Summarize what you read in one paragraph:
In Zephaniah, God warns of His coming judgement against Judah and Jerusalem due to the idolatry the people were committing by continuing to worship Baal and Molech. He calls them to repent before it’s too late. He also pronounces judgement on Philistia, Moab, Ammon, Cush and Assyria for their conduct. Zephaniah ends with God promising to leave a faithful remnant whose fortunes will be restored.
What is one key verse?
Zephaniah 1:4-6 (NLT)
“I will crush Judah and Jerusalem with my fist and destroy every last trace of their Baal worship. I will put an end to all the idolatrous priests, so that even the memory of them will disappear.
5 For they go up to their roofs and bow down to the sun, moon, and stars. They claim to follow the Lord, but then they worship Molech,too. 6 And I will destroy those who used to worship me but now no longer do They no longer ask for the Lord’s guidance or seek my blessings.”
Zephaniah 3:16-20 (NLT)
On that day the announcement to Jerusalem will be, “Cheer up, Zion! Don’t be afraid! 17 For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs.”
18 “I will gather you who mourn for the appointed festivals; you will be disgraced no more.
19 And I will deal severely with all who have oppressed you. I will save the weak and helpless ones; I will bring together those who were chased away. I will give glory and fame to my former exiles, wherever they have been mocked and shamed. 20 On that day I will gather you together and bring you home again. I will give you a good name, a name of distinction, among all the nations of the earth as I restore your fortunes before their very eyes. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
How does what you read change your vision of God?
It reminds me of how seriously God takes not only the sin of idolatry but also people being complacent in dealing with sin in general. Zeph 1:12 (NLT) “I will search with lanterns in Jerusalem’s darkest corners to punish those who sit complacent in their sins. They think the Lord will do nothing to them, either good or bad.” It also reminds me of how much God looks to care for and bless those who do follow him wholeheartedly.
How does what you read change your vision of yourself or others?
It made me really stop and examine myself to see if I have let other things take the place of God in my heart. I had to ask myself: Am I devoting more time to career growth than I am to spiritual growth? Am I getting more security from my bank account than my relationship with God? Do my fears and emotions dictate my behavior more than the Word of God?
How will you Go With God because of this reading? (What is an action step?)
I really want to focus on being humble and letting other spiritual people help me in the areas that I need to grow so I can avoid being described by Zeph 3:2 (NIV): She obeys no one, she accepts no correction.She does not trust in the Lord, she does not draw near to her God. I plan to ask both my husband and the women in my discipleship group for input this week and to make a more regular habit of asking for input going forward.
Where did you see Jesus in these chapters? (What made you think about Jesus?)
Zeph 3:17 made me think of Jesus. “For the Lord your God is living among you. He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears.” God’s love as shown through Jesus really does calm all my fears, because it helps me to understand how deeply He cares for me. Also, having relationships with other disciples who are living their faith by loving like Jesus has helped me maintain a sense of calm regardless of how crazy 2020 has been.