Zephaniah 3:1-7 King James Version (KJV)
3 Woe to her that is filthy and polluted, to the oppressing city!
2 She obeyed not the voice; she received not correction; she trusted not in the Lord; she drew not near to her God.
3 Her princes within her are roaring lions; her judges are evening wolves; they gnaw not the bones till the morrow.
4 Her prophets are light and treacherous persons: her priests have polluted the sanctuary, they have done violence to the law.
5 The just Lord is in the midst thereof; he will not do iniquity: every morning doth he bring his judgment to light, he faileth not; but the unjust knoweth no shame.
6 I have cut off the nations: their towers are desolate; I made their streets waste, that none passeth by: their cities are destroyed, so that there is no man, that there is none inhabitant.
7 I said, Surely thou wilt fear me, thou wilt receive instruction; so their dwelling should not be cut off, howsoever I punished them: but they rose early, and corrupted all their doings.
Zephaniah 3:1-7 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
The Future of Jerusalem
3 Jerusalem, your people fought against God. They hurt other people, and you have been stained with sin. 2 They didn’t listen to me or accept my teachings. Jerusalem didn’t trust the Lord. Jerusalem didn’t go to her God. 3 Jerusalem’s leaders are like roaring lions. Her judges are like hungry wolves that come in the evening to attack the sheep—and in the morning nothing is left. 4 Her prophets are always making secret plans to get more and more. Her priests have treated holy things as if they were not holy. They have done bad things to God’s teachings. 5 But the Lord is still in that city, and he continues to be good. He does not do anything wrong. He continues to help his people. Morning after morning he makes good decisions for them. Not a day passes without his justice. He never gives a decision that is crooked or is something to be ashamed of.
6 The Lord says, “I have destroyed whole nations and their defense towers. I destroyed their streets and now no one goes there anymore. Their cities are empty—no one lives there anymore. 7 I tell you this so that you will learn a lesson. I want you to fear and respect me. If you do this, your home will not be destroyed, and I will not have to punish you the way I planned.” But those evil people only wanted to do more of the same evil things they had already done!