New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures Reference Bible

Chapters:  1  2  3 


1 The word of Jehovah that occurred to Zephaniah the son of Cushi the son of Gedaliah the son of Amariah the son of Hezekiah in the days of Josiah+ the son of Amon+ the king of Judah:

2 “I shall without fail finish everything off the surface of the ground,” is the utterance of Jehovah.+

3 “I shall finish off earthling man and beast.+ I shall finish off the flying creature of the heavens and the fishes of the sea,+ and the stumbling blocks with the wicked ones;+ and I will cut off mankind* from the surface of the ground,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah.* 4 “And I will stretch out my hand against Judah and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem,+ and I will cut off from this place the remaining ones of the Baal,*+ the name of the foreign-god priests* along with the priests,+ 5 and those who are bowing down upon the roofs to the army of the heavens,+ and those who are bowing down,+ making sworn oaths to Jehovah+ and making sworn oaths by Malcam;*+ 6 and those who are drawing back from following Jehovah+ and who have not sought Jehovah and have not inquired of him.”+

7 Keep silence before the Sovereign Lord Jehovah;+ for the day of Jehovah is near,+ for Jehovah has prepared a sacrifice;+ he has sanctified+ his invited ones.

8 “And it must occur on the day of Jehovah’s sacrifice that I will give attention to the princes, and to the sons of the king,+ and to all those wearing foreign attire.+ 9 And I will give attention to everyone that is climbing upon the platform* in that day, those who are filling the house of their masters* with violence and deception.+ 10 And there must occur on that day,” is the utterance of Jehovah, “the sound of an outcry from the Fish Gate,+ and a howling from the second quarter,+ and a great crashing from the hills.+ 11 Howl,+ YOU inhabitants of Maktesh,* for all the people who are tradesmen have been silenced;+ all those weighing out silver have been cut off.

12 “And it must occur at that time that I shall carefully search Jerusalem with lamps,+ and I will give attention to the men* who are congealing upon their dregs+ [and] who are saying in their heart, ‘Jehovah will not do good, and he will not do bad.+ 13 And their wealth must come to be for pillage and their houses for a desolate waste.+ And they will build houses, but they will not have occupancy;+ and they will plant vineyards, but they will not drink the wine of them.+

14 The great day+ of Jehovah* is near.+ It is near, and there is a hurrying [of it] very much.+ The sound of the day of Jehovah is bitter.+ There a mighty man* is letting out a cry.+ 15 That day is a day of fury, a day of distress and of anguish,+ a day of storm and of desolation, a day of darkness and of gloominess,+ a day of clouds and of thick gloom, 16 a day of horn* and of alarm signal,+ against the fortified cities and against the high corner towers.+ 17 And I will cause distress to mankind,* and they will certainly walk like blind men;+ because it is against Jehovah that they have sinned.+ And their blood will actually be poured out like dust,+ and their bowels like the dung.+ 18 Neither their silver nor their gold will be able to deliver them in the day of Jehovah’s fury;+ but by the fire of his zeal the whole earth* will be devoured,+ because he will make an extermination, indeed a terrible one,* of all the inhabitants of the earth.”+

2 Gather yourselves together, yes, do the gathering,+ O nation not paling in shame.*+ 2 Before [the] statute gives birth to [anything],+ [before the] day has passed by just like chaff, before there comes upon YOU people the burning anger of Jehovah,+ before there comes upon YOU the day of Jehovah’s anger,+ 3 seek Jehovah,+ all YOU meek* ones of the earth,+ who have practiced His own judicial decision.* Seek righteousness,+ seek meekness.*+ Probably*+ YOU may be concealed* in the day of Jehovah’s anger.+ 4 For, as regards Gaza, an abandoned [city] is what she will become;+ and Ashkelon is to be a desolate waste.+ As regards Ashdod,+ at high noon they will drive her out;+ and as regards Ekron, she will be uprooted.+

5 “Woe to those inhabiting the region of the sea, the nation of Cherethites!*+ The word of Jehovah is against YOU people. O Canaan, the land of the Philistines, I will also destroy you, so that there will be no inhabitant.+ 6 And the region of the sea must become pasture grounds,+ [with] wells for shepherds and stone pens for sheep. 7 And it must become a region for the remaining ones of the house of Judah.+ Upon them they will feed. In the houses of Ashkelon, in the evening, they will lie stretched out. For Jehovah their God* will turn his attention to them+ and certainly gather back the captive ones of them.”+

8 “I have heard the reproach by Moab+ and the abusive words of the sons of Ammon,+ with which they have reproached my people and kept putting on great airs against their territory. 9 Therefore, as I am alive,”+ is the utterance of Jehovah of armies, the God of Israel, “Moab herself will become just like Sodom,+ and the sons of Ammon+ like Gomorrah, a place possessed by nettles, and a salt pit, and a desolate waste, even to time indefinite.+ The remaining ones of my people will plunder them, and the remnant of my own nation will take possession of them.+ 10 This is what they will have instead of their pride,+ because they reproached and kept putting on great airs against the people of Jehovah* of armies.+ 11 Jehovah will be fear-inspiring against them;*+ for he will certainly emaciate all the gods of the earth,*+ and people will bow down to him,+ each one from his place, all the islands* of the nations.+

12 “YOU also, YOU Ethiopians,*+ YOU yourselves will be people slain by my sword.*+

13 “And he will stretch out his hand toward the north, and he will destroy Assyria.+ And he will make Nineveh a desolate waste,+ a waterless region like the wilderness. 14 And in the midst of her, droves will certainly lie stretched out, all the wild animals of a nation.*+ Both pelican and porcupine+ will spend the night right among her pillar capitals.+ A voice will keep singing in the window. There will be devastation at the threshold; for he will certainly lay bare the very wainscoting.+ 15 This is the exultant city that was sitting in security,+ that was saying in her heart, ‘I am, and there is nobody else.’+ O how she has become an object of astonishment, a place for the wild animals to lie stretched out! Everyone passing along by her will whistle; he will wag his hand.”+

3 Woe to her that is rebelling* and polluting herself, the oppressive city!+ 2 She did not listen to a voice;+ she did not accept discipline.+ In Jehovah she did not trust.+ To her God* she did not draw near.+ 3 Her princes in the midst of her were roaring lions.+ Her judges were evening wolves that did not gnaw [bones] till the morning.+ 4 Her prophets were insolent, were men of treachery.+ Her priests themselves profaned what was holy; they did violence to [the] law.+ 5 Jehovah was righteous in the midst of her;+ he would do no unrighteousness.+ Morning by morning he kept giving his own judicial decision.+ At daylight it did not prove lacking.+ But the unrighteous one was knowing no shame.+

6 “I cut off nations; their corner towers were desolated. I devastated their streets, so that there was no one passing through. Their cities were laid waste, so that there was no man,* so that there was no inhabitant.+ 7 I said, ‘Surely you will fear me; you will accept discipline’;+ so that her dwelling might not be cut off+—all that I must call to account against her.+ Truly they acted promptly in making all their dealings ruinous.+

8 “‘Therefore keep yourselves in expectation of me,’+ is the utterance of Jehovah, ‘till the day of my rising up* to [the] booty,*+ for my judicial decision is to gather nations,+ for me to collect together kingdoms, in order to pour out upon them my denunciation,+ all my burning anger; for by the fire of my zeal all the earth* will be devoured.+ 9 For then I shall give to peoples the change to a pure language,*+ in order for them all to call upon the name of Jehovah,+ in order to serve him shoulder to shoulder.*+

10 “From the region of the rivers of Ethiopia* the ones entreating me, [namely,] the daughter of my scattered ones, will bring a gift to me.+ 11 In that day you* will not be ashamed because of all your dealings with which you transgressed against me,+ for then I shall remove from the midst of you your haughtily exultant ones;+ and you will never again be haughty in my holy mountain.+ 12 And I shall certainly let remain in the midst of you a people humble and lowly,+ and they will actually take refuge in the name of Jehovah.+ 13 As regards the remaining ones of Israel,+ they will do no unrighteousness,+ nor speak a lie,+ nor will there be found in their mouths a tricky tongue;+ for they themselves will feed and actually lie stretched out,+ and there will be no one making [them] tremble.”+

14 Joyfully cry out, O daughter of Zion! Break out in cheers,+ O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem!+ 15 Jehovah has removed the judgments upon you.+ He has turned away your enemy.+ The king of Israel, Jehovah, is in the midst of you.+ You will fear calamity no more.+ 16 In that day it will be said to Jerusalem: “Do not be afraid, O Zion.+ May your hands not drop down.+ 17 Jehovah your God* is in the midst of you. As a mighty One,* he will save.+ He will exult over you with rejoicing.+ He will become silent in his love. He will be joyful over you with happy cries.

18 “The ones grief-stricken+ in absence from [your] festal season I shall certainly gather together;+ absent from you* they happened to be, because of bearing reproach on her account.+ 19 Here I am acting against all those afflicting you, at that time;+ and I will save her that is limping,+ and her that is dispersed I shall collect together.+ And I will set them as a praise and as a name in all the land of their shame. 20 At that time I shall bring YOU people in, even in the time of my collecting YOU together. For I shall make YOU people to be a name and a praise among all the peoples of the earth, when I gather back YOUR captive ones before YOUR eyes,” Jehovah has said.+