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The Golden BowlZechariah Chapter 4

Two Olive Branches - Holy Oil - Seven Lamps

Every prophecy is about Christ.

compiled by Rachel Cory-Kuehl, December 22, 2018

Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise noted

      In a vision, the prophet Zechariah is shown two olive branches, both dripping oil into a golden bowl. From that bowl, golden tubes carried the oil to the lamps of the Menorah in the Tabernacle. The oil we know from many other passages, represents the Holy Spirit which is imparted to believers.

      Anciently, kings and priests were anointed with oil (Exo 29:7, Exo 30:30-33, Exo 40:13-15, 1Sam 10:1, 1Sam 15:1, 1Sam 16:2-13, 1Ki 1:34, 1Ki 19:15, 1Ki 19:16, Psa 23:5).


Exodus 29:7 [Instruction to Moses concerning Aaron’s consecration to High Priest] “And you shall take the anointing oil, pour it on his head, and anoint him.”


Psalm 133:2 “It is like the precious oil upon the head, running down on the beard, the beard of Aaron, running down on the edge of his garments.”


1 Samuel 16:13 “Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward.”


NOTE: Healed lepers also were anointed with oil. Their healing came from God, because their sin was forgiven. The oil symbolized the miraculous nature of that healing, and the graciousness of God. Like priests, healed lepers were to devote themselves fully to serve the LORD (Leviticus Chapter 14). In the New Testament, James instructed the elders to anoint the sick in the name of the LORD (James 5:14).

      The LORD called Israel’s name “Green Olive Tree” (Jeremiah 11:16). Two “olive branches” must therefore represent two tribes of Israel, or two individual Israelites who occupy significant roles within Israel, both of whom were anointed with oil.

      The oil is dripping off the two branches.

      Compare David’s description of Aaron’s anointing, as High Priest.


Psalm 133:2 “It is like the precious oil upon the head, Running down on the beard, The beard of Aaron, Running down on the edge of his garments.”

      Zechariah longed to see the Temple of the LORD restored with its priesthood, and Israel establish in “the land” with a rightful king. At that time, Zerubbabel and Joshua held the offices of Ruler and High Priest. Both were TYPES of Christ, who will be both King and High Priest.

      1. Zerubbabel - Ruler/Governor - a Son of David descended from Solomon.

      2. Joshua - the High Priest (from the tribe of Levi)


Zechariah 4:9 “The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this temple; His hands shall also finish it.”


Zechariah 6:11-13 “Take the silver and gold and make a crown, and set it on the head of the high priest, Joshua son of Jozadak. 12 Tell him this is what the LORD Almighty says: 'Here is the man whose name is the Branch, and he will branch out from his place and build the temple of the LORD. 13 It is he who will build the temple of the LORD, and he will be clothed with majesty and will sit and rule on his throne. And he will be a priest on his throne. And there will be harmony between the two.’” (NIV)


Both king and High Priest would build the Temple of the LORD - Zerubbabel the ruler and Joshua the High Priest. Notice the High Priest Joshua, would “sit and rule on his throne.” Under the Torah, the High Priest had no “throne.” Only the anointed king - the Son of David, had a throne, and was allowed to sit within the Temple court.


Zerubbabel the ruler, and Joshua the High Priest, together typify Jesus the Christ - the one future priest/king. Just as the oil of priestly anointing and the oil of royal anointing are combined in Jesus the Christ, so the oil dripping from two olive branches is combined in the one golden bowl. Priest and King are combined in Jesus the Christ. He is the king/priest of “the order of Melchizedek” (Heb 6:20).


The peace or “harmony” would be “between them both” (between priest and ruler) because one man would become both king and High Priest. His name would be Joshua (Yeshua or Jesus), and He would build the Temple of the LORD.


As Zerubbabel and Joshua rebuilt a physical Temple for the LORD, Yeshua Messiah would build the spiritual Temple - His church (Israel redeemed), symbolized by the seven branched lamp stand - one body with many branches (Revelation 1:12, 13, 20). Christ himself is the “cornerstone” of that Temple.


Comment: In the Tabernacle of Sinai, and later in the Temple of Solomon, the vessel used for pouring oil into the lamps of the Menorah (lamp stand) was made of solid gold (Exo 25:29, Dan 5:2). See, for some great pictures.


From the golden bowl, the oil flows to the 7 lamps and there is light within His Temple. We see in Revelation, that the “seven lamps” represent the “seven churches” (Revelation 1:20). From Christ the Spirit flows to His church. He is the golden bowl.


Matthew 3:11 "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Luke 3:16, Mark 1:7-8, John 7:33, John 7:39)

Zechariah 4:6 “‘Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of Hosts.”


            Gentile believers are “graft in” TO Israel. Unbelievers are “cut off” FROM Israel.

      See our study: “Who are Israel?”


Ephesians 2:19 “Now, therefore, you [Gentiles] are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole building, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord.”


The “household of God” - His church (or “congregation”), grows into “a holy temple” filled with His Spirit. This “temple” is made up of human beings. The “chief cornerstone” of this Temple is Christ Himself - who became a man.


1 Corinthians 3:16 “Do you not know that you are the Temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?”


2 Corinthians 6:16 “For you are the Temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will dwell in them And walk among them. I will be their God, And they shall be My people.’”


1 Peter 2:5You also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”

            See our study: “The Change of the Priesthood.”


The glorified Christ would become the one “golden bowl” through Whom the Spirit of God would flow to His church. He would baptize with the Holy Spirit and fire.


Matthew 3:11 “I [John] indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire (Mark 1:11, Luke 3:16, John 1:33).

We pray this study will prove a blessing.

Prophecy Viewpoint

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Two Covenants

The Change of the Priesthood”A Kingdom of Priests



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