Old Testament: Zechariah 9:9-12 (Pentecost 5: Series A)

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The people gathered in Jerusalem that day were making a bold statement of faith. They believed Jesus was the New David.

The Old Testament Lesson for this Sunday is written in the Book of the Twelve, the prophet Zechariah. The text is Zechariah 9:9-12 and is the well-known prophecy of Jesus’ triumphal ride into Jerusalem on what is now called the Sunday of the Passion, or, Palm Sunday. We see the language of this pericope repeated in the account of Matthew 21, Mark 11, Luke 19 and John 12, and the words of the people who have gathered is striking! “Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD, even the King of Israel!” Matthew and Mark include the name of the King—David!

The people gathered in Jerusalem that day were making a bold statement of faith. They believed Jesus was the New David, the King who would rescue and free His people. They remembered the prophecy of Zechariah as well as Isaiah 11 concerning the, “Sprout that would come forth from the stump of Jesse”—the New David, the King of Israel. However, in these verses there are other, more subtle references to additional Christological figures in the Old Testament; those who foreshadowed the Coming One. In verse 11 the reference to the waterless pit points to Joseph in Genesis 37 as well as Daniel. Verse 12 and the restoration of double points to Job 42, when Job is redeemed and restored and given double all he had previously.

David, Joseph and Job point to Christ in very important ways. The fact that the Jews of Jerusalem recognized the fulfillment of this prophecy in Jesus is seen in their powerful statements and declaration of Praise! Hosanna! King… David! Jesus is the Messiah! And, they understood the Messianic/Christological nature of the Old Testament and its historical characters.

9:9 גִּילִי (gi-Li) root: גיל (gheel) Qal, imperative: “to shout in exultation; to rejoice”

הָרִיעִי (ha-Ri-i) root: רִוע (roo-ah) Hiphil, imperative: “to shout aloud; to cheer; to shout in triumphant”

צַדִּיק וְנוֹשָׁע (tzad-Dik ve-no-Sha) “righteous and having salvation”

עָנִי (a-Ni) “humbly; lowly”

וְרֹכֵב (ve-ro-Chev) root: רכב (raw-kab) Qal, participle: “to ride; to be riding”

חֲמוֹר (cha-Mor) “ass; donkey”

עַיִר (A-yir) “male donkey”

אֲתֹנוֹת] (a-to-Not) “she-ass; female donkey”

9:10 וְהִכְרַתִּי (ve-hich-rat-ti) root: כרת (kaw-rath) Hiphil: “to cut off; to cause to be cut off; to cut”

קֶשֶׁת, (Ke-shet) “a bow”

וּמָשְׁלוֹ (u-ma-she-Lo) from: משׁל (mo-shel) “dominion”

אַפְסֵי (af-sei) “end; extreme limit”

9:11 אַתְּ; (at) “you”

אֲסִירַיִךְ] (a-si-Ra-yich) “prisoners”

מִבּוֹר (mib-Bor) from: בּוֹר (bore) “waterless pit; pit; dungeon” This is not the word for “well,” but refers to a pit used for storage.

9:12 שׁוּבוּ (shoo-vu) Qal, imperative: “to return; to turn”

לְבִצָּרוֹן. (le-vitz-tza-Ron) “stronghold; castle; fortified place”

הַתִּקְוָה; (hat-tik-Vah) “hope”

מִשְׁנֶה (mish-Neh) “double portion; two-fold; double”


TITLE: Your King Comes!

  1. The Enemy Surrounds Us
    1. War and rumors of war…
    2. Political and economic disaster…
    3. Pandemics and nature attacks… This is the context of the Israelites in Zechariah and the Jews in Jerusalem on Palm Sunday and US today.
  2. Rejoice!
    1. Behold your King is coming!
    2. The Messiah rides into the fray (incarnation; Palm Sunday; the Last Day)
    3. The King brings salvation, peace, blood for cleansing, freedom, restoration.
  3. We are Prisoners of Hope
    1. We live in this evil world… but we have been redeemed!
    2. We struggle with our sinful flesh… but the blood of the New Covenant has restored!
    3. We are attacked daily by Satan… but he has been conquered by our King.


Additional Resources:

Concordia Theology-Various helps from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, MO to assist you in preaching Zechariah 9:9-12.

Text Week-A treasury of resources from various traditions to help you preach Zechariah 9:9-12.