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Zephaniah 2

MSG 1 So get yourselves together. Shape up! You're a nation without a clue about what it wants. NIV 1 Gather together, gather yourselves together, you shameful nation, MSG 2 Do it before you're blown away like leaves in a windstorm, Before God's Judgment-anger sweeps down on you, Before God's Judgment Day wrath descends with full force. NIV 2 before the decree takes effect and that day passes like windblown chaff, before the LORD’s fierce anger comes upon you, before the day of the LORD’s wrath comes upon you. MSG 3 Seek God, all you quietly disciplined people who live by God's justice. Seek God's right ways. Seek a quiet and disciplined life. Perhaps you'll be hidden on the Day of God's anger. All Earth-Made Gods Will Blow Away NIV 3 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. MSG 4 Gaza is scheduled for demolition, Ashdod will be cleaned out by high noon, Ekron pulled out by the roots. NIV 4 Gaza will be abandoned and Ashkelon left in ruins. At midday Ashdod will be emptied and Ekron uprooted. MSG 5 Doom to the seaside people, the seafaring people from Crete! The Word of God is bad news for you who settled Canaan, the Philistine country: "You're slated for destruction - no survivors!" NIV 5 Woe to you who live by the sea, you Kerethite people; the word of the LORD is against you, Canaan, land of the Philistines. He says, “I will destroy you, and none will be left.” MSG 6 The lands of the seafarers will become pastureland, A country for shepherds and sheep. NIV 6 The land by the sea will become pastures having wells for shepherds and pens for flocks. MSG 7 What's left of the family of Judah will get it. Day after day they'll pasture by the sea, and go home in the evening to Ashkelon to sleep. Their very own God will look out for them. He'll make things as good as before. NIV 7 That land will belong to the remnant of the people of Judah; there they will find pasture. In the evening they will lie down in the houses of Ashkelon. The LORD their God will care for them; he will restore their fortunes. MSG 8 "I've heard the crude taunts of Moab, the mockeries flung by Ammon, The cruel talk they've used to put down my people, their self-important strutting along Israel's borders. NIV 8 “I have heard the insults of Moab and the taunts of the Ammonites, who insulted my people and made threats against their land. MSG 9 herefore, as sure as I am the living God," says God-of-the-Angel-Armies, Israel's personal God, "Moab will become a ruin like Sodom, Ammon a ghost town like Gomorrah, One a field of rocks, the other a sterile salt flat, a moonscape forever. What's left of my people will finish them off, will pick them clean and take over. NIV 9 Therefore, as surely as I live,” declares the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, “surely Moab will become like Sodom, the Ammonites like Gomorrah— a place of weeds and salt pits, a wasteland forever. The remnant of my people will plunder them; the survivors of my nation will inherit their land.” MSG 10 This is what they get for their bloated pride, their taunts and mockeries of the people of God-of-the-Angel-Armies. NIV 10 This is what they will get in return for their pride, for insulting and mocking the people of the LORD Almighty. MSG 11 God will be seen as truly terrible - a Holy Terror. All earth-made gods will shrivel up and blow away; And everyone, wherever they are, far or near, will fall to the ground and worship him. NIV 11 The LORD will be awesome to them when he destroys all the gods of the earth. Distant nations will bow down to him, all of them in their own lands. MSG 12 Also you Ethiopians, you too will die - I'll see to it." NIV 12 “You Cushites, too, will be slain by my sword.” MSG 13 Then God will reach into the north and destroy Assyria. He will waste Nineveh, leave her dry and treeless as a desert. NIV 13 He will stretch out his hand against the north and destroy Assyria, leaving Nineveh utterly desolate and dry as the desert. MSG 14 The ghost town of a city, the haunt of wild animals, Nineveh will be home to raccoons and coyotes - they'll bed down in its ruins. Owls will hoot in the windows, ravens will croak in the doorways - all that fancy woodwork now a perch for birds. NIV 14 Flocks and herds will lie down there, creatures of every kind. The desert owl and the screech owl will roost on her columns. Their hooting will echo through the windows, rubble will fill the doorways, the beams of cedar will be exposed. MSG 15 Can this be the famous Fun City that had it made, That boasted, "I'm the Number-One City! I'm King of the Mountain!" So why is the place deserted, a lair for wild animals? Passersby hardly give it a look; they dismiss it with a gesture. NIV 15 This is the city of revelry that lived in safety. She said to herself, “I am the one! And there is none besides me.” What a ruin she has become, a lair for wild beasts! All who pass by her scoff and shake their fists.

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