Why would God send such a judgment? The people of Judah had become accustomed to sin. Their physical and moral senses had become dull. Sin (unrighteousness, rebelling against God) had become so common place that, in their eyes, it seemed to be normal conduct. They were no longer offended by obvious sinful behavior.
The more we accept sinful behavior, the more we see it and allow it, the more it seems normal. Our own moral compass becomes flawed.
God sometimes sends calamity to get our attention but He never sends it without first sending His prophets to warn us and to tell us what to do to escape the devastation. Today we have the Bible, preachers, and even godly friends who serve that purpose.
In Joel 1:14-19, Joel called for a national fast. This was to be a period of time when no food was eaten giving the people time to approach God in humility and sorrow over sin. They would pray for His forgiveness and blessing.
In Joel 2:15-17, Joel called for a national day of prayer. Everyone was to take part; children, elders, and even brides and grooms were to put off their honeymoon to gather with the priests and leaders of the nation. Nothing was more important. They were to seek God in earnest prayer and to ask Him for forgiveness and to turn aside the judgment they deserved.
It seems that the people of Judah heeded Joel's warning and followed his call for repentance. God showed them mercy. Joel tells of the terrible swarms being removed and scattered in the desert.
Joel’s book is more than a forewarning of judgment, for there are great promises in it for those who believe.
In Joel 2:25 God says "I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten." After we repent (admit the sin and turn away from it) and get to know God, it becomes apparent that many hardships and wasted years were caused by our own willful disobedience. When we repent, God promises to repay us for those years. With receiving the promised Holy Spirit, our hearts and minds will become so full of God's riches that the sorrow of the wasted years will be completely forgotten.
In Joel 2:32, Joel says that "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."
There is no distinction of class, race or nationality. Everyone has the right to God’s mercy and redemption.
As with most prophets, upon studying Joel’s message, it is sobering to see that it has as much meaning for us today as it did for the people of Judah in 835 BC.
Learn about other people of the Bible.
A Walk With the Women of the Bible
EBook by Lynne Chapman
Join me in getting to know some amazing
women of the Bible
while we extract valuable insights and
lessons from their lives.
Now available for Kindle under new title
A Walk With EVE
Also availble in paperback from Cafe Press.
Names of God Ebook
Almighty God. The Creator of heaven and earth.
Our God is given names in Scripture that
describe the characteristics of His personality.
Experience God through the names given Him in Scripture.