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Bible Study: The Book of Zephaniah

The Book of Zephaniah

“If anyone wishes all the secret oracles of the prophets to be given in a brief compendium, let him read through this brief Zephaniah.” —Martin Bucer (1528)

We know very little about Zephaniah the son of Cushi. His name means Jehovah hides, i.e., “protects” or “treasures.” He liked to put dark against light and light against dark, painting a very gloomy picture of the Day of the Lord, yet giving a very bright foreglimpse of Israel’s coming glory and the conversion of the Gentiles to the Lord. As Bible Commentator Hewitt points out, the Prophet Zephaniah minced no words: There is no compromise in the language used. He denounces sin and announces judgment with perfect fearlessness and closes his book with a song full of inspiration and hope looking forward to the inauguration of the Millennial Kingdom.

Zephaniah ministered during the reign of Josiah (640–609 B.C.). The book was probably written between 621 and 612 B.C.

Zephaniah probably prophesied from Jerusalem (“this place,” 1:4). The historical background of his prophecy will be found in 2 Kings 21–23 and the early chapters of Jeremiah: Continue Reading Here

Bible Study: The Book of Habakkuk

Habakkuk 

“Habakkuk was not a self-centered person concerned only with the comfort and safety of himself and his family. As a true patriot, he was deeply distressed by the moral and spiritual conditions about him. He loved his nation, and knew it was moving ever closer to the precipice of destruction by continuing to break the laws of God. Therefore two anguished questions burst forth from his lips: How long? and Why?”     —Richard W. De Haan

Habakkuk 2:4 has the distinction of being quoted three times in the NT. In Acts 13:40-41 the Apostle Paul ended his sermon in the synagogue at Antioch, Pisidia, by quoting Habakkuk 1:5, another illustration of how an apparently obscure and short OT book can have rich doctrinal content. Also, compare Habakkuk 3:17-18 with Philippians 4:4, 10–19. Both the prophet and the apostle could rejoice in their God no matter what the outward circumstances of life might be. Continue Reading Here