Good News at Last
Ask the heavenly Father to place in your heart a sense of the goodness he wants you to have.
Read Zephaniah 3:14-20
 Sing, Daughter Zion; shout aloud, Israel! Be glad and rejoice with all your heart, Daughter Jerusalem!  The LORD has taken away your punishment, he has turned back your enemy. The LORD, the King of Israel, is with you; never again will you fear any harm.  On that day they will say to Jerusalem, “Do not fear, Zion; do not let your hands hang limp.  The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”  “I will remove from you all who mourn over the loss of your appointed festivals, which is a burden and reproach for you.  At that time I will deal with all who oppressed you. I will rescue the lame; I will gather the exiles. I will give them praise and honor in every land where they have suffered shame.  At that time I will gather you; at that time I will bring you home. I will give you honor and praise among all the peoples of the earth when I restore your fortunes before your very eyes,” says the LORD. Scripture taken from the THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, NIV Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhat does Zephaniah foretell for Jerusalem after judgment?
There could hardly be a greater contrast in Scripture than that between the first and last chapters of Zephaniah. Here in the final verses of the book, metaphors of deliverance pile on top of each other. Fears will be dissolved (15). Helpless hands will be empowered (16). The lame will be rescued (19). The scattered will be gathered and the lost will be brought home (20). The One who is mighty to save will delight in his people; he will rejoice over us with singing; and he will “quiet us with his love” (17). What do these words mean to you, especially if you are the sort who panics easily? It is the language of a loving parent with a fractious child, something that every loving mother is skilled at employing for her little ones. Our loving Father does it too. The final phrase suggests that this future prospect is to be like a great homecoming. Here the feast is of God’s grace, the gifts of his bounty. Nothing has to be earned, nothing deserved. It comes from the Lord’s covenant faithfulness, his boundless generosity.
Thinking about Scripture as a whole, what can you look forward to in this life and the next as a redeemed child of God?
Let the thought of God’s infinite grace and kindness overwhelm you, and open your mouth to him in heartfelt praise.
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