When we read the book of Zechariah, just as with many other prophetic books in the Bible, it is not easy to see what’s going on and what is the prophet speaking about. We really need to put on “the glasses of God’s economy” so that we may see the crystals, the precious points, in this book, and to see that they all relate to Christ who is doing the work of the building of the house of God.
Today I was really impressed with the following statement by brother Witness Lee, “The all-inclusive Christ is the history of God working within the history of man to gain the building of God for the manifestation of God (see Zech. 4:9; 6:12-15; Matt. 16:18; John 1:1, 14; 1 Cor. 15:45b; Rev. 4:5; 5:6; 21:2).”
Wow! God’s history of working within man’s history is just Christ – God in Christ is working in humanity to gain something, which is the building of God, for God to be manifested in humanity!
For this, God works as “a Director” behind the scenes, directing the world situation and arranging everything so that God would get a house, a building, a corporate expression in man. Christ is working behind the human history to play out the divine history.
God is Skillfully Working Himself into Us to Make us His Masterpiece
As the knowledge of God increases and as we see more clearly what God’s plan and economy is, we realize that Christ is skillfully working behind the scenes to sovereignly control the entire world situation throughout the human history.
As He is doing this in the age of mystery – the age of the church – Christ is skillfully working Himself into us, His believers, to make us His masterpiece – the poem of God, His new invention, the church!
As we read in Acts 5:31 and Eph. 2:10, Christ is mysteriously, skillfully, and diligently working Himself into us in the divine history to make us the church, His masterpiece, the poem of God, where His infinite wisdom and divine design is expressed in full. Wow!
We don’t see it physically today, but spiritually – in the divine history – God is operating continually to produce the believers as His best work of art, His masterpiece, the church, and eventually to God it will be the glory in the church and in Jesus Christ forever and ever!
The church is God’s new invention, God’s masterpiece, the best thing He could come up with! Hallelujah!
Christ in His Humanity is Standing with the People of Israel
In Zechariah 1:7-17 we see that Christ in His humanity is the Angel of Jehovah standing with God’s people in the lowest part of the valley of their humiliation to care for them, intercede for them, and bring them out of any captivity.
Christ is Jehovah Himself as the Triune God becoming man, and He was, is, and will always be standing with Israel, God’s earthly people, even in their lowest situation. When you look at the history, Christ skillfully and hiddenly protected the Jews throughout the ages, and He brought them back to the land of Israel.
Do you really think it was “the genius of a mighty leader” that made it possible for Israel to defeat all his more-than-triple enemies around them and regain Jerusalem, obtain their sovereignty, and be a nation? No, Christ is the One standing with them in the times of trials, wars, sufferings, bombings, attacks, etc. Christ is the commander in chief, and if He is not directing something, it is not happening!
Christ as Jehovah, the Redeeming One, was Israel’s patron, and He did everything needed for them to be taken care of, released from captivity, brought back to the good land, build the temple, and eventually for Christ to be born in humanity for the accomplishment of God’s economy. What a Christ!
Christ is the Last Craftsman Used by God to Break the Four Horns
Toward the nations, Christ is the last Craftsman who is used by God to break the fourth horn (see Zech. 1:18-21).
The four horns in this section of the Word are the four great empires throughout human history – Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and the Roman Empire. These are also signified by the great human image with its four sections in Daniel 2:31-33, the four stages of locusts in Joel 1:4, and the four beasts in Daniel 7:3-8.
God raised up empires and allowed them to rule, but when they became too much, too greedy, too harsh in dealing with His people, He skillfully used the next empire to terminate it and replace it.
The Babylonian empire has been skillfully overtaken by the Medo-Persian empire in one night! The Grecian empire skillfully and wondrously defeated and overtook the seemingly-invincible Medo-Persian empire.
And it was definitely God who raised up an army of barbarians who became trained soldiers, the Roman Empire, to defeat and replace the Grecian empire, and allowed them to conquer most of the nations in Asia and Europe.
Lastly and most skillfully, Christ as the last Craftsman will come and crush the last horn / beast / locusts / empire. Christ is the Stone cut without human hands, the last Craftsman, who will skillfully come and defeat, crush, and annihilate the revived Roman empire, and He will bring in the kingdom of God for eternity! Wow!
Living in the Divine History Within the Human History today
I have to humbly admit that these words, this light, this understanding, and this speaking is not from my own mind or understanding of the Bible, but from the ministry of brothers Witness Lee and Watchman Nee.
On my own, I can barely see the portions in Zechariah prophesying about Christ – but who sees the divine history within the human history? Even more, HOW do we live in the divine history within the human history? If we don’t see what God is secretly, mysteriously, and skillfully doing today in humanity, we miss the mark, and we waste our time.
But we can be those who become Christ’s mighty ones for His building by living in the divine history within the human history today! How? There are at least three ways:
- We need to apply the cleansing blood of Christ (Zech. 3:3-4; 1 John 1:9). God ordered that the filthy garments on the high priest Joshua would be removed – our dirty clothes stained with sin are removed when we confess our sins! Also, we overcome the enemy by the blood of the Lamb (Rev. 12:11)!
- We need to live in the divine Spirit of Christ. It’s not by might, nor by power, but by God’s Spirit, who is now mingled with our spirit (Zech. 4:6; 12:1). We are washed by God in the blood of Christ, and we live and walk by the Spirit mingled with our spirit as one spirit (Gal. 5:16; 2:20; 1 Cor. 6:17).
- We need to abide in the beautifying and killing Word of Christ – through His word Christ washes us, cleanses us, kills the germs in us, beautifies us, infuses us, and make us His corporate warrior to come with Him and defeat the Antichrist with His word (Rev. 19:13-15; Eph. 5:26; 6:17).
As we apply the blood of Christ, live and walk by the Spirit, and abide in the word of God, the result will be that we will flow out Christ for the unique expression of God, the golden lampstand (1 Cor. 10:16; Zech. 4:12-14; John 7:37-39a)!
The issue of our daily living in the divine history within the human history is that God gets a golden lampstand, His expression and testimony in the universe, His building!
Lord, have mercy on us that we may not be deceived or drugged by the world today or by the feel-good gospel in Christianity. May we clearly see Your intention, Your desire, and Your move on earth today. Lord, work Yourself into us today to make us Your masterpiece. Keep us applying the precious blood of Christ through confessing our sins. Lord, keep us in our spirit today, living and walking by the Spirit with our spirit. Keep us in Your word, eating You and drinking You in Your living Word, enjoying the beautifying and killing functions of the Word! Lord, gain the golden lampstand, Your building, Your living testimony on the earth!
References and Further Reading
- This sharing is inspired from brother Andrew Yu’s sharing in this message and portions in, Life-study of Zechariah (msg. 15), by Witness Lee, as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on Crystallization-Study of Daniel and Zechariah, week 10 (entitled, A Word concerning the Human Spirit and Aspects of Christ Unveiled in Zechariah for His Move on Earth).
- Buy this morning revival book online via Living Stream Ministry.
- Hymns on this topic:
# The Lord chose you to be a part / Of His great plan, His work of art. / What wonder! What a privilege! / To satisfy / His yearning to share all He is— / Divine, unsearchable riches! / What wisdom, multifarious expressed!
# God the Creator became a God-man, / His death redeemed us for His glorious plan. / Now in resurrection the Spirit’s released / Producing the church. / This is God’s masterpiece.
# Lord, I believe Thy precious blood, / Which, at the mercy seat of God, / Forever doth for sinners plead, / For me, e’en for my soul, was shed.
- Pictures credit: God’s masterpiece here, God bless Israel here, and 1 John 1:9 here.