Movement of Peoples in the End Times
Brit-Am Biblical Commentary (BABCOM) to the Book of Zechariah
Zechariah (NKJV) 9:
1 The burden of the word of the LORD
Against the Land of Hadrach,
And Damascus its resting place
(For the eyes of men
And all the Tribes of Israel
Are on the LORD);
"The Land of Hadrach and Damascus" did not inlcude the area of Syria of Syria known in our time as 'Damascus" but a region further to its north.
# Luhuti, Lukhuti or Lu'ash [i.e. Liash], was an Iron Age Syro-Hittite Aramean region during the early 1st millennium BC located in northern Syria, in an area that used to be called Nuhasse. #
# The city "Hazrak" is mentioned in an inscription of Zakir, king of Hamath and Lukat (L s; c. 780 b.c.e.), who captured the city and resisted its invasion by a coalition of kings from northern Syria and southern Anatolia.#
2 Also against Hamath, which borders on it,
And against Tyre and Sidon, though they are very wise.
3 For Tyre built herself a tower,
Heaped up silver like the dust,
And gold like the mire of the streets.
4 Behold, the LORD will cast her out;
He will destroy her power in the sea,
And she will be devoured by fire.
Hadrach appears to be close to Luash otherwise known as Dan. This was originally an enclave of the Tribe of Dan.
The Bible says that Danites from the south went northward and conquered two places that they renamed "Dan." One had originally been called Leshem (Joshua 19). this was in the north Galilee on the site of Tell Dan; the other locale had previously been named Laish (Judges chapter 18). It is often mistakenly assumed that Laish and Leshem were different names for the same city but we have shown that they were totally different areas.
Dan and the Serpent Way.
So too, there were two places referred to in the Bible as "Damascus." One was where the modern city of Damascus is located. The other was in the region of Gozan. This encompasses both sides of the Khabur (Chabor) River. This is in northern Syria and is the largest perennial tributary to the Euphrates River.
The SEFORNO [see RABBIS QUOTED] says that the eye of all humanity in the Messianic Era will look in hope for Divine Salvation. They will cease to worship idols. [See the Hebrew-language commentary Otsar Ha-Torah https://www.otzar.org.il
The areas of Hamath and Tyre and Sidon will all be included in the future borders of Greater Israel. Before that however Tyre will be destroyed. The previous inhabitants of Tyre will be exiled. This could refer to the non-Israelite inhabitants of Lebanon BUT it sounds as if it represents a more formidable entity, perhaps Western Germany? Tyre and Sidon were Phoenician-Canaanite cities. Canaanites settled in parts of Western Germany and helped give rise to the Hanseatic League of Medieval times. Palace-Names recalling Phoenician cities are found in the ara, for example CAUDINGE ON THE SITE OF HAMBURG which is to be seen on the Map based on Ptolemy of Scandinavia as interpreted by Marcus-Beneventanus (1460-1533). "Caudinge" is a dialectical variation of Sidon (see "Identifying Sidon")!
5 Ashkelon shall see it and fear;
Gaza also shall be very sorrowful;
And Ekron, for He dried up her expectation.
The king shall perish from Gaza,
And Ashkelon shall not be inhabited.
6 A mixed race shall settle in Ashdod,
And I will cut off the pride of the Philistines.
A mixed race. Hebrew "mamzer" This word is usually used to denote the illegitimate offspring of a married woman or the product of incest (Deuteronomy 23:3). The Commentators however in this case opine that it simply means someone who is foreign, or who came from elsewhere, or a general mixture of alien peoples.
7 I will take away the blood from his mouth,
And the abominations from between his teeth.
But he who remains, even he shall be for our God,
And shall be like a leader in Judah,
And Ekron like a Jebusite.
This is referring to the Phillistines mentioned above (9:6). The Palestinians are named after a Latin pronounciation of the name Philistine. It may be that a minority of Palestinians will be allowed to remain. These will abjure violence. Their violent nature will be changed. They shall recognize the God of Israel and convert. They shall become part of Judah. Another opinion says that the word used here that is translated as "leader" in Hebrew is "Aloof" which elsewhere connotes an element from Edom. RASHI interprets this whole passage as not applying to the "Philistines" but rather to Edom a portion of which, say some sources, will repent in the End Times. This could refer to elements from Europe. Abarbanel points out that the term "aloof" also means an ox (bull) that is put to work (2-Samuel 5:8, 1-Chronicles 11:6) and that is the meaning here.
One of my favorite quotations is: "Where no oxen [Hebrew: "Alufim"] are, the trough is clean;
But much increase comes by the strength of an ox" (Proverbs 14:4). in other words "a lot of work and activity may mean less spruce surroundings!"
The status of those Palestinians who remain may be similar to that of the Jebusites in Biblical Times. These were Canaanites who had dwelt in Jerusalem before it was conquered (Joshua 16:63). They became part of Israel but they had their own individual station and probably did not intermarry with the Hebrews. Daat Mikra says they were put to work and had a similar status to the Gibeonites (Joshua 9:19-21).
8 I will camp around My house
Because of the army,
Because of him who passes by and him who returns.
No more shall an oppressor pass through them,
For now I have seen with My eyes.
The Almighty will dwell in the Temple which shall be rebuilt.
9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your King is coming to you;
He is just and having salvation,
Lowly and riding on a donkey,
A colt, the foal of a donkey.
This is referring to the future Messiah son of David. The word translated here as "lowly" in Hebrew is "ani" which usually means "poor" but here connotes "humble," from the root "ANV" (RADAK).
10 I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim
And the horse from Jerusalem;
The battle bow shall be cut off.
He shall speak peace to the nations;
His dominion shall be from sea to sea,
And from the River to the ends of the earth.
The reign of the Messiah in the End Times will be a regime of Universal Peace. The Messiah will have control over all the earth BUT the center of his rule will be in the Holy Land stretching from the Indian Ocean to the Mediterranean and from the Euphrates River. Another sources indicates that the intention is to the Atlantic Ocean area.
11 As for you also,
Because of the blood of your covenant,
I will set your prisoners free from the waterless pit.
12 Return to the stronghold,
You prisoners of hope.
Even today I declare
That I will restore double to you.
The Jews will have kept the Covenant of Circumcision. It may be that before the Final Exile many of them will have been taken into yet another captivity. These too shall be released.
13 For I have bent Judah, My bow,
Fitted the bow with Ephraim,
And raised up your sons, O Zion,
Against your sons, O Greece,
And made you like the sword of a mighty man.
Ephraim. Metsudat David Commentary: "The Ten Tribes are referred to as Ephraim."
The way of Prophecy is at times to flit around from one subject to another not necessarily in Chronological Order. At all events, at some stage either just before the coming of the Messiah or after it the forces of Ephraim (i.e. the Ten Tribes, especially the English-speaking ones) will join forces with Judah. They shall war against the forces of "Greece," in Hebrew "Yavan." This could be anyone of a variety of candidtates. In Ancient Times the western area of Anatolia (mainland Turkey) was populated by a Greek-speaking people known as Ionia which is another way of pronouncing "Yavan." The Turks emerged from central Asia and conquered the area imposing their culture and language ont he inhabitants. About 80% of the population of what is now Turkey deswcedn from peoples who were there before the Turks arrived. This includes Ionians the descendants of whom now occupy the most important areas of Turkey.
Another possibility it that it could mean Ukrainians and Russians, etc., who were referred to in Jewish Chronicles of the 1500s and 1600s as "Yavanim" due perhaps to them belonging to the Greek Orthodox Church.
14 Then the LORD will be seen over them,
And His arrow will go forth like lightning.
The LORD God will blow the trumpet [shofar],
And go with whirlwinds from the south.
15 The LORD of hosts will defend them;
They shall devour and subdue with slingstones.
They shall drink and roar as if with wine;
They shall be filled with blood like basins,
Like the corners of the altar.
In the Temple in Jerusalem 100s, maybe thousands, of animals were sacrificed daily. Some sacrifices were eaten mainly by the people who offered them up and their families. Other sacrifices went to the Cohens (Priests), while still others were burnt up altogether. This resulted in an enormous amount of blood sometimes pouring like a river through the Temple Precincts.The logistics of dealing with all this are described in detail in a section of the Mishnah which is part of the Oral Tradition incorporated into the Talmud. All this blood helped atone for the sins of Judah and Israel and moderated the forces of violence and adversity.
16 The LORD their God will save them in that day,
As the flock of His people.
For they shall be like the jewels of a crown,
Lifted like a banner over His land
17 For how great is its goodness
And how great its beauty!
Grain shall make the young men thrive,
And new wine the young women.
It will be all good. People will be healthier than they now are. Food will be more nutritious. We will all regain the natural joy of life and living.
There will also be a Resurrection of the Dead. How and when this will come about is not clear.