Zephaniah 3

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 effect1

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;2

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 meadows3 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;4

zeven the owl and the hedgehog5

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 your1 dwelling would not be cut off

according to all that I have appointed against you.2

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.3

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.

Haggai Illustration

Haggai

The Command to Rebuild the Temple

aIn the second year of Darius the king, in the sixth month, on the first day of the month, the word of the Lord came by the hand of Haggai the prophet to bZerubbabel the son of cShealtiel, governor of Judah, and to dJoshua the son of eJehozadak, the high priest: Thus says the Lord of hosts: These people say the time has not yet come to rebuild the house of the Lord. Then the word of the Lord came fby the hand of Haggai the prophet, gIs it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while hthis house lies in ruins? Now, therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: iConsider your ways. jYou have sown much, and harvested little. kYou eat, but you never have enough; you drink, but you never have your fill. You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm. And he who learns wages does so to put them into a bag with holes.

Thus says the Lord of hosts: iConsider your ways. Go up to the hills and bring wood and build the house, that mI may take pleasure in it and that nI may be glorified, says the Lord. jYou looked for much, and behold, it came to little. And when you brought it home, oI blew it away. Why? declares the Lord of hosts. Because of my house hthat lies in ruins, while each of you busies himself with his own house. 10 Therefore pthe heavens above you have withheld the dew, and the earth has withheld its produce. 11 And qI have called for a drought on the land and the hills, on rthe grain, the new wine, the oil, on what the ground brings forth, on man and beast, and son all their labors.

The People Obey the Lord

12 tThen uZerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and uJoshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, with all vthe remnant of the people, obeyed the voice of the Lord their God, and the words of Haggai the prophet, as the Lord their God had sent him. And the people feared the Lord. 13 Then Haggai, the messenger of the Lord, spoke to the people with the Lord's message, wI am with you, declares the Lord. 14 And xthe Lord stirred up the spirit of uZerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of yJoshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of all zthe remnant of the people. And they came and aworked on the house of the Lord of hosts, their God, 15 bon the twenty-fourth day of the month, in the sixth month, in the second year of Darius the king.

The Coming Glory of the Temple

cIn the seventh month, on the twenty-first day of the month, the word of the Lord came by the hand of Haggai the prophet: Speak now to dZerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to dJoshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to all the remnant of the people, and say, eWho is left among you who saw this house fin its former glory? How do you see it now? gIs it not as nothing in your eyes? Yet now hbe strong, O dZerubbabel, declares the Lord. hBe strong, O dJoshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest. hBe strong, all you people of the land, declares the Lord. iWork, for jI am with you, declares the Lord of hosts, kaccording to the covenant that I made with you when you came out of Egypt. lMy Spirit remains in your midst. mFear not. For thus says the Lord of hosts: nYet once more, in a little while, oI will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land. And I will shake all nations, so that the treasures of all nations shall come in, and pI will fill this house with glory, says the Lord of hosts. qThe silver is mine, and the gold is mine, declares the Lord of hosts. rThe latter glory of this house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts. And sin this place I will give peace, declares the Lord of hosts.

Blessings for a Defiled People

10 tOn the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month, uin the second year of Darius, the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, 11 Thus says the Lord of hosts: vAsk the priests about the law: 12 If someone carries wholy meat in the fold of his garment and touches with his fold bread or stew or wine or oil or any kind of food, does it become holy? The priests answered and said, xNo. 13 Then Haggai said, yIf someone who is unclean by contact with a dead body ztouches any of these, does it become unclean? The priests answered and said, It does become unclean. 14 Then Haggai answered and said, aSo is it with this people, and with this nation before me, declares the Lord, and so with every work of their hands. And what they offer there is unclean. 15 Now then, bconsider from this day onward.1 Before stone was placed upon stone in the temple of the Lord, 16 how did you fare? cWhen2 one came to a heap of twenty measures, there were but ten. When one came to the wine vat to draw fifty measures, there were but twenty. 17 dI struck you and all the products of your toil with blight and with mildew and with hail, eyet you did not turn to me, declares the Lord. 18 bConsider from this day onward, ffrom the twenty-fourth day of the ninth month. Since gthe day that the foundation of the Lord's temple was laid, bconsider: 19 hIs the seed yet in the barn? Indeed, the vine, the fig tree, the pomegranate, and the olive tree have yielded nothing. But from this day on iI will bless you.

Zerubbabel Chosen as a Signet

20 The word of the Lord came a second time to Haggai fon the twenty-fourth day of the month, 21 Speak to jZerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying, kI am about to shake the heavens and the earth, 22 and lto overthrow the throne of kingdoms. I am about to destroy the strength of the kingdoms of the nations, and moverthrow the chariots and their riders. And the horses and their riders shall go down, nevery one by the sword of his brother. 23 On that day, declares the Lord of hosts, I will take you, O jZerubbabel omy servant, the son of pShealtiel, declares the Lord, and make you qlike a3 signet ring, ofor I have chosen you, declares the Lord of hosts.