Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Zephaniah 3:12

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

An afflicted and poor people - In such a state will the Jews be found when they shall hear the universal call, and believe in Christ Jesus. Indeed, this is the general state of the Jews in the present day; except a Jew that are called Jews, who are very rich; and who believe just as much in the God of Jacob, as they do in Jesus Christ.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

I will also leave - (Over, as a remnant, it is still the same heavy prophecy, that a remnant only ‹shall be saved‘) “an afflicted and poor people.” priests, (except that ‹great company who were obedient to the faith‘) Acts 6:7, scribes, lawyers, Pharisees, Sadducees were taken away; and there remained “the people of the land”, the “unlearned and ignorant” Acts 4:13, “the weak things of the world and the things despised” 1 Corinthians 1:27-28 who bore the very title of their Master, “the poor and needy; poor in Spirit” Psalm 41:1; poor also in outward things, since “they who had lands, sold them and they had all things common” Acts 2:44-45; Acts 4:32, Acts 4:35. They were afflicted above measure outwardly in the (Acts 8:1; Acts 9:2, Acts 9:13-14; Acts 12:1-2; Acts 13:50; Acts 14:5, Acts 14:22; 22; etc. Romans 8:17, Romans 8:35-36; Romans 12:14; 1 Corinthians 9:19; 2 Corinthians 1:8-9; 2 Corinthians 12:10; 2 Thessalonians 1:4; 2 Timothy 3:11-12; Hebrews 10:32-34; James 2:6-7; 1 Peter 1:6-7; 1 Peter 4:13; Revelation 1:9; Revelation 6:9 etc.) persecutions, “reproaches, spoiling of” their “goods,” stripes, deaths, which they endured for Christ‘s sake.

They knew too their own poverty, Rup: “knowing themselves to be sinners, and that they were justified only by faith in Jesus Christ.” When the rest were cast out “of the midst of her,” these should be left “in the midst of her” (the words stand in contrast with one another) in the bosom of the Church. “And they shall trust in the name of the Lord.” “As they looked to be justified only in the Name of Christ,” and (Dionysius) “trusted in the grace and power of God alone, not in any power or wisdom or eloquence or riches of this world, they converted the world to a faith above nature.” Cyril: “Conformed in this too to Christ. Who for our sakes became poor and almost neglected both His divine glory and the supereminence of His nature, to subject Himself to the condition of a servant. So then those instructed in His laws after His example, think humbly of themselves, They became most exceedingly loved of God, and chiefly the divine disciples, who were set as lights of the world.”

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The preaching of the gospel is predicted, when vengeance would be executed on the Jewish nation. The purifying doctrines of the gospel, or the pure language of the grace of the Lord, would teach men to use the language of humility, repentance, and faith. Purity and piety in common conversation is good. The pure and happy state of the church in the latter days seems intended. The Lord will shut out boasting, and leave men nothing to glory in, save the Lord Jesus, as made of God to them wisdom, righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. Humiliation for sin, and obligations to the Redeemer, will make true believers upright and sincere, whatever may be the case among mere professors.
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 6, 457

Is there not something stimulating and inspiring in this thought, that the human agent stands as the visible instrument to confer the blessings of angelic agencies? As we are thus laborers together with God, the work bears the inscription of the divine. The knowledge and activity of the heavenly workers, united with the knowledge and power that are imparted to human agencies, bring relief to the oppressed and distressed. Our acts of unselfish ministry make us partakers in the success that results from the relief offered. 6T 457.1

With what joy heaven looks upon these blended influences! All heaven is watching those agencies that are as the hand to work out the purpose of God in the earth, thus doing the will of God in heaven. Such co-operation accomplishes a work that brings honor and glory and majesty to God. Oh, if all would love as Christ has loved, that perishing men might be saved from ruin, what a change would come to our world! 6T 457.2

“I will also leave in the midst of thee an afflicted and poor people, and they shall trust in the name of the Lord.... They shall feed and lie down, and none shall make them afraid. Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem. The Lord hath taken away thy judgments, He hath cast out thine enemy: the King of Israel, even the Lord, is in the midst of thee: thou shalt not see evil any more. In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem, Fear thou not: and to Zion, Let not thine hands be slack. The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love. He will joy over thee with singing.” Zephaniah 3:12-17. What a representation is this! Can we grasp its meaning? 6T 457.3

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