1 Behold, the day of the LORD comes, and your spoil shall be divided in the midst of you. 2 For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken, the houses rifled, and the women ravished. Half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. 3 Then the LORD will go forth and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle. 4 And his feet will stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst of it toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley. Half of the mountain shall remove toward the north and half of it toward the south. 5 And you shall flee to the valley of the mountains, for the valley of the mountains shall reach to Azal. Indeed, you shall flee as you fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah. And the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with you.
6 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark. 7 But it shall be one day which is known to the LORD, neither day, nor night, but it shall come to pass, that at evening it shall be light.
8 And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem: half of them toward the former sea and half of them toward the hinder sea. In summer and in winter it shall be.
9 And the LORD will be king over all the earth. In that day there will be one LORD, and his name one.
10 All the land shall be turned into a plain from Geba to Rimmon, south of Jerusalem. And it shall be lifted up and inhabited in her place, from Benjamin's gate to the place of the first gate, to the corner gate, and from the tower of Hananeel to the king's wine-presses. 11 And men shall dwell in it, and there shall no longer be utter destruction. And Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
12 And this shall be the plague with which the LORD will smite all the people who have fought against Jerusalem: their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth. 13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them, and they shall each lay hold upon the hand of his neighbor, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbor. 14 And Judah shall also fight at Jerusalem. The wealth of all the heathen around shall be collected: gold, silver, and apparel in great abundance. 15 And so the plague of the horse, of the mule, of the camel, of the donkey, and of all the beasts that will be in these tents, shall be as this plague.
16 And it shall come to pass, that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. 17 And it shall be, that whoever will not come up of all the families of the earth to Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, there shall be no rain upon them. 18 And if the family of Egypt shall not go up and shall not come, they shall have no rain. There the plague shall be, with which the LORD will smite the heathen who do not come up to keep the feast of tabernacles. 19 This shall be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all nations that do not come up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
20 In that day there shall be upon the bells of the horses, "HOLINESS TO THE LORD," and the pots in the LORD'S house shall be like the bowls before the altar. 21 Even every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness to the LORD of hosts. And all those who sacrifice shall come and take of them and seethe in them. And in that day the Canaanite shall no longer be in the house of the LORD of hosts.
John Gill's Chapter Summary
This chapter treats of the coming of Christ with all his saints, and his personal appearance among them; and of the signs of the times before that; and of what shall befall the enemies of the church, both open and secret; and of the happy state and condition of the church itself. First there will be a time of great affliction to the people of God (verses 1-2), when the Lord will appear and fight for them, and will appear to them, and with them (verses 3-5); but before this time it will be an uncommon season, neither day nor night; at the close of which, light will break forth (verses 6-7); the Gospel will be spread far and near, attended with the Spirit and grace of God in great plenty (verse 8); which will bring on the spiritual reign of Christ over all the earth (verse 9); particularly the land of Judea, and the city of Jerusalem, shall be inhabited by men with safety (verses 10-11); and all those who oppose and fight against the Lord's people shall be destroyed, partly by an immediate plague from the Lord upon them, and partly by the hands of one another, and also by the saints of the most High; and the plague shall not only be upon their persons, but upon their cattle likewise (verses 12-16); and as for those who profess the Christian name, and yet neglect or refuse to worship the Lord in a spiritual and evangelical manner, there shall be no rain upon them (verses 17-19); and as for the church and people of God, there shall be universal holiness among them, and not a single Canaanite to be found in the midst of them (verses 20-21).
[v.5] - "and all the saints with you" - From the Pulpit Commentary: "[Many] versions have, "with him," and thus many Hebrew manuscripts. But such abrupt changes of persons are not uncommon [in Hebrew]."
[v.6] - "that the light shall not be clear, nor dark" - An alternate translation of this is, "that there shall not be light; the bright ones shall withdraw themselves" (ASV). That is, the heavenly bodies will withdraw their light (Pulpit Commentary).
John Calvin's Prayer for Verses 1-7:
Grant, Almighty God, that since you have deigned to separate us to be your peculiar treasure, and lead us daily under your banner, and invite us so kindly and gently by the voice of your gospel,— O grant, that we may not reject so great a kindness, nor render ourselves unworthy of our holy calling; and whatever evils must be borne by us, may we sustain them with resigned minds, until having at length finished the contests by which you would now exercise and prove our faith, we shall be received into that blessed rest, which is laid up for us in heaven, and has been purchased for us by the blood of your only-begotten Son. Amen.
John Calvin's Prayer for Verses 8-10:
Grant, Almighty God, that as you gather us for this end, that we may be to you a peculiar people, and as you have separated us from profane men, that your legitimate worship may prevail among us,— O grant, that we may all attend to your word, and surrender ourselves wholly to you, and never turn aside either to the right hand or to the left, but continue to observe the rule which you have prescribed, so that we may know by the continual flowing of your favor that you rule in the midst of us; and may we by this enjoyment be stimulated more and more to love, worship, and fear you, so that consecrating ourselves, body and soul, truly and from the heart, to you, we may make continual advances in true religion, until having at length put off all the filth of our flesh we shall come to that blessed inheritance, which has been purchased for us by the blood of your only-begotten Son. Amen.
John Calvin's Prayer for Verses 11-16:
Grant, Almighty God, that as you see that your Church at this day is miserably torn by many discords, and that there are so many traitorous ministers of Satan, who cease not to disturb it,— O grant, that we may find by experience what you have promised by your Prophet, even that you will be the perpetual guardian of those whom you have been pleased once to choose as your own, and whom you have received into your own embrace, so that they may courageously proceed amidst all discords, and come forth at length as conquerors: and may it please you also to put forth your hand, and to execute that vengeance which you have denounced by the same Prophet, so as to destroy and reduce to nothing not only those who openly oppose you and your servants and children, but also those serpents, who by intrigues and frauds and by other base means, harass and torment your Church, until we shall at length attain a full victory and triumph in your celestial kingdom, together with our head, even Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.
John Calvin's Prayer for Verses 17-21:
Grant, Almighty God, that as you have deigned to choose us as your peculiar treasure, and to consecrate us to yourself in the person of your only-begotten Son,— O grant, that we may so follow holiness through the whole course of our life, that your glory may shine forth in all our works: and may we never undertake anything except for this end—that your name may be more and more glorified, and may we be holy both in body and soul, and free from all the pollutions of the flesh and of the world, that we may be thus confirmed in the hope of our calling, and be encouraged to proceed during the remainder of our course, until we shall at length reach that glory which has been procured for us by the blood of your only-begotten Son. Amen.