What is the message of the vision of Zechariah 4?
God had called Zerubbabel to do this great work of completing the building of the temple (v. 8-9). However, though Mr. Z was an extremely capable man who possessed significant leadership skills and resources (the book of Haggai tells us that he was the governor – Hag. 1:1,14; 2:2, 21), he needed to know that this work would not be accomplished by human strength, ingenuity and skill, but by the Spirit of God (represented by the olive oil) that fills and empowers the instruments of God (“Then he said to me, “This is what the Lord says to Zerubbabel: It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies” Zec. 4:6). Just as with Jeshua (ch. 3), the work that was to be done through Mr. Z was initiated, empowered and completed by God.
No matter how gifted and talented we may be, we must live in total dependence on the Lord to accomplish His Kingdom work. We must follow the examples of Ezra, Nehemiah and the early apostles and be committed to becoming persons of deep piety and prayer and never begin to think that we can to the work of God apart from the Spirit of God.
“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father” (John 15:5-8).