July 28, 2019 – Zechariah 14

Lesson Date: July 28, 2019

Focal Scripture Passage: Zechariah 14:1-21

AIM: To lead students to discover biblical facts about the future Kingdom of Jesus Christ, and to respond by either: (1) thanking the Lord that their future citizenship is in Christ’s Kingdom, or (2) accepting Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord so they can be citizens of that Kingdom.

 

Before class: Read the notes on Zechariah 14 found in the Sunday School Teacher Book. Write the following lesson outline on the marker board or chalkboard.

  1. The Battle for Jerusalem (v. 1-3)
  2. Christ’s Return to Earth (v. 4-8)
  3. Christ’s Kingdom Established (v. 9-11)
  4. Fate of Those who Fought against Jerusalem (v. 12-15)
  5. Regular Worship in the Kingdom (v. 16-19)
  6. Everything will be Devoted to the Lord (v. 20-21)

 

INTRODUCTION (Create Learning Readiness): Ask: “What would you think if I came to class this morning and told you I am a king? What if I demanded that you address me as ‘Your majesty’ or ‘Your Highness’? What questions would come to your mind if I did those things?” They might have some of the following questions: “If you are a king, where is your kingdom?” “Where is your crown?” “Where is your throne?” “Are you feeling okay?” Tell the class those are natural questions, because a king isn’t a king unless he has a kingdom over which to rule.

Read Matthew 6:9-13. Ask: “What do we commonly call those verses of scripture?” (the Lord’s Prayer). Explain that Jesus gave this as model or pattern we can follow in our prayers, but Christians for 2,000 years have recited these words as a prayer. Ask: “What is the first request in that prayer?” (“Thy kingdom come”). Tell the students every time the Lord’s Prayer is sincerely prayed, people are asking God to bring His Kingdom to earth. Ask: “Have you ever wondered what Christ’s Kingdom will be like?”

Tell the students this is our last lesson from the book of Zechariah. Ask: “What was last week’s lesson about?” (God’s plan to save and purify the Jews, and the three “tenses” of our salvation: justification, sanctification, and glorification). In today’s lesson we will discover some important biblical facts about the future Kingdom of Jesus Christ.

 

HEART OF THE LESSON (Bible Study):

  1. The Battle for Jerusalem.
    • Direct the class’ attention to item 1 on the lesson outline.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Zechariah 14:1-3.
    • Ask: “What day is coming?” (the Day of the Lord).
    • Ask: “Who will God gather around Jerusalem?” (all nations who will come to attack Jerusalem).
    • Tell the class these verses describe the battle of Armageddon (which is also described in Rev. 19:17-21).
    • There will be terrible bloodshed and destruction, and half the population of Jerusalem will be taken away into captivity.
    • Ask: “What will the Lord do?” (He will go forth and fight against those nations).
    • Summarize: All nations will gather to fight against Jerusalem. The battle will be terrible, but the Lord will step in to fight for His people and His city.
  2. Christ’s Return to Earth.
    • Direct the class’ attention to item 2 on the lesson outline.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Zechariah 14:4.
    • Tell the class at this climactic point in the battle the Lord Jesus Christ will return to earth and “touch down” on the Mount of Olives, just across the Kidron Valley east of Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. That is the very spot from which He left the earth.
    • Ask: “What will happen to the Mount of Olives?” (it will split in two and the two halves will separate, creating a great valley).
    • Read Zechariah 14:5-8.
    • Explain that the surviving Jews will flee to this valley, where they will join the Lord Jesus Christ and the saints of God (the saved people of all ages who return to earth with Christ – see Rev. 19:14).
    • Tell the students verses 6-8 describe great changes that will occur.
    • Ask: “What are those changes?” (the world will be filled with the Lord’s light and living waters will flow from Jerusalem toward the east and the west).
    • Summarize: Jesus Christ will physically and visibly return to earth. Great physical changes to the land will take place.
  3. Christ’s Kingdom Established.
    • Direct the class’ attention to item 3 on the lesson outline.
    • Read Zechariah 14:9-11.
    • Ask: “Who will be king over all the earth?” (the Lord Jesus Christ).
    • Ask: “Will there be any other so-called ‘gods’ or other religions in Christ’s Kingdom?” (absolutely not).
    • Explain that the land around Jerusalem will be changed into a great plain, which will be lifted higher than the surrounding country.
    • Ask everyone to look at the last phrase of verse 11.
    • Ask: “What does it say about Jerusalem?” (it will be safely inhabited).
    • Tell the students that Jerusalem today is often plagued with violence and terror attacks, but in Christ’s Kingdom there will be unrest, no security checkpoints, and no suicide bombers!
    • Summarize: Jesus Christ will establish His Millennial Kingdom over all the earth. Jerusalem will be exalted and safely inhabited.
  4. Fate of Those who Fought against Jerusalem.
    • Direct the class’ attention to item 4 on the lesson outline.
    • Tell the class the next few verses tell us more about the battle for Jerusalem.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Zechariah 14:12-15.
    • Ask: “What does verse 12 say will happen to the attackers?” (their flesh, eyes, and tongues will literally melt away).
    • Explain the following:
      • God will also send great confusion among the attackers’ army, so that they will accidentally kill one another (verse 13).
      • The same things will happen to the animals, equipment, and camps of the attackers (verse 15).
      • Afterward, the Jews will gather up a great spoil of gold, silver, and clothing from their dead enemies (verse 14).
    • Summarize: King Jesus will utterly eradicate Jerusalem’s enemies, leaving all the spoils for His people.
  5. Regular Worship in the Kingdom.
    • Direct the class’ attention to item 5 on the lesson outline.
    • Read Zechariah 14:16.
    • Ask: “Who will come up to worship the Lord Jesus every year at Jerusalem?” (everyone in the nations that previously fought against Jerusalem).
    • Explain the following:
      • At the beginning of Christ’s Millennial Kingdom there will not be any lost people left on earth.
      • The world’s population will be only a fraction of its current size.
      • Everyone on earth will come to Jerusalem every year to worship King Jesus.
      • During the ensuing 1,000 years, however, new generations will be born to repopulate the earth.
      • Some of those younger people will not accept Jesus Christ as their Savior.
    • Read Zechariah 14:17-19.
    • Ask: “What will happen to any nations that do not come to Jerusalem to worship Jesus Christ?” (their land will receive no rain and they will suffer from a plague).
    • Tell the class verses 18-19 reveal that Egypt will be one of those rebellious nations.
    • Summarize: Those who formerly were Christ’s enemies will be required to go up to Jerusalem each year to worship King Jesus. If they do not, their land will receive no rain.
  6. Everything will be Devoted to the Lord.
    • Direct the class’ attention to item 6 on the lesson outline.
    • Ask a volunteer to read Zechariah 14:20-21.
    • Ask: “What will be written on the bells that decorate the horses’ bridles?” (“HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD”).
    • Tell the students this is the same thing that was inscribed upon the plate of pure gold the high priest wore upon his forehead (Ex. 28:36).
    • Tell them verse 21 says every pot in Jerusalem and Judah will be sanctified and set apart for God’s glory.
    • Stress that even the most ordinary and mundane items in Christ’s Kingdom will be completely holy, dedicated, and devoted to the Lord Jesus.
    • Ask: “Who will no longer be present in the house of the Lord of hosts?” (Canaanites – non-Jewish idol worshipers).
    • Summarize: Everything in Christ’s Kingdom will be devoted to the Lord. No foreign idol worshipers will be present.

 

PERSONAL APPLICATION: Tell the students they have discovered some important biblical facts about the future Kingdom of Jesus Christ. The Kingdom will be marked by Christ’s light, living water, peace, safety, and worship. That is what we are praying for when we pray, “Thy kingdom come.” This study should give us a new perspective on that seemingly simple request in the Lord’s Prayer.

Ask: “How should we respond to the truths we have learned in this lesson?” After some responses, tell the class there are at least two appropriate responses:

  1. Those who are saved should respond with gratitude for Christ’s gift of salvation that guarantees them citizenship in His future Kingdom.
  2. Those who are unsaved should accept Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord so they can be citizens of that Kingdom.

The sad truth is that those who refuse to trust Christ for salvation are doomed to spend eternity in the torment of hell.

Ask everyone to bow their head and close their eyes. Encourage them to personally respond with either (1) thanksgiving or (2) repentance and faith. Voice a closing prayer.

 

CONCLUSION: Ask everyone to memorize Zechariah 14:9. Encourage them to remember that when things look bad here and now, Christians can look forward to the future Kingdom awaiting them. Tell the students to look for opportunities to tell others what the prayer, “Thy Kingdom come” really means. Next week we begin a study of the book of Malachi. Ask everyone to follow the Daily Bible Reading Guide found in his or her Sunday School Member Quarterly.

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