Zephaniah 3:8-13 A Faithful Remnant.
Waiting can be hard, especially when one feels overwhelmed by their circumstances, but the prophet writes ‘therefore’, so that waiting is encouraged by the promise that the guilty will not go unpunished Cf. Prov. 20:22; Mic. 7:7). In those marvellous words of Habakkuk, the proud, those who look to their own persons and work, are those who are contrasted with the just who live by faith, having a righteousness not their own (2:3 Cf. Phil. 3:9). Zephaniah is saying the same thing here. The nations or kingdoms would be gathered together for judgment, with the fire of the LORD’s jealousy (v. 8 Cf. Is. 66:18; Mic. 4:12). Judgment was necessary, before there could be restoration. Faith cannot be divorced from repentance.
However, one goal of this humiliation would be that there would also be a remnant gathered from among the nations, who would call on the covenant LORD, “to serve Him with one accord” (v. 9 Is. 57:19-21). The remnant would not be ashamed for their deeds, but instead the LORD will take away those who took pride in themselves (vv. 10-11 Cf. Is. 5:15), and have the effect of the making of “a meek and humble people” (v. 12 Cf. Is. 14:32; Zech. 13:8-9). “The remnant of Israel shall do no unrighteousness and speak no lies, nor shall a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth; for they shall feed their flocks and lie down, and no one shall make them afraid” (v. 13 Cf. Is. 10:20-22; 60:21; Ezek. 34:13-15; 28-30; Mic. 4:6-8; Zech. 8:3, 16; Rev. 14:5).