Zephaniah 1

"God's Judgment"

This Bible Study is written by Roger Christopherson, and made available with written permission by http://www.theseason.org

Zephaniah 1:1 "The word of the LORD which came unto Zephaniah the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hizkiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah."

Zephaniah was the last of the prophets preceding the captivity. He prophesied in the days of King Josiah, of the House of Judah. This prophecy took place between 518 and 513 B.C.

"Zephaniah" in the Hebrew means, "hidden of Yahveh", or "He whom Yahveh hath hidden". This verse gives us Zephaniah's parentage back four generations.

Zephaniah 1:2 "I will utterly consume all things from off the land, saith the Lord."

Has this come to pass yet? No, it is yet to come, for this prophecy is given for the "day of the Lord", and just prior and following.

Zephaniah 1:3 "I will consume man and beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven, and the fishes of the sea, and the stumblingblocks with the wicked; and I will cut off man from off the land, saith the Lord."

This is utter destruction, and the time will come in the near future for all evil to be consumed, and along with it the flesh of both man and animal. It will happen at the sounding of the seventh trumpet, because we are told by Paul in I Corinthians 15:50-52, that in an instant, all flesh will be changed. This is the time God will completely cleanse the earth, as well as all the pollution the flesh contributes.

The "stumbling blocks with the wicked", are all the earthly forms of idolatry, and deception. This cleansing will be at the Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, and on that day the Antichrist's [Satan's] reign on earth will end. The entire world order he has ruled over will also be finished, and never again be formed.

The "chief stumbling block" is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. This is because most Christians will be so anxious to see Christ, they will be joyful to follow the first Christ to come. That first Christ is the false Christ, the Antichrist who is Satan. Included in those stumbling blocks are the fallen angels, who returned to earth with the Antichrist.

Zephaniah 1:4 "I will also stretch out mine hand upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and I will cut off the remnant of Baal from this place, and the name of the Chemarims with the priests;"

The "remnant of Baal" includes all those who are actively involved in that religious order or the Antichrist", and God will make an end of those involved as well as all the idolatry used to satisfy their worship.

The "Chemarims" are called the "Kemarim" in the Hebrew text, and they were the black robed, or cassocked leaders in the religious forms. These priests or ministers are promoting all forms of idolatry acts and their doctrines are of Satan, the Antichrist, while traditions are heathen and will deceive the children of God. They are not appointed by God, nor are they anointed of God, yet they lie, and present themselves, and their message as being of God.

Zephaniah 1:5 "And then that worship the host of heaven upon the housetops; and them that worship and that swear by the Lord, and that swear by Malcham;"

This is a warning by God against those who worship any form of the "Hosts of heaven." These hosts of heaven are prayers to the angelic beings, the saints who have died and gone to be with the Lord, and also any created form of stars or universal bodies. We are not to worship the creation, but the Creator. He is the only one worthy of our worship.

Those that "swear by Malcham", are those who have a king god, or an image of what they imagine their king god to be, and worship that form. Another form of swearing by Malcham, is when one claims to be a Christian, and says that God told them this, or that, and God did not; then in God's name, gets other Christians to do, or give him something. This is easy today for these rip-off artist to work, because most of the Christian world, including the pastors, and Biblically illiterate.

Zephaniah 1:6 "And them that are turned back from the Lord; and those that have not sought the Lord, nor enquired for him."

God is also naming those who have not prepared themselves, through the study of His Word, and are satisfied in their Biblical ignorance. They are named because their neglect has placed them in the center of the Great Apostasy [falling away]. God has told us in Revelation 9:1-5 that because of their lack of knowledge and preparation, He [God] will turn them all over to Satan [the Antichrist] and his "locust army" of fallen angels.

Zephaniah 1:7 "Hold thy peace at the presence of the Lord God: for the day of the Lord is at hand: for the Lord hath prepared a sacrifice, he hath bid [consecrated] his guests."

The "day of the Lord" is coming and that is what this book is addressing. This warning is also given in Amos 6:10. God is telling us here that He is going to separate His guest, and have a special feast. This feast is a marriage supper, for our Lord Jesus Christ and His virgin bride {His Church]. There are going to be many who are not prepared to attend that feast. Many will come to participate with their credentials, and claim to be part of that bride of Christ, but they will be rejected.

Jesus addresses them in Matthew 24:19; "And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!" To be "with child", or to "give suck" is in the spiritual sense, for it means that you as the virgin bride of Christ have taken another man. That adulterous act was with Satan the Antichrist, and you have taken his mark, his name and his number.

Then in Matthew 24:20; But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the Sabbath day." This shows us that you would have been taken out of season, for the time of the harvest is in the fall. We are warned to have patience and wait for the true Christ, that is what our gospel armor is all about. So that we are not deceived into doing the work, or worshipping the fake christ, and not waiting on the True Christ.

Zephaniah 1:8 "And it shall come to pass in the day of the Lord's sacrifice, that I will punish the princes, and the king's children, and all such as are clothed with strange [foreign] apparel."

You will need the correct apparel on, to attend this wedding feast, of the Lamb. That apparel is your robes, washed in the blood of the Lamb, and unstained through mixing yourself with the Antichrist, and any part of his religious world system.

Zephaniah is addressed to those Christians of the Elect, who are living on earth, and in the flesh body, just prior to and on "the day of the Lord". That day is the last day of this flesh earth age, and the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Your dress for this feast is your gospel armor, however, many think they have their armor on, when in fact they are preparing themselves to be Satan's warriors. This will be done by their faith in the Rapture doctrine.

"The Lord's sacrifice" [wedding feast of the Lamb] will take place only after Satan has walked the earth as the Antichrist, and your relationship to him has been determined, and then the Antichrist is removed to the pit. It is after this, at the seventh trumpet, that Jesus Christ will return and your participation is then set. It will be cut and dry as to whether you are part of that bride of Christ.

Remember, this discussion is only addressing those who are living in the flesh body, and are forced to stand against Satan, and wait on the True Christ; or whether they have yielded themselves in ignorance to the deceptions of Satan.

Zephaniah 1:9 "In the same day also will I punish all those that leap on the threshold, which fill their masters' houses with violence and deceit."

This loses somewhat in the translation, because "to leap on the threshold", was a very religious practice. This is done when a religious leader [priest or minister] sends his servants [flock] out in the community to steal sheep [people] from the other congregations, or churches. These "preachers of Malchem" [the Antichrist] strive to drag in these potential members to increase the size, for the sake of money, prestige, position, or any of a number of thing in their church games. It is definitely not for the saving of souls for God's kingdom.

Zephaniah 1:10 "And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord, that there shall be the noise of a cry from the fish gate, and an howling from the second, and a great crashing from the hills."

The "fish gate" is the north gate at the temple in Jerusalem, and at that gate, is where Satan will sit when he rules the world as the Antichrist. This is referred to in Isaiah 14:12-15. The noise that will come crashing down is the destruction that will come when Christ's feet touch down on the Mount of Olives. Then the whole earth will shake.

The "second" refers to this new city the Antichrist and his children have built. That city will come crashing down, and swept clean.

Zephaniah 1:11 "Howl, ye inhabitants of Kaktesh, for all the merchant people are cut down; all they that bear silver are cut off."

"Maktesh" means "mortar, or the place where people come to grind corn. It's the grinding pot, which is the city of Babylon in the time of this earth age. These two, "Maktesh" and Babylon of the Antichrist are compared to each other by God. God is telling us that those people that make up the commerce part of the Antichrist's religious system will be "cut down" in His grinding pot.

On that day of the Lord you will either be part of "Miktesh" and in trouble with our Lord, or you will be of God's elect, who are waiting patiently and victoriously for His return. Notice also how the loan sharks, and those dealing in usury practices are addressed. God will have a special place for them, when He comes to do His cleaning up.

Zephaniah 1:12 "And it shall come to pass at that time, that I will search Jerusalem with candles, and punish the men that are settled on their lees; that say in their heart, The Lord will not do good, neither will he do evil."

To "search Jerusalem with candles" refers to the fact that He will not let one of His own get away from Him. He knows each one, and every last one is precious to Him.

One who "settles on his lees", is a person who is happy and comfortable in his sins. Where and when the action of Satan is going on, he has to be there. The ones that say to themselves, and believe in their mind that "the Lord will not do good, neither will he do evil", are atheists. Some may even call themselves Christians, but in their heart they don't believe the bible is any more than a story book. They don't believe Jesus was God, nor do they believe His blood had anything to do with their sin. They just don't believe God is real.

God has a special place for them in His judgment.

Zephaniah 1:13 "Therefore their goods shall become a booty, and their houses a desolation: they shall also build houses, but not inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, but not drink wine thereof."

This is directed at those luke warm Christians, for they are going to lose everything they have, including their works given to the Lord. God is telling them here, I am not going to accept their works or their sacrifices. The reason they will not benefit from anything they do in this day, is that the whole period will only be five months long [Revelation 9:5, 10].

When the political beast falls from his mortal head wound [one world political system collapses], the Antichrist will come with his false peace and prosperity. The whole world will believe him, and start their empire building. Yet before they get finished, the end of this age will come to a close, before they have reaped their harvest, or lived in their homes, or any other thing they were doing. All except the elect; for they know what is happening.

Zephaniah 1:14 "The great day of the Lord is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the Lord: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly."

"It is near" is given two times for emphasis. The "day of the Lord is near, and those warning signs are here, and now.

Zephaniah 1:15 "That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness,"

"That day" is like no other day this earth age has ever seen, and it will come very shortly. The entire bible is aimed at warning us of the coming destruction, and it's consequences that will fall on all those who are deceived. This verse shows the completeness of the end that will come to all evil elements [rudiments] that are on the earth, when the seventh trumpet sounds, and our Lord returns.

The darkness is for the void of truth, and the lies and deception that exists on that "day of the Lord."

Zephaniah 1:16 "A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers [battlements]."

This "day of the trumpet", is the final trumpet, and that day will bring an end to this flesh earth age. The "high towers" are to give warning that an enemy is approaching, however it is to late, for even the high towers are down, and most calling themselves Christians will be part of the enemy, through their ignorance of God's warning in His Word.

Zephaniah 1:17 "And I will bring distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the Lord: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung."

They will walk like "blind men", because they are blind to God's truth. When you are biblically illiterate, you are spiritually blind and dead. In such a condition, God says that they will be as dung and dust in the street; in the physical body. They will awaken in a spiritual body on the same day, facing a thousand years of teaching and discipline. God's grace is not offered to them in the millennium age, for they will then be judged by their works.

Zephaniah 1:18 "Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the Lord's wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy riddance [an end, yea a terrible end] of all them that dwell in the land."

This is all happening in that one day; the "day of the Lord". Our Lord is going to take out all His jealousy, and wrath on the one day. God is mad at all those false prophets and rip-off artists, those who took his bride and made harlots out of them with the False Christ.

When Jesus Christ gets through with His house [earth] cleaning on that day, this earth age will be over, as will all trace of the flesh age. Then you will stand before Him in victory, singing the song of Moses; or in great shame. Now is the time for preparation.


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