1 When Jo siah, son of Am mon, reigned in Juda, the word of Yahweh was addressed to Zephaniah, the son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Ama riah, son of Heze kiah. He said:
2 “I will wipe out ev erything from the face of the earth. 3 I will put an end to humans and animals, to the birds of heaven and the fish of the sea. I will wipe humankind from the face of the earth. 4 I will raise my hand to punish Judah and all the inhabitants of Jeru salem; and I will bring out of that place all the remnants of Baal with their priests. 5 I will also drive away those who kneel on the roofs to worship the stars, those who invoke at the same time Yahweh and Mil com, 6 those who have deserted Yahweh and no longer look toward him or consult him.
7 Silence before Yahweh! For his day is near: Yahweh has prepared a sacrifice and consecra ted his invited guests. 8 Yahweh says, “On the day that sacrifice is made, I will call to account the officials, the king’s sons and all who clothe themselves in foreign fashion. 9 I will also give the corresponding punishment to everyone who jumps over the threshold without stepping on it and fills the House of their Lord with the fruits of their crimes and thefts.
10 On that day, a great cry will be heard from the Fish Gate, a wail from the new city and a frightful noise from the nearby hills. 11 Wail, inhabitants of the lower district, for all the traders have disappeared, all who counted the silver have perished.
12 On that day I will explore Jeru salem with torches, and call to account those who have sunk in their vices and think in their hearts: Well, Yahweh does not do good or evil! 13 Their riches will be pillaged, their houses demolished.
13 You have built houses but will not live in them. You have planted vineyards but you will not taste the wine.”
A day of wrath
14 The great day of the Lord is near,
14 it already comes.
14 Its sound is so frightening
14 that even the valiant cries out in terror.
15 It is a day of wrath, anguish and distress;
15 a day of destruction and devastation,
15 of gloom and darkness;
15 it is a day of dark clouds
16 and fog when the trumpet sounds
16 the call for battle,
16 and the enemy attacks the fortresses
16 and the high fortified towers.
17 I will bring misfortune on these people and they will grope along like the blind. Their blood will be poured out like dust and their remains will lie like dung.
18 Neither their gold nor their silver will rescue them when the anger of God burns against them. The land of Judah will be burned in the fire of his zeal when he destroys even the traces of all who dwell in that land.