Day 296 – Zephaniah 1-3; Psalm 94; Proverbs 20:16–20; 1 Timothy 2

Zephaniah 1-3

1 The word of the Lord which came to Zephaniah the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hezekiah, in the days of Josiah son of Amon, king of Judah.
2 “Let all things be totally consumed from the face of the earth,” says the Lord. 3 “Let man and cattle cease. Let the birds of the air and the fish of the sea be consumed. I shall drive mankind from the face of the land,” says the Lord. 4 “I shall stretch out My hand against Judah and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And I shall remove the names of Baal from this place and the names of the priests— 5 those who worship the host of heaven on the housetops and who swear oaths by the Lord and who swear oaths by their king— 6 those who turn away from the Lord, neither seeking the Lord nor holding steadfastly to Him.
7 “Fear before the presence of the Lord God, for the day of the Lord is at hand. The Lord has prepared His sacrifice; He has sanctified His guests. 8 And it shall be in the day of the Lord’s sacrifice that I shall take vengeance on the princes and on the king’s house, and upon all clothed with strange garments. 9 And I will openly take vengeance upon all those in the gates in that day, on those who fill the house of the Lord their God with ungodliness and deceit.
10 “And in that day,” says the Lord, “there will be from the gate the sound of shouting from men killing, and a wailing from the second gate along with a great destruction from the hills. 11 Mourn, those of you dwelling here, being cut down in pieces; for all the people are like Canaan. All those exalting in silver are utterly destroyed.
12 “And it shall come to pass in that day that I shall search Jerusalem with a lamp and shall take vengeance on the men having scorned their charge, the ones saying in their hearts, ‘The Lord shall not do any good, nor shall He do any harm.’ 13 And their power will be for plundering and their houses for complete destruction. And they will build houses, but will not live in them; and they will plant vineyards, but will not drink of their wine.
14 “For the great day of the Lord is near. It is near and quick. The sound of the day of the Lord is bitter and harsh. 15 A mighty day of wrath has been appointed: a day of affliction and distress, a day of unseasonable happenings and destruction, a day of gloom and darkness, a day of cloud and vapor, 16 a day of the trumpet and shouting against the fortified cities and the high towers. 17 I will greatly afflict the men, and they will walk as blind men, for they sinned against the Lord; and He shall pour out their blood as dust and their flesh as dung. 18 Their silver and gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord, but the whole land shall be consumed by the fire of His zeal; for He will bring about a speedy end to all those who dwell in the land.
  Judgment against the Nations
1 “O untaught nation, be gathered together and united to one another, 2 before you become like a flower that passes away, before the anger of the Lord comes upon you, before the day of the wrath of the Lord comes upon you! 3 Seek the Lord, all you humble of the earth. Bring about justice, seek righteousness, and give answer to these things, so you may be sheltered in the day of the Lord’s wrath.
4 “For Gaza shall be for pillaging, and Ashkelon shall be for extermination. Ashdod shall be driven out at midday, and Ekron shall be uprooted. 5 Woe to those dwelling on the seacoast, neighbors of the Cretans; O Canaan, land of the Philistines, the word of the Lord is against you, and I shall destroy you out of your dwelling place. 6 Crete shall be a pasture for flocks and folds for sheep. 7 The seacoast shall be for the remnant of the house of Judah; upon them they shall pasture their flocks in the houses of Ashkelon; in the evening they will rest because of the presence of the children of Judah, for the Lord their God has cared for them and has removed their captivity.
8 “I have heard the insults of Moab and the cruel acts of the people of Ammon, by which they have berated My people and exalted themselves against My borders. 9 Therefore, as I live,” says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, “Moab shall be like Sodom, and the sons of Ammon like Gomorrah, and Damascus is like a heap left on the threshing floor and ruined forever; and the remnant of My people will plunder them, and the remnant of My nation will inherit them.” 10 This is their punishment because they have reproached and exalted themselves against the Lord Almighty. 11 The Lord shall show Himself to be against them and shall utterly destroy all the gods of the earth, and they will worship Him, each one from his place, even all the islands of the nations.
12 “O Ethiopians, you are the slain of My sword.” 13 And He shall stretch out His hand to the north and destroy the Assyrian, and make Nineveh a waterless desolation, as a desert. 14 And flocks will graze in the midst of her, even all the wild animals of the land; and the chameleons and hedgehogs will sleep in her coffered ceilings, and wild animals will cry out between her breaches and ravens in her gates, for her loftiness was as a cedar. 15 This is the contemptuous city who dwells in hope, who says in her heart, “I am, and there is none beside me.” How she has even become a desolation, a pasture for wild beasts! Everyone passing through her will hiss and shake his fists.
Woe to Jerusalem
1 Alas, the glorious and ransomed city! The dove 2 did not listen to the voice, nor did she accept correction, nor did she trust in the Lord, and she did not draw near to her God. 3 Her rulers are in her as roaring lions, and her judges are as wolves of Arabia that remain until morning. 4 Her prophets borne by the wind, men who are scoffers, the bearers of the spirit, are men who are scorners. Her priests profane the holy things and live contrary to the law. 5 But the Lord in her midst is just and will never act unjustly. Morning by morning He will give His judgment in the light, and it is not concealed; He does not grant injustice by extortion nor injustice by strife.
6 “I have brought down the arrogant with destruction, and their cornerstones are destroyed. I will make their streets totally desolate, so that none can pass through. Their cities are destroyed because there is no one to live or dwell in them. 7 I said, ‘But fear Me and receive instruction, and you will not be completely uprooted from the face of it—for much vengeance I have taken against her.’ Prepare yourself, rise early in the morning, for every last small grape left for the gleaners has been spoiled.
  8 “On account of this, wait for Me,” says the Lord, “until the day of My rising up as a testimony. For My judgment shall be for the gathering of the nations, to receive kings to pour out upon them all My fierce anger, for all the earth shall be consumed with the fire of My jealousy.
9 “For then I shall transform for the people a language for her generation, for all to call upon the name of the Lord, to serve Him under one yoke. 10 From the boundaries of the rivers of Ethiopia they will bring offerings to Me. 11 In that day, you will not be ashamed of all your practices in which you acted profanely against Me. For at that time I will take away from you the contempt of your arrogance, and you shall no longer be haughty upon My holy mountain. 12 And I will leave among you a gentle and humble people, who will show reverence to the name of the Lord. 13 The remnant of Israel will not commit unrighteousness nor speak vanities; neither will a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth; for they will feed and lie down, and there will be no one terrifying them.”
Promised Blessings for Jerusalem
14 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Cry aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Be glad and rejoice with your whole heart, O daughter of Jerusalem! 15 The Lord has taken away your iniquities and ransomed you from your enemies. The Lord, the King of Israel, is in your midst; you will no longer see any evil. 16 At that time the Lord shall say to Jerusalem, “O Zion, be of good courage; do not let your hands grow slack. 17 The Lord your God is with you. The Mighty One shall save you. He shall bring gladness upon you and will renew you with His love. He will delight over you with joy as in a day of feasting. 18 I shall gather together your broken ones. Alas! who has taken up a reproach against her?
19 “Behold, at that time I will act among you for your sake,” says the Lord. “I will save the oppressed and welcome those being rejected. I will make them a praise and renowned throughout the whole earth. 20 And they shall be put to shame in that day when I do well with you, at the time when I shall receive you, for I will make you praised and renowned among all the peoples of the earth when I return your captivity,” says the Lord.
Psalm 94

1 The praise of an ode by David.
Come, let us greatly rejoice in the Lord;
Let us shout aloud to God our savior;
2 Let us come before His face with thanksgiving,
And let us shout aloud to Him with psalms.
3 For the Lord is a great God,
A great King over all the gods;
4 For in His hand are the ends of the earth,
And the heights of the mountains are His;
5 For the sea is His, and He made it,
And His hands formed the dry land.
6 Come, let us worship and fall down before Him,
And let us weep before the Lord who made us;
7 For He is our God,
And we are the people of His pasture
And the sheep of His hand.
Today, if you hear His voice,
8 “Do not harden your hearts as in the Rebellion,
During the day of testing in the desert,
9 Where your fathers tempted Me;
They tested Me, and saw My works.
10 For forty years I was treated with contempt by that generation,
And I said, ‘They always go astray in their heart,
And they do not know My ways’;
11 So I swore in My wrath,
‘They shall not enter My rest.’ ”
Proverbs 20:16–20

16 Do not love to speak ill,
That you may not be taken away;
17 Open your eyes,
And you will be filled with bread.
18 A double standard is an abomination to the Lord,
And a deceitful scale is not good before Him.
19 Steps are made straight for a man by the Lord,
But how can a mortal man understand His ways?
20 It is a snare for a man to quickly sanctify something of his own things as holy,
Then after making this vow, to come to a change of heart.
1 Timothy 2

1 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men,
2 for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.
3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,
4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
  5 For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus,
6 who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time,
7 for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle—I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying—a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.
Men and Women in the Church
8 I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting;
9 in like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing,
10 but, which is proper for women professing godliness, with good works.
11 Let a woman learn in silence with all submission.
12 And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence.
13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve.
14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression.
15 Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control.

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