(Zeph·a·niʹah) [Jehovah Has Concealed (Treasured Up)].
1. A Levite in the genealogical line from Kohath to Samuel and Heman.—1Ch 6:33-38.
2. A prophet of Jehovah in Judah during the early part of Josiah’s reign; writer of the book bearing his name. Zephaniah was possibly a great-great-grandson of King Hezekiah.—Zep 1:1; see ZEPHANIAH, BOOK OF.
3. A leading priest during the last decade of the kingdom of Judah; son of Maaseiah. Zephaniah was twice sent by Zedekiah to Jeremiah, first to inquire of Jehovah about Judah’s future and later to request him to pray on their behalf. (Jer 21:1-3; 37:3) From a false prophet in Babylon, Zephaniah received a letter urging him to rebuke Jeremiah, but instead of complying, Zephaniah read the letter to Jeremiah, who then wrote Jehovah’s reply. (Jer 29:24-32) Following the fall of Jerusalem, Zephaniah, then second priest under Seraiah, was taken to Nebuchadnezzar at Riblah and killed.—Jer 52:24, 26, 27; 2Ki 25:18, 20, 21.