ZECHARIAH - CHAPTER 3 - THE ATONEMENT Print E-mail

ZECHARIAH – CHAPTER 3 – THE ATONEMENT

Pastor Carolyn Sissom

July 9, 2019, the Year of Our Lord

 

Zechariah continues to paint an amazing and complete portrait of Jesus Christ, King of Kings; and as the Great High Priest of our Atonement.   In Chapter 3, the unveiling of the King’s composite portrait continues:

 

 Zechariah paints a court scene before our eyes:

 

Zech 3:1:  He showed me Joshua, the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him.

 

 He showed me” refers back to 2:13: Be silent, O all flesh, before the LORD (Jehovah); for He is raised up out of His holy habitation.

 

The prophet is drawn aside and directed to a celestial court scene of the tribunal of God in which Joshua the high priest is arraigned before the LORD who is the judge.  As the defendant, Joshua represents all Israel.  The accuser or prosecutor is none other than Satan himself! 

 

To Israel, the High Priest represented their very salvation as he stood in their stead before the Lord.   It was the High Priest who could approach the presence of the Most High God on the Day of Atonement and receive assurance from God that the sins of the nation were forgiven and covered.  He was the designated mediator between the Lord and the people.

 

We are being given a spiritual visual of what happened between God and the High Priest on the Day of Atonement; but not only the Day of Atonement, but our Atonement by Jesus Christ when we received the grace of righteousness to cover our sins at the Cross.  

 

It must have been a fearful thing to the prophet to behold Joshua, the high priest, standing in jeopardy and being withstood by so powerful an adversary.

 

But Joshua had an Advocate who was more powerful than his adversary---even the Messiah, Jesus Christ! 

 

1 John 2:1:  My little children, these things I write unto you, that you do not sin.  If any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.

 

Ro. 8:33: Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect?  It is God that justifies. 

 

It is the Lord (Jehovah) who rebuked Satan and defended Jerusalem and Joshua.  Here is an amazing scene in which the Judge becomes the Advocate, and mercy again glories over judgment! 

 

Joshua the High Priest, as the representative of the nation of Israel,  is a brand plucked out of the fires of God’s judgment.

 

Zech 3:2-3: The LORD said to Satan, the LORD rebuke you, O Satan; even the LORD that has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you; is not this brand plucked out of the fire? Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments and stood before the angel.

 

 In spite of the ceremonial care with which he had been cleansed, consecrated, clothed and prepared to enter the Holy of Holies before the Court of Heaven; all his righteousness is as filthy rags in the presence of the ALL-HOLY. 

 

In this vision, the Holy Spirit revealed to the prophet the contrast between the Old Testament righteousness, which was only topical and ceremonial; and the perfect righteousness of the Great High Priest to come, Jesus Christ; toward whom all the Old Testament sacrifices and ceremonies pointed.

 

The book of Hebrews throws a revealing light upon this chapter of Zechariah.  We readily understand that it is only Christ who can place upon Joshua or any of His priests, the pure white garments of His righteousness.  It is He who now commands:

 

Zech 3:4:  He (The LORD) answered and spoke unto those that stood before him, saying, Take away the filthy garments from him. And unto him he said, Behold, I have caused your iniquity to pass from you, and I will clothe you with change of raiment.

 

An instantaneous work of grace was then wrought before the eyes of Zechariah,

 

Zech 3:5: And I said, Let them set a fair mitre upon his head. So they set a fair mitre upon his head, and clothed him with garments. And the angel of the LORD stood by.

 

 

(Ex. 28: 36-39):  And you shall make a plate of pure gold, and engrave upon it, like the engravings of a signet, Holiness to the Lord.  And you shall put it on a blue lace that it may be upon the MITRE; upon the forefront of the MITRE (turban), it shall be.

 

Ex. 39: 28-31: And a MITRE of fine linen, and goodly bonnets of fine linen, and lined breeches of fine twined linen, and a girdle of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple and scarlet of needlework, as the Lord commanded Moses.  And they made the plate of the holy crown of pure gold, and wrote upon it writing, like to the engravings of a signet, HOLINESS TO THE LORD.

 

 

The Mind of Christ is a Mind of Holiness (the Divine nature):  Be you therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. (Mt. 5:48)

 

The MITRE and Plate were joined by a Blue lace.  The Mind of Christ is a heavenly Mind (1 Cor. 15: 44-49 – Amplified). 

 

The forehead speaks of purpose, will, mind (sealed with the Mind of Christ).  The very word for Crown (revealing the King-Priest ministry of Melchisedec) shows a separation unto holiness which ultimately results in a separation from sin, sickness, poverty, and death.  The reward (or crown) of holiness is life and immortality (Rom. 1:4).

 

Joshua fully dressed pictures Jesus Christ in all His glorious perfection as High Priest.  He also typifies man in glorification, having put on Christ in fullness (fully clothed as in 2 Cor. 5: 1-5).

 

The shape of the MITRE is not given, but it was made of linen (Lev. 16:4).  The Mind of Christ is a mind of righteousness.  Jewish tradition says that the MITRE was in the shape of a large dome with a small dome on top.

 

As we look now upon Joshua, we behold not him, but Jesus Christ, the eternal High Priest, after the order of Melchisedec (Ps. 110:4; Heb. 7:21).  In this portrait of Christ, as High Priest, we also see a great composite company of Melchizedek priests who, like Joshua, bear the name of JESUS.  Joshua is an Old Testament form of Jesus’ name.  We are clothed with Christ’s righteousness.  We, who are called to participate in this eternal priesthood, no longer give power to the accuser of the brethren.

 

Ro. 8:1-2: There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.

 

Unchecked Copy BoxRev 12:10 - And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

 

We are in the “NOW” of Christ’s salvation, strength and the Kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven.  The accuser of our brethren is NOW cast down.  For the Christian, we are the recipient of Zachariah’s vision of grace.

 

The words spoken to Joshua are spoken by the Spirit unto us, in this latter day, as we are being prepared for this royal priesthood: 

 

Zech 3:6-7:  - And the angel of the LORD admonished Joshua, saying,

Thus says the LORD of hosts:

 

If you will walk in My ways,
And if you will keep My command,
Then you shall also judge My house,
And likewise have charge of My courts;
I will give you places to walk
Among these who stand here.

 

IF”, --- All the kingdom promises and blessings of the Lord are conditional and their fulfillment is dependent upon the faith and obedience of the “sons of the Kingdom.”  The great “IF” is always the equivocal factor. 

 

Up to this point, Joshua had been protected, delivered, clothed and crowned by GRACE, through the mediation of the Messiah.  But now his cooperation with the grace of God is called for, and he is strictly charged about his walk and his ways before the Lord.  It is only the doers of the WORD who shall inherit the glories and blessings of the Kingdom!

 

Today, as in Zechariah’s day, the Lord’s threefold promise to His priests are being fulfilled, if we keep His charge (1), we are placed in ruling positions in God’s Kingdom, His spiritual Temple; (2) We lead God’s people in the worship and the ways of the Spirit; (3) The heavenly sanctuary of the LORD is open to us and we are brought into communion with saints and angels as we are taken into the fellowship of the General Assembly on high.

 

 Heb 12:22-24:  But you are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,

To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,

And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaks better things than that of Abel.

 

These privileges are not given as an instantaneous gift of grace---as were the raiment and the crown---but are bestowed as we walk daily in progressive obedience and union with our Great High Priest.

 

This special revelation about the communion of saints and angels is most precious, because so little mention is made of this in the Old Testament.  In these days the Holy Spirit is bringing many of God’s sons into this communion. 

 

Joshua would have open access to the presence of the Lord and to the heavenly hosts.  And, wonder of wonders beyond all this, the Lord promises:

 

Zach 3:8 - Hear now, O Joshua the high priest, you, and your fellows that sit before you: for they are men wondered at: for, behold, I will bring forth my servant the BRANCH.

 

The Hebrew “tsehmakh” means sprout, branch or spring.   This is used both by Jeremiah and Isaiah and always refers to THE MESSIAH.  Sometimes it is translated, “the day-spring.”  It was also revealed that Joshua and his fellow priests would be “wonders” or “signs” (for they are men wondered at) --- just as Jesus is and His sons will be.  The word wondered is “mopheth” and means “a wonder, sign portent, marvel, miracle, symbol or token.” 

 

Many years ago I had a vision of a glorious, golden branch.  I looked for it and could not locate the vision last night.  The branch was golden leaves and golden fruit---just glorious and it grew out of a tree.  The branch grew for miles and miles across the land.  It was covered with the glory of God.

 

Because of John 15:5 when Jesus said, I am the vine, you are the branches: He that abides in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing, some argue that the sons of God are the branches.  It is my persuasion that Jesus is the BRANCH (OR VINE) and we are branches from Him.  I don’t see what there is to argue about.  It seems simple to me.

 

Unchecked Copy BoxZech 6:12 - And speak unto him, saying, Thus speaks the LORD of hosts, saying, Behold the man whose name is The BRANCH; H6780 and he shall grow up out of his place, and he shall build the temple of the LORD.

 

The man is the “Son of Man”, Jesus Christ, and He is the temple of the LORD, and within His church.

 

Without our connectivity to Christ, the constant flow of His will into our lives would be cut off.  Without this connectivity, the power of an endless life would cease.  Jesus’ connection is the link between heaven and earth empowering the church.

 

 Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do...

 

We too have free access to the heavenlies and come freely to the throne. 

 

Zech 3:9 - For behold the stone that I have laid before Joshua; upon one stone shall be seven eyes: behold, I will engrave the graving thereof, saith the LORD of hosts, and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day.

 

I have a teaching; BEHOLD THE STONE, dated December 12, 2010 on the website, www.eastgateministries.com

 

There are three “beholds” in this passage.  The first is the Branch, the second, is the stone; and the third is the engraving upon the stone.

 

A mysterious jewel is placed before the eyes of Joshua.  It has seven eyes and reminds us at once of Christ, the Lamb in Revelation 5:6:

 

Unchecked Copy BoxRev 5:6 - And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.

 

In the teaching, Behold the Stone, I went in depth using C. R. Oliver’s book, The Sons of Zadok as a source and David Baron, Commentary on Zechariah, His Visions and Prophecies.  I researched all the theories of the “Stone” written by commentators and taught on all the scriptures on the “Stone” throughout the Bible.

 

Brother C. R.  Oliver states that the Lord gave him a revelation for this.  “I believe the stone placed before Joshua is in line with is investiture and is put there to assist him.  The significance of the stone is found in the fact that it is a stone.  It is forever (related to Moses receiving the Ten Commandments).  When God writes, it is forever.  His writings on stone, however, are rare.  Things written on stone are to be established; they can be counted on.

 

 Job wished that his confession was written in stone, for in great faith he cried out:  Oh that my words were now written! Oh, that they were printed in a book; that they were engraved, with an iron pen and lead, in the rock forever!  For I know that my redeemer lives and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth (Job. 19: 23-24)

 

During worship today, I believe the LORD revealed to me the writing on the stone is the visions given to Zechariah which will be an eternal book even in Heaven.  The visions reveal the King of Kings, the Son of Man, the Great High Priest, The Atonement, the Savior, and our calling to rule and reign with Christ in Heaven.

 

The character of writing in stone is permanence.  (Archeological findings have proven the historical value of stone writing.)  In Revelation, Jesus promises to write in stone, as evidence of his great love for the overcomer. In Revelation 2:17, a talisman stone is mentioned.  He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says unto the churches; To him that overcomes will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knows except he that receives it.”

 

C. R. Oliver states that he believes the stone laid before Joshua was a stone of this kind.  Written upon the stone were the intimate things known only to Joshua and God.

 

The seven eyes are the seven Spirits of God, wisdom, knowledge, understanding, council, might and the fear of God.  The Holy Spirit reveals the deep things of God; to reveal things that are to come, and to bring to remembrance the living Word of God.  The seven eyes are cut within to remind the sons that the Spirit is their only guide!  Dependence upon flesh will fail!  The “System” relies upon its communal wisdom; sons rely wholly upon the Spirit.  Their sowing is to the Spirit (Eph. 6:8).  The seven eyes remind Joshua the manifestation of power for His Priesthood is only in the Spirit.  It is the Sprit that is his law (Romans 8:2), that bears His witness as true (Ro. 8:16), that makes intercession (8:26); that gives power (1Co. 2:4), that searches to correct and counsel, (1 Co. 2:4), who gifts for service (1 Co. 12:4); who affords the liberty to minister (11 Co. 3:17), who bears fruit within and without (Eph. 5:19). 

 

BEHOLD I WILL ENGRAVE:  Joshua saw his life work (destiny) engraved in the stone as well as the life and ministry of Jesus Christ, the Son of Man and the Son of God.

 

Behold, I will engrave his labor (graving), says the Lord of hosts(Jubilee Bible Zech. 3:9)

 

His Kingdom destiny is written on the stone at the time of his investiture.  Characteristic of The Son is the astute knowledge of His areas of responsibility in the kingdom.  The Spirit of God has placed the sons in their several places in order to accomplish the complete will of God.  All the details may not be revealed to them, but not one of them will deny knowing their place in the kingdom.  The assurance that emanates from this knowledge is unbelievable.   

 

Whether the stone is construed to be a talisman or breastplate is immaterial; whether it is simply observed and worn is immaterial.  What is material is that it was acknowledged by Joshua as part of the planned Power of God for His life.

 

“I will remove the iniquity of the land in one day.  In that day, says the Lord of the hosts, every one of you shall call his neighbor under his vine and under his fig tree. (Zech. 3: 9-10).

 

Atonement is in this verse.  Atonement is the task of the Priest to bring God and man together.  It is the reason for the Blood of Jesus being ministered before the Divine Altar in the heavenly Temple.  One day the Lord will be satisfied that the ministering labor of Jesus at the altar is complete.  Completed Atonement for all who are to be sealed will be announced.  The High priest will announce God is satisfied that all who are sealed are saved and that Jesus must now return to earth.  That day and hour no man knows, but none of His will be lost.  He will establish His Throne, and these will minister Peace. (Zech. 6 carries this picture out in more detail.)

 

We are told in the Talmud (Yoman, vii.4) that, when, on the day of Atonement, the high priest had performed the various duties of the solemn day, he was escorted home in a festive manner, and was accustomed to give a festal entertainment to his friends.  The maidens and youths of the people went forth to their gardens and vineyards with songs and dances; social entertainment took place on all sides, and universal gladness closed the festival of that solemn day. (Baron, page 122)

 

Breastplate or talisman, whatever you are happy with, the point of all the garments, the Branch, the Stone, and the Engraving is the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

 

Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries, Inc.

 

Scripture from K.J.V. unless otherwise noted.  Text and quotes from The Sons of Zadok by: C. R. Oliver; Ladies of Gold, by Frances Metcalfe; Sermon by Carolyn Sissom, Behold the Stone.

 
< Prev   Next >
RocketTheme Joomla Templates