on Zephaniah 3 :5
The just Lord is in the midst thereof - He sees, marks down, and will punish all these wickednesses.
Every morning doth he bring his judgment to light - The sense is, says Bp. Newcome, "Not a day passes but we see instances of his goodness to righteous men, and of his vengeance on the wicked."
on Zephaniah 3 :5
But, beside these "evening wolves in the midst of her," there standeth Another "in the midst of her," whom they knew not, and so, very near to them although they would not draw near to Him. But He was near, to behold all the iniquities which they did in the very city and place called by His Name and in His very presence; He was in her to protect, foster her with a father's love, but she, presuming on His mercy, had cast it off. And so He was near to punish, not to deliver; as a Judge, not as a Saviour. Dionysius: "God is everywhere, Who says by Jeremiah, 'I fill heaven and earth' Jeremiah 23:24. But since, as Solomon attesteth, 'The Lord is far from the wicked' Proverbs 15:29, how is He said here to be in the midst of these most wicked men? Because the Lord is far from the wicked, as regards the presence of love and grace; still in His Essence He is everywhere, and in this way He is equally present to all."
The Lord is in the midst thereof; He will not do iniquity - Dionysius: "Since He is the primal rule and measure of all righteousness; therefore from the very fact that He doeth anything, it is just, for He cannot do amiss, being essentially holy. Therefore He will give to every man what he deserves. Therefore we chant, 'The Lord is upright, and there is no unrighteousness in Him' Psalm 92:15." justice and injustice, purity and impurity, cannot be together. God's presence then must destroy the sinners, if not the sin. He was "in the midst of them," to sanctify them, giving them His judgments as a pattern of theirs; "He will not do iniquity:" but if they heeded it not, the judgment would fall upon themselves. It were for God to become "such an one as themselves" Psalm 50:21, and to connive at wickedness, were He to spare at last the impenitent.
Every morning - (Literally, in the morning, in the morning) one after the other, quickly, openly, daily, continually, bringing all secret things, all works of darkness, to light, as He said to David, "Thou didst it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, and before the sun" 2 Samuel 12:12. Doth He bring His judgments to light," so that no sin should be hidden in the brightness of His Light, as He said by Hosea, "Thy judgments are a light which goeth forth." Cyril: "Morning by morning, He shall execute His judgments, that is, in bright day and visibly, not restraining His anger, but bringing it forth in the midst, and making it conspicuous, and, as it were, setting in open vision what He had foreannounced." Day by day God gives some warning of His judgments. By chastisements which are felt to be His on this side or on that or all around, He gives ensamples which speak to the sinner's heart. "He faileth not." As God said by Habakkuk, that His promises, although they seem to "linger," were not "behind" Habakkuk 2:3 the real time, which lay in the Divine Mind, so, contrariwise, neither are His judgments. His hand is never missing at the appointed time. "But the unjust," he, whose very being and character, "iniquity," is the exact contrary to what he had said of the perfection of God, "Who doth not iniquity," or, as Moses had taught them in his song, "all His ways are judgment, a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is He" Deuteronomy 32:4. "Knoweth no shame," as God saith by Jeremiah, "Thou refusedst to be ashamed" Jeremiah 3:3. They were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush" Jeremiah 6:15; Jeremiah 8:12. Even thus they would not be ashamed of their sins, "that they might be converted and God might heal them" Isaiah 6:10.
on Zephaniah 3 :5
3:5 In the midst - Observing all. Not do iniquity - He will judge them righteously. Every morning - Daily he discovers his displeasure against the wicked. Faileth not - Lets no season slip to convince them, by public and visible punishments. The unjust - But the wicked Jews proceed without shame, and without fear.