on Zechariah 3 :2
Is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? - The Jews were nearly destroyed because of their sins; a remnant of them is yet left, and God is determined to preserve them. He has had mercy upon them, and forgiven them their sins. Wouldst thou have them destroyed? It is God that hath justified them; who art thou that condemnest them? The Lord rebuke thee! God confound thee for what thou hast done, and for what thou desirest farther to do! It is evident that Jde 1:9 relates to this circumstance - the very same phraseology which occurs here. See the notes on Jde 1:9, where the subject is largely considered. With difficulty has this remnant escaped, and God will not permit fresh evils to fall upon them, by which they might be totally consumed. This was Satan's design, who accuses the followers of God day and night. See Revelation 12:10.
on Zechariah 3 :2
And the Lord said unto Satan, The Lord rebuke thee - Jerome: "This they so explain, that the Father and the Son is Lord, as we read in the Psalm 110:1-7, "The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit Thou on My right hand." The Lord speaketh of another Lord; not that He, the Lord who speaketh, cannot rebuke, but that, from the unity of nature, when the Other rebuketh, He Himself who speaketh rebuketh. For "he who seeth the Son, seeth the Father also" John 14:9. It may be that God, by such sayings , also accustomed people, before Christ came, to believe in the Plurality of Persons in the One Godhead. The rebuke of God must be with power. "Thou hast rebuked the nations, Thou hast destroyed the ungodly" Psalm 9:5. "Thou hast rebuked the proud, accursed" Psalm 119:21. "They perish at the rebuke of Thy Countenance" Psalm 80:16. "At Thy rebuke, O God of Jacob, both the chariot and horse are cast into a deep sleep" Psalm 76:6. "God shall rebuke him, and he fleeth far off, and shall be chased as the chaff of the mountains before the wind" Isaiah 17:13. "He rebuked the Red Sea and it dried up" Psalm 106:9. "The foundations of the world were discovered at Thy rebuke, O Lord" (Psalm 18:15, add Nahum 1:4). He "rebuked the seed" Malachi 2:3, and it perished; the devourer" Malachi 3:11, and it no longer devoured. The rebuke then of the blasted spirit involved a withering rejection of himself and his accusations, as when Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit and he departed out of his victim Mark 1:25-26; Mark 9:25; Luke 4:35; Luke 9:42.
The Lord hath chosen Jerusalem - Joshua then is acquitted, not because the accusation of Satan was false, but out of the free love of God for His people and for Joshua in it and as its representative. "Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth?" Romans 8:33-34. The high priest, being "himself also compassed with infirmity, needed daily to offer up sacrifices first for his own sins, and then for the people's" Hebrews 5:2-3. As Isaiah said, on the sight of God, "I am undone, because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips" Isaiah 6:5, and, until cleansed by the typical coal, dared not offer himself for the prophetic office, so here Satan, in Joshua, aimed at the whole priestly office, and in it, at Israel's relation to God.
Is not this a brand plucked out of the fire? - Cyril: "As if he should say, Israel confessedly has sinned, and is liable to these charges. Yet it has suffered no slight punishment; it has endured sufferings, and has scarce been snatched out of them, as a half-burned "brand out of the fire." For not yet had it shaken off the dust of the harms from the captivity; only just now and scarely had it escaped the flame of that most intolerable calamity. Cease then imputing sin to them, on whom God has had mercy."
on Zechariah 3 :2