Day of Judgment on Judah

The word of the Lord which came to Zephaniah son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Amariah, son of Hezekiah, in the days of (A)Josiah son of (B)Amon, king of Judah:

“I will completely (C)remove all things
From the face of the [a]earth,” declares the Lord.
“I will remove (D)human and animal life;
I will remove the (E)birds of the sky
And the fish of the sea,
And the [b](F)ruins along with the wicked;
And I will eliminate mankind from the face of the [c]earth,” declares the Lord.
“So I will (G)stretch out My hand against Judah
And against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
And I will (H)eliminate the remnant of Baal from this place,
And the names of the (I)idolatrous priests along with the other priests.
And those who bow down on the (J)housetops to the heavenly [d]lights,
And those who bow down and (K)swear to the Lord, but also swear by [e](L)Milcom,
And those who have (M)turned back from following the Lord,
And those who have (N)not sought the Lord nor inquired of Him.”

[f](O)Be silent before the Lord [g]God!
For the (P)day of the Lord is near,
Because the Lord has prepared a (Q)sacrifice,
He has (R)consecrated His guests.
“Then it will come about on the day of the Lords sacrifice
That I will (S)punish the princes, the king’s sons,
And all who clothe themselves with (T)foreign garments.
And on that day I will punish all who leap on the temple threshold,
Who fill the house of their [h]lord with (U)violence and deceit.
10 And on that day,” declares the Lord,
“There will be the sound of a cry from the (V)Fish Gate,
Wailing from the [i](W)Second Quarter,
And a loud crash from the (X)hills.
11 Wail, you inhabitants of the [j]Mortar,
Because all the [k]people of (Y)Canaan will be destroyed;
All who weigh out (Z)silver will be eliminated.
12 And it will come about at that time
That I will (AA)search Jerusalem with lamps,
And I will punish the people
Who are [l](AB)stagnant in spirit,
Who say in their hearts,
‘The Lord will (AC)not do good nor harm!’
13 Their wealth will become (AD)plunder,
And their houses desolate;
Yes, (AE)they will build houses but not inhabit them,
And plant vineyards but not drink their wine.”

14 The (AF)great (AG)day of the Lord is near,
Near and coming very quickly;
Listen, the day of the Lord!
[m]In it the warrior (AH)cries out bitterly.
15 That day is a day of anger,
A day of (AI)trouble and distress,
A day of destruction and desolation,
A day of (AJ)darkness and gloom,
A day of clouds and thick darkness,
16 A day of (AK)trumpet and battle cry
Against the (AL)fortified cities
And the high corner towers.
17 I will bring (AM)distress on mankind
So that they will walk (AN)like those who are blind,
Because they have sinned against the Lord;
And their (AO)blood will be poured out like dust,
And their (AP)flesh like dung.
18 Neither their (AQ)silver nor their gold
Will be able to save them
On the day of the Lords anger;
And (AR)all the earth will be devoured
By the fire of His jealousy,
For He will (AS)make a complete end,
Indeed a horrifying one,
Of all the inhabitants of the earth.

Judgments on Judah’s Enemies

Gather yourselves together, yes, (AT)join together,
You nation (AU)without [n]shame,
Before the decree [o]takes effect—
The day passes (AV)like chaff—
Before the (AW)burning anger of the Lord comes upon you,
Before the (AX)day of the Lords anger comes upon you.
(AY)Seek the Lord,
All you (AZ)humble of the [p]earth
Who have practiced His [q]ordinances;
(BA)Seek righteousness, seek humility.
Perhaps you will (BB)remain hidden
On the day of the Lords anger.

For (BC)Gaza will be abandoned,
And Ashkelon will become a desolation;
The inhabitants of (BD)Ashdod will be driven out at noon,
And (BE)Ekron will be uprooted.
Woe to the inhabitants of the seacoast,
The nation of the [r](BF)Cherethites!
The word of the Lord is (BG)against you,
(BH)Canaan, land of the Philistines;
And I will (BI)eliminate you
So that there will be (BJ)no inhabitant.
So the seacoast will become (BK)grazing places,
With pastures for shepherds and folds for flocks.
And the coast will be
For the (BL)remnant of the house of Judah,
They will (BM)drive sheep to pasture on it.
In the houses of Ashkelon they will lie down at evening;
For the Lord their God will (BN)care for them
And (BO)restore their fortunes.

“I have heard the (BP)taunting of Moab
And the (BQ)abusive speech of the sons of Ammon,
With which they have taunted My people
And (BR)boasted against their territory.
Therefore, as I live,” declares the Lord of armies,
The God of Israel,
(BS)Moab will assuredly be like (BT)Sodom,
And the sons of (BU)Ammon like (BV)Gomorrah—
Ground overgrown with weeds and full of salt mines,
And a permanent desolation.
The remnant of My people will (BW)plunder them,
And the remainder of My nation will inherit them.”

10 This they will have in return for their (BX)arrogance, because they have (BY)taunted and boasted against the people of the Lord of armies. 11 The Lord will be (BZ)terrifying to them, for He will [s]starve (CA)all the gods of the earth; and all the (CB)coastlands of the nations will (CC)bow down to Him, everyone from his own place.

12 “You also, (CD)Ethiopians, will be slain by My sword.”
13 And He will (CE)stretch out His hand against the north
And eliminate (CF)Assyria,
And He will make (CG)Nineveh a desolation,
Parched like the wilderness.
14 Flocks will lie down in her midst,
[t]All animals that range in herds;
Both the [u](CH)pelican and the hedgehog
Will spend their nights in [v]the tops of her pillars;
[w]Birds will sing in the window,
Devastation will be on the threshold;
For He has uncovered the cedar work.
15 This is the (CI)presumptuous city
That (CJ)dwells securely,
Who says in her heart,
(CK)I am, and there is no one besides me.”
How she has become a (CL)desolation,
A resting place for animals!
(CM)Everyone who passes by her will [x]hiss
And wave his hand in contempt.

Woe to Jerusalem and the Nations

Woe to her who is (CN)rebellious and (CO)defiled,
The (CP)oppressive city!
She (CQ)obeyed no voice,
She (CR)accepted no discipline.
She did not (CS)trust in the Lord,
She did not (CT)approach her God.
Her (CU)leaders within her are roaring lions,
Her judges are (CV)wolves at evening;
They have no bones to gnaw in the morning.
Her prophets are (CW)insolent, treacherous men;
Her (CX)priests have profaned the sanctuary.
They have done violence to the Law.
The Lord is (CY)righteous (CZ)within her;
He will (DA)do no injustice.
(DB)Every morning He brings His justice to light;
He [y]does not fail.
But the [z]criminal (DC)knows no shame.
“I have eliminated nations;
Their corner towers are deserted.
I have (DD)laid waste their streets,
With no one passing by;
Their (DE)cities have been laid waste,
Without a person, (DF)without an inhabitant.
I said, ‘You will certainly revere Me,
You will (DG)accept discipline.’
So her dwelling will (DH)not be eliminated
In accordance with everything that I have stipulated for her.
Instead, they were eager to (DI)corrupt all their deeds.

“Therefore (DJ)wait for Me,” declares the Lord,
“For the day when I rise up as a witness.
Indeed, My decision is to (DK)gather nations,
To assemble kingdoms,
To pour out on them My indignation,
All My burning anger;
For (DL)all the earth will be devoured
By the fire of My zeal.
For then I will [aa]restore to the peoples (DM)pure lips,
So that all of them may (DN)call on the name of the Lord,
To serve Him [ab]shoulder to shoulder.
10 From beyond the rivers of (DO)Ethiopia
My worshipers, [ac]My dispersed ones,
Will (DP)bring My offerings.
11 On that day you will (DQ)feel no shame
Because of all your deeds
By which you have rebelled against Me;
For then I will remove from your midst
Your (DR)proud, arrogant ones,
And you will never again be haughty
On My (DS)holy mountain.

A Remnant of Israel

12 But I will leave among you
A (DT)humble and lowly people,
And they will (DU)take refuge in the name of the Lord.
13 The (DV)remnant of Israel will (DW)do no wrong
And (DX)tell no lies,
Nor will a deceitful tongue
Be found in their mouths;
For they will (DY)feed and lie down
With no one to frighten them.”

14 Shout for joy, daughter of Zion!
(DZ)Shout in triumph, Israel!
Rejoice and triumph with all your heart,
Daughter of Jerusalem!
15 The Lord has taken away (EA)His judgments against you,
He has cleared away your enemies.
The King of Israel, the Lord, is (EB)in your midst;
You will no longer (EC)fear disaster.
16 (ED)On that day it will be said to Jerusalem:
(EE)Do not be afraid, Zion;
(EF)Do not let your hands fall limp.
17 The Lord your God is (EG)in your midst,
A [ad](EH)victorious warrior.
He will (EI)rejoice over you with joy,
He will [ae]be quiet in His love,
He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.
18 I will gather those who are (EJ)worried about the appointed feasts—
They [af]came from you, Zion;
The disgrace of exile is a burden on [ag]them.
19 Behold, I am going to deal at that time
With all your (EK)oppressors;
I will save (EL)those who limp
And gather the scattered,
And I will turn their (EM)shame into (EN)praise and fame
In all the earth.
20 At that time I will (EO)bring you in,
Even at the time when I gather you together;
Indeed, I will make you (EP)famous and praiseworthy
Among all the peoples of the earth,
When I (EQ)restore your fortunes before your eyes,”
Says the Lord.


  1. Zephaniah 1:2 Lit ground
  2. Zephaniah 1:3 Or stumbling blocks
  3. Zephaniah 1:3 Lit ground
  4. Zephaniah 1:5 Lit host; i.e., sun, stars, etc.
  5. Zephaniah 1:5 Or their king; MT Malcam, prob. a variant spelling of Milcom, the Ammonite god
  6. Zephaniah 1:7 Lit Hush
  7. Zephaniah 1:7 Heb YHWH, usually rendered Lord
  8. Zephaniah 1:9 Or Lord
  9. Zephaniah 1:10 I.e., a district of Jerusalem
  10. Zephaniah 1:11 I.e., a district of Jerusalem
  11. Zephaniah 1:11 Or merchant people will
  12. Zephaniah 1:12 Lit thickening on their dregs
  13. Zephaniah 1:14 Lit There
  14. Zephaniah 2:1 Or longing
  15. Zephaniah 2:2 Lit gives birth
  16. Zephaniah 2:3 Or land
  17. Zephaniah 2:3 Or justice
  18. Zephaniah 2:5 I.e., a segment of the Philistines with roots in Crete
  19. Zephaniah 2:11 Lit allow to dwindle
  20. Zephaniah 2:14 Or All kinds of beasts in crowds; lit Every kind of beast of a nation
  21. Zephaniah 2:14 Or owl; or jackdaw
  22. Zephaniah 2:14 Lit her capitals
  23. Zephaniah 2:14 Lit A voice
  24. Zephaniah 2:15 Or whistle
  25. Zephaniah 3:5 Lit is not missing
  26. Zephaniah 3:5 Or sinner
  27. Zephaniah 3:9 Lit change
  28. Zephaniah 3:9 Lit with one shoulder
  29. Zephaniah 3:10 Lit the daughter of My dispersed ones
  30. Zephaniah 3:17 Lit A warrior who saves
  31. Zephaniah 3:17 Or with some ancient versions, renew you in
  32. Zephaniah 3:18 Lit were
  33. Zephaniah 3:18 Lit her

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