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Zephaniah excites to repentance, foretells the destruction of
the enemies of the Jews, and comforts the pious among them with
promises of future blessings, the restoration of their nation,
and the prosperity of the church in the latter days.
hreatenings against sinners. (1-6) More threatenings. (7-13)
Distress from the approaching judgments. (14-18)
Verses 1-6: Ruin is coming, utter ruin; destruction from the Almighty.
The servants of God all proclaim, There is no peace for the
wicked. The expressions are figurative, speaking every where
desolation; the land shall be left without inhabitants. The
sinners to be consumed are, the professed idolaters, and those
that worship Jehovah and idols, or swear to the Lord, and to
Malcham. Those that think to divide their affections and worship
between God and idols, will come short of acceptance with God;
for what communion can there be between light and darkness? If
Satan have half, he will have all; if the Lord have but half, he
will have none. Neglect of God shows impiety and contempt. May
none of us be among those who draw back unto perdition, but of
those who believe to the saving of the soul.
Verses 7-13: God's day is at hand; the punishment of presumptuous
sinners is a sacrifice to the justice of God. The Jewish royal
family shall be reckoned with for their pride and vanity; and
those that leap on the threshold, invading their neighbours'
rights, and seizing their possessions. The trading people and
the rich merchants are called to account. Secure and careless
people are reckoned with. They are secure and easy; they say in
their heart, the Lord will not do good, neither will he do evil;
that is, they deny his dispensing rewards and punishments. But
in the day of the Lord's judgment, it will clearly appear that
those who perish, fall a sacrifice to Divine justice for
breaking God's law, and because they have no interest by faith
in the Redeemer's atoning sacrifice.
Verses 14-18: This warning of approaching destruction, is enough to
make the sinners in Zion tremble; it refers to the great day of
the Lord, the day in which he will show himself by taking
vengeance on them. This day of the Lord is very near; it is a
day of God's wrath, wrath to the utmost. It will be a day of
trouble and distress to sinners. Let them not be laid asleep by
the patience of God. What is a man profited if he gain the whole
world, and lose his own soul? And what shall a man give in
exchange for his soul? Let us flee from the wrath to come, and
choose the good part that shall never be taken from us; then we
shall be prepared for every event; nothing shall separate us
from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.