In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel. And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem: When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning. And the LORD will create upon every dwelling place of mount Zion, and upon her assemblies, a cloud and smoke by day, and the shining of a flaming fire by night: for upon all the glory shall be a defence. And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain.
The rest of this chapter looks forward to the glorious kingdom of Christ. He is the Branch, beautiful and glorious, the first fruit of the land, in whom the restored Israelites boast. Unbelievers will have been destroyed by the Lord Jesus. Saved Jews, recorded for life in Jerusalem, will be called holy. The cleansing of verse 4 is accomplished by judgment and not by the gospel. Mount Zion will be covered by a canopy of cloud by day and of flaming fire by night, a symbol of God’s care and protection.