I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter, my great army, which I sent among you. “You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame. You shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the Lord your God and there is none else. And my people shall never again be put to shame. “And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. Joel 2:25-28
Where Elijah was a prophet to Israel (the Northern Kingdom), Joel is a prophet in Judah (the Southern Kingdom). They are facing an outbreak of locusts destroying everything in sight, as well as famine. It is symbolic of an even more severe judgment to come for those who continue to rebel.
God speaks through Joel to show the people their need for repentance – to ask forgiveness for the ways they have strayed from God and to turn back to Him. God has many blessings in store for them if they just follow His ways.
Joel speaks often of the Day of the Lord. A day of judgment and wrath that is coming and will be devastating to the enemies of God. The time is now to repent, Joel urges those in Judah.
In the New Testament after Jesus’s resurrection, we see the apostle Peter give a similar sermon of repentance and restoration. In Joel’s prophesy we see a glimpse into the restoration God desires us to have and the Holy Spirit given to us after the resurrection of Jesus.
Challenge: Take time today to ask God to show you where you need to repent. He can’t wait to forgive you and watch you walk in freedom. As the day of judgment is sure to come, who in your life can you pray about sharing Jesus with?
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