Page:An Exposition of the Old and New Testament (1828) vol 4.djvu/1081

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AN


EXPOSITION,


WITH


PRACTICAL OBSERVATIONS


OF THE PROPHECY OF


ZEPHANIAH.





This prophet is placed last, as he was last in time, of all the minor prophets before the captivity, and not long before Jeremiah, who lived at the time of the captivity. He foretells the general destruction of Judah and Jerusalem by the Chaldeans, and sets their sins in order before them, which had provoked God to bring their ruin upon them; calls them to repentance; threatens the neighbouring nations with the like destructions, and gives encouraging promises of their joyful return out of captivity in due time, which have a reference to the grace of the gospel. We have, in the first verse, an account of the prophet, and the date of his prophecy, which supersedes our inquiry conceniing them here.



ZEPHANIAH. I.



CHAP. I.

After the title of the book, (v. 1.) here is, I. A threatening of the destruction of Judah and Jerusalem, an utter dc- Btruction, by the Chaldeans, y. 2.. 4. 11. A charge against them for their gross sin, which provoked God to bring that deslruction upon them; (v. 5, 6.) and so he goes on in the rest of the chapter, setting both the judg- ments before them, that they might prevent them or pre- pare for them ; and the sins that destroy them, that Ihey might judge themselves, and justify God in what was brought upon them. 1. They must hold their peace be- cause they had greatly sinned, v. 7. . . 9. But, 2. They shall howl because the trouble will be great. The day of the Lord is near, and it will be a terrible day, v. 10 . . 18. Such fair and timely warning as this did God give to the Jews of the approacliing captivity ; but they har- dened their neck, which made their destruction reme- diless.

1.THE word of the Lord which came JL unto Zephaniah the son of Ciishi, the son of Gcdaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hizkiah, in tlie days of Josiah the son of Anion king of Judah. 2. I will utterly consume all things from off the land, saith the Lord. 3. I will consume man and beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven, and the fishes of the sea; and the stumbling-blocks with the wicked; and I will cut off man from off the land, saith the Lord. 4. I will also stretch out my hand upon TL"dahi 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; 5. And them that worship the host of heaven upon the house-tops ; and them that worship cmd that swear by the Lord, and that swear by Malcham; 6. And them that are turned back from the Lord ; and those that have not sought the Lord, nor inquired for him. Here is, I. Tlie title-page of this book, {v. ].) in which we observe, 1. What authority it has, and wV.', gave it that authority; it is from heaven and not of men. It is the word of the Lord. 2. Who was the instrument of conveying it to the church. His name Zejihaniah, which signifies the serz'ant of the Lord, for God revealed fits secrets to /lis servants the firo- jihets. The pedigree of other prophets, whose ex- traction we have an account of, goes no further back tlian their father, except Zecharias, whose grand- father also is named, but this of Zephaniah goes back four generations, and the highest mentioned is Hizkiah; it is the very same name in the original with that of Hezekiah king of Judah, (2 Kings xviii. 1.) and refers, probably, to him; if so, our prophet, being lineally descended from that pious prince, and being of the royal family, could with the better grace reprove the folly of the king's chil- dren as he does, v. 8. 3. When this ijrophet pro- phesied; in the days of Josiah king of Judah, who reigned well, and in the twelfth year of his reigii