(Bar·a·chiʹah) [Jah blesses].
As to the words “son of Barachiah,” they are not found in Luke’s account and they are omitted from Matthew’s account in the Codex Sinaiticus. Some scholars believe that they are possibly an addition to the text made by a “corrector” who confused this Zechariah with Zechariah the prophet “the son of Berechiah.” (Zech. 1:1) However, there is no evidence that the latter prophet was murdered. Another suggestion is that Jehoiada, the father of a Zechariah who was murdered, may have had two names, as is the case with other Bible characters. (Compare Matthew 9:9 and Mark 2:14; Matthew 10:2, 3.) The meaning of Barachiah is much like that of Jehoiada, which means “Jehovah knows.”
It is generally understood that Jesus here referred to Zechariah “the son of Jehoiada the priest.” (2 Chron. 24:20-22) This is the most logical conclusion, since Chronicles is listed last in the traditional Jewish canon, thereby making Abel the first and Zechariah the last righteous man recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures as murdered. According to 2 Chronicles 24:21, Zechariah was murdered “in the courtyard of Jehovah’s house.” The altar of burnt offering was in the inner courtyard, outside of and in front of the entrance to the sanctuary. This would correspond with Jesus’ location of the incident “between the sanctuary and the altar.”
In the cases of both Abel and Zechariah a reckoning for shedding of blood was foretold. (Gen. 4:10; 2 Chron. 24:22) Also, there is a strong parallel between the circumstances and events in the days of Zechariah the son of Jehoiada and those of the generation living when Jesus spoke these words. As Zechariah was dying he said: “Let Jehovah see to it and ask it back.” Very soon his prophetic words began to be fulfilled. A small Syrian force came up and Jehovah delivered a great military force of Judah into their hand, the princes of Judah being greatly ruined and despoiled. The Syrians executed acts of judgment on Jehoash and left him with many diseases, after which he was murdered by his servants. (2 Chron. 24:23-25) After describing the bloodguilt of those to whom he was talking, Jesus said: “All these things will come upon this generation.” (Matt. 23:36) Jesus’ prophecy was fulfilled in a major scale on Jerusalem and Judea in 70-73 C.E.
If, indeed, the name Barachiah was inserted by a “corrector” at Matthew 23:35, based on the traction that Isaiah and Jeremiah were martyred later, as some believe is the case, this would betray an unfamiliarity of such a “corrector” with the order of the Hebrew canon, and it does not seem to be the likely solution.
Another suggestion, based on the old age of Jehoiada, is that Jehoiada may have been the grandfather, not the father, of Zechariah and that the name of the father (Barachiah) was preserved in the genealogies of the priests. But this is not generally given wide acceptance.