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Reformed Fruit

Zepheniah 3:1-13

Judgement against Jerusalem

3 Doom, obstinate one, the defiled one, the violent city. 2 She listened to no voice; she accepted no discipline. She didn’t trust in the Lord, nor did she draw near to her God. 3 The princes in her midst are roaring lions. Her judges are wolves of the evening; they leave nothing for the morning. 4 Her prophets are reckless, men of treachery. Her priests pollute that which is holy; they do violence to the Instruction. 5 The Lord is righteous in her midst. He does nothing unjust. Morning by morning he renders justice, but the unrighteous one knows no shame. 6 I will cut off nations; their towers will be destroyed; I will devastate their streets. No one will pass through. Their cities will be laid waste. There will be no person, no inhabitant left. 7 I said, “Surely, she will fear me; she will take instruction so that her habitation won’t be cut off because of everything I did to her.” However, they rose early to corrupt their deeds. 8 Therefore, wait for me, says the Lord, wait for the day when I rise up as a witness, when I decide to gather nations, to collect kingdoms, to pour out my indignation upon them, all the heat of my anger. In the fire of my jealousy, all the earth will be devoured.

9 Then I will change the speech of the peoples into pure speech, that all of them will call on the name of the Lord and will serve him as one. 10 From beyond the rivers of Cush, my daughter, my dispersed ones, will bring me offerings. 11 On that day, you won’t be ashamed of all your deeds with which you sinned against me; then I will remove from your midst those boasting with pride. No longer will you be haughty on my holy mountain, 12 but I will cause a humble and powerless people to remain in your midst; they will seek refuge in the name of the Lord. 13 The few remaining from Israel won’t commit injustice; they won’t tell lies; a deceitful tongue won’t be found on their lips. They will graze and lie down; no one will make them afraid.


It was obvious by the time Zepheniah wrote the reformed the king had put in place years before was not going to work. It didn’t bear fruit. God acted instead through four new ways: prophets, covenant laws, preserving nature, and defeating enemies. Zephaniah believe that not seeing God at work in those things was a kind of willful ignorance.


  • How much is seeing God at work a choice?

  • God works in new ways and through new pathways. How might we be more available to see God at work?


God of the outcast, help us to see where others have something important to say and to see them in your light. Amen.

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