RELEVANCY of ZEPHANIAH for TODAY
Some might say that Zephaniah, an Old Testament prophetic book, has no relevance to us in this “age of grace”. Some might say that, but …“Let God be true, and every man a liar” (Romans 3:4)
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Tim 3:16)
“For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” (Romans 15:4)
“Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come.” (1 Cor 10:11)
This church age in which we live IS “the end of the ages”, even back two thousand years ago, according to that Scripture and others. However, I do think that we are very close to the Coming of the LORD. But whether or not, who can know the end of their lifespan?
FULL PROPHECY STILL TO COME
One might say, like so many trying to convince us that the OT is irrelevant except as history, that all Zephaniah was talking about has already happened. One might say that, but …“Let God be true, and every man a liar”
It is true that Zephaniah was warning the people of Judah of the Babylonian takeover of Judah and captivity which did occur not long afterward.
However, some of these verses are decidedly future applications. They have not yet been fulfilled in their entirety. For example,
1. FALSE GODS REDUCED TO NOTHING
Zeph 2:11 “For the LORD will be awesome to them, For He will reduce to nothing all the gods of the earth.”
This has never happened yet! Idolatry is and has been rampant throughout the earth since the tower of Babel. Idolatry is a root cause of the evils of the earth, whereas worship of the LORD blesses a land. I look forward to the day when every idol is obliterated because only YHWH deserves the glory and because idolatry brings oppression to people. You may see this is the world today, where people bow down to idols, there is gross oppression.
“Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love.” (Jonah 2:8)
“The sorrows of those who run after another god shall multiply; their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names on my lips.” (Psalm 16:4)
2. A PURE LANGUAGE
The fact that Classical Hebrew is being revived in our day, perhaps is the beginning of the fulfillment of this prophecy: “For then I will restore to the peoples a pure language.” (Zeph 3:9)
Ultimately, perhaps this Scripture in its fullest manifestation will also include the eradication of the names of every false god from our everyday speech. That should be interesting. A new name for the planets, the days of the weeks, etc. Our everyday speech is infused with the names of false gods. We live in modern day Babylon and communication using these names is almost unavoidable. Even the most victorious day on the Christian calendar may be known by a pagan name. (This is debatable depending on whom you believe!) Some have tried to rename Easter as “Resurrection Sunday” which is better. However, why don’t we call it by it’s real name: the Feast of Firstfruits which it is called in the Hebrew Scriptures (Leviticus 23:9-14).
“But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.” (1 Cor 15:20-23)
3. NO MORE DISASTER FOR ISRAEL
Zeph 3:15 “The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst, You shall see disaster no more.”
How can anyone claim that this verse has come to pass fully? Certainly, the Jewish people and the Christian people have been persecuted relentlessly throughout history!
But we, the Israel of God and the Church, are the apple of God’s eye, His covenant peoples. God is faithful and will bring the remnant of Israel, who will “do no unrighteousness” (v 3:13) into the glorious promises of which Zephaniah prophesied!
Both Israel and the Church will are destined for glory!
So, establishing the relevancy of this book, let’s see what the prophet spoke back around 625 BC.
Continued> DOOM & GLOOM & HIDDEN GEMS