Scripture Zechariah 1:1-6
In the eighth month, in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to the prophet Zechariah son of Berechiah son of Iddo, saying: 2 The Lord was very angry with your ancestors. 3 Therefore say to them, Thus says the Lord of hosts: Return to me, says the Lord of hosts, and I will return to you, says the Lord of hosts. 4 Do not be like your ancestors, to whom the former prophets proclaimed, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, Return from your evil ways and from your evil deeds.” But they did not hear or heed me, says the Lord. 5 Your ancestors, where are they? And the prophets, do they live forever? 6 But my words and my statutes, which I commanded my servants the prophets, did they not overtake your ancestors? So they repented and said, “The Lord of hosts has dealt with us according to our ways and deeds, just as he planned to do.”
- Do not be like your ancestors… return to me
- Ancestors – those who went into exile when Jerusalem fell?
- “The Lord of hosts” repeated – why this formulation? What does this signify?
- Is the genealogy of Zechariah a reminder that his ancestors as well as “theirs” were guilty?
As Pogo famously quipped “We have met the enemy and he is us.” I am my own worst enemy. It is easy to blame others, circumstances, luck for things that happen/ And sometimes it is true to be sure. But more often than not. more likely than not – my crises are my doing. Or at least where I land when they strike is anyway.
I love the image of the words and statues of the Lord overtaking the ancestors of the people. Like a storm they tried to outrun – but a storm of their own making – it hits them no matter how far and hard they run.
I cannot outrun the consequences of my decisions. They will overtake me for good or ill. For that matter I cannot outrun circumstances beyond my control either.
I can, however, not try to outrun the Lord or run away from him – even when I am guilty of some transgression. Return to him, he says. And he will return to me he promises.
Lord of Hosts, you promised to return to those who returned to you. Even when the consequences of their disobedience came to fruition… so let me not run from you or need to return to you. Sometimes I know what it is to be overtaken by my sins or by my mistakes. May i trust in your word and in your grace even then. Amen.