Zephaniah 1–3; 2 Chronicles 35:20–27; 2 Kings 23:29–30; Jeremiah 47–48

Zephaniah Illustration

Zephaniah

The word of the Lord that came to Zephaniah the son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Amariah, son of Hezekiah, ain the days of bJosiah the son of Amon, king of Judah.

The Coming Judgment on Judah

cI will utterly sweep away everything

from the face of the earth, declares the Lord.

I will sweep away dman and beast;

I will sweep away the birds of the heavens

and dthe fish of the sea,

and ethe rubble1 with the wicked.

I will fcut off mankind

from the face of the earth, declares the Lord.

I will stretch out my hand against Judah

and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem;

gand I will cut off from this place the remnant of Baal

and the name of the idolatrous priests along with the priests,

hthose who bow down on the roofs

to the host of the heavens,

ithose who bow down and swear to the Lord

and yet swear by jMilcom,2

kthose who have turned back from following the Lord,

lwho do not seek the Lord or inquire of him.

The Day of the Lord Is Near

mBe silent before the Lord God!

For nthe day of the Lord is near;

othe Lord has prepared a sacrifice

and pconsecrated his guests.

And on the day of the Lord's sacrifice

qI will punish the officials and the king's sons

and rall who array themselves in foreign attire.

On that day I will punish

everyone swho leaps over the threshold,

and those who fill their master's3 house

with violence and fraud.

10  On that day, declares the Lord,

a cry will be heard from tthe Fish Gate,

ua wail from vthe Second Quarter,

a loud crash from the hills.

11  wWail, O inhabitants of the Mortar!

For all the traders4 are no more;

all who weigh out silver are cut off.

12  At that time xI will search Jerusalem with lamps,

and I will punish the men

ywho are complacent,5

zthose who say in their hearts,

The Lord will not do good,

nor will he do ill.

13  Their goods shall be aplundered,

and their houses laid waste.

bThough they build houses,

they shall not inhabit them;

cthough they plant vineyards,

they shall not drink wine from them.

14  dThe great day of the Lord is near,

near and hastening fast;

the sound of the day of the Lord is bitter;

ethe mighty man cries aloud there.

15  fA day of wrath is that day,

a day of distress and anguish,

a day of gruin and devastation,

ha day of darkness and gloom,

ha day of clouds and thick darkness,

16  ia day of trumpet blast and battle cry

jagainst the fortified cities

and against the lofty battlements.

17  kI will bring distress on mankind,

so that they shall walk llike the blind,

because they have sinned against the Lord;

mtheir blood shall be poured out like dust,

and their flesh nlike dung.

18  oNeither their silver nor their gold

shall be able to deliver them

on the day of the wrath of the Lord.

pIn the fire of his jealousy,

qall the earth shall be consumed;

rfor a full and sudden end

he will make of all the inhabitants of the earth.

Judgment on Judah's Enemies

Gather together, yes, gather,

O sshameless nation,

tbefore the decree takes effect6

before the day passes away ulike chaff

vbefore there comes upon you

the burning anger of the Lord,

before there comes upon you

the day of the anger of the Lord.

wSeek the Lord, xall you humble of the land,

who do his just commands;7

yseek righteousness; seek humility;

yperhaps zyou may be hidden

on the day of the anger of the Lord.

aFor Gaza shall be deserted,

and Ashkelon shall become a desolation;

Ashdod's people shall be driven out at noon,

and Ekron shall be uprooted.

Woe to byou inhabitants of the seacoast,

you nation of cthe Cherethites!

dThe word of the Lord is against you,

eO Canaan, land of the Philistines;

and I will destroy you funtil no inhabitant is left.

gAnd you, O seacoast, hshall be pastures,

with meadows8 for shepherds

and folds for flocks.

iThe seacoast shall become the possession

of jthe remnant of the house of Judah,

hon which they shall graze,

and in the houses of Ashkelon

they shall lie down at evening.

For the Lord their God kwill be mindful of them

and lrestore their fortunes.

I have heard mthe taunts of Moab

and nthe revilings of the Ammonites,

how they have taunted my people

and made boasts oagainst their territory.

Therefore, pas I live, declares the Lord of hosts,

the God of Israel,

Moab shall become qlike Sodom,

and the Ammonites qlike Gomorrah,

a land possessed by nettles and salt pits,

and a waste forever.

The remnant of my people shall plunder them,

and the survivors of my nation shall possess them.

10  This shall be their lot in return rfor their pride,

because they taunted and boasted

against the people of the Lord of hosts.

11  The Lord will be awesome against them;

sfor he will famish all the gods of the earth,

and tto him shall bow down,

each in its place,

all uthe lands of the nations.

12  vYou also, O Cushites,

shall be slain by my sword.

13  And he will stretch out his hand against the north

wand destroy Assyria,

and he xwill make Nineveh a desolation,

a dry waste like the desert.

14  yHerds shall lie down in her midst,

all kinds of beasts;9

zeven the owl and the hedgehog10

shall lodge in her capitals;

a voice shall hoot in the window;

devastation will be on the threshold;

for aher cedar work will be laid bare.

15  This is the exultant city

bthat lived securely,

that said in her heart,

I am, and there is no one else.

What a desolation she has become,

ca lair for wild beasts!

dEveryone who passes by her

hisses and eshakes his fist.

Judgment on Jerusalem and the Nations

Woe to her who is rebellious and defiled,

fthe oppressing city!

She listens to no voice;

gshe accepts no correction.

hShe does not trust in the Lord;

she does not draw near to her God.

iHer officials within her

are roaring lions;

her judges are jevening wolves

that leave nothing till the morning.

kHer prophets are fickle, treacherous men;

kher priests lprofane what is holy;

they do violence to the law.

The Lord within her mis righteous;

he does no injustice;

every morning he shows forth his justice;

each dawn he does not fail;

but nthe unjust knows no shame.

oI have cut off nations;

their battlements are in ruins;

I have laid waste their streets

pso that no one walks in them;

their cities have been made desolate,

without a man, without an inhabitant.

qI said, Surely you will fear me;

ryou will accept correction.

Then your11 dwelling would not be cut off

according to all that I have appointed against you.12

But sall the more they were eager

to make all their deeds corrupt.

Therefore twait for me, declares the Lord,

for the day when I rise up to seize the prey.

For my decision is uto gather nations,

to assemble kingdoms,

to pour out upon them my indignation,

all my burning anger;

for in the fire of my jealousy

vall the earth shall be consumed.

The Conversion of the Nations

For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples

to wa pure speech,

that all of them may call upon the name of the Lord

and serve him with one accord.

10  xFrom beyond the rivers yof Cush

my worshipers, the daughter of my dispersed ones,

shall bring my offering.

11  zOn that day ayou shall not be put to shame

because of the deeds by which you have rebelled against me;

for then bI will remove from your midst

your proudly exultant ones,

and cyou shall no longer be haughty

in my holy mountain.

12  But I will leave in your midst

a people dhumble and lowly.

eThey shall seek refuge in the name of the Lord,

13  fthose who are left in Israel;

they gshall do no injustice

and speak no lies,

hnor shall there be found in their mouth

a deceitful tongue.

iFor they shall graze and lie down,

and none shall make them afraid.

Israel's Joy and Restoration

14  jSing aloud, O daughter of Zion;

shout, O Israel!

Rejoice and exult with all your heart,

O daughter of Jerusalem!

15  The Lord has taken away the judgments against you;

he has cleared away your enemies.

kThe King of Israel, lthe Lord, is in your midst;

you shall never again fear evil.

16  zOn that day it shall be said to Jerusalem:

Fear not, O Zion;

mlet not your hands grow weak.

17  lThe Lord your God is in your midst,

na mighty one who will save;

ohe will rejoice over you with gladness;

he will quiet you by his love;

he will exult over you with loud singing.

18  I will gather those of you who mourn pfor the festival,

so that you will no longer suffer reproach.13

19  Behold, at that time qI will deal

with all your oppressors.

And rI will save the lame

and gather the outcast,

and I will change stheir shame into tpraise

and renown in all the earth.

20  uAt that time I will bring you in,

at the time when I gather you together;

for I will make you renowned and praised

among all the peoples of the earth,

vwhen I restore your fortunes

before your eyes, says the Lord.


Josiah Killed in Battle

20 eAfter all this, when Josiah had prepared the temple, Neco king of Egypt went up to fight at fCarchemish on the Euphrates, and Josiah went out to meet him. 21 But he sent envoys to him, saying, What have we to do with each other, king of Judah? I am not coming against you this day, but against the house with which I am at war. And God has commanded me to hurry. Cease opposing God, who is with me, lest he destroy you. 22 Nevertheless, Josiah did not turn away from him, but gdisguised himself in order to fight with him. He did not listen to the words of Neco from the mouth of God, but came to fight in the plain of hMegiddo. 23 And the archers shot King Josiah. And the king said to his servants, iTake me away, for I am badly wounded. 24 So his servants took him out of the chariot and carried him in his second chariot and brought him to Jerusalem. And he died and was buried in the tombs of his fathers. jAll Judah and Jerusalem mourned for Josiah. 25 kJeremiah also uttered a lament for Josiah; and all lthe singing men and singing women have spoken of Josiah in their laments to this day. They made these a rule in Israel; behold, they are written in the Laments. 26 Now the rest of the acts of Josiah, and his good deeds according to what is written in the Law of the Lord, 27 and his acts, first and last, behold, they are written in the Book of the Kings of Israel and Judah.


29 wIn his days xPharaoh Neco king of Egypt went up to the king of Assyria to the river Euphrates. King Josiah went to meet him, and Pharaoh Neco killed him at yMegiddo, as soon as he saw him. 30 zAnd his servants carried him dead in a chariot from yMegiddo and brought him to Jerusalem and buried him in his own tomb. aAnd the people of the land took Jehoahaz the son of Josiah, and anointed him, and made him king in his father's place.


Judgment on the Philistines

47 The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet fconcerning the Philistines, before Pharaoh struck down gGaza.

Thus says the Lord:

hBehold, waters are rising iout of the north,

hand shall become an overflowing torrent;

they shall overflow jthe land and all that fills it,

the city and those who dwell in it.

Men shall cry out,

and every inhabitant of the land shall wail.

At the noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his stallions,

lat the rushing of his chariots, at the rumbling of their wheels,

the fathers mlook not back to their children,

so feeble are their hands,

because of the day that is coming to destroy

all fthe Philistines,

to cut off from nTyre and Sidon

every helper that remains.

For the Lord is destroying the Philistines,

othe remnant of the coastland of pCaphtor.

qBaldness has come upon Gaza;

rAshkelon has perished.

O remnant of their valley,

show long will you gash yourselves?

tAh, sword of the Lord!

How long till you are quiet?

Put yourself into your scabbard;

rest and be still!

How can it1 be quiet

uwhen the Lord has given it a charge?

Against vAshkelon and against the seashore

whe has appointed it.

Judgment on Moab

48 xConcerning Moab.

Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel:

Woe to yNebo, for it is laid waste!

zKiriathaim is put to shame, it is taken;

the fortress is put to shame aand broken down;

the renown of Moab is no more.

In bHeshbon they planned disaster against her:

Come, let us cut her off cfrom being a nation!

You also, O dMadmen, shall be brought to silence;

the sword shall pursue you.

A voice! A cry from eHoronaim,

Desolation and great destruction!

Moab is destroyed;

her little ones have made a cry.

eFor at the ascent of Luhith

they go up weeping;2

for eat the descent of Horonaim

they have heard the distressed cry3 of destruction.

Flee! Save yourselves!

You will be like fa juniper in the desert!

For, gbecause you trusted in your works and your treasures,

you also shall be taken;

and hChemosh ishall go into exile

with jhis priests and his officials.

kThe destroyer shall come upon every city,

and no city shall escape;

the valley shall perish,

and lthe plain shall be destroyed,

as the Lord has spoken.

Give wings to Moab,

for she would fly away;

her cities shall become a desolation,

with no inhabitant in them.

10 mCursed is he who does nthe work of the Lord with slackness, and cursed is he who keeps back his sword from bloodshed.

11  Moab has been at ease from his youth

and has osettled on his dregs;

he has not been emptied from vessel to vessel,

nor has he gone into exile;

so his taste remains in him,

and his scent is not changed.

12 Therefore, behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I shall send to him pourers who will pour him, and empty his vessels and break his4 jars in pieces. 13 Then pMoab shall be ashamed of Chemosh, as qthe house of Israel was ashamed of rBethel, their confidence.

14  How do you say, We are heroes

and mighty men of war?

15  The destroyer of sMoab and his cities has come up,

and the choicest of his young men have tgone down to slaughter,

declares uthe King, uwhose name is the Lord of hosts.

16  The calamity of Moab is near at hand,

and his affliction hastens swiftly.

17  vGrieve for him, all you who are around him,

and all who know his name;

say, wHow the mighty scepter is broken,

the glorious staff.

18  xCome down from your glory,

and sit on the parched ground,

O inhabitant of yDibon!

For the destroyer of Moab has come up against you;

he has destroyed your strongholds.

19  zStand by the way zand watch,

O inhabitant of aAroer!

Ask him who flees and her who escapes;

say, What has happened?

20  Moab is put to shame, for it is broken;

vwail and cry!

Tell it beside bthe Arnon,

that sMoab is laid waste.

21 Judgment has come upon cthe tableland, upon Holon, and dJahzah, and Mephaath, 22 and yDibon, and eNebo, and Beth-diblathaim, 23 and fKiriathaim, and Beth-gamul, and gBeth-meon, 24 and hKerioth, and iBozrah, and all the cities of the land of Moab, far and near. 25 jThe horn of Moab is cut off, and khis arm is broken, declares the Lord.

26 lMake him drunk, mbecause he magnified himself against the Lord, so that Moab shall lwallow in his vomit, nand he too shall be held in derision. 27 oWas not Israel a derision to you? pWas he found among thieves, that whenever you spoke of him qyou wagged your head?

28  rLeave the cities, and dwell in the rock,

O inhabitants of Moab!

Be slike the dove that nests

in the sides of the mouth of a gorge.

29  tWe have heard of the pride of Moab

he is very proud

of his loftiness, his pride, and his arrogance,

and the haughtiness of his heart.

30  I know his insolence, declares the Lord;

uhis boasts are false,

his deeds are false.

31  vTherefore I wail for Moab;

I cry out for all Moab;

for the men of wKir-hareseth I mourn.

32  More than for xJazer I weep for you,

yO vine of zSibmah!

aYour branches passed over the sea,

reached to the Sea of xJazer;

on your summer fruits and your grapes

the destroyer has fallen.

33  bGladness and joy have been taken away

from the fruitful land of Moab;

I have made the wine cease from the winepresses;

no one treads them with shouts of joy;

the shouting is not the shout of joy.

34 cFrom the outcry at Heshbon even to Elealeh, as far as Jahaz they utter their voice, from Zoar to dHoronaim and Eglath-shelishiyah. For the waters of Nimrim also have become desolate. 35 And I will bring to an end in Moab, declares the Lord, him who offers sacrifice in ethe high place and makes offerings to his god. 36 Therefore my heart moans for Moab like a flute, and my heart moans like a flute for the men of fKir-hareseth. gTherefore the riches they gained have perished.

37 hFor every head is shaved and every beard cut off. iOn all the hands are gashes, and jaround the waist is sackcloth. 38 On all the housetops of Moab and in the squares there is nothing but lamentation, for I have broken Moab like ka vessel for which no one cares, declares the Lord. 39 How it is broken! How they wail! lHow Moab has turned his back in shame! So Moab mhas become a derision and a horror to all that are around him.

40  For thus says the Lord:

Behold, none shall fly swiftly like an eagle

oand spread his wings against Moab;

41  pthe cities shall be taken

and the strongholds seized.

qThe heart of the warriors of Moab shall be in that day

like the heart of ra woman in her birth pains;

42  Moab shall be sdestroyed and be no longer a people,

because the magnified himself against the Lord.

43  uTerror, pit, and snare

are before you, O inhabitant of Moab!

declares the Lord.

44  He who flees from the terror

shall fall into the pit,

and he who climbs out of the pit

shall be caught in the snare.

vFor I will bring these things upon Moab,

the year of their punishment,

declares the Lord.

45  In the shadow of Heshbon

fugitives stop without strength,

for fire came out from Heshbon,

flame from the house of Sihon;

it has destroyed wthe forehead of Moab,

the crown of wthe sons of tumult.

46  xWoe to you, O Moab!

The people of yChemosh are undone,

for your sons have been taken captive,

and your daughters into captivity.

47  zYet I will restore the fortunes of Moab

in the latter days, declares the Lord.

Thus far is the judgment on Moab.