.

8  Give ear now, O Joshua, the high priest, you and your friends who are seated before you; for these are men who are a sign: for see, I will let my servant the Branch be seen. 9  For see, the stone which I have put before Joshua; on one stone are seven eyes: see, the design cut on it will be my work, says the Lord of armies, and I will take away the sin of that land in one day. 10  In that day, says the Lord of armies, you will be one another's guests under the vine and under the fig-tree.

The Candlestick and the Olive Trees

4 1  And the angel who was talking to me came again, awaking me as a man out of his sleep. 2  And he said to me, What do you see? And I said, I see a light-support, made all of gold, with its cup on the top of it and seven lights on it; and there are seven pipes to every one of the lights which are on the top of it; 3  And two olive-trees by it, one on the right side of the cup and one on the left. 4  And I made answer and said to the angel who was talking to me, What are these, my lord? 5  Then the angel who was talking to me, answering me, said, Have you no knowledge of what these are? And I said, No, my lord. 6  This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel, saying, Not by force or by power, but by my spirit, says the Lord of armies. 7  Who are you, O great mountain? before Zerubbabel you will become level: and he will let all see the headstone, with cries of Grace, grace, to it. 8  Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 9  The hands of Zerubbabel have put the base of this house in place, and his hands will make it complete; and it will be clear to you that the Lord of armies has sent me to you. 10  For who has had a poor opinion of the day of small things? for they will be glad when they see the weighted measuring-line in the hand of Zerubbabel. Then he said in answer to me, These seven lights are the eyes of the Lord which go quickly up and down through all the earth.

11  And I made answer and said to him, What are these two olive-trees on the right side of the light-support and on the left? 12  And answering a second time, I said to him, What are these two olive branches, through whose gold pipes the oil is drained out? 13  And he said in answer to me, Have you no knowledge what these are? And I said, No, my lord. 14  And he said, These are the two sons of oil, whose place is by the Lord of all the earth.

The Flying Roll

5 1  Then again lifting up my eyes I saw a roll in flight through the air. 2  And he said to me, What do you see? And I said, A roll going through the air; it is twenty cubits long and ten cubits wide. 3  Then he said to me, This is the curse which goes out over the face of all the land: for long enough has every thief gone without punishment, and long enough has every taker of false oaths gone without punishment. 4  And I will send it out, says the Lord of armies, and it will go into the house of the thief and into the house of him who takes a false oath by my name: and it will be in his house, causing its complete destruction, with its woodwork and its stones.

The Woman in the Ephah

5  And the angel who was talking to me went out and said to me, Let your eyes be lifted up now, and see the ephah which is going out. 6  And I said, What is it? And he said, This is an ephah which is going out. And he said further, This is their evil-doing in all the land. 7  And I saw a round cover of lead lifted up; and a woman was seated in the middle of the ephah. 8  And he said, This is Sin; and pushing her down into the ephah, he put the weight of lead on the mouth of it. 9  And lifting up my eyes I saw two women coming out, and the wind was in their wings; and they had wings like the wings of a stork: and they took the ephah, lifting it up between earth and heaven. 10  And I said to the angel who was talking to me, Where are they taking the ephah? 11  And he said to me, To make a house for her in the land of Shinar: and they will make a place ready, and put her there in the place which is hers.

The Four Chariots

6 1  And again lifting up my eyes I saw four war-carriages coming out from between the two mountains; and the mountains were mountains of brass. 2  In the first war-carriage were red horses; and in the second, black horses; 3  And in the third, white horses; and in the fourth, horses of mixed colour. 4  And I made answer and said to the angel who was talking to me, What are these, my lord? 5  And the angel, answering, said to me, These go out to the four winds of heaven from their place before the Lord of all the earth. 6  The carriage in which are the black horses goes in the direction of the north country; the white go to the west; and those of mixed colour go in the direction of the south country. 7  And the red ones go to the east; and they made request that they might go up and down through the earth: and he said, Go up and down through the earth. So they went up and down through the earth. 8  Then crying out to me, he said, See, those who are going to the north country have given rest to the spirit of the Lord in the north country.

The Symbolic Crowning of Joshua

9  And the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 10  Take the offerings of those who went away as prisoners, from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, and from the family of Josiah, the son of Zephaniah, who have come from Babylon; 11  And take silver and gold and make a crown and put it on the head of Zerubbabel; 12  And say to him, These are the words of the Lord of armies: See, the man whose name is the Branch, under whom there will be fertile growth. 13  And he will be the builder of the Temple of the Lord; and the glory will be his, and he will take his place as ruler on the seat of power; and Joshua will be a priest at his right hand, and between them there will be a design of peace. 14  And the crown will be for grace to Heldai and Tobijah and Jedaiah and the son of Zephaniah, to keep their memory living in the house of the Lord. 15  And those who are far away will come and be builders in the Temple of the Lord, and it will be clear to you that the Lord of armies has sent me to you.

Insincere Fasting Reproved

7 1  And it came about in the fourth year of King Darius, that the word of the Lord came to Zechariah on the fourth day of the ninth month, the month Chislev. 2  Now they of Beth-el had sent Sharezer and Regem-melech to make a request for grace from the Lord, 3  And to say to the priests of the house of the Lord of armies and to the prophets, Am I to go on weeping in the fifth month, separating myself as I have done in past years? 4  Then the word of the Lord of armies came to me, saying 5  Say to all the people of the land and to the priests, When you went without food and gave yourselves to grief in the fifth and the seventh months for these seventy years, did you ever do it because of me? 6  And when you are feasting and drinking, are you not doing it only for yourselves? 7  Are not these the words which the Lord said to you by the earlier prophets, when Jerusalem was full of people and wealth, and the towns round about her and the South and the Lowland were peopled?

Disobedience the Cause of Captivity

8  And the word of the Lord came to Zechariah, saying, 9  This is what the Lord of armies has said: Let your judging be upright and done in good faith, let every man have mercy and pity for his brother: 10  Do not be hard on the widow, or the child without a father, on the man from a strange country, or on the poor; let there be no evil thought in your heart against your brother. 11  But they would not give attention, turning their backs and stopping their ears from hearing; 12  And they made their hearts like the hardest stone, so that they might not give ear to the law and the words which the Lord of armies had said by the earlier prophets: and there came great wrath from the Lord of armies. 13  And it came about that as they would not give ear to his voice, so I would not give ear to their voice, says the Lord of armies: 14  But with a storm-wind I sent them in flight among all the nations of whom they had no knowledge. So the land was waste after them, so that no man went through or came back: for they had made waste the desired land.

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