Introduction to Zechariah Chapter 8

This chapter contains promises of various blessings to the people of the Jews; and exhortations to each of the duties incumbent on them; and is concluded with a prophecy of the calling of the Gentiles. The cause of all the blessings promised is the love of God to them, signified by zeal, or jealousy for them, Zechariah 8:1. The blessings promised are the Lord's return to dwell in Jerusalem, and the integrity and holiness of that city, Zechariah 8:3. The long life of the inhabitants of it, and the plenty of children that should be born in it, Zechariah 8:4 and, however wonderful and incredible this might seem to some, it was not to the Lord, who was determined to bring his people that were in various distant countries to Jerusalem, and settle them there; and renew and reestablish his covenant with them, Zechariah 8:6 wherefore the Lord encourages them to go on in rebuilding the temple, Zechariah 8:9 and promises them that things would be better with them than in times past; that whereas there had been nothing but penury, affliction, and distress, now there should be great affluence and prosperity, Zechariah 8:10 and though before they were a curse among the nations, now they should be a blessing; and though their fathers were punished, they should be dealt well with, Zechariah 8:13 and then they are exhorted to the discharge of several duties mentioned, to which they are induced by the Lord's hatred of that which is evil, and by his turning their fasts into cheerful feasts. Zechariah 8:16 to which is added a prophecy of the calling and conversion of the Gentiles, which would make for the glory of the Jewish church; who are described by their numbers, being many people, and the inhabitants of many cities; by their association together, to pray to the Lord, and worship him; by their coming up to Jerusalem for that purpose; and by their junction with the Jews, to which they will be encouraged by having heard that God is with them, Zechariah 8:20.