Zechariah 11 Bible Commentary

John Darby’s Synopsis

(Read all of Zechariah 11)
The rejection of Messiah and its consequences

In connection with the judgments that should attend it, the Spirit enters into more detail with respect to the rejection of the Messiah, and the particular circumstances of the last days, in consequence of this rejection. It is the history of Israel in connection with Christ.

The invasion of Israel by the Gentiles; Jehovah's care for His flock

I think that the beginning of chapter 11 speaks of the invasion of Israel by the Gentiles. The first three verses give a picture of the general condition of the land. In verse 4 Jehovah takes up the case of His devastated flock. Their Gentile possessors only made a spoil of them. Their own shepherds pitied them not. Jehovah, while giving up the nation to the fruit of their iniquity, was moved with compassion for the poor of the flock, and cares for the oppressed. It is the spirit of the life of Christ in Israel.

The true Shepherd and Antichrist

The two staves represent His authority, as uniting all the nations under Him, and binding Judah and Israel together—the double effect of the presence of Christ. But the shepherds of Israel are cut off; and Christ, grieved with the wicked and corrupt people, Himself abhorred by them, leaves them to themselves and to the consequences of their behaviour. As the result of this, He renounces for that time the inheritance of the nations, since it is in Israel that He is to take possession of it. But the poor of the flock have recognised in His ways the fulfilment of the word of prophecy: they have not waited for the manifestation of the Messiah's public glory in Israel, but have attached themselves to Him personally, in consequence of the proofs He gave of His mission from God. It appears to me that this comprises the apostolic work in Israel, as well as the life of Christ. The prophecy only speaks of the fact itself. Verses 12 and 13 relate the price at which the nation estimated their King and their Saviour. The fulfilment of this is known to all. The prophet here performs the thing prophetically, marking that so it was to be according to the counsels of God. We see also that Christ appears here as Jehovah Himself. The connection between verses 6 and 9 brings out the same truth. The thoughts of Jehovah with respect to that which He will do find their accomplishment in the Person of Jesus. The union between Judah and Israel, of which Christ should be the bond, is also deferred. In verses 15-17 the prophet is seen assuming the features of the Antichrist, to represent him in type (as previously, the actions of Judas), in order to announce that foolish shepherd who should be raised up in judgment from God, and who should himself suffer the judgment he deserved. Christ came in the name of the Father—He was not received. Another should come in his own name, and him the people would receive.