By Leslie M. Grant

“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 NKJV

The name Zephaniah means “treasured of Jehovah.” He prophesied in the days of Josiah, a godly king whose faith and energy had produced a marked revival in Israel. But this book takes no notice of this revival. Instead, it launches immediately into a declaration of the sweeping judgment of God, when He utterly consumes everything in the land. The apparent revival was outward only, that is, the actual condition of the nation at heart remained the same as before. This became evident immediately after Josiah died. Whatever seeming improvement developed, God had already ruled that His judgment would go out in every direction, with Judah and Jerusalem being the center of it.

However, the book also dwells on the effects of these judgments in producing great blessing in a coming day. The people will be turned to a pure language, and the Lord God will save that afflicted nation. He will be in the midst of the once guilty city, quieting it in His love and rejoicing over her. His long labor with her will be finished. The mourning of His heart over her will be turned to exultant, or triumphant, singing.

Attention to this prophecy will surely preserve us from the prevalent error that present-day, occasional revivals may forestall the judgment of God on professed Christianity. No! The coming of the Lord for His Church is imminent, and His judgments on the earth will quickly follow.