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Zephaniah 3:4-6 New English Translation (NET Bible)

Her prophets are proud;[a]
they are deceitful men.
Her priests have defiled what is holy;[b]
they have broken God’s laws.[c]
The just Lord resides[d] within her;
he commits no unjust acts.[e]
Every morning he reveals[f] his justice.
At dawn he appears without fail.[g]
Yet the unjust know no shame.

The Lord’s Judgment will Purify

“I destroyed[h] nations;
their walled cities[i] are in ruins.
I turned their streets into ruins;
no one passes through them.
Their cities are desolate;[j]
no one lives there.[k]


  1. Zephaniah 3:4 sn Applied to prophets, the word פֹּחֲזִים (pokhazim, “proud”) probably refers to their audacity in passing off their own words as genuine prophecies from the Lord (see Jer 23:32).
  2. Zephaniah 3:4 tn Or “defiled the temple.”sn These priests defiled what is holy by not observing the proper distinctions between what is ritually clean and unclean (see Ezek 22:26).
  3. Zephaniah 3:4 tn Heb “they treated [the] law violently.”
  4. Zephaniah 3:5 tn The word “resides” is supplied for clarification.
  5. Zephaniah 3:5 tn Or “he does no injustice.”
  6. Zephaniah 3:5 tn Heb “gives”; or “dispenses.”
  7. Zephaniah 3:5 tn Heb “at the light he is not missing.” Note that NASB (which capitalizes pronouns referring to Deity) has divided the lines differently: “Every morning He brings His justice to light; // He does not fail.”
  8. Zephaniah 3:6 tn Heb “cut off.”
  9. Zephaniah 3:6 tn Heb “corner towers”; NEB, NRSV “battlements.”
  10. Zephaniah 3:6 tn This Hebrew verb (צָדָה, tsadah) occurs only here in the OT, but its meaning is established from the context and from an Aramaic cognate.
  11. Zephaniah 3:6 tn Heb “so that there is no man, without inhabitant.”
New English Translation (NET)

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