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Zechariah 

 After the death of King Solomon, the nation of the Jews became divided into the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah.  Idolatry and wickedness infected the northern kingdom until God allowed the Assyrians to invade and conquer it in 722 B.C.  The southern kingdom followed a similar decline, until the Lord allowed the Babylonians to invade and conquer it.  From 605-587 B.C. Nebuchadnezzar deported and scattered the majority of the Jews throughout his kingdom.  However, when the Persians conquered the Babylonians, King Cyrus of Persia allowed some of the Jews to return home.  These began to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem and the Temple of God in Jerusalem, which had been destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar.  

 

However, the work went slowly because of the indifference of the people and the opposition of the Samaritans.  To counter their negligence, God raised up the prophets Haggai and Zechariah to encourage the Jews to complete the task of rebuilding God’s Temple.  Zechariah’s book is special in that it contains a number of prophecies concerning the coming Messiah, Jesus.  This class will be taught by Truman Criss in Room 118.

 

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