THE DAY OF THE LORD (ZEPHANIAH)
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THE DAY OF THE LORD (ZEPHANIAH). Lesson 9 for June 1, 2013. The prophet Zephaniah was great-great-grandson of King Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family . His preaching together promoted the religious reformation of Josiah, together with other prophets like Jeremiah .

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THE DAY OF THE LORD (ZEPHANIAH)

Lesson 9 for June 1, 2013


The prophet Zephaniah was great-great-grandson of King Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family.

His preaching together promoted the religious reformation of Josiah, together with other prophets like Jeremiah.

His message was very clear: God was going to judge and destroy Jerusalem because of their severe sins. The only way to escape from destruction was to surrender to the Lord and to change their behavior.

That prophecy was fulfilled in Zephaniah’s time, but it also applies to the End Time when Jesus will come back “to give to every one according to his work” (Revelation 22:12)

THE PROPHET AND THE MESSAGE


A DAY OF DARKNESS Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family

“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. 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” (Zephaniah 1:14-15)

As believers, we usually think about “the great day of the Lord” as a day of happiness when we’ll meet our Lord and God. But Zephaniah warns us that that day will be a day of gloominess and darkness.

It will affect the whole Creation (Zephaniah 1:2-3) and will be a day of destruction for two special groups of people:

For the people of God, represented by Judah and Jerusalem in Zephaniah 1:4-18.

For the non-believers, represented by Philistine, Moab, Ammon, Ethiopia and Assyria in Zephaniah 2:4-15.

No one could escape from his own work, money or position in that day(Zephaniah 1:18)


A DAY OF DARKNESS Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family

Why was that day a day of darkness for the people of God?

“Woe to her who is rebellious and polluted, to the oppressing city! She has not obeyed His voice, she has not received correction; she has not trusted in the Lord, she has not drawn near to her God” (Zephaniah 3:1-2)

Despite the light the people of Judah had received, they didn’t trust God and moved away from Him.

That means that being part of the people of God is not a safe-conduct for the divine Judgment.

Salvation is related to our personal relationship with Jesus.


REMAINING SAFE Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family

“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 2:3)

The possibility of survival for the humble who are faithful is expressed through the word perhaps. It means that survival depends solely on divine grace, and grace is something that never should be taken for granted. In the face of impending doom, there is hope for the future from God, who is merciful.


REMAINING SAFE Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family

Zephaniah makes it clear that God’s judgment is not only punitive but corrective. The Lord holds out a promise of shelter for those who seek Him (Zeph. 2:3). Thus, the day of the Lord is more than the end of the world. It is the beginning of the future establishment of God’s rule, which will last forever.


GOD IS HAPPY FOR THE SAVED Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family

“The Lord your God in your midst, the Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing” (Zephaniah 3:17)

Have you ever imagined God joyfully singing because you have accepted His salvation?

The great King, the divine Warrior, will protect and vindicate His people. He will grant them all the benefits of His victory, the one that He won for us at the cross. He will exalt the humble and turn disgrace, suffering, and alienation into an experience of honor, blessings, and His own presence.


Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal familyI address the people of God who today are holding fast their confidence, who will not depart from the faith once delivered unto the saints, who stand amid the moral darkness of these days of corruption. The word of the Lord to you is: “I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in My people.” Can we not here see the paternal love of God expressed to those who hold fast to the faith in righteousness? The closest relationship exists between God and His people. Not only are we objects of His sparing mercy, His pardoning love; we are more than this. The Lord rejoices over His people. He delights in them. He is their surety. He will beautify all who are serving Him with a whole heart with the spirit of holiness. He clothes them with righteousness. He loves those who do His will, who express His image. All who are true and faithful are conformed to the image of His Son. In their mouth is found no guile, for they are without fault before the throne of God”

E.G.W. (Testimonies to Ministers and Gospel Workers, cp. 15, pg. 414)


NAHUM: GOD’S RESPONSE TO INJUSTICE Hezekiah. He was a descendant of the royal family

“The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him” (Nahum 1:7)

“What do you conspire against the Lord? He will make an utter end of it. Affliction will not rise up a second time” (Nahum 1:9)

“Behold, on the mountains the feet of him who brings good tidings, who proclaims peace! O Judah, keep your appointed feasts, perform your vows. For the wicked one shall no more pass through you; He is utterly cut off”(Nahum 1:15)

Although God’s justice seems slow, nothing ultimately can stop it.


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