Zephaniah

From the Greek Septuagint text as was used by First Century Christians
A prophecy against Jerusalem, its surrounding countries, and the Assyrians,
which was written around 640-BCE.

Chapter 1

1 These are the words of Jehovah that came to ZephaniAh (the son of Cushi, grandson of GedaliAh, and great-grandson of AmariAh, the son of HezekiAh) in the days of JosiAh (the son of Amon) the king of Judah.

2 'When it comes to being in want,
Let all on the face of the earth be in want,' says the Lord!
3 'Let men and cattle all be in want;
Let things that fly in the sky be in want,
As well as the fish in the sea.

'May the irreverent all become ill,
Over their lawless deeds;
For, from the land, I'll remove them,' says the Lord.

4 'Then, over Judah, I'll stretch out my hand,
And on those who live in JeruSalem.
The name of BaAl, I'll remove from this place,
Along with the names of his priests,
And the things dedicated [to him].

5 '[I'll remove] those who bow on their roofs,
Before the [stars] in the skies,
As well as those who bow low,
And swear their oaths by their masters,
And those swearing oaths by their king.
6 For, they have all turned from Jehovah,
And they are not seeking their Lord…
They refuse to stick closely [to Him].

7 'So, be cautious before Jehovah, [your] God;
For the Day of the Lord is now near!
Jehovah has readied His [great] sacrifice,
And His Chosen One, He's made holy.

8 'For the day of sacrifice will arrive,
When He'll take vengeance on the rulers,
As well as on the house of the king,
And on all those who wear foreign clothes.

9 'When I take vengeance, you'll see it;
For, it will come to the gates in that day,
Of those filling the House of Jehovah their God,
With their treacherous, ungodly ways.

10 'And in that day,' said the Lord;
'There'll come the sounds of cries from the gates…
[The sounds] of people being stabbed through.
And from the second quarter, women will scream,
As the battles rage on in the hills.

11 'So wail, all you who now dwell there…
In this place that will be cut to pieces.
For [as happened] to the people of CanaAn;
Those who carry silver will be slaughtered!

12 'And in that day;
I'll search JeruSalem through with a lamp,
And take vengeance upon all the people,
Who've paid no attention to my orders,
And on those who have said in their hearts,
Jehovah will do neither evil nor good!

13 'Then the power to ravage will be given,
And to bring all the houses to ruin.
For, you will build homes in which you won't live,
And you will plant vineyards, but not drink the wine.

14 'The Lord's Great Day is now near;
Yes, it will come very soon!
And the sounds of the Day of the Lord,
Are ordered to be bitter and harsh.

15 'It is a great day of His anger;
A day of distress and affliction;
A day of misery and extinction;
A day of dimness and darkness;
A day of clouds and [thick] fog.

16 'It's a day of the blowing of trumpets,
And cries against the walled cities,
As well as against their high corners.
17 For, I will squeeze out the people,
And they will walk like the blind;
Since, it's against Jehovah that they have sinned.

'I'll pour out their blood like the dust,
And [pour] their flesh out like dung.
18 Then their silver and gold will not save them,
In the Day of the Rage of Jehovah.
For the fire of His zeal will consume the whole land.

'In a diligent way, He will bring it,
Upon all who dwell in this land.

Chapter 2

1 'Gather and be bound together,
You nation that cannot be taught,
2 Before this day's passed like a blossom…
Before [God's] wrath comes upon you…
Before the Day of [God's] anger and rage.

3 'Seek Jehovah, you meek of the earth…
Seek what is righteous and fair!
Give truthful answers to all,
And tell them to hide in the Day of God's wrath.

4 'For, it will bring plundering to Gaza,
And AshKelon will be wiped away.
AshDod will fall at mid-day,
And EkRon will soon be uprooted.

5 'Woe to you in the lands by the sea…
All you who have [moved there] from Crete.
For the Word of Jehovah's against you
(You Philistines in CanaAn's land),
And I'll destroy the places where you dwell.

6 '[Your lands] will become pastures for flocks…
They'll be havens for sheep.
7 And the lands of those who dwell by the sea,
Will be given to the remnant of Judah.

'AshKelon's homes will then become [pens],
Where, in the afternoons, sheep will rest.
Then Jehovah will visit sons of Judah,
And from their captivity, He'll return them.

8 'For I've heard the scorning of Moab,
And of the ill-treatment by AmMon's sons,
When they berated my people,
And forced themselves over my borders.

9 'Because of this; As I live,
Says IsraEl's God, Jehovah of armies;
Moab will soon be like Sodom,
And the sons of AmMon, like GomorRah.

'Damascus will also come to its end,
And be heaps of salt through the age!
By the remnants of My people, they'll be plundered…
They'll be inherited by the remnants of My nation.

10 'This will happen to them for their insolent ways…
Because they berated [my people],
And because they put themselves higher,
Than Jehovah, the Almighty God.

11 'Then, before them, the Lord will appear,
To destroy all the gods of those nations and lands,
And they all will bow down before Him…
Each man within his own land,
As will the gentiles that live on the islands…
12 And the Ethiopian people,
Will also be slain by my broadsword!

13 'Then I'll stretch out my hand toward the north,
And the Assyrians will all be destroyed,
Turning Nineveh into a desert.

14 'Flocks will then feed in her midst,
Along with wild beasts of the land.
Chameleons and hedgehogs will live in her fretwork,
Wild beasts will roar in her ditches,
And crows will nest in her gates.

'But because she has been a tall cedar,
15 This city that has paid no attention,
Still hopes that she can survive.

'For, she has said in her heart:
I am, and none will replace me!
But, it will soon all be gone…
It will be a place for wild beasts,
So that all who then travel through her,
Will whistle and just wring their hands.

Chapter 3

1 'And you, O great city of [JeruSalem]…
O my dove, whom I've ransomed;
2 To His voice, you just wouldn't listen,
And His instructions, you just wouldn't follow…
Upon Jehovah, you wouldn't rely…
You refused to turn back to your God.

3 'Now your rulers are like roaring lions…
And your judges are like Arabian wolves,
Who leave nothing for the next morning.

4 'Your prophets are all wanton liars,
[Whose words] are blown by the winds.
[God's] Holy Things are profaned by your priests,
Who have no respect for His Laws.

5 'But Jehovah has been righteous among you,
And no way has He done what's unjust.
Each morning, He brings light and justice,
For nothing is hidden from Him.
And though He doesn't put up with injustice,
These wicked ones have been shameless.

6 'So, I will tear down their proud ones,
And destroy the places where they hide.
I'll wipe away all their roads,
So no one will go through their cities.
Then, all their towns will have vanished…
No one will dwell there, for they won't exist.

7 'I told you to fear Me and do as I say,
And then you would not be destroyed.
So, prepare for the vengeance that I'm bringing to her…
It's best to rise early and reap,
For even her gleanings will be ruined,
said Jehovah.

8 'Then, I'll pass judgment on the gathering of nations;
And I'll pour My rage out on their kings…
All My anger and rage,
And the fire of My zeal will consume them.

9 'Then, to that generation, I'll bring just one tongue,
So all can call on the Name of the Lord,
And serve him under one yoke.

10 'From the ends of Ethiopia's rivers,
I'll welcome back those who were scattered;
And they'll bring sacrifices to Me.

11 'In that Day, you'll not be disgraced,
By all the disrespect you once showed Me.
For I'll remove your insolence and careless attitudes,
And about My Holy Mountain, you'll boast.

12 'I'll leave the meek and humble among you
(Those who respect the Name of the Lord).
13 And this remnant of IsraEl will not be unrighteous…
Of vain things, they will not speak,
And no way will their tongues then deceive.
So, they will eat as they lie in their beds,
And no one will make them afraid.

14 'Rejoice, O daughter of Zion…
Shout aloud, O JeruSalem's daughter…
Whole-heartedly [call out in] joy…
JeruSalem's daughters; shout in delight!

15 'For Jehovah has removed your offenses,
And ransomed you from your enemy's hands.
IsraEl's King, Jehovah, is with you;
So you'll not see bad anymore!

16 'To JeruSalem, I'll say in that time:
Be courageous, O Zion,
And don't let your hands become weak!
17 For Jehovah, your God, is among you…
The Almighty has brought you salvation!

'He will spread gladness among you,
And because He cares, He'll revive you;
He'll also be glad and delighted with you,
As He was in the days of your holiday feasts.

18 'Then I'll gather back those who are broken,
And bring woe upon any who scorn them!

19 '{Look!} In that time, I will act on your behalf…
I will save all those who were pressured,
And take back those whom I once pushed away.
Then I'll make them [a people] of boasting and fame,
In every place throughout the whole earth.

20 'Your enemies will all be disgraced in that time,
And I'll do whatever you think to be good;
Because, in that time, I'll accept you…
I'll make you famous and reasons to boast,
Before the rest of the peoples on earth.
Before their eyes, I'll return you,
From the places where they held you captive,' said the Lord.

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