Zephaniah 3:19
Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict you: and I will save her that halts, and gather her that was driven out; and I will get them praise and fame in every land where they have been put to shame.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
3:14-20 After the promises of taking away sin, follow promises of taking away trouble. When the cause is removed, the effect will cease. What makes a people holy, will make them happy. The precious promises made to the purified people, were to have full accomplishment in the gospel. These verses appear chiefly to relate to the future conversion and restoration of Israel, and the glorious times which are to follow. They show the abundant peace, comfort, and prosperity of the church, in the happy times yet to come. He will save; he will be Jesus; he will answer the name, for he will save his people from their sins. Before the glorious times foretold, believers would be sorrowful, and objects of reproach. But the Lord will save the weakest believer, and cause true Christians to be greatly honoured where they had been treated with contempt. One act of mercy and grace shall serve, both to gather Israel out of their dispersions and to lead them to their own land. Then will God's Israel be made a name and a praise to eternity. The events alone can fully answer the language of this prophecy. Many are the troubles of the righteous, but they may rejoice in God's love. Surely our hearts should honour the Lord, and rejoice in him, when we hear such words of condescension and grace. If now kept from his ordinances, it is our trial and grief; but in due time we shall be gathered into his temple above. The glory and happiness of the believer will be perfect, unchangeable, and eternal, when he is freed from earthly sorrows, and brought to heavenly bliss.Behold, at that time I will undo - (Literally, I deal with . While God punisheth not, He seemeth to sit still Isaiah 18:4, be silent Habakkuk 1:13, asleep Psalm 44:23. Then He shall act, He shall "deal" according to their deserts with "all," evil men or devils, "that afflict thee," His Church. The prophecy looked for a larger fulfillment than the destruction of Jerusalem, since the Romans who, in God's Hands, avenged the blood of His saints, themselves were among those who "afflicted her." "And will save her," the flock or sheep "that halteth" (see Micah 4:6-7), Dionysius: "imperfect in virtue and with trembling faith," "and gather," like a good and tender shepherd, "her that was driven out" (see Isaiah 40:11); scattered and dispersed through persecutions. All infirmities within shall be healed; all troubles without, removed.

And I will get them praise and fame - (Literally, I will make them a praise and a name) "in every land where they have been put to shame." . Throughout the whole world have they been "the offscourings of all things" 1 Corinthians 4:13; throughout the whole world should their praise be, as it is said, "Thou shalt make them princes in all lands" Psalm 45:16. One of themselves saith, "Ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; and base things of this world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are" 1 Corinthians 1:26-28. Rup.: "These He maketh a praise and a name there, where they were without name and dispraised, confounding by them and bringing to nought those wise and strong and mighty, in whose sight they were contemptible."

19. undo—Maurer translates, "I will deal with," that is, as they deserve. Compare Eze 23:25, where the Hebrew is similarly translated. The destruction of Israel's foes precedes Israel's restoration (Isa 66:15, 16).

her that halteth—all that are helpless. Their weakness will be no barrier in the way of My restoring them. So in Ps 35:15, Margin, "halting" is used for adversity. Also Eze 34:16; Mic 4:6, 7.

I will get them praise, &c.—literally, "I will make them (to become) a praise and a name," &c.

shame—(Eze 34:29).

Behold; mark well.

I will undo; I will deal with them, do their work for them, as we say, I will break their power and dissolve their kingdom.

All that afflict thee; Babylonians who afflicted the Jews. and who were undone by Cyrus and his Persians.

I will save her that halteth; who is in great trouble and ready to fall, as Psalm 38:16,17; who is under greatest distress, and hath least strength to bear, or get out.

Driven out; by force of the enemy, carried away captives, and scattered into far remote countries.

Get them praise and fame; vindicate them, as a people that are not rejected of their God, as the people of the great God of heaven and earth, as Psalm 121:2.

In every land; among all people with whom they dwelt as strangers.

Where they have been put to shame; were scorned and reproached as slaves and abjects, whose God could not, or would not, help them, or had cast them off, and none other would take care of them. But now, gathered together by the Lord, they shall appear to be still his peculiar people and his delight. Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict thee,.... Or, "I will do" (w); their business for them; "slay" them, as the Vulgate Latin version; and make an entire destruction of them, as the Targum; bring them to utter ruin. This must be understood of antichrist, both eastern and western, the Turk and Pope, and all the antichristian states that have afflicted the Jews, or shall attempt to distress them at the time of their conversion; and will be fulfilled at the time of the pouring out of the seven vials of God's wrath upon them, which will issue in the entire undoing and ruin of them, especially the seventh and last of them; which, when poured out, will clear the world of all the enemies of Christ, his church and people; and because this will be a wonderful event, and of great moment and importance, hence the word "behold" is prefixed to it, as exciting attention, as well as a note of admiration and asseveration: "and I will save her that halteth", that has sinned, and is weak in faith, and cannot walk, at least but haltingly; which is like a lame and maimed sheep, of which there is danger of its being left behind and lost; but the Lord here promises he will take care of such, and save them from all their sins, and out of the hands of all their enemies; and bring them through all difficulties and discouragements into his church, and to their own land; they shall none of them be lost, even the meanest and weakest of them, any more than the healthful and strong:

and gather her that was driven out; even everyone that was scattered abroad in each of the nations of the world; See Gill on Micah 4:6, Micah 4:7,

and I will get them praise and fame in every land, where they have been put to shame; being converted, they shall be spoke well of everywhere; they shall be praised for their ingenuous acknowledgment of their sins; for their sincere repentance of them; and for their faith in Christ, and for their ready submission to his Gospel and ordinances; and the fame of their conversion shall be spread everywhere; and they shall be in great credit and esteem in all Christian countries, where their name has been used for a taunt and a proverb; and so, "instead of their shame", as R. Moses interprets it, they shall have glory and honour in all places.

(w) "agam", Tigurine version; "conficiam", Castalio; "ego conficiens", Calvin; "ego faciens, vel facio", Burkius.

Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict thee: and I will {p} save her that halteth, and gather her that was driven out; and I will get them praise and fame in every {q} land where they have been put to shame.

(p) I will deliver the Church, which now is afflicted, as in Mic 4:6.

(q) As among the Assyrians and Chaldaeans, who mocked them and put them to shame.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
19. I will undo all that afflict thee] As R.V., I will deal with all.

I will save her that halteth] The people are spoken of under the metaphor of a flock, in which are some that are lame, and to which belong some that have been driven away. Hence the use of the fem. gender. Comp. Ezekiel 34:16, “I will seek that which was lost, and will bring back again that which was driven away.” Micah 4:6-7.

I will get them praise] As R.V., I will make them (to be) a praise and a name. Jeremiah 33:9, “and this city shall be to me for a name of joy, for a praise and for a glory before all the nations of the earth, which shall hear all the good that I do unto them.” Cf. Jeremiah 13:11. The precise sense is not clear. In the passages in Jer. the people, being righteous and blessed, are the source of praise and renown to Jehovah, whose people they are. But the meaning might be that the people themselves are the object of praise by the nations; Isaiah 61:9; Isaiah 62:7. Both ideas are elsewhere expressed; Jehovah bestows His glory on Israel (Isaiah 60:2), and this glory is reflected back upon Him, and He is glorified in Israel (Isaiah 44:23; Isaiah 49:3; Isaiah 60:21; Isaiah 61:3).

In every land … put to shame] A.V. marg., Heb. (every land) of their shame. R.V. renders: whose shame hath been in all the earth. Both renderings are possible, but both are unnatural. R.V. lays an unnatural emphasis upon the pronoun: “I will make them a praise and a name, whose shame,” &c., whereas “them” seems rather to refer back to “her that halteth” and “her that was driven away,” or, to the people generally. On the other hand, the construction assumed by A.V. is ungrammatical, although occasional instances of it appear. The Sept. rightly felt that the natural sense of the passage was: and I will make them a praise and a name in all the earth (Zephaniah 3:20), and so rendered. The Heb. word their shame, still remaining undisposed of in this rendering, the Sept. attached to the next verse: and they shall be ashamed at that time. This is quite unsatisfactory. But the analogy of Zephaniah 3:20, a name and a praise among all the peoples of the earth, suggests that the expression their shame is not original.Verse 19. - I will undo all that afflict thee; I will deal with in punishment (Jeremiah 18:23); Vulgate, "I will slay." The restoration of Israel is preceded by the destruction of the enemies of God and the Church. Septuagint, Ποιῶ ἐν σοὶ ἕνεκέν σου ἐν τῷ καιρῷ ἐκείνῳ λέγει Κύριος, "Dominus dicet ad Sion, Ecce, ego faciam in te propter te, id est, faciam ultionem tuam" (St. Jerome). Her that halteth (Micah 4:6). The afflicted of Israel, here compared to a lame and footsore flock of sheep. Septuagint, τὴν ἐκπεπιεσμένην, "pressed," like grapes or olives, to extract the juice. Her that was driven out. The exiled and dispersed. I will get them praise and fame; I will make them to be a praise and a name. This is in accordance with the promise in Deuteronomy 26:19. In every land where they have been put to shame; literally, in every land of their shame. The scene of their shame should be the scene of their glorification. The prophet does not consider that the restored theocracy shall be confined to the geographical limits of the Holy Land; he looks to its dissemination throughout the world. Wide as the dispersion itself shall be the diffusion of the knowledge of Goal and the admiration of his doings towards Israel (comp. Zephaniah 2:11; Zephaniah 3:9; Ezekiel 20:41; Ezekiel 28:25; Zechariah 8:23). "He threateneth the sea, and drieth it up, and maketh all the rivers dry up. Bashan and Carmel fade, and the blossom of Lebanon fadeth. Nahum 1:5. Mountains shake before Him, and the hills melt away; the earth heaveth before Him, and the globe, and all the inhabitants thereon. Nahum 1:6. Before His fury who may stand? and who rise up at the burning of His wrath? His burning heat poureth itself out like fire, and the rocks are rent in pieces by Him." In the rebuking of the sea there is an allusion to the drying up of the Red Sea for the Israelites to pass through (cf. Psalm 106:9); but it is generalized here, and extended to every sea and river, which the Almighty can smite in His wrath, and cause to dry up. ויּבּשׁהוּ for וייבּשׁהוּ, the vowelless י of the third pers. being fused into one with the first radical sound, as in ויּדּוּ in Lamentations 3:53 (cf. Ges. 69, Anm. 6, and Ewald 232-3). Bashan, Carmel, and Lebanon are mentioned as very fruitful districts, abounding in a vigorous growth of vegetation and large forests, the productions of which God could suddenly cause to fade and wither in His wrath. Yea more: the mountains tremble and the hills melt away (compare the similar description in Micah 1:4, and the explanation given there). The earth lifts itself, i.e., starts up from its place (cf. Isaiah 13:13), with everything that dwells upon the surface of the globe. תּשּׂא from נשׂא, used intransitively, "to rise," as in Psalm 89:10 and Hosea 13:1; not conclamat s. tollit vocem (J. H. Michaelis, Burk, Strauss). תּבל, lit., the fertile globe, always signifies the whole of the habitable earth, ἡ οἰκουμένη; and יושׁבי בהּ, not merely the men (Ewald), but all living creatures (cf. Joel 1:18, Joel 1:20). No one can stand before such divine wrath, which pours out like consuming fire (Deuteronomy 4:24), and rends rocks in pieces (1 Kings 19:11; Jeremiah 23:29; cf. Jeremiah 10:10; Malachi 3:2).
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