The prophecy opens with a bang, not a whimper. God is going to destroy everything on earth.
It’s going to be even worse than the flood, because this time even the fish will be destroyed.
He’ll utterly destroy Judah because of their unfaithfulness.
Zephaniah describes the coming day of the Lord as a day of sacrifice, with Judah as the offering on the altar.
God will go house to house in Jerusalem, ferreting out everyone and destroying the untroubled wealthy, who will now be extremely troubled.
Here are a few of the things that will be involved: wrath, distress and anguish, ruin and devastation, darkness and gloom, clouds and thick darkness.
It will be a “terrible end” (1:18) for everyone on earth.
That said, God just might leave a righteous remnant to take over the places whose residents he has wiped out, so behave yourselves, kids, and you just might get lucky.
The prophet lists all the nations about to be desolate: Gaza, Ashkelon, Ekron, Canaan, Moab. All these traditional enemies of Judah will be conquered by the remnants of Judah left after God gets finished with them.
That’s what they get for jeering at God’s people.
The Cus***es and Assyrians won’t be spared, either. Their cities will be destroyed and all that will be left are birds and animals living in the abandoned homes.