Zephaniah 2 OutlineÂ
– Zephaniah asks Israel to turn to the Lord (Zephaniah 2:1-3)
– The Lord will punish Philistia (Zephaniah 2:4-7)
– The Lord will punish Moab and Ammon (Zephaniah 2:8-11)
– The Lord will punish Ethiopia (Zephaniah 2:12)
– The Lord will punish Assyria (Zephaniah 2:13-15)
Zephaniah 2 Summary
In Zephaniah 2:1-3, God called the people of Judah to repent from their sins before he bring judgment on them. If they are willing to humble themselves and abide in his commands, he will turn away his anger and not let enemies attack them.
Zephaniah 2:4-15 talks about the destructions God is going to bring upon the different nations including Philistia, Moab and Ammon, Cush, and Assyria. These nations were located near to each other. Philistia is located on the west. The four important cities of Philistia are mentioned in Zephaniah 2:4-15 including Gaza, Ashkelon, Ashdod and Ekron. Moab and Ammon were situated to the east. The Moabites and Ammonites were descendants of Lot and Lot’s daughters.
Lot’s daughter lay with their fathers and conceived sons later, whom they named Moab and Ben Ammi. God promised that he will make Moab like Sodom and Ammon like Gomorrah because of the wicked things that they do. Cush, also known as Ethiopia today, was situated to the south. Cush is often associated with Egypt. Assyria was situated on the north. Assyria’s capital was Nineveh.
The four nations probably represent the impending judgment of God on the nations around the world in the end time. God wanted to punish these nations because they oppressed God’s people.
Zephaniah 2 Bible Study
1. It is never too late to repent and ask for God’s forgiveness
It is never too late to repent from your sins and turn back to God. Repentance involves hating your past sins and making up your mind to change for the better. Repentance is not just regretting the mistakes you make. It involves taking the effort to change yourself and ensures that you won’t commit the sin again in the future. Every Christian has the right to inherit eternal life. Yet, a person cannot be saved alone by simply believing and accepting Jesus in his heart. If you want to be saved, you must also obey God’s laws and live righteously for him.
2. Seeking God’s help through prayer
As Christian, you should always rely on God to get help for your problem including sickness, financial problem, bad habits and etc. Many Christians don’t recognize the authority in prayer. Instead of praying to God to ask for help, they rely on solutions which they can. For example, if you have a debt problem, you should pray and ask God to help you instead of seeking other solutions. Some people give themselves excuses to give up by believing that nothing can change them because it is too late. If you say this to yourself, you do not believe in God’s promises.
3. Believing in God’s promises
To succeed in changing yourself, you must persistently trust in God’s promises. The Bible is full of God’s promises which you can use to apply to your problems. God can change you no matter how sinful you are. It is important that you take the effort to repent from your sin because only those who are obedient to God will be allowed in his kingdom (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). During the days of Moses, God gave a set of laws for the Israelites to follow including the 10 commandments. Each of the 10 commandments is repeated in the New Testament. Therefore, we must obey the 10 commandments.
4. Anyone who is in Christ is a new creation
2 Corinthians 5:17 says that anyone who is in Christ will be a new creation. After you accepted Jesus, you must die to your own self and live for Jesus. Every bad habit that does not please God should be eliminated from your life. Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit so you should keep yourself holy. To help yourself change, you can devise a plan. You should avoid all sorts of circumstances, substances and etc that tempt you to sin. Planning to succeed is crucial to change yourself. If you did not plan to change, you are planning to fail.
5. Show love and take care of other people’s needs
We must do good so that people can see us as a testimony for Christ. We must love other people and take care of their needs. Loving your neighbor is not just thinking nice about them. It involves taking action to help people who in need. You should help people whenever you can out of your love.