Zechariah 9

God speaks against Israel's enemies

1 The Lord speaks against the land of Hadrach, and against the city of Damascus.

The Lord watches all men and all the groups of people in Israel.

2 The Lord speaks against the country called Hamath. (It is next to the country called Hadrach.) The people in Tyre and Sidon cities are very wise. But the Lord also speaks against them.

3 Tyre's people have built strong walls to keep enemies out.

They have swept up rich metals like dirt.

They have swept up gold like dirt in the streets.

4 The Lord will take away all the things that Tyre's people have.

And he will remove their ships from the sea.

Fire will burn every part of the city.

5 The people in Ashkelon city will see it and they will be afraid.

The people in Gaza city will see it and they will be afraid.

The things that the people in Ekron city hope for will not happen.

The king of Gaza will die

and there will be no people in Ashkelon any longer.

6 Foreign people will live in Ashdod city.

I will show the Philistines that they are not clever. They are not as clever as they believe.

7 I will take the blood from their mouths.

I will take the food from their teeth, because it is bad food.

Those that remain will still be my people.

They will become leaders in Judah.

Ekron will be like a part of Judah, as the Jebusites were.

8 Then I will keep my house safe against my enemies.

No army will ever again beat my people,

because I am watching them.

The king of Zion comes

9 Sing loudly, people in Zion.

Shout, people in Jerusalem.

Look! Your king comes to you.

He will save you because he does everything well.

But he is quiet and he is riding on a donkey.

He will ride on a young animal. Its mother is a donkey.

10 I will take away the chariots from Ephraim,

9:10Ephraim was the name that people used for the Northern Kingdom of Israel.

and the horses of war from Jerusalem.

The bows of war will be broken.

He will speak to all the countries and wars will finish.

He will rule from sea to sea. He will rule from the river Euphrates to the ends of the earth.

11 But I made a promise to you. I made that promise true with blood. I will free your people that are in a prison, in deep dark holes without water.

12 All you people who hoped to see your own country again, return to Jerusalem.

I tell you this now: I will give back to you twice as much as you have lost.

13 I will use Judah and Israel to attack my enemies.

I will use you, men from Zion, to attack the men from Greece.

I will make you like the long metal knife of a soldier.

The Lord will appear

14 Then the Lord will appear above his people.

His arrows will be as fast as lightning in the sky.

The Lord God will make a loud sound with a trumpet.

He will march in a storm from the south to attack.

15 And the Lord Almighty will help his people.

They will throw great stones at their enemies.

When they go to war, they will shout loudly,

like men who have drunk too much wine.

They will be as full of joy as the priest's bowl is full of blood,

when he pours it on the altar.

16 On that day, the Lord will save them.

They are his people.

They will shine in his country

like beautiful stones that shine in a crown.

17 The people will be beautiful and good.

The young people will become strong

when they eat good bread.

The young women will become strong

when they drink new wine.