Zephaniah 3: Judgment on Jerusalem and the Nations
1 Woe to her who is rebellious and defiled, the oppressing city!
2 She listens to no voice; she accepts no correction. She does not trust in the LORD; she does not draw near to her God.
3 Her officials within her are roaring lions; her judges are evening wolves that leave nothing till the morning.
4 Her prophets are fickle, treacherous men; her priests profane what is holy; they do violence to the law.
5 The LORD within her is righteous; he does no injustice; every morning he shows forth his justice; each dawn he does not fail; but the unjust knows no shame.
6 "I have cut off nations; their battlements are in ruins; I have laid waste their streets so that no one walks in them; their cities have been made desolate, without a man, without an inhabitant.
7 I said, 'Surely you will fear me; you will accept correction. Then your dwelling would not be cut off according to all that I have appointed against you.' But all the more they were eager to make all their deeds corrupt.
8 "Therefore wait for me," declares the LORD, "for the day when I rise up to seize the prey. For my decision is to gather nations, to assemble kingdoms, to pour out upon them my indignation, all my burning anger; for in the fire of my jealousy all the earth shall be consumed.
The Conversion of the Nations
9 "For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech, that all of them may call upon the name of the LORD and serve him with one accord.
10 From beyond the rivers of Cush my worshipers, the daughter of my dispersed ones, shall bring my offering.
11 "On that day you shall not be put to shame because of the deeds by which you have rebelled against me; for then I will remove from your midst your proudly exultant ones, and you shall no longer be haughty in my holy mountain.
12 But I will leave in your midst a people humble and lowly. They shall seek refuge in the name of the LORD,
13 those who are left in Israel; they shall do no injustice and speak no lies, nor shall there be found in their mouth a deceitful tongue. For they shall graze and lie down, and none shall make them afraid."
Israel's Joy and Restoration
14 Sing aloud, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem!
15 The LORD has taken away the judgments against you; he has cleared away your enemies. The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst; you shall never again fear evil.
16 On that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: "Fear not, O Zion; let not your hands grow weak.
17 The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.
18 I will gather those of you who mourn for the festival, so that you will no longer suffer reproach.
19 Behold, at that time I will deal with all your oppressors. And I will save the lame and gather the outcast, and I will change their shame into praise and renown in all the earth.
20 At that time I will bring you in, at the time when I gather you together; for I will make you renowned and praised among all the peoples of the earth, when I restore your fortunes before your eyes," says the LORD.
Things to think about…
1.Look what happens when people in positions of power and responsibility don't care. The priests, the prophets, the scribes, both king and people alike did not care less about the fact that they had the law of God and that they were rejecting it and that imminent judgement was upon them. Zeph 3:1-5. Where does this apathy and rebellion come from? If you don't fear the principle, perhaps you will fear the judgement. But should it really come to that. How hard the human heart is! Look at the scope of the judgement that Zephaniah says is coming, vs 8. This is global folks! Our responsibility is to be faithful priests of God and Ambassadors for Christ, telling them that there is a judgement to come. The good news of course is that God has graciously opened up an opportunity for people to accept the judgement that has fallen upon His Son, Jesus.
2.Zephaniah looks forward to the glory of the gospel, and even beyond when they will all speak one language. We do this in Christ, but more than that I believe there will be a literal fulfilment that all the redeemed will speak one united language, Zeph 3:9. The promise is that those who are left of Israel at that time (Jews) will know the true Messiah.
3.Jerusalem has and will be in the future a place of turmoil right up to the coming of Christ. But look at the promises Zephaniah speaks of regarding Jerusalem, Zeph 3:14-20. God will restore fulfilling the prophecies concerning the Jewish people, this can only happen if they receive Christ, the true Messiah then the promises of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob will be fulfilled., vs 20.
CBC's Vision :- To be a growing biblical church community, significantly influencing our city and beyond, through intentional outreach, fulfilling our mission.
1.Please pray for 5 young people in their 20's who heard the gospel on Sunday morning. They were given the gospel. Please continue to pray for Harry, Bec, Joe, Mary and Anthony. They have all said they will be back.
2.Pray that the rain forecast this week will send healing and relief to the areas affected by the bushfires have so far burned more than 12 million acres, they have killed at least 27 people, 20 from NSW alone 2000 homes have been destroyed. Please consider supporting CBC's Malacoota bushfire appeal. You may give now directed in the announcements.
3.Pray for continued follow up rain across Australia – especially NSW and Vic.
4.Ministry planning and events calendar for this year.
5.Young girl (5 yo) Amelia lost her fight for life with a congenital heart disorder. Daisy is her mother. Please pray for Daisy who is hurting and does not know the Lord. Phil Weston has more details.
6.Our outreach initiatives as well as the Axiom podcast.
7.Sunday's message on Acts 26 "Paul's testimony and ours" by Jay.
8.Finish "Bean Redeemed" coffee shop and podcast area.
9.Church finances to meet our expenses.
10.Our City and Country – Pray for revival over our city and the leadership of our country.
11.Some aren't well Tessa Torrington and John Ward. Pray for relief and healing.
1.Made contact with David Jeffrey of Malacoota yesterday and he has an amazing story of faith to tell. More about that on Sunday.
2.Quite a few no people on Sunday – pray as they settle into CBC. Please continue to welcome them and get to know them as you can.
3.Rain falling in drought affected areas of Qld, NSW and Vic today and forecast for the rest of this week.
4.Recharge youth planning night this Friday – pray for Jay, leaders, youth and their parents/carers.
5.Safe return of those travelling from holidays.
6.Praise God for what He will do as we begin and plan for ministry this year at CBC.
7.Unity, peace and Christ's love over our church.
1.Willey group - Hosting, morning tea next Sunday morning.
2.Axiom services start on 2nd of February
3.Bushfire appeal – no target has been set but CBC will be raising money towards fireys and bush fire victims. You can donate directly through our "Give" tab on the website http://www.chuwarbaptist.com/give . Label your offering "Bushfire appeal"
4.Picnic at Kholo Gardens – 12pm at Kholo Gardens after church – 26th Jan – Australia Day. Bring a cook, cold meats, salads. There are BBQ's there but they are notoriously slow to heat up. Best to bring food ready to eat.
5.All Kids@Church and Recharge parents will be on a roster to teach their children and attend throughout the year. Rosters will be finalized this week. See Helen to get the email for when you are rostered on.
6.Recharge youth starts at 7pm, Fri 31st Jan for all High Schoolers.
7.Kids@church – for all primary aged children starts 10am Sunday 2nd Feb.
January's catechism question...
Question. 8. What is the second petition?
Answer. "Your kingdom come."
Bible Reference – Matt.6:10; Luke 11:2.
"Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known" Jer 33:3