COGWA on Zephaniah, but what about protection?


One of the websites of the Church of God, a Worldwide Association (COGWA) had the following about the Book of Zephaniah:

Main theme

The theme of the book is the Day of the Lord. Despite the fact that Zephaniah warns Judah of impending doom, the prophecy is dual, and the major fulfillment of his prophecy is yet future. Although the prophet’s pronouncements focus on Jerusalem, nations nearby (Assyria, Ethiopia, Moab and Ammon) and all other nations of the earth are included in the warnings (Zephaniah 1:2-3; 3:6, 8, 20).

This book points forward to the dramatic and earthshaking events that will unfold before the return of Christ to the earth (1:9, 15-18).

When these major prophecies come to pass, it will be better to be “hidden in the day of the Lord’s anger” (2:3) than to be in the midst of what occurs when God intervenes and brings righteous judgment on mankind.

God’s indignation will be poured out on all nations, and none will escape: “My determination is to gather the nations to My assembly of kingdoms, to pour on them My indignation, all My fierce anger; all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of My jealousy” (3:8, emphasis added throughout). God’s anger will be felt worldwide.

A remnant is saved

For those who are willing to seek and submit to God, God promises protection during a period of unprecedented destruction. This time of Great Tribulation was also prophesied by Daniel (Daniel 12:1) and later by Jesus Christ: “And unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved [alive]; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:22)…

Here is one way to outline the book of Zephaniah:

The Day of the Lord (chapter 1).

  1. Prophecies concerning the entire earth (1:1-3).
  2. Prophecies regarding Judah and Jerusalem (1:4-9).
  3. God’s wrath on rebellious mankind (1:10-18).

Nations warned of coming judgment (chapters 2-3:7).

  1. Repentant meek are spared (2:1-3).
  2. Surrounding nations warned of impending punishment (2:4-15).
  3. Entire earth to be punished (3:1-7).

Ultimate deliverance: God’s people restored (3:8-20).

  1. A pure language taught (3:8-9).
  2. God dwells with His people (3:10-20).

Zephaniah is one of the books of the Bible that places the destruction of end-time Assyria with that of end-time Babylon (Zephaniah 2:13-15; see also Germany in Biblical and Catholic Prophecy).

But a point that I would like to emphasize related to Zephaniah is that it is not simply those that are meek who get protected, but those who truly uphold God’s justice and properly gather together (see the video Zephaniah’s ‘Gather Together’ Prophecy). Those Christians who are promised end time protection are those that are truly Philadelphian Christians (Revelation 3:7-13). The Bible teaches that not all Christians will be protected at the time of the end (see also Revelation 12:14-17).

Notice some of those scriptures as well as the some in Zephaniah:

7 “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write,

‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens”: 8 “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. 9 Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie — indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. 10 Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. 11 Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. (Revelation 3:7-12)

14 But the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent. 15 So the serpent spewed water out of his mouth like a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood. 16 But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. 17 And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. (Revelation 12:14-17)

1 Gather yourselves together, yes, gather together,
O undesirable nation,
2 Before the decree is issued,
Or the day passes like chaff,
Before the Lord’s fierce anger comes upon you,
Before the day of the Lord’s anger comes upon you!
3 Seek the Lord, all you meek of the earth,
Who have upheld His justice.
Seek righteousness, seek humility.
It may be that you will be hidden
In the day of the Lord’s anger. (Zephaniah 2:1-3)

So, it is those that will gather together BEFORE a decree will be issued and who are Philadelphia Christians that are promised protection. It is those who hold fast to the priorities and work of Philadelphia by placing their proper emphasis on doing the work (Matthew 24:14; 28:19-20) as well as live as Philadelphia Christians will be protected, while others who follow Jesus will not be.

Some items of possibly related interest may include:

There is a Place of Safety for the Philadelphians. Why it May Be Petra This article discusses a biblical ‘place of safety’ and includes quotes from the Bible and Herbert W. Armstrong on this subject–thus, there is a biblically supported alternative to the rapture theory. What did Zephaniah warn? There is also a video on the subject: Might Petra be the Place of Safety? Here is something related in the Spanish language: Hay un lugar de seguridad para los Filadelfinos. ¿Puede ser Petra?
Zephaniah’s ‘Gather Together’ Prophecy This is a video about the ramifications of the writings in Zephaniah 2:1-3.
This is PETRA! This is a 1962 Good News article by the late Dr. Hoeh.
Concerns about Church of God, a Worldwide Association This seems to be the largest group that came out of the United Church of God. Here is some history and concerns about it.
Should the Church Still Try to Place its Top Priority on Proclaiming the Gospel or Did Herbert W. Armstrong Change that Priority for the Work? Some say the Church should mainly feed the flock now as that is what Herbert W. Armstrong reportedly said. Is that what he said? Is that what the Bible says? What did Paul and Herbert W. Armstrong expect from evangelists?
The Philadelphia Church Era was predominant circa 1933 A.D. to 1986 A.D. The old Radio Church of God and old Worldwide Church of God, now basically the most faithful in the Church of God, like the beliefs held of the Continuing Church of God.
The Laodicean Church Era has been predominant circa 1986 A.D. to present. The Laodiceans are non-Philadelphians who mainly descended from the old WCG or its offshoots.  They do not properly understand the work or biblical prophecies and will face the Great Tribulation if they do not repent.

Get news like the above sent to you on a daily basis

Your email will not be shared. You may unsubscribe at anytime.