Is Jesus in the Old Testament?

Part 1: In the Beginning... Jesus
Part 2: Jesus in Genesis
Part 3: Jesus in Judges
Part 4: Jesus in Zechariah
Part 5: Jesus in Jerusalem
Part 6: Jesus and Satan

Perhaps my favorite passage in the Old Testament involves the Godhead, man, and Satan all wrapped into one dramatic scenario in the book of Zechariah, one of the 12 minor prophets.

Zechariah 1
“Upon the four and twentieth day of the eleventh month, which is the month Sebat, in the second year of Darius, came the word of the Lord unto Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo the prophet, saying,
8 I saw by night, and behold a man riding upon a red horse, and he stood among the myrtle trees that were in the bottom; and behind him were there red horses, speckled, and white.
9 Then said I, O my lord, what are these? And the angel that talked with me said unto me, I will shew thee what these be.
10 And the man that stood among the myrtle trees answered and said, These are they whom the Lord hath sent to walk to and fro through the earth.
11 And they answered the angel of the Lord that stood among the myrtle trees, and said, We have walked to and fro through the earth, and, behold, all the earth sitteth still, and is at rest.
12 Then the angel of the Lord answered and said, O Lord of hosts, how long wilt thou not have mercy on Jerusalem and on the cities of Judah, against which thou hast had indignation these threescore and ten years?
13 And the Lord answered the angel that talked with me with good words and comfortable words.”

The image here takes place at night with reconnaissance scouts on horseback standing in a valley amongst the myrtle trees. Zechariah is with them speaking to the “Angel” of God. The myrtle trees represent righteousness and in this case Israel. The scene takes place after the 70 years of exile in Babylon and nothing is being done to restore Jerusalem. The “Angel” Zechariah is speaking to is in fact Jesus prior to His becoming flesh. He asks Jesus who these angels are on horseback; Jesus tells Zechariah that they have been sent out to report on that state of the earth and in particular Israel. At this time the angels report to their Creator that the earth “sitteth still, and is at rest”. –This is not a good thing because the earth is to be re-establishing Israel in Jerusalem but is doing the opposite, hindering the progress of God’s people. Jesus then looks to heaven, to the Father, and asks how long God will withhold mercy on Jerusalem of which has been exiled in Babylon for 70 years. God replies to Jesus as we would expect, with “good words and comfortable words”. We see the love of God toward His Son Jesus Christ even before the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

“So the angel that communed with me said unto me, Cry thou, saying, Thus saith the Lord of hosts; I am jealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great jealousy.
15 And I am very sore displeased with the heathen that are at ease: for I was but a little displeased, and they helped forward the affliction.
16 Therefore thus saith the Lord; I am returned to Jerusalem with mercies: my house shall be built in it, saith the Lord of hosts, and a line shall be stretched forth upon Jerusalem.
17 Cry yet, saying, Thus saith the Lord of hosts; My cities through prosperity shall yet be spread abroad; and the Lord shall yet comfort Zion, and shall yet choose Jerusalem.”

Jesus shares the words of the Father with Zechariah that God is angry with the heathen that prevent the progress of Israel and that God will bring prosperity to His people and uphold Jerusalem. This is a great reassurance to the prophet when nothing seems to be going right in the world, but God keeps His promises. And keep them He will.

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