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The Complete Jewish Bible with Rashi Commentary

Zechariah - Chapter 1

Zechariah - Chapter 1

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Chapter 1

1In the eighth month in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah son of Berechiah, son of Iddo the prophet, saying:   א בַּחֹדֶשׁ הַשְּׁמִינִי בִּשְׁנַת שְׁתַּיִם לְדָרְיָוֶשׁ הָיָה דְבַר יְהֹוָה אֶל זְכַרְיָה בֶּן בֶּרֶכְיָה בֶּן עִדּוֹ הַנָּבִיא לֵאמֹר:
The prophecy: of Zechariah is extremely enigmatic, because it contains visions resembling a dream that requires an interpretation. We cannot ascertain the truth of its interpretation until the teacher of righteousness comes. Nonetheless, I will put my heart to reconciling the verses, one by one, according to the interpretations that resemble it and following the interpretation of Jonathan .  
In the eighth month: Before they commenced resuming the work of the construction, for they commenced it on the twenty-fourth day of the [ninth] month.  
2The Lord was wroth with your fathers, for they provoked Him.   בקָצַף יְהֹוָה עַל אֲבוֹתֵיכֶם קָצֶף:
with your fathers: who were in the generation of the destruction of the Temple.  
3And you shall say to them: So said the Lord of Hosts, Return to Me, said the Lord of Hosts, and I will return to you, said the Lord of Hosts.   גוְאָמַרְתָּ אֲלֵהֶם כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת שׁוּבוּ אֵלַי נְאֻם יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת וְאָשׁוּב אֲלֵיכֶם אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת:
4Be not like your fathers, to whom the early prophets called, saying: So said the Lord of Hosts: Return now from your evil ways and your evil deeds. But they neither obeyed nor hearkened to Me, said the Lord.   דאַל תִּהְיוּ כַאֲבֹתֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר קָרְאוּ אֲלֵיהֶם הַנְּבִיאִים הָרִאשֹׁנִים לֵאמֹר כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת שׁוּבוּ נָא מִדַּרְכֵיכֶם הָרָעִים וּמַעַלְלֵיכֶם (כתיב וּמַעַלְילֵיכֶם) הָרָעִים וְלֹא שָׁמְעוּ וְלֹא הִקְשִׁיבוּ אֵלַי נְאֻם יְהֹוָה:
5[As for] your fathers-where are they? But the prophets-do they live forever?   האֲבוֹתֵיכֶם אַיֵּה הֵם וְהַנְּבִאִים הַלְעוֹלָם יִחְיוּ:
[As for] your fathers - where are they?: See that they suffered an evil blow, with famine, with the sword, and with pestilence.  
But the prophets - do they live forever?: And if you ask, “the prophets, too where are they? Have they not died?” I [God] will answer you, “Should the prophets have lived forever?” But their end proves that their words were true; for all My words, and the declarations of the decrees of My retribution that I commanded My servants, the prophets, concerning you - did they not overtake your fathers?  
6But My words and My decrees that I commanded My servants, the prophets-did they not overtake your fathers? And they returned and said: "As the Lord of Hosts planned to do to us, according to our ways and according to our deeds, so He did to us."   ואַךְ | דְּבָרַי וְחֻקַּי אֲשֶׁר צִוִּיתִי אֶת עֲבָדַי הַנְּבִיאִים הֲלוֹא הִשִּׂיגוּ אֲבֹתֵיכֶם וַיָּשׁוּבוּ וַיֹּאמְרוּ כַּאֲשֶׁר זָמַם יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת לַעֲשׂוֹת לָנוּ כִּדְרָכֵינוּ וּכְמַעֲלָלֵינוּ כֵּן עָשָׂה אִתָּנוּ:
7On the twenty-fourth day of the eleventh month-that is, the month of Shevat-in the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came to Zechariah the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo the prophet, saying:   זבְּיוֹם עֶשְׂרִים וְאַרְבָּעָה לְעַשְׁתֵּי עָשָׂר חֹדֶשׁ הוּא חֹדֶשׁ שְׁבָט בִּשְׁנַת שְׁתַּיִם לְדָרְיָוֶשׁ הָיָה דְבַר יְהֹוָה אֶל זְכַרְיָה בֶּן בֶּרֶכְיָהוּ בֶּן עִדּוֹא הַנָּבִיא לֵאמֹר:
8I saw tonight, and behold! A man was riding on a red horse, and he was standing among the myrtles that were in the pool, and after him were red, black, and white horses.   חרָאִיתִי | הַלַּיְלָה וְהִנֵּה אִישׁ רֹכֵב עַל סוּס אָדֹם וְהוּא עֹמֵד בֵּין הַהֲדַסִּים אֲשֶׁר בַּמְּצֻלָה וְאַחֲרָיו סוּסִים אֲדֻמִּים שְׂרֻקִּים וּלְבָנִים:
I saw tonight: Our Sages explained [this phrase as] they explained [it] in the Aggadah of the chapter entitled “ Helek ” (Sanh. 93a), but the sequence of the chapter and the language do not fit it.  
and behold! A man: an angel.  
on a red horse: This is an allusion that He would exact retribution upon the Chaldeans, Media, and Persia with the sword and with blood, as He says (verse 15 below): “And I was very wroth with the nations.”  
and after him were red, etc., horses: prepared for the mission of the Omnipresent. That there were among them [horses of] many sorts of colors was a [means of] praise for him.  
black: do not know what color this is. Jonathan rendered קְוָחִין.  
among the myrtles that were in the pool: Among the myrtle trees of Babylon.  
9And I said, "What are these, my lord?" and the angel who was speaking to me said to me, "I will show you what these are."   טוָאֹמַר מָה אֵלֶּה אֲדֹנִי וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי הַמַּלְאָךְ הַדֹּבֵר בִּי אֲנִי אַרְאֶךָּ מָה הֵמָּה אֵלֶּה:
And I said: to one angel who showed me all this.  
“What are these, my lord?”: He was the one riding on the red horse.  
10And the man standing among the myrtles replied and said, "These are the ones whom the Lord has sent to walk to and fro on the earth."   יוַיַּעַן הָאִישׁ הָעֹמֵד בֵּין הַהֲדַסִּים וַיֹּאמַר אֵלֶּה אֲשֶׁר שָׁלַח יְהֹוָה לְהִתְהַלֵּךְ בָּאָרֶץ:
to walk to and fro on the earth: To see the tranquility of the nations.  
11And they answered the angel of the Lord who was standing among the myrtles, and they said, "We have walked to and fro on the earth, and behold! All the earth sits still and is at rest."   יאוַיַּעֲנוּ אֶת מַלְאַךְ יְהֹוָה הָעֹמֵד בֵּין הַהֲדַסִּים וַיֹּאמְרוּ הִתְהַלַּכְנוּ בָאָרֶץ וְהִנֵּה כָל הָאָרֶץ ישֶׁבֶת וְשֹׁקָטֶת:
12And the angel of the Lord replied and said, "O Lord of Hosts! How long will You not have mercy on Jerusalem and upon the cities of Judah, upon whom You are wroth for seventy years already?"   יבוַיַּעַן מַלְאַךְ יְהֹוָה וַיֹּאמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת עַד מָתַי אַתָּה לֹא תְרַחֵם אֶת יְרוּשָׁלִַם וְאֵת עָרֵי יְהוּדָה אֲשֶׁר זָעַמְתָּה זֶה שִׁבְעִים שָׁנָה:
And the angel of the Lord replied: The angel that was speaking to me.  
13And the Lord answered the angel who was speaking to me, good words-yea, consoling words.   יגוַיַּעַן יְהֹוָה אֶת הַמַּלְאָךְ הַדֹּבֵר בִּי דְּבָרִים טוֹבִים דְּבָרִים נִחֻמִּים:
And the Lord answered the angel who was speaking to me, good words: Not that the prophet heard what He answered [the angel], but from what the angel said to him, “Proclaim, saying, ‘I am jealous etc.,’” I know that He answered him good words.  
14And the angel who was speaking to me said to me, "Proclaim, saying: 'So said the Lord of Hosts, I am jealous for Jerusalem, and for Zion-great jealousy.   ידוַיֹּאמֶר אֵלַי הַמַּלְאָךְ הַדֹּבֵר בִּי קְרָא לֵאמֹר כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת קִנֵּאתִי לִירוּשָׁלִַם וּלְצִיּוֹן קִנְאָה גְדוֹלָה:
I am jealous for Jerusalem: I am exacting the retribution [for] the cause of Jerusalem from those who oppress her.  
15And I am very angry with the nations that are at ease, for I was wroth a little, and they helped to do harm.'   טווְקֶצֶף גָּדוֹל אֲנִי קֹצֵף עַל הַגּוֹיִם הַשַּׁאֲנַנִּים אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי קָצַפְתִּי מְעָט וְהֵמָּה עָזְרוּ לְרָעָה:
that are at ease: Concerning whom these [messengers] say that they sit still and are at rest.  
for I was wroth: with My people, a little.  
and they helped to do harm: In addition to the wrath, [they helped] to do harm.  
16Therefore, so said the Lord: 'I have returned to Jerusalem with mercy; My house shall be built there,' says the Lord of Hosts. 'And a plumb line shall be stretched out over Jerusalem.'   טזלָכֵן כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה שַׁבְתִּי לִירוּשָׁלִַם בְּרַחֲמִים בֵּיתִי יִבָּנֶה בָּהּ נְאֻם יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת וְקָו (כתיב וְקָוה) יִנָּטֶה עַל יְרוּשָׁלִָם:
and a plumb line shall be stretched out: to measure its wall, its length and breadth.  
17Further, proclaim, saying: so said the Lord of Hosts, 'My cities shall yet spread out with prosperity, and the Lord shall yet console Zion and shall yet choose Jerusalem.' "   יזעוֹד | קְרָא לֵאמֹר כֹּה אָמַר יְהֹוָה צְבָאוֹת עוֹד תְּפוּצֶנָה עָרַי מִטּוֹב וְנִחַם יְהֹוָה עוֹד אֶת צִיּוֹן וּבָחַר עוֹד בִּירוּשָׁלִָם:
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