1The word of the LORD which came unto Zephaniah the son of Cushi, the son of Gedaliah, the son of Amariah, the son of Hizkiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah.Next Verse 2
The Book of Zephaniah (Hebrew: Modern Tsfanya, Tiberian ??p?any?) is the ninth of the twelve minor prophets, preceded by Habakkuk and followed by Haggai. The name Zephaniah means "Yahweh has hidden/protected," "Yahweh hides," or "Yahweh is my secret."
The book's superscription attributes its authorship to "Zephaniah son of Cushi son of Gedaliah son of Amariah son of Hezekiah, in the days of King Josiah son of Amon of Judah" (1:1, NRSV). All that is known of Zephaniah comes from the text.
The name "Cushi," Zephaniah's father, means "Cushite" or "Ethiopian," and the text of Zephaniah mentions the sin and restoration of Ethiopians. While some have concluded from this that Zephaniah was a black Jew, Ehud Ben Zvi maintains that, based on the context, "Cushi" must be understood as a personal name rather than an indicator of nationality.Abraham ibn Ezra interpreted the name Hezekiah in the superscription as King Hezekiah of Judah, though that is not a claim advanced in the text of Zephaniah.
As with many of the other prophets, there is no external evidence to directly associate composition of the book with a prophet by the name of Zephaniah. Some scholars, such as Kent Harold Richards and Jason DeRouchie, consider the words in Zephaniah to reflect a time early in the reign of King Josiah (640–609 BCE) before his reforms of 622 BCE took full effect, in which case the prophet may have been born during the reign of Manasseh (698/687–642 BCE). Others agree that some portion of the book is postmonarchic, that is, dating to later than 586 BCE when the Kingdom of Judah fell in the Siege of Jerusalem. Some who consider the book to have largely been written by a historical Zephaniah have suggested that he may have been a disciple of Isaiah because of the two books' similar focus on rampant corruption and injustice in Judah.
O God of goodness and mercy, to Thy fatherly guidance we commend our family, our household and all our belongings. We commit all to Thy love and keeping; do Thou fill this house with Thy blessings even as Thou didst fill the holy House of Nazareth with Thy presence.
Keep far from us, above all else, the blemish of sin, and do Thou alone reign in our midst by Thy law, by Thy most holy love and by the exercise of every Christian virtue. Let each one of us obey Thee, love Thee and set himself to follow in his own life Thine example, that of Mary, Thy Mother and our Mother most loving, and that of Thy blameless guardian, Saint Joseph.
Protect us and our house from all evils and misfortunes, but grant that we may be ever resigned to Thy divine will even in the sorrows which it shall please Thee to send us. Finally give unto all of us the grace to live in perfect harmony and in the fullness of love toward our neighbor. Grant that every one of us may deserve by a holy life the comfort of Thy holy Sacraments at the hour of death. O Jesus, bless us and protect us.
O Mary, Mother of grace and of mercy, defend us against the wicked spirit, reconcile us with Thy Son, commit us to His keeping, that so we may be made worthy of His promises.
Saint Joseph, foster-father of our Savior, guardian of His holy Mother, head of the Holy Family, intercede for us, bless us and defend our home at all times.
Saint Michael, defend us against all the evil cunning of hell.
Saint Gabriel, make us to understand the holy will of God.
Saint Raphael, preserve us from all sickness and from every danger to our lives.
Our holy Guardian Angels, keep our feet safely on the path of salvation both day and night.
Our holy Patrons, pray for us before the throne of God.
Yea, bless this house, O God the Father, who hast created us; O God the Son, who hast suffered for us upon the holy Cross, and Thou, O Holy Spirit, who hast sanctified us in holy Baptism. May the one God in three divine Persons preserve our bodies, purify our minds, direct our hearts and bring us all to everlasting life.
Glory be to the Father, glory be to the Son, glory be to the Holy Ghost!