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Zephaniah 1:6

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Them that are turned back - Who have forsaken the true God, and become idolaters.

Nor inquired for him - Have not desired to know his will.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

And them that are turned back from - (Literally, have turned themselves back from following after) the Lord From this half-service, the prophet goes on to the avowed neglect of God, by such as wholly fall away from Him, not setting His will or law before them, “but turning away from” Him. It is their misery that they were set in the right way once, but themselves “turned themselves back,” now no longer “following” God, but “their own lusts, drawn away and enticed” James 1:14 by them. How much more Christians, before whose eyes Christ Jesus is set forth, not as a Redeemer only but as an Example that they should “follow His steps!” 1 Peter 2:21.

And those that have not sought the Lord, nor inquired for Him - This is marked to be a distinct class. “And those who.” These did not openly break with God, or turn away overtly from Him; they kept (as men think) on good terms with Him, but, like “the slothful servant,” rendered Him a listless heartless service. Both words express diligent search. God is not found then in a careless way. They who “seek” Him not “diligently” Matthew 2:8, do not find Him. “Strive,” our Lord says, “to enter in at the strait gate, for many, I say unto you, shall seek to enter in, and shall not be able” Luke 13:24. She who had lost the one piece of silver, “sought” “diligently” Luke 15:8, until she had found it.

Thus, he has gone through the whole cycle. First, that most horrible and cruel worship of Baal, the idolatrous priests and those who had the name of priests only, mingled with them, yet not openly apostatizing; then the milder form of idolatry, the star-worshipers; then those who would unite the worship of God with idols, who held themselves to be worshipers of God, but whose real king was their idol; then those who openly abandoned God; and lastly those who held with Him, just to satisfy their conscience-qualms, but with no heart-service. And so, in words of Habakkuk and in reminiscence of his awful summons of the whole world before God, he sums up;

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Ruin is coming, utter ruin; destruction from the Almighty. The servants of God all proclaim, There is no peace for the wicked. The expressions are figurative, speaking every where desolation; the land shall be left without inhabitants. The sinners to be consumed are, the professed idolaters, and those that worship Jehovah and idols, or swear to the Lord, and to Malcham. Those that think to divide their affections and worship between God and idols, will come short of acceptance with God; for what communion can there be between light and darkness? If Satan have half, he will have all; if the Lord have but half, he will have none. Neglect of God shows impiety and contempt. May none of us be among those who draw back unto perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.
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