Seek Shelter

from Lynda Lindsey

The Lord’s declaration concerning the day of wrath: I will sweep away everything from the face of the earth, …both men and animals; …birds of the air; …fish of the sea. …I will stretch out my hand against Judah and against all who live in Jerusalem. I will cut off from this place every remnant of Baal, the names of the pagan and the idolatrous priests—- …those who turn back from following the Lord and neither seek the Lord nor inquire of Him.  Zephaniah 1:2; 3; 4; 6

Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, you who do what He commands. Seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you will be sheltered on the day of the Lord’s anger. Zephaniah 2:3

The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:17

God, broken hearted over His people’s rebellious ways and broken promises, divided loyalties, and moral depravity, warned of coming destruction. God, angry at people who turned back from following Him, who neither sought Him nor inquired of Him, warned that the day of His wrath, judgment, and punishment would come; a day when He would sweep the earth clean, leaving the wicked only heaps of rubble. Judah, grown complacent, rich, comfortable with idolatrous ways, no longer cared about anything except hedonistically pursuing pleasure and wealth. They continued eagerly to act corruptly in all their ways. Houses demolished? Wealth plundered? Plant vineyards but not drink the wine? Impossible!

Zephaniah, contrasting the coming day of wrath and judgment with the day of hope and restoration, urges repentance. Punishment was unavoidable; the Babylonians, God’s instrument of judgment, were nearly at Judah’s doorstep. Yet God, keeping His promise to Abraham, would preserve a remnant. Why are we not totally consumed? Because the Lord’s great love shelters us; His unfailing compassion clothes us each new morning. He is good to those who hope, and wait, in obedience on Him. So, before it’s too late, repent, turn toward God’s sheltering presence in hope.

God has come; He will return as righteous judge with reward in hand. He will purify. Rescue. Gather and bring us home. Restore us. Shelter us. As a mother cradles an infant to her breast, whispering sweet words, crooning love songs to comfort her child, so God shelters us. God greatly delights in us such that He bursts into song over us!   God lovingly quietens our fears. Therefore, never let it be said of us that we continued eagerly to act corruptly in all our ways. He is mighty to save. Repent, seek the Lord, all you humble of the land. Seek His righteousness. Seek humility. Seek His shelter!  He eagerly awaits!