Zephaniah 1 has this prophet bringing the word of the Lord to God’s people in the day of Josiah. And the word he has to share isn’t pretty. “I will utterly sweep away everything from the face of the earth….I will stretch out my hand against Judah and against all the inhabitants of Jerusalem”. God’s had enough of their sin and is going to deal with their sin and idol worship of Baal. He is a jealous God and doesn’t tolerate our choice to share our affection with another god.
What’s driving God’s anger toward judgment? “Those who have turned back from following the Lord, who do not seek the Lord or inquire of him”. When we get full of ourselves and believe we can live without Him, things go poorly. When we turn our back on Him and His Word and stop seeking His direction, we are setting ourselves up for correction. God expects us to walk with Him. “I will search Jerusalem with lamps,and I will punish the men who are complacent, those who say in their hearts, The Lord will not do good, nor will he do ill”. God hates lukewarm. He wants us hot and on fire for Him. If we aren’t, we face the reality of His judgment.
The prophet proclaims the truth that God’s judgment is on the way. “The great day of the Lord is near, near and hastening fast; the sound of the day of the Lord is bitter; the mighty man cries aloud there. A day of wrath is that day, a day of distress and anguish, a day of ruin and devastation, a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and thick darkness, a day of trumpet blast and battle cry”. It won’t be pretty, particularly for those who are not walking with God and set free from their sin.
Sin wil be the determining factor of what happens on Judgment Day. God will examine us and determine if “they have sinned against the Lord; their blood shall be poured out like dust”. It’s really pretty black and white. We’re all sinners, scripture is clear on that and certainly life validates what God has said. So we have the option of addressing that sin problem through God’s grace offered to us through the blood of Christ, or standing before Him on our own and giving account of our choices. God will hold us responsible for those things, and that sin will separate us from God for eternity if we haven’t received the salvation of Jesus. Are you ready for that day?