Zephaniah 2

A Call to Repentance

1 Gather yourselves, gather together, O shameful nation, 2 before the decree takes effect
Hebrew gives birth
and the day passes like chaff, before the burning anger of the LORD comes upon you, before the Day of the LORD’s anger comes upon you.
3 Seek the LORD, all you humble of the earth, who carry out His justice. Seek righteousness; seek humility. Perhaps you will be sheltered on the Day of the LORD’s anger.

The Judgment on the Philistines

4 For Gaza will be abandoned, and Ashkelon left in ruins. Ashdod will be driven out at noon, and Ekron will be uprooted. 5 Woe to the inhabitants of the seacoast, O nation of the Cherethites! The word of the LORD is against you, O Canaan, land of the Philistines: ‘I will destroy you, and no one will be left.’ 6 So the seacoast will become [a land of] pastures, having caves filled with shepherds and folds with sheep. 7 The coast will belong to the remnant of the house of Judah; there they will find pasture. They will lie down in the evening among the houses of Ashkelon, for the LORD their God will attend to them and restore their captives.

The Judgment on Moab and Ammon

8 I have heard the reproach of Moab and the insults of the Ammonites, who have taunted My people and threatened their borders. 9 Therefore, as surely as I live, declares the LORD of Hosts, the God of Israel, surely Moab will be like Sodom and the Ammonites like Gomorrah— a place of weeds and saltpits, and a perpetual wasteland. The remnant of My people will plunder them; the remainder of My nation will dispossess them. 10 This they shall have in return for their pride, for taunting and mocking the people of the LORD of Hosts. 11 The LORD will be terrifying to them when He starves all the gods of the earth. Then the nations of every shore will bow in worship to Him, each in their own place.

The Judgment on Cush and Assyria

12 You too, O Cushites,
That is, people from the upper Nile region
will be slain by My sword.
13 And He will stretch out His hand against the north and destroy Assyria; He will make Nineveh a desolation, as dry as a desert. 14 Herds will lie down in her midst, creatures of every kind.
Hebrew beasts of every nation
Both the desert owl and screech owl
The precise identification of the animals rendered desert owl and screech owl is uncertain
will roost atop her [pillars] . Their calls will sound from the window, but desolation will lie on the threshold, for He will expose the beams of cedar.
15 This carefree city that dwells securely, that thinks to herself: ‘I [am it] , and [there is] none besides me,’ what a ruin she has become, a resting place for beasts. Everyone who passes by her hisses and shakes his fist.
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