Joel 1: The Day of the Lord
December 6, 2020
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
Joel prophesies at a time when there has been a plague of locusts (1:4), and in that context calls on the elders and all inhabitants of the land (1:1) to pay attention and ask what is going on. In fact, they are to repent, mourn: Put on sackcloth and lament (1:13). They are to consecrate a fast and call a solemn assembly and gather the elders (1:14).
What is going on? What is God up to by allowing this plague of locusts? They are to repent before God and ask for his renewed blessing on the land. “Alas,” Joel prophesies, “for the day, for the day of the Lord is near” (1:15). That day, so longed for in the Old Testament, would come, and they needed to be prepared for it, and call to the Lord (1:19), repent of their sins, and be ready.
Joel’s famous prophecy is fulfilled at Pentecost (2:28/Acts 2:17), and all this timely prophecy then was to point the way towards that greater “day.” In the midst of this plague of locusts, they are called to look to God and seek blessing from him.
Would you return to God? Would you cry out to God for his Holy Spirit to fill you, that you might bear the fruit of the Spirit? Would you repent of your sins and trust in him? What “locusts” is God using to cause you to turn back to God in faithfulness, integrity, repentance, and with a whole and willing heart?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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