BibleTools.info

Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Loading...

Zephaniah 2:3

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

Seek ye the Lord - He had exhorted sinners to penitence; he now calls the righteous to persevere and increase more and more. He bids them “seek diligently”, and that with a three-fold call, to seek Him from whom they received daily the three-fold blessing Numbers 6:23-26, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, as he had just before threatened God‘s impending judgment with the same use of the mysterious number, three. They, whom he calls, were already, by the grace of God, “meek,” and “had wrought His judgment.” Rup.: “Submitting themselves to the word of God, they had done and were doing the judgment of God, ‹judging themselves that they benot judged;‘ the beginning of which judgment is, as sinners and guilty of death, to give themselves to the Cross of the Lord, that is, to be ‹baptized‘ in ‹His Death and be buried with Him by Baptism into death;‘ but the perfection of that judgment or righteousness is, to ‹walk in newness of life, as He rose from the dead through the glory of the Father‘ Romans 6:3-4.”

Dionysius: “Since the meek already have God through grace as the Possessor and Dweller in their heart, how shall they seek Him but that they may have Him more fully and more perfectly, knowing Him more clearly, loving Him more ardently, cleaving to Him more inseparably, that so they may be heard by Him, not for themselves only, but for others?” It is then the same Voice as at the close of the Revelation, “the righteous, let him be still more righteous; the holy, let him be still more holy” Revelation 22:11. They are the “meek,” who are exhorted “diligently” to “seek meekness,” and they who had “wrought His judgment,” who are “diligently” to “seek Righteousness.” And since our Lord saith, “Learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly of heart” Matthew 11:29, He bids (Jerome) “those who imitated His meekness and did His judgment, to seek the Lord in their meekness.” Meekness and Righteousness may be His Attributes, Who is All-gentleness and All-Righteousness, the Fountain of all, wheresoever it is, in gentleness receiving penitents, and, as “the Righteous Judge, giving the crown of righteousness” to those who “love Him and keep His commandments,” yea He joineth righteousness with meekness, since without His mercy no man living could be justified in His Sight. Cyril: “God is sought by us, when, of our choice, laying aside all listlessness, we thirst after doing what pleases Him; and we shall do judgment too, when we fulfill His divine law, working out what is good unshrinkingly; and we shall gain the prize of righteousness, when crowned with glory for well-doing and running the well-reported anti blameless way of true piety to God and of love to the brethren, for ‹love is the fulfilling of the law‘ Romans 13:10.”

It may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord‘s anger - Rup.: “Shall these too then scarcely be ‹hid in the day of the Lord‘s anger?‘ Doth not the Apostle Peter say the very same? ‹If it first begin at us, what shall be the end of them that obey not the Gospel of God? And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?‘ 1 Peter 4:17-18. So then, although any be ‹meek,‘ although he ‹have wrought the judgment‘ of the Lord, let him ever suspect himself, nor think that he has ‹already attained,‘ since neither can any righteous be saved, if he be judged ‹without mercy.‘” Dionysius: “He saith, if ‹may‘ be; not that there is any doubt that the meek and they who perseveringly seek God, shall then be saved, but, to convey how difficult it is to be saved, and how fearful and rigorous is the judgment of God.” To be hid is to be sheltered from wrath under the protection of God; as David says, “In the time of trouble He shall hide me” Psalm 27:5; and, “Thou shalt hide them (that trust in Thee) in the secret of Thy presence from the pride of man; Thou shalt keep them secretly in a pavilion from the strife of tongues” Psalm 31:20. And in Isaiah, “A Man shall be as an hiding-place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest” Isaiah 32:2; and, “There shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain” Isaiah 5:6.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The prophet calls to national repentance, as the only way to prevent national ruin. A nation not desiring, that has not desires toward God, is not desirous of his favour and grace, has no mind to repent and reform. Or, not desirable, not having any thing to recommend them to God; to whom God might justly say, Depart from me; but he says, Gather together to me that you may seek my face. We know what God's decree will bring against impenitent sinners, therefore it highly concerns all to repent in the accepted time. How careful should we all be to seek peace with God, before the Holy Spirit withdraws from us, or ceases to strive with us; before the day of grace is over, or the day of life; before our everlasting state is determined! Let the poor, despised, and afflicted, seek the Lord, and seek to understand and keep his commandments better, that they may be more humbled for their sins. The chief hope of deliverance from national judgments rests upon prayer.
Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

Ye meek of the earth - ענוי anavey, ye oppressed and humbled of the land.

It may be ye shall be hid - The sword has not a commission against you. Ask God, and he will be a refuge to you from the storm and from the tempest.

Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 1, 619

I was shown that if God's people make no efforts on their part, but wait for the refreshing to come upon them and remove their wrongs and correct their errors; if they depend upon that to cleanse them from filthiness of the flesh and spirit, and fit them to engage in the loud cry of the third angel, they will be found wanting. The refreshing or power of God comes only on those who have prepared themselves for it by doing the work which God bids them, namely, cleansing themselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. 1T 619.1

I was shown that in some respects my husband's case is similar to that of those waiting for the refreshing. If he should wait for the power of God to come upon his body, to feel that he was made whole before he made efforts in accordance with his faith, saying, When the Lord heals me I will believe and do this or that, he might continue to wait and would realize no change, for the fulfillment of God's promise is only realized by those who believe and then work in accordance with their faith. I saw that he must believe God's word, that His promises are for him to claim, and they will never, no, never, fail. He should walk out by faith, relying upon the evidences that God has been pleased to give, and work, as much as possible, to the point of becoming a well man. Said the angel: “God will sustain him. His faith must be made perfect by works, for faith alone is dead. It must be sustained by works. A living faith is always manifested by works.” 1T 619.2

I saw that my husband would be inclined to shrink from making efforts in accordance with his faith. Fear and anxiety in regard to his own case have made him timid. He looks at appearances, at disagreeable feelings of the body. Said the angel: “Feeling is not faith. Faith is simply to take God at His word.” I saw that in the name and strength of God my husband must resist disease and, by the power of his will, rise above his poor feelings. He must assert his liberty, in the name and strength of Israel's God. He must cease thinking and talking about himself as much as possible. He should be cheerful and happy. 1T 620.1

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 5, 137

The test will surely come. Thirty-six years ago I was shown that what is now transpiring would take place, that the observance of an institution of the papacy would be enforced upon the people by a Sunday law, while the sanctified rest day of Jehovah would be trampled underfoot. 5T 137.1

The Captain of our salvation will strengthen His people for the conflict in which they must engage. How often when Satan has brought all his forces to bear against the followers of Christ, and death stares them in the face, have earnest prayers put up in faith brought the Captain of the Lord's host upon the field of action and turned the tide of battle and delivered the oppressed. 5T 137.2

Now is the time when we should closely connect with God, that we may be hid when the fierceness of His wrath is poured upon the sons of men. We have wandered away from the old landmarks. Let us return. If the Lord be God, serve Him; if Baal, serve him. Which side will you be on? 5T 137.3

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, 438

You need to open your heart to love, to that love which dwelt in the bosom of Jesus. Should your Saviour deal with you as you would deal with those with whom you differ, you would certainly be in a distressed condition. Your case would be nearly hopeless. But I thank the Lord that we have a merciful high priest who can be touched with the feeling of our infirmities. You have been tried with others, and have pursued a course toward them that Heaven does not approve. You have a work to do to let the softening influence of the grace of God into your heart; seek meekness, seek righteousness. 2T 438.1

You are zealous for the truth. You love it and wish to invest something in it. This is all right, but be careful that the precepts you give to others are backed up with example. You must seek for peace. You can do this and not sacrifice one principle of truth. You have stormed and fought your way through, and now you need to soften your influence, to sweeten, to soothe, instead of stirring up opposition. You have possessed a large share of self-confidence and self-esteem, and have been self-exalted. Now you need to exalt Jesus and imitate the harmless life of Him whom peace everywhere followed. 2T 438.2

You, my sister, will prove a trial to God's people unless you are willing to learn, willing to be counseled. You must not continue to feel that you know it all. You have much yet to learn before you can be perfect before God. The sweetest and best lesson to be learned will be that of humility. “Learn of Me,” says the humble Nazarene; “for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” This lesson of meekness, forbearance, patience, and love you have yet to learn and practice. You can be a blessing. You can help such as need help; but you must lay down your measuring tape, for that is not for you to use. One who is unerring in judgment, who understands the weakness of our fallen, corrupt natures, holds the standard Himself. He weighs in the balances of the sanctuary, and His just measure we shall all accept. 2T 438.3

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, 405

I entreat you, for Christ's sake, to set your house and hearts in order. Let the truth of heavenly origin elevate and sanctify you, soul, body, and spirit. “Abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul.” Brother G, your eating has a tendency to strengthen the baser passions. You do not control your body as it is your duty to do in order to perfect holiness in the fear of God. Temperance in eating must be practiced before you can be a patient man. Remember that you have given to your children, in a great degree, the stamp of your own character. You should guard yourself, and not be harsh, severe, or impatient. Deal with them decidedly, yet patiently, lovingly, pityingly, as Jesus has dealt with you. Be careful how you censure. Bear with your children, yet restrain them. This you have neglected too much. You have not corrected them in the right manner, not having perfect control of your own spirit. A great work must be done for you both. 2T 405.1

Brother G, if you had gone on from strength to strength, following in the light the Lord has given, He would now have chosen you as an instrument of righteousness. You have talents; you have ability; you can work for God's glory; but you have not made an entire surrender of yourself to God. Oh, that you would even now seek meekness, seek the righteousness of Christ, that you might be hid in the day of the Lord's fierce anger! 2T 405.2

My dear brother and sister, you should take hold unitedly and perseveringly to right your mismanagement of your children. Sister G has been too indulgent; yet unitedly and in love you can do much, even now, to bind your children to your hearts and instruct them in the good and right way. You have a work to do in setting your own hearts and house in order. You should cultivate harmonious action. The transforming influence of the Spirit of God can do a great work for you both, and will unite your hearts and efforts in the work of reform in your own family. All repining, murmuring, and hasty irritability should cease. Its effects are to weaken you both and to destroy the influence you must exert if you succeed in training your children for heaven. 2T 405.3

Read in context »
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, 222

You have no time to lose. Make mighty efforts to rescue yourself from Satan's snare. You need to learn of Jesus, who is meek and lowly of heart, and then you will obtain rest. Oh, what a work you have to do to perfect holiness in the fear of God, and be prepared for the society of the pure and holy angels. You need to humble your heart before God, and seek meekness and righteousness, that you may be hid in the day of the Lord's fierce anger. 2T 222.1

Brother B, the Lord let His blessing rest upon you last spring; but you did not see the relation which watchfulness and prayer sustain to a progress in the divine life. You have neglected these duties, and the result is that darkness has enshrouded you. You have been in a state of uncertainty and distrust, and have frequently chosen the society of those who are in darkness, those whom Satan uses to scatter from Christ. You could live among the most corrupt, and remain unstained, unsullied, if God in His providence thus directed you. But it is dangerous for those who wish to honor God to find their pleasure and entertainment with companions who fear Him not. Satan ever surrounds such with great darkness; and if those who profess Christ go unbidden into this darkness, they tempt the devil to tempt them. If, in order to do good and glorify His name, the Lord requires us to go among infernal spirits, where is the blackest darkness, He will encircle us with His angels and keep us unsullied. But if we seek the company of sinners, and are pleased with their coarse jests, and entertained and amused with their stories, sports, and ribaldry, the pure and holy angels remove their protection and leave us to the darkness we have chosen. 2T 222.2

Brother B, I wish to alarm you; I wish to arouse you to action. I wish to entreat of you to seek God while He invites you to come to Him that you may have life. Watch, pray, work,” are the Christian's watchwords. Satan is vigilant in his efforts; his perseverance is untiring, his zeal earnest and unabated. He does not wait for his prey to come to him; he seeks for it. To wrench souls from the hand of Christ is his determined purpose; yet professed Christians are asleep in their blindness, insane in their pursuits. God is not in their thoughts. A vigilant foe is upon their track; yet they are in no danger while they make God their trust. But unless they do this, their strength will be weakness, and they will be overcome by Satan. 2T 222.3

Read in context »
More Comments