From Handbook to Scripture, Day 202
READING: ZEPHANIAH 3
Like the majority of Old Testament prophets, Zephaniah develops the twin themes of condemnation (1:1–3:8) and consolation (3:9–20). The bulk of the book concerns the primary theme of judgment, and like Joel before him, Zephaniah’s central image of judgment is “the day of the Lord.” This image appears 23 times in different forms in this short book of three chapters, and it refers to a judgment that is universal (1:2–3; 3:8), imminent (1:14), and wrathful (1:15–17). But there is another side of the day of the Lord that points to restoration (3:9–13) and blessing (3:14–20).
Zephaniah is a powerful and condensed book that uses vivid and gripping imagery to communicate an unrelenting message about the day of judgment that would come not only to Judah and the nations that surrounded Judah, but will also come in the future to all the nations of the earth.
Prayer: Lord, I thank You that You exult over Your loved ones with joy, that You are quiet in Your love, and that You rejoice over Your people with shouts of joy.
Meditation passage: verses 5, 9, 15, 17