Corrected by the Word of God (Zechariah 5:2–4) - Radical

Corrected by the Word of God (Zechariah 5:2–4)

“And he said to me, ‘What do you see?’ I answered, ‘I see a flying scroll. It’s length is 20 cubits and it’s width, 10 cubits.’ Then he said to me, ‘This is the curse that goes out over the face of the whole land. For everyone who steals shall be cleaned out according to what is on one side, and everyone who swears falsely shall be cleaned out according to what is on the other side.’ ‘I will send it out’, declares the Lord of Hosts, ‘And it shall enter the house of the thief and the house of him who swears falsely by my name. It shall remain in his house and consume it, both timber and stones.'”
– Zechariah 5:2–4

So there’s a lot we could talk about here, and that was a lot in just three verses. But the big picture that I want to make sure is in your mind, coming away from these three verses, is the power of God’s word to go out and accomplish God’s purposes. And specifically, thinking about the purposes of God here in Zechariah 5:2–4, God’s word depicted by this picture of this scroll exposes sin and the judgment that sin warrants. So the whole picture is this scroll flying, going out over the face of the whole land and cleaning out, exposing sin, stealing, swearing falsely, exposing sin and showing the judgment that comes as a result of sin.

Zechariah 5:2–4 Teaches that God’s Word Exposes Sin

And when you think about that picture, then think about why we need to be in God’s word every day, why we need to hear it and meditate on it. Because this is one of the purposes of God in His word, to open our eyes to sin in our lives, to uncover, to help us see the sin in us that we’re holding onto, sin around us that we’re tempted by. So when we read the word, when we meditate on God’s word, when we hear it, we need to pray. “God, expose my sin. Help me to see my sin and the judgment it warrants. And in the process, help me to turn from it. Help me to run from it. By your grace, when I sin, to confess it quickly and to repent of it. And not just when I sin, but God, keep me from sinning.”

This is the power of God’s word. And then maybe even take it one step further. This is the picture in Zechariah, the prophet, to proclaim God’s word, to share God’s word in ways that God’s word does this work, that it helps people see the seriousness of sin and helps people see the judgment it warrants. And in the process, it draws people to the grace of God in salvation. This is second Timothy 3:16-17, all scripture is God breathed. It’s breathed out by God. And it’s useful. For what? For teaching, rebuking, correcting, training in righteousness.

Zechariah 5:2–4 Reminds Us of Our Need for Correction

Yes, God, we need all of that. I need all of that. Every single one of us who’s praying right now needs all of that. Teach us through your word, rebuke us through your word. Correct us according to your word. Train us in righteousness by your word today. God, we want that. Please open my eyes. Open each of our eyes to sin. We don’t want to be comfortable with sin. Lord, we certainly don’t want to be desensitized to sin. We want to be extremely sensitive to sin. God, we want to be extremely sensitive to temptation in such a way that we run from it. We flee from temptation.

Any thoughts, desires, words, actions, anything that does not spring from faith in you and trust in you, in obedience to you. And God, in our sinfulness and our tendency to sin when that happens, God, help us to see it, not to be comfortable in it. Help us to see it, to confess it humbly before you and to run from it and to be conformed into your image.

2 Timothy 3:17. “So that the man, the woman of God, may be complete, equipped for every good work.” That’s what we want. Oh God, we want to look more like Jesus at the end of today than we do right now, at the end of tomorrow than when when we wake up in the morning tomorrow. God, we want to be more complete. We want to live in your goodness more tomorrow than we are today and more the next day and the next day. So we pray, do this work in us through your word. Teach us, reprove us, correct us, train us in righteousness.

Praying for the Nung People of Vietnam

And God, we pray that you would help us to humbly share your word with others, to encourage others with your word in ways that lead to all these different fruits. God, help us to share the gospel with somebody today, your word of salvation, the scripture that is able to make us wise for salvation. God, we pray that over our friends and neighbors and coworkers and family members who don’t know you.

We pray that over the Nung people in Vietnam, 1.1 million of them, most of whom have never heard your word. They’ve never heard your word that has this power. God, we pray, help us to spread this word to all the peoples of the world. That they might be taught and reproved and corrected and trained in righteousness and made complete. That they might experience the good life that comes from following, hearing, obeying, meditating on, doing your word. We pray for the spread of your word to the Nung people of Vietnam. You would use our lives to get your word to them and other people like them that are unreached by it right now.

Oh God, we praise you for your word, for its power. We pray that you would help us to prioritize, meditating on it. That by your spirit you would do this sin-exposing work in us and this righteousness training work in us. I pray this in Jesus’ name, according to your word, in Zechariah 5. Amen.

David Platt

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

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