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The Burden of Damascus


Zakaryahu (Zechariah) 9:1

The burden of the word of YAHUAH in the land of Hadrach, and Damascus shall be the rest thereof: when the eyes of man, as of all the tribes of Israel, shall be toward YAHUAH.

Masaw (Burden) dvar (word) YAHUAH b’eretz (in the land) khadrack (of Hadrak) v’damaseq (and Damascus) mnuchah (resting place) kee (when) l’YAHUAH (on YAHUAH) ayin (eyes) adam (of man) v’kole (and all) shebeti (the scions) Yisra’el (of Yisra’el).

The term masaw (Strong’s 4853), means a burden; specifically, tribute, or (abstractly) porterage; figuratively, an utterance, chiefly a doom, especially in singing.

Another view of the same passage can lend the reading:

The word of YAHUAH shall burden the land of Hadrak and rest on Damascus when the eyes of man and all of the scions of Yisra’el are on YAHUAH. (Compare with the concept set forth in Yeshayahu 9:8; ADONAI sent a word into Ya`aqov, and it has lighted upon Yisra’el.)

So we see that the general tone of this burden on Damascus and the land of Hadrak is the word of YAHUAH. With this prophecy, we see that at some point, it is the Word of YAH and not the word of other derivatives which shall come upon Syria and Damascus and shall burden the place with its weight and impact.  Moreover, there is a timing set forth in this same prophecy, telling us when it will happen; i.e., when eyes of man and [the eyes] of all of the scions of Yisra’el are on YAHUAH.

Let’s take a moment and review this term scion.  According to the modern definition, the scion is a detached living portion of a plant (as a bud or shoot) joined to a stock in grafting, and usually supplying solely aerial parts to a graft; which is to say, it is the grafted-in branch.

Zakaryahu (Zechariah) 9:2

And Chamath also shall border thereby; Tsor, and Tsiydon, though it be very wise.

The review of the Hebrew also lends another understanding:

Gather Chamath, Tsor (Tyrus) and Tsiydon as the border thereof, in vehement wisdom.

The burden that is discussed in verse 1 reaches all the way to the borders which are defined as Chamath, Tyrus, and Tsiydon.  Now let us consider the rest of the text.

Zakaryahu (Zechariah) 9:3-4

And Tsor did build herself a stronghold, and heaped up silver as the dust, and fine gold as the mire of the streets. 4 Behold, ADONAI will cast her out, and he will smite her power in the sea; and she shall be devoured with fire.

A quick review of the map below shows Tyre (Tsor or Tyrus), Sidon (Tsiydon) and Damascus.  Tyrus and Tsiydon are both in modern day Lebanon, and are the markers of the region currently occupied by Hezbollah.  As this burden arrives on Damascus and this area, the verse also indicates other areas will be affected.

Damascus Map

Zakaryahu (Zechariah) 9:5-8

Ashqelon shall see it, and fear; Gaza also shall see it, and be very sorrowful, and Eqron; for her expectation shall be ashamed; and the king shall perish from Gaza, and Ashqelon shall not be inhabited. 6 And a bastard (mongrel, which is to say, a person of a Jewish father but a non-Jewish mother) shall dwell in Ashdod, and I will cut off the pride of the Pelishtiym (the inhabitants of the area). 7 And I will take away his blood out of his mouth, and his abominations from between his teeth: but he that remains, even he, shall be for our ELOHIYM, and he shall be as a governor in Yahudah, and Eqron as a Yevuciy. 8 And I will encamp about my house because of the army, because of him that passes by, and because of him that returns: and no oppressor shall pass through them anymore: for now have I seen with my eyes.

Again, a map will be helpful in understanding this region:

Gaza Map

Here, you can see modern day Ashdod, Ashqelon, Gaza (Eqron is within the Gaza Strip).  The land of the Gaza Strip is occupied by the Peleshtiym – the residents thereof.  Shall I say that this is prophecy concerning the Gaza Strip?

Let’s compare this prophecy in Zakaryahu 9 with that which appears in Amoc 1:

Amoc (Amos) 1:1-2

THE words of Amoc, who was among the herd-men of Teqoa, which he saw concerning Yisra’el in the days of Uzziyahu king of Yahudah, and in the days of Yarov`am the son of Yo’ash king of Yisra’el, two years before the earthquake. 2 And he said, YAHUAH will roar from Tsiyon, and utter his voice from Yerushalayim; and the habita-tions of the shepherds shall mourn, and the top of Karmel shall wither.

On December 1, 2010, a fire was set in the forest which covered Mount Carmel in Northern Israel.  Did the top of Karmel wither?  If so, is it a marker for the dating of the other prophecies carried within this passage?  Let us continue to consider.

Amoc (Amos) 1:3-5

Thus says YAHUAH; For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have threshed את eth-Gil`ad with threshing instruments of iron: 4 But I will send a fire into the house of Chaza’el, which shall devour the palaces of Ben Hadad. 5 I will break also the bar of Damascus, and cut off the inhabitant from the plain of Aven, and him that holds the sceptre from the house of Eden: and the people of Syria shall go into captivity unto Qiyr, says YAHUAH.

Here, the prophecy states that because the Syrians have threshed eth-Gil’ad (known in part as the “Golan Heights” with threshing instruments of iron, a fire comes into their house, which devours the palaces, breaks the bar of Damascus, cuts off the inhabitants of the plains, cuts off the scepter from him who holds it, and causes the people of Syria to become refugees in the land of ancient Assyria.  Has this happened?  Assad remains in power, yet virtually all of the other aspects of this prophecy have already occurred.  Consider Yeshayahu’s word on this subject:

Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 17:1-5

The burden of Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap. 2 The cities of Aro`er are forsaken: they shall be for flocks, which shall lie down, and none shall make them afraid. 3 The fortress also shall cease from Ephrayim, and the kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria: they shall be as the glory of the children of Yisra’el, says YAHUAH TSEVA’OT. 4 And in his day it shall come to pass, that the glory of Ya`aqov shall be made thin, and the fatness of his flesh shall wax lean. 5 And it shall be as when the harvest-man gathers the grain, and reaps the ears with his arm; and it shall be as he that gathers ears in the valley of Repha’iym.

Returning to the prophecy in Amoc which acts as a second witness to the statements found in Zakaryahu 9, we continue to read:

Amoc (Amos) 1:6-8

Thus says YAHUAH; For three transgressions of Gaza, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they carried away captive the whole captivity, to deliver them up to Edom: 7 But I will send a fire on the wall of Gaza, which shall devour the palaces thereof: 8 And I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod, and him that holds the sceptre from Ashqelon, and I will turn my hand against Eqron: and the remnant of the Pelishtiym shall perish, says ADONAI YAHUAH.

The language here is almost word for word with the passage set forth in Zakaryahu.  Amazing. What is noteworthy here is that we have a sequence which specifies that first comes the withering of Carmel, then the distress in Damascus and Syria, followed by the fire on the wall in Gaza.  This sequence has been followed exactly since 2010.  Let us consider if there is an ongoing prophecy which may reach the other area described in Zakaryahu 9:

Amoc (Amos) 1:9-10

Thus says YAHUAH; For three transgressions of Tsor, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they delivered up the whole captivity to Edom, and remembered not the brotherly covenant: 10 But I will send a fire on the wall of Tsor, which shall devour the palaces thereof.

Once again, we see judgment fall on Tsor (Tyrus), the area of Lebanon occupied by Hezbollah.  Fire is apparently destined to come upon the wall of Tsor.

We leave this passage of Zakaryahu here.

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