The burden of the word of the Lord in the land of Hadrach, and Damascus shall be the rest thereof: when the eyes of man, as of all the tribes of Israel, shall be toward the Lord. And Hamath also shall border thereby; Tyrus, and Zidon, though it be very wise. And Tyrus did build herself a strong hold, and heaped up silver as the dust, and fine gold as the mire of the streets. Behold, the Lord will cast her out, and he will smite her power in the sea; and she shall be devoured with fire. Ashkelon shall see it, and fear; Gaza also shall see it, and be very sorrowful, and Ekron; for her expectation shall be ashamed; and the king shall perish from Gaza, and Ashkelon shall not be inhabited And a bastard shall dwell in Ashdod, and I will cut off the pride of the Philistines. And I will take away his blood out of his mouth, and his abominations from between his teeth: but he that remaineth, even he, shall be for our God, and he shall be as a governor in Judah, and Ekron as a Jebusite (Zechariah 9:1-7)
We now come into the last two sections of the prophecy of Zechariah. chapters 9-11 form a whole and cover the destruction of the Gentile powers which have scattered and oppressed Israel and Judah, as well as the first coming of the King Messiah in lowliness and bringing salvation. The last section chapters 12-14, concern the vision of Israel’s fail trial, conflict and deliverance at the second coming of Messiah.
Zechariah 9 is a remarkable pre-telling of a historical event which would occur two centuries later, in the invasion of the Holy Land by Alexander the great. After all, what is prophecy but the foretelling of History.
Nearly two centuries after Zechariah prophesied, Alexander came into Syria, via Hadrach, a city near Damascus, in 323 bc, he then took Damascus and set up his headquarters there,, (Damascus shall be the rest thereof…). From there he followed the prophesied route precisely as Zechariah envisioned it, taking the cities of Tyre and Sidon,, then proceeding south into the Holy Land, destroying Gaza and Ashkelon, vassals of Tyre, and destroying Ashdod, former cities of the Philistines.
While He was besieging Tyre, Alexander sent a letter to the Jewish High Priest demanding supplies and even auxiliary troops to aid him in the siege. Josephus tells us that the High Priest refused, citing his treaty obligation to Darius the Persian King, as the reason for his refusal. Alexander was livid and vowed to come to Jerusalem and make all men know that He would be the only Sovereign that men should keep oaths to.
He also had already arranged a treacherous alliance with Sanballat of the Arabs and a large group of Samarians and apostate Jews, allowing them to build a rival temple in JIsrael, and preparing them to join him in the destruction of Jerusalem.
But according to an account by Josephus, when the time came that Alexander had finished his sieges of Tyre and of Gaza and had conquered Ashdod, he turned to Jerusalemwith all of his fifth column of Arabs, Samarians and apostate turn coats.
In the meantime the High Priest of Israel, Jaddus, also had a dream, commanding him to set out the entire priesthood in Holy Array and to go out to meet Alexander, leaving the city open,
[11.326] and Jaddus the high-priest, when he heard that, was in an agony, and under terror, as not knowing how he should meet the Macedonians, since the king was displeased at his foregoing disobedience. He therefore ordained that the people should make supplications, and should join with him in offering sacrifice to God, whom he besought to protect that nation, and to deliver them from the perils that were coming upon them;
[11.327] whereupon God warned him in a dream, which came upon him after he had offered sacrifice, that he should take courage, and adorn the city, and open the gates; that the rest should appear in white garments, but that he and the priests should meet the king in the habits proper to their order, without the dread of any ill consequences, which the providence of God would prevent.
[11.328] Upon which, when he rose from his sleep, he greatly rejoiced, and declared to all the warning he had received from God. According to which dream he acted entirely, and so waited for the coming of the king.
[11.329] And when Jaddus understood that Alexander was not far from the city, he went out in procession, with the priests and the multitude of the citizens. The procession was venerable, and the manner of it different from that of other nations. It reached to a place called Sapha, which name, translated into Greek, signifies a prospect, for you have thence a prospect both of Jerusalem and of the temple.
[11.330] And when the Phoenicians and the Samarians that followed him thought they should have liberty to plunder the city, and torment the high-priest to death, which the king’s displeasure fairly promised them, the very reverse of it happened;
[11.331] for Alexander, when he saw the multitude at a distance, in white garments, while the priests stood clothed with fine linen, and the high-priest in purple and scarlet clothing, with his mitre on his head, having the golden plate whereon the name of God was engraved, he approached by himself, and adored that name, and first saluted the high-priest.(Josephus, Wars of the Jews)
The fifth columnists were almost drooling to commence the betrayal and slaughter of the Jews, but were instead amazed to see Alexander dismount and approach the High Priest, kissing his hand and bowing in worship, when he saw the Priestly procession….
[11.332] The Jews also did all together, with one voice, salute Alexander, and encompass him about; whereupon the kings of Syria and the rest were surprised at what Alexander had done, and supposed him disordered in his mind.
[11.333] However, Parmenion alone went up to him, and asked him how it came to pass that, when all others adored him, he should adore the high-priest of the Jews? To whom he replied, “I did not adore him, but that God who has honored him with his highpriesthood;
[11.334] for I saw this very person in a dream, in this very habit, when I was at Dion in Macedonia, who, when I was considering with myself how I might obtain the dominion of Asia, exhorted me to make no delay, but boldly to pass over the sea thither, for that he would conduct my army, and would give me the dominion over the Persians;
[11.335] whence it is that, having seen no other in that habit, and now seeing this person in it, and remembering that vision, and the exhortation which I had in my dream, I believe that I bring this army under the Divine conduct, and shall therewith conquer Darius, and destroy the power of the Persians, and that all things will succeed according to what is in my own mind.”
[11.336] And when he had said this to Parmenion, and had given the high-priest his right hand, the priests ran along by him, and he came into the city. And when he went up into the temple, he offered sacrifice to God, according to the high-priest’s direction, and magnificently treated both the high-priest and the priests.
[11.337] And when the Book of Daniel was showed him wherein Daniel declared that one of the Greeks should destroy the empire of the Persians, he supposed that himself was the person intended.note And as he was then glad, he dismissed the multitude for the present.
But the next day he called them to him, and bid them ask what favors they pleased of him;(Flavius Josephus…)
The High Priest presented to Alexander the Great, the book of Daniel, showing him the prophecies which detailed him, as Isaiah’s book was once shown to Cyrus, another pagan conqueror, predicted of, and used by God.
Zechariah predicted this two centuries before it occurred, and it happened exactly as the prophet said it would, although this prophecy is a multiple fulfillment prophecy.
And I will encamp about mine house because of the army, because of him that passeth by, and because of him that returneth: and no oppressor shall pass through them any more: for now have I seen with mine eyes.(Zechariah 9:8)
We are coming again to a time when Israel is threatened by all of her neighbors, particularly with events once again in Damascus, and the area around, as well as Southern Lebanon,(Tyre and Sidon) ,Hezbullah, and her vassal state, Palestinian Gaza, raining missiles on the Holy land, and once again, “The eyes of all are directed to the God of Prophecy…”.
Soon we will behold the emergence of a new “Alexander the Great:, an AntiChrist figure shall arise and have dealings with the Holy land, this prophecy is timeless and as relevant as ever.
Once again God will save Israel by His mighty power for all of the world to see and to believe or perish! Maranatha!