Zechariah 13:2-9

2 “On that day, I will banish the names of the idols from the land, and they will be remembered no more,” declares the LORD Almighty. “I will remove both the prophets and the spirit of impurity from the land.
3 And if anyone still prophesies, their father and mother, to whom they were born, will say to them, ‘You must die, because you have told lies in the LORD’s name.’ Then their own parents will stab the one who prophesies.
4 “On that day every prophet will be ashamed of their prophetic vision. They will not put on a prophet’s garment of hair in order to deceive.
5 Each will say, ‘I am not a prophet. I am a farmer; the land has been my livelihood since my youth.[a]
6 If someone asks, ‘What are these wounds on your body[b] ?’ they will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’

The Shepherd Struck, the Sheep Scattered

7 “Awake, sword, against my shepherd, against the man who is close to me!” declares the LORD Almighty. “Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered, and I will turn my hand against the little ones.
8 In the whole land,” declares the LORD, “two-thirds will be struck down and perish; yet one-third will be left in it.
9 This third I will put into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’ and they will say, ‘The LORD is our God.’ ”

Zechariah 13:2 in Other Translations

KJV
2 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land.
ESV
2 "And on that day, declares the LORD of hosts, I will cut off the names of the idols from the land, so that they shall be remembered no more. And also I will remove from the land the prophets and the spirit of uncleanness.
NLT
2 “And on that day,” says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies, “I will erase idol worship throughout the land, so that even the names of the idols will be forgotten. I will remove from the land both the false prophets and the spirit of impurity that came with them.
MSG
2 "On the Big Day" - this is God-of-the-Angel-Armies speaking - "I will wipe out the store-bought gods, erase their names from memory. People will forget they ever heard of them. And I'll get rid of the prophets who polluted the air with their diseased words.
CSB
2 On that day"-the declaration of the Lord of Hosts-"I will erase the names of the idols from the land, and they will no longer be remembered. I will remove the prophets and the unclean spirit from the land.

Zechariah 13:2-9 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO ZECHARIAH 13

In this chapter are prophecies concerning the purification of the penitent Jews before spoken of; the removal of idols, and false prophets, out of the earth; the death of Christ; the destruction of the greater part of men, and the salvation of a few of them. The cleansing of such that mourn for sin, in a fountain opened for that purpose, is spoken of, Zec 13:1 the utter abolition of idols, and false prophets, and unclean spirits, is affirmed, Zec 13:2 the parents of false prophets will forbid them to prophesy; they themselves will be ashamed of their visions; they will throw off the rough garment, which was a token of their being prophets, and by which they deceived: they will confess they are no prophets, and what they are, and own the wounds they have received from their friends on that account, Zec 13:3-6 and whereas the Messiah, as pierced and crucified, is spoken of in the preceding chapter Zec 12:10, whose blood is the cleansing fountain mentioned in this, an account is given of his death; who is described by his office, the Shepherd of the Lord; and by his natures, human and divine, the Man his fellow; his death is signified by smiting with the sword, which was done by the order of the Lord; the consequences of which were the scattering of the sheep, and the turning of the hand of the Lord upon them in a way of mercy, Zec 13:7 and then it is declared that two parts in three of the land should be cut off, and a third part saved, but yet so as by fire, whom the Lord would own as his people, and they should acknowledge him to be their God, Zec 13:8,9.

Zechariah 13:2-9 In-Context

1 “On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity.
2 “On that day, I will banish the names of the idols from the land, and they will be remembered no more,” declares the LORD Almighty. “I will remove both the prophets and the spirit of impurity from the land.
3 And if anyone still prophesies, their father and mother, to whom they were born, will say to them, ‘You must die, because you have told lies in the LORD’s name.’ Then their own parents will stab the one who prophesies.
4 “On that day every prophet will be ashamed of their prophetic vision. They will not put on a prophet’s garment of hair in order to deceive.
5 Each will say, ‘I am not a prophet. I am a farmer; the land has been my livelihood since my youth. ’
6 If someone asks, ‘What are these wounds on your body ?’ they will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’
7 “Awake, sword, against my shepherd, against the man who is close to me!” declares the LORD Almighty. “Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered, and I will turn my hand against the little ones.
8 In the whole land,” declares the LORD, “two-thirds will be struck down and perish; yet one-third will be left in it.
9 This third I will put into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’ and they will say, ‘The LORD is our God.’ ”

Cross References 22

  • 1. Exodus 23:13; S Jeremiah 43:12; S Ezekiel 6:6; S Ezekiel 36:25; S Hosea 2:17
  • 2. S Micah 5:13
  • 3. 1 Kings 22:22; Jeremiah 23:14-15
  • 4. S Jeremiah 28:16
  • 5. Deuteronomy 13:6-11; Deuteronomy 18:20; S Nehemiah 6:14; Jeremiah 23:34; S Ezekiel 14:9
  • 6. S Jeremiah 6:15; Micah 3:6-7
  • 7. Matthew 3:4
  • 8. S 1 Kings 18:7; 2 Kings 1:8; S Isaiah 20:2
  • 9. S Ezekiel 12:24
  • 10. S Amos 7:14
  • 11. S Isaiah 34:5; Jeremiah 47:6
  • 12. Isaiah 40:11; S Isaiah 53:4; Ezekiel 37:24
  • 13. S 2 Samuel 17:2; Matthew 26:31*; Mark 14:27*
  • 14. S Eze 5:2-4,12; Zechariah 14:2
  • 15. S Isaiah 4:4; Isaiah 33:14; Malachi 3:2
  • 16. S Psalms 12:6; S Daniel 11:35; Isaiah 48:10; 1 Peter 1:6-7
  • 17. S Job 6:29; S Jeremiah 6:27
  • 18. S Psalms 50:15
  • 19. Psalms 105:1
  • 20. S Psalms 86:7; S Isaiah 30:19; S Zechariah 10:6
  • 21. S Leviticus 26:12; S Jeremiah 30:22
  • 22. S Isaiah 44:5; S Jeremiah 29:12; S Ezekiel 20:38

Footnotes 2

  • [a]. Or "farmer; a man sold me in my youth"
  • [b]. Or "wounds between your hands"
Scripture quoted by permission.  Quotations designated (NIV) are from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide.