Zephaniah 1

The effects of God’s universal judgment (verses 2, 3) upon Judah and Jerusalem are described in detail (verses 4-13). The chapter ends with a terrifying picture of the day of the Lord (verses 14-18).

  1. On whom particularly will God’s judgment fall according to this chapter, and why? Can you think of any modern counterparts to the sinful actions described?
  2. Having considered the reasons for judgment, now ponder the accompaniments of the day of the Lord in verses 14-18. What can we learn from this about God’s view of sin? Cf. Prov. 11:4; Ezek. 7:19.


  1. Verse 4. To ‘cut off… the names of’ means to ‘obliterate the memory of’.
  2. Verse 5. ‘Molech’: a foreign deity of this or similar name was worshiped in several of the countries surrounding Judah.
  3. Verse 12. ‘Like wine left on its dregs’: cf. Jer. 48:11. This picture, taken from the wine-trade, refers to the sedimentation of wine. The idle, stagnant, muddy-minded men in Jerusalem, who thought that they could settle down in their godless indifference, will be punished.