One should know vividly that Zachariah in the Bible like Haggai, was one of the first captives who returned to their homeland from Babylon. He combined the function of a prophet with that of a priest. In this capacity, he encouraged the people who had become despondent and apathetic, to continue with the reconstruction of the temple. Many of the people had been born in exile and had very little idea on how the sins of their fathers had been responsible for the devastation of the old temple and the exile, in the first place. As a result, Zachariah therefore warned them that if they kept repeating the sins of their fathers, they should not expect anything less than their consequences.
This is a timely warning for all those who might presume on the mercies of God. Sin has its consequences because the soul that sins shall die. But thanks to God for making available to us His word, His prophets and above all, His spirit whose witness can only be ignored at our own risk. But when we sin and are truly sorry for it, and when we turn back to the Lord in genuine repentance, He will kindly pardon. The Jews of Zachariah’s time needed to know just as we Christians today need to know that neither time nor economic, social, political and cultural circumstances can change the wages of sin. It isstill death! As a result of this, sin always results in punishment!
-By Jokpeme Joseph Omode