“Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, ‘The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel.’” Zechariah 4:8–10
Small things marked the beginning of the work in the hand of Zerubbabel, but none might despise it, for the Lord had raised up one who would persevere until the headstone should be brought forth with shoutings. The plumb line was in good hands.
Here is the comfort of every believer in the Lord Jesus; let the work of grace be ever so small in its beginnings, the plumb line is in good hands, a master builder greater than Solomon has undertaken the raising of the heavenly temple, and he will not fail nor be discouraged till the topmost pinnacle shall be raised. If the plumb line were in the hand of any merely human being, we might fear for the building, but the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in Jesus’ hand.
The works did not proceed irregularly, and without care, for the master’s hand carried a good instrument. Had the walls been hurriedly run up without due superintendence, they might have been out of the perpendicular; but the plumb line was used by the chosen overseer. Jesus is evermore watching the erection of his spiritual temple, that it may be built securely and well. We are for haste, but Jesus is for judgment. He will use the plumb line, and that which is out of line must come down, every stone of it. Hence the failure of many a flattering work, the overthrow of many a glittering profession. It is not for us to judge the Lord’s church, since Jesus has a steady hand, and a true eye, and can use the plumb line well. Do we not rejoice to see judgment left to him?
The plumb line was in active use—it was in the builder’s hand; a sure indication that he meant to push on the work to completion. O Lord Jesus, how would we indeed be glad if we could see you at your great work. O Zion, the beautiful, your walls are still in ruins! Rise, you glorious Builder, and make her desolations to rejoice at your coming.
Adapted from Morning and Evening.