New International Version - UK

Zephaniah 2

Judah and Jerusalem judged along with the nations

Judah summoned to repent

1Gather together, gather yourselves together,
    you shameful nation,
before the decree takes effect
    and that day passes like windblown chaff,
before the Lord’s fierce anger
    comes upon you,
before the day of the Lord’s wrath
    comes upon you.
Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land,
    you who do what he commands.
Seek righteousness, seek humility;
    perhaps you will be sheltered
    on the day of the Lord’s anger.

Philistia

Gaza will be abandoned
    and Ashkelon left in ruins.
At midday Ashdod will be emptied
    and Ekron uprooted.
Woe to you who live by the sea,
    you Kerethite people;
the word of the Lord is against you,
    Canaan, land of the Philistines.
He says, ‘I will destroy you,
    and none will be left.’
The land by the sea will become pastures
    having wells for shepherds
    and sheepfolds for flocks.
That land will belong
    to the remnant of the people of Judah;
    there they will find pasture.
In the evening they will lie down
    in the houses of Ashkelon.
The Lord their God will care for them;
    he will restore their fortunes.[a]

Moab and Ammon

‘I have heard the insults of Moab
    and the taunts of the Ammonites,
who insulted my people
    and made threats against their land.
Therefore, as surely as I live,’
    declares the Lord Almighty,
    the God of Israel,
‘surely Moab will become like Sodom,
    the Ammonites like Gomorrah –
a place of weeds and salt pits,
    a wasteland for ever.
The remnant of my people will plunder them;
    the survivors of my nation will inherit their land.’

10 This is what they will get in return for their pride,
    for insulting and mocking
    the people of the Lord Almighty.
11 The Lord will be awesome to them
    when he destroys all the gods of the earth.
Distant nations will bow down to him,
    all of them in their own lands.

Cush

12 ‘You Cushites,[b] too,
    will be slain by my sword.’

Assyria

13 He will stretch out his hand against the north
    and destroy Assyria,
leaving Nineveh utterly desolate
    and dry as the desert.
14 Flocks and herds will lie down there,
    creatures of every kind.
The desert owl and the screech owl
    will roost on her columns.
Their hooting will echo through the windows,
    rubble will fill the doorways,
    the beams of cedar will be exposed.
15 This is the city of revelry
    that lived in safety.
She said to herself,
    ‘I am the one! And there is none besides me.’
What a ruin she has become,
    a lair for wild beasts!
All who pass by her scoff
    and shake their fists.

Footnotes

  1. Zephaniah 2:7 Or will bring back their captives
  2. Zephaniah 2:12 That is, people from the upper Nile region

Amplified Bible

Zephaniah 2

Judgments on Judah’s Enemies

1Gather yourselves together [in repentance], yes, gather [in submission],
O nation without shame,

Before the decree takes effect [and the time for repentance is lost]—
The day passes like the chaff [whirled by the wind]—
Before the burning and fierce anger of the Lord comes upon you,
Before the day of the wrath of the Lord comes upon you.

Seek the Lord [search diligently for Him and regard Him as the foremost necessity of your life],
All you humble of the land
Who have practiced His ordinances and have kept His commandments;
Seek righteousness, seek humility [regard them as vital].
Perhaps you will be hidden [and pardoned and rescued]
In the day of the Lord’s anger.


For [this is the fate of the Philistines:] Gaza will be abandoned
And Ashkelon a desolation;
[The people of] Ashdod will be driven out at noon [in broad daylight]
And Ekron will be uprooted and destroyed.

Woe (judgment is coming) to the inhabitants of the seacoast,
The nation of the Cherethites [in Philistia]!
The word of the Lord is against you,
O Canaan, land of the Philistines;
I will destroy you
So that no inhabitant will be left.

So the [depopulated] seacoast shall be pastures,
With [deserted] meadows for shepherds and folds for flocks.

The [a]seacoast will belong
To the remnant of the house of Judah;
They will pasture [their flocks] on it.
In the [deserted] houses of Ashkelon [in Philistia] they [of Judah] will lie down and rest in the evening,
For the Lord their God will care for them;
And restore their fortune [permitting them to occupy the land].


“I have heard the taunting of Moab
And the revilings of the sons of Ammon,
With which they have taunted My people
And become arrogant against their territory [by violating Israel’s boundary and trying to seize its land].

“Therefore, as I live,” declares the Lord of hosts,
The God of Israel,
[b]Moab will in fact become like Sodom
And the [c]sons of Ammon like Gomorrah,
A land possessed by nettles and salt pits,
And a perpetual desolation.
The remnant of My people will plunder them
And what is left of My nation will inherit them [as their own].”

10 This they shall have in return for their pride, because they have taunted and become arrogant against the people of the Lord of hosts. 11 The Lord will be terrifying and awesome to them, for He will starve all the gods of the earth; and all the coastlands of the nations will bow down and worship Him, everyone from his own place.

12 
“You also, O Ethiopians, will be slain by My sword.”
13 
And the Lord will stretch out His hand against the north
And destroy Assyria,
And He will make Nineveh a desolation [a wasteland],
Parched as the desert.
14 
Flocks will lie down in her midst,
All the animals which range in herds;
Both the pelican and the short-eared owl
Will roost on the top of Nineveh’s pillars.
Birds will sing in the window,
Desolation will be on the threshold;
For He has uncovered the cedar paneling.
15 
This is the joyous city
Which dwells carelessly [feeling so secure],
Who says in her heart,
“I am, and there is no one besides me.”
What a desolation she has become,
A lair for [wild] animals!
Everyone who passes by her will hiss [in scorn]
And wave his hand in contempt.

Footnotes

  1. Zephaniah 2:7 This is one of the more than twenty-five details of Bible prophecy about the promised land that has been literally fulfilled. See note Ezek 26:14 for information about a similar fulfillment of Bible prophecy with regard to Tyre.
  2. Zephaniah 2:9 The descendants of Lot and his elder daughter (Gen 19:37).
  3. Zephaniah 2:9 Descendants of Lot and his younger daughter (Gen 19:38).