Dr. Charles Stanley
Read | Zechariah 4:1-14
In the vision God gave to Zechariah, the mountain is an illustration of a barrier or hindrance. We might wonder what the prophet’s strange dreams can teach us today. While the imagery is foreign, the principles are repeated throughout the Bible.
Zerubbabel, leader of Judah, and a group of 50,000 captives had been released by the Babylonians to return to Jerusalem. There, they began to rebuild the temple walls but were attacked by hostile neighbors. As a result, God’s people were discouraged and on the verge of giving up.
In verse six, God reminded Zerubbabel through Zechariah that progress is made “not by might nor by power but by My Spirit.” In other words, when God calls us to a task, He Himself assumes responsibility for removing hindrances. The Lord went on to ask, “What are you, O great mountain?” Nothing but flatland would remain once He worked through Zerubbabel.
God never intended for us to face seemingly insurmountable tasks in our own strength. Instead, we’re to rely on the Holy Spirit’s power within us. We are like the lampstand (v. 2) that was to be kept constantly burning in the temple. In Zechariah’s dream, the olive trees on each side of the lampstand were pouring oil directly into its bowl, with no help from the priests (v. 12). Like those olive trees, the Holy Spirit was God’s promise of continual help to the weary people. We, too, can trust the Lord to pour His Spirit into our lives for help when we’re facing a “mountain” of an obstacle.