Planting Peace

This is what the Lord Almighty says: “You who now hear these words spoken by the prophets who were there when the foundation was laid for the house of the Lord Almighty, let your hands be strong so that the temple may be built.  Before that time there were no wages for man or beast. No one could go about his business safely because of his enemy, for I had turned every man against his neighbor.  But now I will not deal with the remnant of this people as I did in the past,” declares the Lord Almighty.

“The seed will grow well, the vine will yield its fruit, the ground will produce its crops, and the heavens will drop their dew.  I will give all these things as an inheritance to the remnant of this people.  As you have been an object of cursing among the nations, O Judah and Israel, so will I save you, and you will be a blessing.  Do not be afraid, but let your hands be strong. ”  — Zechariah 8:9-13

As is true in most of the prophetic books, there are passages of peace and blessing mixed in with lengthy passages of curse and despair.  It is refreshing to read these passages of hope, because it is a constant reminder that God still maintains a chosen few, and He cares for them deeply.

I especially like the rendering of verse twelve in the English Standard Version – “For there shall be a sowing of peace”.  When I think on this verse, I think about the chaos and distraction that is our world today – so many things can pull us away from God.  But in seeking Him, there will be a time to sow peace, which will no doubt come to fruit one day.  It is these moments of peace-sowing that are so important for the later harvest.


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