Journey Through The Scriptures

The Prophecies of Nahum and Zephaniah

Lesson 7: A Hopeful Future for Jerusalem

(Scripture to Read: Zephaniah 3:1–20)

We can rejoice that our God is ultimately a God of forgiveness and restoration who has a glorious future in store for His people. The prophecy of Zephaniah ends with the promise that God will never abandon His inheritance, Israel. But first the purging and cleansing must come. The people of Judah had no reliable guidance from either the royal palace or even the Temple, for the nation’s rulers, prophets, and priests were corrupt (excepting King Josiah who would institute many reforms). The priests are indicted for treating their sacred responsibilities lightly. Such a careless attitude on the part of Judah’s civil and religious leaders could not help but manifest itself in the faithlessness of the people.

Thankfully, the day of God’s people’s unfaithfulness would be temporary. He would bring about a transformation in which the evil and arrogant would be removed and a remnant of the godly would be preserved. The idea of a remnant of Israel is a regular theme in the prophetic books. After the judgment and suffering of Israel is over, there will be a righteous people who are eager to serve and please God. The realization of Zephaniah’s description of Israel’s future restoration awaits the Messianic age, when God will deal with Israel’s enemies and no evil will ever trouble His people again. So the message of Zephaniah is one of coming judgment, both in the near and the far future, and of God’s glorious restoration of His people.

Study Questions

  1. According to Zephaniah 3:3, how were the rulers of Judah displeasing God?
  2. What does Zephaniah 3:9 prophesy about the nations’ future response to the God of Israel?
  3. According to verse 20, one element of Israel’s restoration will be that God brings them “home” to the land He gave them. How is this prophecy being fulfilled even today?

Something to Think About

Zephaniah 3:20 serves as another witness to the fact that we today are being privileged by God to share in the restoration and ingathering of His ancient people! I am overjoyed to be able to offer Fellowship friends like you opportunities to participate in this fulfillment as we bring the remnants of Israel home via our On Wings of Eagles program. Thank you for sharing in this miracle!