- (Zeph 2:1-3 NLT): "Gather together and pray, you shameless nation. Gather while there is still time,before judgment begins and your opportunity is blown away like a chaff. Act now, before the fierce fury of the Lord falls and the terrible day of the Lord's anger begins. Beg the Lord to save you, all you who are humble, all you who uphold justice. Walk humbly and do what is right. Perhaps even yet the Lord will protect you from his anger on that day of destruction."
You say Zeph 2:1-3 (see below) is talking about Israel. Then you ask: "but could it also be describing AMERICA, and all the nations, who have turned and rebelled against JESUS CHRIST?"
When these prophetic scriptures talk about Judah and Israel (aka: the Jews and Jacob) we are seeing a distinction between one Tribe (Judah/Jews) compared to the entirety of the 12 Tribes (Israel/Jacob). We need to realize that God has been scattering ALL of Israel for about 4000 years. God spoke to Jacob:
"I am the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of. (Gen 28:13-15)"
For about 4000 years virtually ALL 12 TRIBES OF ISRAEL HAVE BEEN COMPLETELY SCATTERED EXCEPT for a REMNANT of the TRIBE of JUDAH (who are essentially today's Jewish people). Jacob/Israel has been scattered throughout the world, just like God said. Our Lord knows exactly where each and every Israelite is located. He promises He will soon gather us (starting with the 144,000 in Rev 7:4):
God will not forget the promise He made to ALL of ISRAEL:
"And the LORD shall scatter you among the nations, and ye shall be left few in number among the heathen, whither the LORD shall lead you. And there ye shall serve gods, the work of men's hands, wood and stone, which neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell. But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. When thou art in tribulation, and all these things are come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the LORD thy God, and shalt be obedient unto his voice; (For the LORD thy God is a merciful God;) he will not forsake thee, neither destroy thee, nor forget the covenant of thy fathers which he sware unto them. (Deu 4:27-31)"
So yes this scripture applies to AMERICA, and any other nation containing Israel's "lost" Tribes:
"That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, A day of the trumpet and alarm against the fenced cities, and against the high towers. And I will bring distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against the LORD: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung. Neither their silver nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the LORD'S wrath; but the whole land shall be devoured by the fire of His jealousy: for He shall make even a speedy riddance of all them that dwell in the land... Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired; Before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the LORD come upon you, before the day of the LORD'S anger come upon you. Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD'S anger. (Zeph 1:15-18, 2:1-3)"