Look, your king is coming to you.
He is righteous and victorious,
yet he is humble, riding on a donkey—
riding on a donkey’s colt.
I will remove the battle chariots from Israel
and the warhorses from Jerusalem.
I will destroy all the weapons used in battle,
and your king will bring peace to the nations.
Zechariah 9:9b-10a New Living Translation
This is one of the most familiar passages in the collection of Zachariah’s prophecies since the Gospel writers use it in their account of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem just before His crucifixion and resurrection. Through Zachariah, God points the remnant Israelites toward a coming day when He will send a New King, the Messiah, to Jerusalem to set up a kingdom of peace that will be not only for the Hebrews but will bring peace to all nations. The victory march represented here is different than all other victory marches people experienced the ancient near east at the time. There is no triumphalism or pompous attitude by a conquering king. This King will be marked by humility. Instead of riding in a war chariot through the streets of the city, He will ride the colt of a donkey. God will use this King to destroy all the weapons of war and bring peace to all nations.
This King described in this prophecy is best represented by Jesus. God’s desire was that all nations would be blessed through the descendants of Abraham. Jesus was the fulfillment of this prophecy. He is the one who will bring an end to all war and bring a time of peace for all nations. Many critics will point out that war is often caused by differences in religion. The key to remember here is that Jesus did not come to create more religion. He came to call people from all nations into His Kingdom of peace and to open a way for the Holy Spirit to again dwell in them and give them peace in the midst of the chaos and war around them.
As the followers of Jesus, we have the opportunity to live in the peace He calls us to. We also can be messengers of peace to the world around us. When we give in to the nationalistic tendencies of our earthly nations and focus only on our own interests we fall short of the call to be a Kingdom of peace for all people groups. In those times, God by His Holy Spirit calls us back to be peacemakers again and lay aside the weapons of our warfare.
Jesus, thank You that You are a King of Peace. Help us to be people that live out the call to be peacemakers for all nations.