Period: c.640- 627 B.C.
Title: The English, Hebrew, Greek and Latin versions all name this book after Zephaniah, the prophet whose ministry is recorded in the book. The name Zephaniah means “The Lord hides” or “The Lord protects.”
Summary: Zephaniah prophesied during the reign of King Josiah, who was responsible for a great religious reform. This reform followed the wicked reigns of Kings Manasseh and Amon, who led the nation into various forms of idolatry. Zephaniah pronounces inescapable judgments against Jerusalem for their sins and exhorts national repentance. He further speaks of “the day of the Lord,” when God will intervene to judge sin.
Introduction: Chapter 1:1
A warning of impending judgment: Chapter 1:2-18
- The judgment announced: 1:2-6
- The judgment defined: 1:7-13
- The judgment described: 1:14-18
An exhortation to immediate repentance: Chapter 2:1 – 3:8
- An invitation to repentance: 2:1-3
- A detailed warning of judgment: 2:4-3:8
A promise of future blessing: Chapter 3:9-20
- The promise of conversion: 3:9-13
- The promise of restoration: 3:14-20