Thus saith the Lord of hosts
What follows is a full answer to the question in ( Zechariah 7:3 ) : The fast of the fourth [month];
the month Tammuz, which answers to June: this fast was kept on the ninth day of the month, on account of the city of Jerusalem being broken up on that day F15, as it is said, ( 2 Kings 25:3 2 Kings 25:4 ) ( Jeremiah 39:2 ) ( Jeremiah 52:6 Jeremiah 52:7 ) though Kimchi says this was on the seventeenth day of that month, as also says the Misna F16; on which day a fast was kept likewise, for the breaking of the two tables of the law on that day: the reconciliation of this with the above Scriptures is attempted in the Talmud F17 by observing, that the Scripture speaks of the first temple, the Misna of the second temple: and the fast of the fifth;
the month Ab, which answers to July, on the tenth of which the city was burnt, ( Jeremiah 52:12 Jeremiah 52:13 ) but the fast on account of it was kept on the ninth day; (See Gill on Zechariah 7:3) on which day the Jews say that both the first and second temple were destroyed, Bither was taken, and the city ploughed F18: and the fast of the seventh;
the month Tisri, which answers to September; on the third of this month a fast was kept on account of the murder of Gedaliah; see ( Zechariah 7:5 ) and on the tenth day of the same was the day of atonement, which was the grand fast; see ( Acts 27:9 ) : and the fast of the tenth;
the month Tebet; which answers to December, on the tenth day of which the city of Jerusalem was besieged by Nebuchadnezzar; and this fast was kept on that account, ( Jeremiah 52:4 ) now of all these fasts the Lord by the prophet says, they shall be to the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful
that is, there shall be no occasion for them; but, on the contrary, such plenty of good things, both temporal and spiritual, shall be had, that, instead of them, rather festivals should be kept with the greatest cheerfulness, joy, and gladness. So Maimonides F19 says, that all these fasts shall cease in the times of the Messiah, with all others, which will be times of joy and gladness. Therefore love the truth and peace;
love to speak truth, and execute the judgment of peace, ( Zechariah 8:16 ) or express by words and deeds love to Christ, who is the way, the truth, and the life; and also is our Peace, the Peacemaker, and Peace giver; and on these accounts, as well as on others, is greatly to be loved: likewise the Gospel, which is the word of truth, and the Gospel of peace; which contains nothing but truth, and is the ministry of reconciliation, and is to be loved on that account; and even peace with men is no further to be loved and sought after than as it is consistent with truth; and these being the principal things under the Gospel dispensation, these, and not fasts, or any other ceremonial observances, are to be attended to.
F15 T. Bab. Roshhashanah, fol. 18. 2.
F16 Taanith, c. 4. sect. 7.
F17 T. Bab. Taanith, fol. 28. 2.
F18 Roshhashanah, ut supra. (fol. 18. 2.)
F19 Hilchot Taanioth, c. 5. sect. 19.