2 I lifted up mine eyes again, and looked, and behold a man with a measuring line in his hand.
This is the third of the eight visions that Zechariah is given. Commentators debate who this man is, with views such as- Nehemiah, a spiritual type of Nehemiah, an angel, or Jesus.
In verse 1:16, God promised that Jerusalem would be measured for the rebuilding of the city and the Temple. The rebuilding of Jerusalem, after the Babylonian exile, produced only a partial fulfillment of this promise. We will see that this chapter is directing us to the millennial reign of Jesus.
Apparently, this is the interpreting angel from chapter 1. He went out, from the prophet’s side, to meet another angel bringing a message.
Most believe the “young man” refers to Zechariah, but some that it refers to the man with the measuring line.
This appears to refer to the millennium (Isaiah 60:18-19), since Jerusalem was never inhabited as a city without walls, except for the time until Nehemiah could lead the people to rebuild the wall, when it was not an overflowing city as this verse speaks of. That was also a time of trouble (Nehemiah 2:17; Daniel 9:25), while these verses speak of a time of peace.
Many commentators try to give this verse a historical application concerning the Babylonian captivity, even though Babylon is clearly not north of Israel. The phrase “saith the Lord” reminds us that this message comes from God, and not from Zechariah.
The phrase “daughter of Babylon” shows that this is not a reference to the historical Babylon. In Revelation 18:1-4, God warns His children to come out of “Babylon the Great”, the end-times capital city of the Antichrist, so they would not partake of her sins or punishment.
Again, the word Zion is a reference to God dwelling among His people. In the end-times application, this would refer to the gathering in of God-fearing Jews after the return of Jesus, during which He destroys the kingdom of the Antichrist.
After the return of Jesus, and after He destroys Babylon the Great, Jesus will gather the nations of the wicked to the battle of Armageddon (Revelation 16:12-16; 19:11-21; Joel 3:2-16).
Any attempt to relate this chapter to the historical Babylon, stumbles at this verse. This is speaking of the millennial reign of Jesus (Joel 3:17-21; Revelation 20:4).
No historical nation ever became converts to Judaism. Commentators, therefore, generally sidestep their historical Babylon applications, and apply this verse to Christianity. Yet, the next verse plainly shows that this specifically refers to Judah and Jerusalem. Also, the phrase “in that day” is a reference to the end-times Day of the LORD. Again, this is clearly speaking of the millennial reign of Jesus (Isaiah 60).
God will naturally reject Jerusalem after her covetous relationship with the Antichrist (Revelation 17-18). As in verse 1:17, God promises to again choose Jerusalem from which to dwell with mankind.
Be silent in awe and fear (Psalm 46:10; Zephaniah 1:7). This verse speaks of the time after Jesus returns, destroys the Antichrist and beast-kingdom (Revelation 19:11-21), resurrects the Christians (Matthew 24:30-31), converts the Jews (Romans 11:1-28; Zechariah 12;10), and reigns from Jerusalem. The phrase “raised up out of his holy habitation” refers to Jesus coming to earth from heaven.