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11 The Lord will terrify them,[a]
for[b] he will weaken[c] all the gods of the earth.
All the distant nations will worship the Lord in their own lands.[d]
12 “You[e] Ethiopians[f] will also die by my sword!”[g]
13 The Lord[h] will attack the north[i]
and destroy Assyria.
He will make Nineveh a heap of ruins;
it will be as barren[j] as the desert.

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  1. Zephaniah 2:11 tn Heb “will be awesome over [or, “against”] them.”
  2. Zephaniah 2:11 tn Or “certainly.”
  3. Zephaniah 2:11 tn The meaning of this rare Hebrew word is unclear. If the meaning is indeed “weaken,” then this line may be referring to the reduction of these gods’ territory through conquest (see Adele Berlin, Zephaniah [AB 25A], 110-11). Cf. NEB “reduce to beggary”; NASB “starve”; NIV “when he destroys”; NRSV “shrivel.”
  4. Zephaniah 2:11 tn Heb “and all the coastlands of the nations will worship [or, “bow down”] to him, each from his own place.”
  5. Zephaniah 2:12 sn Though there is no formal introduction, these words are apparently spoken by the Lord (note my sword).
  6. Zephaniah 2:12 tn Heb “Cushites.” This is traditionally assumed to refer to people from the region south of Egypt, i.e., Nubia or northern Sudan, referred to as “Ethiopia” by classical authors (not the more recent Abyssinia).
  7. Zephaniah 2:12 tn Heb “Also you Cushites, who lie dead by my sword.”
  8. Zephaniah 2:13 tn Heb “He”; the referent (the Lord) has been specified in the translation for clarity.
  9. Zephaniah 2:13 tn Heb “he will stretch out his hand against the north.”
  10. Zephaniah 2:13 tn Or “dry.”