“Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying, I am about to shake the heavens and the earth, and to overthrow the throne of kingdoms. I am about to destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the nations … I will take you, O Zerubbabel my servant, the son of Shealtiel, declares the LORD, and make you like a signet ring, for I have chosen you, declares the LORD of hosts.” (Haggai 2:21-23)
The book of Haggai ends with promises to Zerubbabel, the governor of Judah. This man was from the royal line of David, so he should have been Israel’s king. But since the Persian empire was still ruling over Israel, he was only a governor. Now God promises that the oppression by foreign nations will come to an end and Zerubbabel will receive royal authority.
But history shows that Israel did not get political independence and Zerubbabel never became a king! Even in Jesus’ days, some 500 years later, the Israelites were still oppressed by a foreign empire. So, did God break his promise? No. He did not. Matthew 1:12-16 draws our attention to a man from Zerubbabel’s royal line: Jesus Christ. He is the King of Glory who will rule the nations and whose reign will never end (Luke 1:33). He will be given the throne of his father David. In Him, God’s promise comes true. The prophecy was not focused on Zerubbabel personally but on his position as heir of David’s throne, and was passed on over the generations to Jesus’ birth.
We can’t always foresee how and when God fulfills his promises, but we can be sure He does!
Can you give an example from your own life that confirmed you that God is in control?