1. A Kohathite, in the seventh generation from Levi, 1Ch 6:36.
2. A priest, high in the sacred order, during the troublous times of king Zedekiah, who often communicated with Jeremiah by his agency. He was among the captives slain by the king of Babylon at Riblah, 2Ki 25:18-21; Jer 21:1; 29/25'>29:25,29; 37:3; 52:24-27.
3. The ninth in order of the minor prophets, of the tribe of Simeon. He prophesied in the early part of king Josiah's reign, before the reforms of that good king were instituted, 2Ch 34:3; Zep 1:4-5. This would fix his date about 630 B. C., and the destruction of Nineveh, foretold in Zep 2:13, occurred in 625 B. C. His prophecy contains two oracles, in three chapters, directed against idolaters in Judah, against surrounding idolatrous nations, and against wicked rulers, priests, and prophets. It closes with cheering promises of gospel blessings. His style and manner are like those of Jeremiah, during whose early years they were contemporary. His subsequent history is unknown.
Jehovah has concealed, or Jehovah of darkness. (1.) The son of Cushi, and great-grandson of Hezekiah, and the ninth in the order of the minor prophets. He prophesied in the days of Josiah, king of Judah (B.C. 641-610), and was contemporary with Jeremiah, with whom he had much in common. The book of his prophecies consists of:
(a) An introduction (1:1-6), announcing the judgment of the world, and the judgment upon Israel, because of their transgressions.
(b) The description of the judgment (1:7-18).
(c) An exhortation to seek God while there is still time (2:1-3).
(d) The announcement of judgment on the heathen (2:4-15).
(e) The hopeless misery of Jerusalem (3:1-7).
(f) The promise of salvation (3:8-20).
(2.) The son of Maaseiah, the "second priest" in the reign of Zedekiah, often mentioned in Jeremiah as having been sent from the king to inquire (Jer 21:1) regarding the coming woes which he had denounced, and to entreat the prophet's intercession that the judgment threatened might be averted (29/25'>Jer 29:25-26,29; 37:3; 52:24). He, along with some other captive Jews, was put to death by the king of Babylon "at Riblah in the land of Hamath" (2Ki 25:21).
(3.) A Kohathite ancestor of the prophet Samuel (1Ch 6:36).
(4.) The father of Josiah, the priest who dwelt in Jerusalem when Darius issued the decree that the temple should be rebuilt (Zec 6:10).
1. Ninth of the minor prophets; "in the days of Josiah," between 642 and 611 B.C. "Son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hizkiah." The specification of his father, grandfather, and great grandfather, implies he was sprung from men of note. The omission of the designation "king," or "king of Judah," is against the notion that the "Hizkiah" means king Hezekiah (compare Pr 25:1; Isa 38:9). He prophesied in the former part of Josiah's reign. In Zep 2:13-15 he foretells Nineveh's fall (625 B.C.), therefore his prophesying was before 625 B.C.; and in Zep 1:4-6 threatens "cutting off" to "the remnant of Baal" and "the name of the (See CHEMARIMS with the priests "; see Ho 10:5 margin, "and them that worship the host of heaven upon the housetops, and them that worship and that swear by the Lord, and that swear by Malcham."
Fulfilled by Josiah (2Ki 23:4-5). Josiah's reformation was begun in the 12th year of his reign, and was completed in the 18th. Zephaniah in denouncing the different forms of idolatry paved the way for Josiah's work, and probably cooperated with the king from the 12th to the 18th year. Jewish tradition says that Zephaniah had as his colleagues Jeremiah, labouring in the thoroughfares and market places, and Huldah the prophetess in the college in Jerusalem. His position among the prophets, and his quotations from Joel, Amos, and Isaiah, indicate the correctness of the date assigned to him in Zep 1:1.
In Zep 1:8, "I will punish the king's children" must refer to coming judgments on the foreseen idolatries of the younger members of the royal family (Jer 22:19; 39:6; 2Ki 23:31-37; 2Ch 36:5-6; 2Ki 20:18). Not only the masses, but even princes, should not escape the penalty of idolatry. "The remnant of Baal" (Zep 1:4) implies that Josiah's reformation was already begun but not completed.
2. "The second priest" or sagan, next to the high priest. Son of Maaseiah. Sent by Zedekiah to consult Jeremiah (Jer 21:1). Succeeded to Jehoiada who was in exile. Appealed to by Shemaiah in a letter from Babylon to punish Jeremiah with imprisonment and the stocks for declaring the captivity would be long (Jer 29:25-26,29). Zephaniah read the letter to Jeremiah. This fact and Shemaiah's upbraiding Zephaniah for want of zeal against Jeremiah imply that Zephaniah was less prejudiced against Jeremiah than the others. This was the reason for the king's choosing him as messenger to the prophet (Jer 37:3). Slain by Nebuchadnezzar as an accomplice in Zedekiah's rebellion (Jer 52:24,27). Jer 52:3. Father of Hen or Josiah (Zec 6:14). Zec 6:4. Ancestor of Samuel and Heman; a Kohathite Levite (1Ch 6:36), called Uriel 1Ch 6:24.
1. The prophet (see next art.). 2. A Kohathite (1Ch 6:36). 3. Son of Maaseiah the priest in Jerusalem in the time of Zekediah the king and Jeremiah the prophet (Jer 21:1; 29/25'>29:25,29; 37:3). As next in rank to Seraiah, grandson of Hilkiah (1Ch 6:14), Zeph. is called second priest (2Ki 25:18). On the occasion of the final overthrow of Jerusalem he was put to death at Riblah (Jer 52:24 ff.). 4. The father of one Josiah in Babylon (Zec 6:10,14).
2. Son of Tahath, a Kohathite. 1Ch 6:36-37.
3. Son of Cushi, and one of the 'minor prophets.' Zep 1:1.
(hidden by Jehovah).
1. The ninth in order of the twelve minor prophets. His pedigree is traced to his fourth ancestor, Hezekiah,
supposed to be the celebrated king of that name. The chief characteristics of this book are the unity and harmony of the composition, the grace, energy and dignity of its style, and the rapid and effective alternations of threats and promises. The general tone of the last portion is Messianic, but without any specific reference to the person of our Lord. The date of the book is given in the inscription--viz, the reign of Josiah, from 642 to 611 B.C. It is most probable moreover, that the prophecy was delivered before the eighteenth year of Josiah.
2. The son of Maaseiah,
and sagan or second priest in the reign of Zedekiah. (B.C. 588.) He succeeded Jehoida,
and was probably a ruler of the temple, whose office it was, among others, to punish pretenders to the gift of prophecy.
On the capture of Jerusalem he was taken and slain at Riblah.
3. Father of Josiah, 2,
and of Hen, according to the reading of the received text of
ZEPHANIAH was the son of Cushi, and was probably of a noble family of the tribe of Simeon. He prophesied in the reign of Josiah, about B.C. 630. He denounces the judgments of God against the idolatry and sins of his countrymen, and exhorts them to repentance; he predicts the punishment of the Philistines, Moabites, Ammonites, and Ethiopians, and foretels the destruction of Nineveh; he again inveighs against the corruptions of Jerusalem, and with his threats mixes promises of future favour and prosperity to his people; whose recall from their dispersion shall glorify the name of God throughout the world. The style of Zephaniah is poetical; but it is not distinguished by any peculiar elegance or beauty, though generally animated and impressive.