The Word of God: Zephaniah 2:1-15 – November 4, 2020

1Gather together, gather,
O shameless nation,
2before you are driven away
like the drifting chaff,
before there comes upon you
the fierce anger of the Lord,
before there comes upon you
the day of the Lord’s wrath.
3Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land,
who do his commands;
seek righteousness, seek humility;
perhaps you may be hidden
on the day of the Lord’s wrath.
4For Gaza shall be deserted,
and Ashkelon shall become a desolation;
Ashdod’s people shall be driven out at noon, and Ekron shall be uprooted.

5Ah, inhabitants of the sea coast,
you nation of the Cherethites!
The word of the Lord is against you,
O Canaan, land of the Philistines;
and I will destroy you until no inhabitant is left.
6And you, O sea coast, shall be pastures,
meadows for shepherds
and folds for flocks.
7The sea coast shall become the possession
of the remnant of the house of Judah,
on which they shall pasture,
and in the houses of Ashkelon
they shall lie down at evening.
For the Lord their God will be mindful of them
and restore their fortunes.

8I have heard the taunts of Moab
and the revilings of the Ammonites,
how they have taunted my people
and made boasts against their territory.
9Therefore, as I live, says the Lord of hosts,
the God of Israel,
Moab shall become like Sodom
and the Ammonites like Gomorrah,
a land possessed by nettles and salt-pits,
and a waste for ever.
The remnant of my people shall plunder them,
and the survivors of my nation shall possess them.
10This shall be their lot in return for their pride,
because they scoffed and boasted
against the people of the Lord of hosts.
11The Lord will be terrible against them;
he will shrivel all the gods of the earth,
and to him shall bow down,
each in its place,
all the coasts and islands of the nations.

12You also, O Ethiopians,
shall be killed by my sword.

13And he will stretch out his hand against the north,
and destroy Assyria;
and he will make Nineveh a desolation,
a dry waste like the desert.
14Herds shall lie down in it,
every wild animal;
the desert-owl and the screech-owl
shall lodge on its capitals;
the owl shall hoot at the window,
the raven croak on the threshold;
for its cedar-work will be laid bare.
15Is this the exultant city
that lived secure,
that said to itself,
“I am, and there is no one else”?
What a desolation it has become,
a lair for wild animals!
Everyone who passes by it
hisses and shakes the fist.

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