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©Clay Eldridge

Chapter 3:14-15 (ESV)

Posted on June 05, 2024  - By Chris LaBelle  

Chapter 3:14-15 (ESV) - Sing aloud, O daughter of Zion;
    shout, O Israel!
Rejoice and exult with all your heart,
    O daughter of Jerusalem!
The LORD has taken away the judgments against you;
    he has cleared away your enemies.
The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst;
    you shall never again fear evil.

Question to consider: Who is this King of Israel, and how has he cleared away her enemies?

If you were not convinced that the “day” in which Israel’s rebellious deeds were removed was not speaking about the crucifixion of Christ, then maybe you will recognize that in today’s passage, Israel was called to rejoice because the very LORD who has taken the judgments against them away was now the King of Israel dwelling in her midst.

They never again needed to fear evil, for He has cleared away her enemies. The enemies of Israel were the other nations who worshiped foreign gods and hated the God of Israel. Christ took away the sins of the world on the cross which means that they no longer had reason to fear these other nations. People from every tribe and nation could now receive the good news that they could be reconciled to the one true God who made heaven and earth. Is this not cause for rejoicing?

Yes, there are those in the world who hate the church and would like nothing more than to undermine it. If they can’t undermine it, then they’ll do their best to fight against it and try to destroy it. However, Christ proclaimed that the “gates of hell would not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16:18) There is nothing in this world or beyond that can keep Christ’s kingdom from coming into the world. I know people argue about whether Jesus was referring to Peter as the “rock” on whom He’d build His church, but Peter referred to himself and all Christians as living stones built upon the cornerstone of Christ.

When Jesus sent out the twelve apostles, He spoke of the persecution they would face and followed it up by saying, “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10:28) Christ their King had taken away the judgments against them and cleared away their enemies with His sacrifice so they did not need to fear those who hated them as servants of Christ.

At the end of Matthew’s gospel, Jesus said to the disciples, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20) We never again have to fear evil because Christ is with us.

Despite all of the hard news that Zephaniah was given to relay to king Josiah, this was the part of the vision where he was able to convey an everlasting hope that would cause his people to rejoice.


Dear heavenly Father, thank You for removing our enemies and making them our brothers and sisters. Help us to rejoice in what Christ has done for the world and sing it aloud with Hallelujahs! Amen.