on Zechariah 11 :14
That I might break the brotherhood - I cannot, says Newcome, explain this passage, without supposing that the kingdom of Israel subsisted when the prophet wrote it; and that either the wars between Judah and Israel are referred to, (see 2 Kings 16:5), or the captivity of the ten tribes, when the brotherly connection between these kingdoms ceased.
on Zechariah 11 :14
And I cut asunder mine other staff, Bands, to dissolve the brotherhood between Judah and Israel - Hitherto prophecy had spoken of the healing of the great breach between Israel and Judah, in Christ. "The Lord," Isaiah said, "shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth. The envy of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off: Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim" Isaiah 11:12-13; and Hosea, "Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together and shall appoint themselves one Head" Hosea 1:11; and Jeremiah, "In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel." Jeremiah 3:18. And Ezekiel, in the midst of the captivity, in a symbolic action the counterpart of this, is bidden, "Take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions; then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and all the house of Israel his companions, and join them one to another into one stick, and they shall become one in thy hand" Ezekiel 37:16-17; and, when asked the meaning of this act, he was to say, "Thus saith the Lord God, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and will make them one stick, and they shall be one in Mine hand" Ezekiel 37:19.
And dropping the symbol; "Thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the pagan, whither they be gone - and I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel: and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all - I will cleanse them, and they shall be My people and I will be their God, and David My servant shall be king over them, and they all shall have one Shepherd" Ezekiel 37:21-24. Such should be the unity of those who would be gathered under the One Shepherd. And so it was, "The multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul" Acts 4:32; and long afterward it was a proverb among the pagan, o, "See how these Christians love one another." Zechariah is here speaking of those who had rejected the Good Shepherd, the Israel and Judah after the flesh, who shut themselves out from the promises of God. This had its first fulfillment in the terrible dissolution of every band of "brotherhood" and of our common nature, which made the siege of Jerusalem a proverb for horror, and precipitated its destruction. o "Having thus separated the believing from the unbelieving, He bared the rest of His care. And what we now see bears witness to the prophecy. For the Jews, being deprived, of prophets and priests and kings and temple and ark and altar and mercy-seat and candlestick and table and the rest, through which the legal worship was performed, have come to be deprived also of the guardianship from above; and, scattered, exiled, removed, serve against their will those who preach Christ: denying Him as Lord, they yield service to His servants. The prophet having foretold these things of Christ, our God and Saviour, and reproved the obstinacy of the Jews, naturally turns his prophecy straight to the God-opposed christ whom they expect, as they say. So said the Lord in the holy Gospels to them, "I am come in My Father's name, and ye receive Me not; another will come in his own name, and him ye will receive" John 5:43. This the blessed Paul also prophesied of them, "Because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved, God shall send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie, that all might be damned, who believe not the truth, but have pleasure in unrighteousness" 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12. The like does the blessed Zechariah prophesy, having received the power of the Holy Spirit."
on Zechariah 11 :14
11:14 Then - So soon as I saw what value they put upon me. I cut asunder - Christ did it really, the prophet did it in the type. Break - Declare it broken. The brother - hood - That friendship which had been among them. Judah - The two tribes, and the remnant of the ten tribes.