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Minor Prophets Two

Image by Ben White

ADULT VERSION - What is a Minor Prophet?

The term "minor" in the context of the Minor Prophets doesn't imply any lesser significance or importance compared to the Major Prophets. Instead, it simply refers to the length of their books in the Bible. The Minor Prophets' writings are shorter in length compared to the books of the Major Prophets like Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel. So, they are called "minor" not because they are less significant, but because their books are shorter.

KID VERSION - The Second Six Minor Prophets

Nahum, Habakkuk, and Zephaniah were special messengers who had important things to tell the people of Israel and Judah. Nahum told them that the time of the big, scary empire Assyria ruling over them would soon be over, which made them feel hopeful and comforted. Habakkuk asked a big question: where was God when bad things happened? But he learned to trust that God had a plan, even when things seemed tough. Zephaniah warned the people to keep being good and faithful to God, even when it was hard. Then there's Haggai, who helped the Israelites rebuild their special temple after they had to leave it for a while. Zechariah reminded them that God was always watching over them, even when they were far from home. Finally, there's Malachi, who was like the last cheerleader in a game, encouraging everyone to keep believing and worshiping God with all their hearts.


Nahum wrote in a poetic style to tell the Israelites that Assyria's time ruling over them would soon come to an end. The Babylonians defeated Assyria, and Nahum's name means "comfort," so he offered hope and reassurance to his people. 

Habakkuk asked a tough question: "Where is God when people suffer?" He wrestled with this idea, especially when Judah was being punished by the Babylonians. But in the end, Habakkuk trusted in God's plan. 

Zephaniah's message wasn't comforting either. He warned the people of Judah that if they continued worshipping other gods instead of the one true God, they would face destruction. Despite the bleak outlook, Zephaniah emphasized the importance of remaining faithful to God, even in difficult times. Some believe Zephaniah was a descendant of King Hezekiah, giving him a powerful voice in society.

Image by Mick Haupt


Haggai: Once the exiled people return to Judah, they face questions about rebuilding the temple and how to worship God. Zerubbabel, the governor, and Joshua, the high priest, are key characters in this story.

Zechariah: The longest of the minor prophet books, Zechariah has 14 chapters filled with strange visions. It focuses on the rebuilding of the temple after 20 years of exile. Zechariah reassures the people that God is in control, and it contains a reference to a king riding a donkey.

Malachi: The final book in the Protestant Bible, Malachi bridges the gap between the Old and New Testaments. It emphasizes the importance of giving 10 percent of one's earnings and condemns insincere worship. Malachi also predicts the return of Elijah, leaving readers wondering how this prophecy will be fulfilled.

A Few Fun Facts

  • Joel's prophecy includes vivid descriptions of locust plagues and the Day of the Lord. (Locusts: Imagine a locust as a super-jumping, winged bug that sometimes teams up with its friends to fly in huge groups, kind of like a bug squad! Gross to some and awesome to others!) 

  • Obadiah's book is the shortest in the Old Testament, containing only 21 verses.

  • Jonah is famously swallowed by a great fish after attempting to flee from God. (Many people think that Jonah was swallowed by a whale, but the Bible actually says it was a "big fish." Now, this "big fish" could have been a whale, but it could have been another large sea creature.)

  • Malachi is the last book in the Protestant Bible, with 400 years between its writing and the New Testament.

One Popular Verse from Each Minor Prophet (Second Six)

  • Haggai 1:8 - "Go up to the hills and bring wood and build the house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored, says the Lord."

  • Zechariah 9:9 - "Rejoice greatly, O daughter Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter Jerusalem! Lo, your king comes to you; triumphant and victorious is he, humble and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey."

  • Zechariah 7:9 - "Thus says the Lord of hosts: Render true judgments, show kindness and mercy to one another."

  • Malachi 3:10 - "Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in my house, and thus put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts; see if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you an overflowing blessing."

  • Malachi 4:6 - "He will turn the hearts of parents to their children and the hearts of children to their parents, so that I will not come and strike the land with a curse."

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