Zephaniah 1:13–2:3 (NKJV)
13 Therefore their goods shall become booty,
And their houses a desolation;
They shall build houses, but not inhabit them;
They shall plant vineyards, but not drink their wine.”
Here, Zephaniah completes his list of punishments of Jerusalem and Judah with a declaration that they goods will be taken, their houses laid desolate. They will not reap the fruit of their labor at all.
14 The great day of the Lord is near;
It is near and hastens quickly.
The noise of the day of the Lord is bitter;
There the mighty men shall cry out.
15 That day is a day of wrath,
A day of trouble and distress,
A day of devastation and desolation,
A day of darkness and gloominess,
A day of clouds and thick darkness,
16 A day of trumpet and alarm
Against the fortified cities
And against the high towers.
17 “I will bring distress upon men,
And they shall walk like blind men,
Because they have sinned against the Lord;
Their blood shall be poured out like dust,
And their flesh like refuse.”
18 Neither their silver nor their gold
Shall be able to deliver them
In the day of the Lord’s wrath;
But the whole land shall be devoured
By the fire of His jealousy,
For He will make speedy riddance
Of all those who dwell in the land.
The prophecy changes tone slightly here, to describe the punishment in even stronger tones. Verses 15 and 16 show the various ways in which this judgment will show up. Verses 17 and 18 show how utterly helpless the men will be in this judgment. Distress, blindness, death, and disposal are ahead for them all. Their wealth will be worthless against this onslaught. They will be devoured.
2:1 Gather yourselves together, yes, gather together,
O undesirable nation,
2 Before the decree is issued,
Or the day passes like chaff,
Before the Lord’s fierce anger comes upon you,
Before the day of the Lord’s anger comes upon you!
3 Seek the Lord, all you meek of the earth,
Who have upheld His justice.
Seek righteousness, seek humility.
It may be that you will be hidden
In the day of the Lord’s anger.
Zephaniah warns the people of God to gather together to pray and seek the Lord so that they may be spared during this day. Those who have lived by the Lord’s commands might be hidden or saved from this coming judgment. This is good advice to the people of God today. Seek the face of the Lord and live. Do not get caught up in the culture of sin. Be strong in your faith and refuse to bow to the gods of this world. Rise up and be counted as a person of faith in God.