Once again I looked up - another strange sight! Four chariots charging out from between two mountains. The mountains were bronze.
The first chariot was drawn by red horses, the second chariot by black horses,
the third chariot by white horses, and the fourth chariot by dappled horses. All the horses were powerful.
I asked the Messenger-Angel, "Sir, what's the meaning here?"
The angel answered, "These are the four winds of heaven, which originate with the Master of the whole earth.
The black horses are headed north with the white ones right after them. The dappled horses are headed south."
The powerful horses galloped out, bursting with energy, eager to patrol through the earth. The Messenger-Angel commanded: "On your way! Survey the earth!" and they were off in every direction.
Then he called to me and said, "Look at them go! The ones going north are conveying a sense of my Spirit, serene and secure. No more trouble from that direction."
Then this Message from God came to me:
"Take up a collection from the exiles. Target Heldai, Tobiah, and Jedaiah. They've just arrived from Babylon. You'll find them at the home of Josiah son of Zephaniah.
Collect silver and gold from them and fashion crowns. Place one on the head of Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest,
and give him this message:
Yes, he's the one. He'll build the Temple of God. Then he'll assume the role of royalty, take his place on the throne and rule - a priest sitting on the throne! - showing that king and priest can coexist in harmony.'
"The other crown will be in the Temple of God as a symbol of royalty, under the custodial care of Helem, Tobiah, Jedaiah, and Hen son of Zephaniah.
"People will come from faraway places to pitch in and rebuild the Temple of God. This will confirm that God-of-the-Angel-Armies did, in fact, send me to you. All this follows as you put your minds to a life of responsive obedience to the voice of your God." "You're Interested in Religion, I'm Interested in People"
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)