Zephaniah 1

The identity of Zephaniah; The Lord will consume everything and everyone 1
False worshippers in Judah and Jerusalem to be cut off 4
A feast prepared; some wear strange clothing 7
Howl inhabitants and merchants; punishment is coming 11
The day of the Lord, the day of wrath, distress 14
Text
Comments
.1 ¶ The word of the LORD which came unto Zephaniah the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hizkiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah.   Zephaniah son of Most prophets are identified only by their father. The fact that Zephaniah traces back four generations to Hizkiah leads us to see this Hezekiah as the King of Judah (with different spelling) 2ki1801.
.2  I will utterly consume all things from off the land, saith the LORD.
.3  I will consume man and beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven, and the fishes of the sea, and the stumblingblocks with the wicked; and I will cut off man from off the land, saith the LORD.
  2 - Utterly consume all things Although directed to the kingdom of Judah, the prophecy is for the final end of the earth as we know it at the end of the thousand years. The end of Judah and Jerusalem resembles the final destruction. All things were not consumed at the destruction of Jerusalem before the captivity. Compare re2101, re2009b, ob16, je0423.
.4  I will also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the name of the Chemarims with the priests;   Cut off Baal never belonged there.
  Name of ... Or "names of the idolatrous priests along with the priests." (NASB). Both the pagan religious leaders and those of Judaism were corrupt.
.5  And them that worship the host of heaven upon the housetops; and them that worship and that swear by the LORD, and that swear by Malcham;   Worship the host Astrology is still practiced today by all who place confidence in or play with horoscopes.
  wear by the Lord and ... by Malcham When serving as missionaries in Haiti, my wife and I found it interesting that people could participate in Voodoo ceremonies all night and stop at the church in the morning for mass. The two were in harmony.
 6  And them that are turned back from the LORD; and those that have not sought the LORD, nor enquired for him.   The lives of those who reject true religion or Christ do not need to be reviewed in judgment jn0318.
.7 ¶ Hold thy peace at the presence of the Lord GOD: for the day of the LORD is at hand: for the LORD hath prepared a sacrifice [or "slaughter"], he hath bid [Or "consecrated"] his guests.
 8  And it shall come to pass in the day of the LORD'S sacrifice, that I will punish the princes, and the king's children, and all such as are clothed with strange apparel.
.9  In the same day also will I punish all those that leap on [or "over"] the threshold, which fill their masters' houses with violence and deceit.
 10  And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD, that there shall be the noise of a cry from the fish gate, and an howling from the second, and a great crashing from the hills.
  7 - Hold thy peace The same time is described in Psalm 46 ps04610. This is also the time of silence when the Lord is in His temple hab0220. This time is also the "day of the Lord" with punishment for the wicked.
  7 - Lord hath prepared a [slaughter] We see this as a feast with animals butchered because guests are invited.
  9 - Those [who] leap [over] the threshold Perhaps equivalent to jn1001. In the symbolism, we may see them as teachers who enter the temple without divine approval or who followed a pagan ritual. Possibly not touching the threshold was thought to release them from guilt for crimes. Compare 1sa0505.
  9 - Violence ... deceit Compare the virtues of the Messiah is5309.
.11  Howl, ye inhabitants of Maktesh, for all the merchant people are cut down; all they that bear silver are cut off.
.12  And it shall come to pass at that time, that I will search Jerusalem with candles, and punish the men that are settled on their lees: that say in their heart, The LORD will not do good, neither will he do evil.
 13  Therefore their goods shall become a booty, and their houses a desolation: they shall also build houses, but not inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, but not drink the wine thereof.
 12 - I will search Jerusalem Investigation for judgment.
  12 - The Lord will not do good, neither Many modern Christians tend to be this way. The idea of punishment and rewards seems unreal.
.14 ¶ The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly.
.15  That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness,
 16  A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers.
.17  And I will bring distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the LORD: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung.
.18  Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD'S wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land.
  15 - Near and hasteth The city of Jerusalem would be burned. The end-time meaning is even more significant. This is the time of trouble.
  15 - Day of wrath See ro0205.
Zephaniah 1
Parallels in Matthew 22
An interesting comparison to the story of the man without a wedding garment
 7a Hold thy peace at the presence of the Lord GOD: for the day of the LORD is at hand:   Notice the Lord's presence before the punishment in the day of the Lord. We see the time again at zp-v12 below
 7b for the LORD hath prepared a sacrifice [or "slaughter"],  he hath bid [Literally "consecrated"] his guests. The day of atonement symbolizes the Lord's work of cleansing but the invitation to "come" may represent the earlier forgiveness.  To understand the two, see on  le1630. Those who refuse are cut off le2329.  4 .... Behold, I [the king] have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. Remember that Jesus' parable illustrates two calls, first to the Jewish nation, then to the Gentiles. Thus verses 4 and 9. It's the same food preparation.
 8a And it shall come to pass in the day of the LORD'S sacrifice, that I will punish the princes, and the king's children, This was the chosen nation.  7  ... He [the king] was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers [who refused the invitation to the marriage].
  Jesus apparently divided the invitation for the two groups.  9  Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. Those invited this time were not the elect the chosen nation. They were the Gentiles.
 10 And the wedding was furnished with guests.
 8b and [punish] all such as are clothed with strange [foreign] apparel.  11  And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment:
 12  And he [the  king] saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless.
 10 And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the LORD, that there shall be the noise of a cry from the fish gate, and an howling from the second, and a great crashing from the hills.  13  Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.
.12  And it shall come to pass at that time, that I will search Jerusalem with candles. . . .   This is judgment with investigation. Jerusalem is searched (Zephaniah) the king inspects his guests (Matthew) and finds someone who didn't think he needed Christ's robe of righteousness. Perhaps he skipped the process at the doorway v9.
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