Joel

  • Joel Facts

    3 chapters
    73 verses
    1,896 words
    Minor Prophets Genre

  • Joel Word Cloud

    This word cloud picture shows the most repeated words in Joel

  • Joel Videos

    These are short videos about Joel, most include slides.

  • Writings about Joel

    Christian education materials about Joel, including book overviews, reading guides for the Minor Prophets genre, discussion questions, discipleship lessons, and thought-provoking essays.

  • Audio about Joel

    Audio companion guides for reading as well as book overviews

  • Joel Daily Readings

    Start reading or listening to Joel and its associated daily readers on Day 251 when Joel begins

Daily Reader for Day 251: Joel -


by Dave Moore

Unknown date, possibly after the Fall of Samaria, or even of Jerusalem. 

What the cutting locust left, the swarming locust has eaten.  What the swarming locust left, the hopping locust has eaten, and what the hopping locust left, the destroying locust has eaten.   – Joel 1:4

The book of Joel’s prophecies breaks neatly into three parts.  In chapter 1 he acknowledges the devastation of a recent locust plague – described as a nation powerful and beyond number – but keeps a cool distance from it.  Joel’s concern is that his hearers will understand the power behind the locusts: For the day of the LORD is near, and as destruction from the Almighty it comes.

The book pivots in the middle of chapter 2: “Yet even now,” declares the LORD, “return to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; and rend your hearts and not your garments.”  Return to the LORD your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and He relents over disaster. Joel plants his call in a logical consideration: Who knows whether he will not turn and relent, and leave a blessing behind him, a grain offering and a drink offering for the LORD your God?  In other words, what does Israel have to lose?  Perhaps the LORD won’t relent; but if He might, doesn’t it make sense to return?

In the final act Joel looks forward – beyond the present plague, to a new beginning for his nation and for the earth.  A day when not only will the LORD restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, and when He will restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, and when the LORD brings Judah’s enemies together in the Valley of Decision, but when it shall come to pass that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved. 

Our verse for this week is Psalm 37:4-5: Delight yourself in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your heart.  Commit your way to the LORD; trust in Him, and He will act.

Joel 1 through 3.  Now let’s read it!

Joel -

1:1 The word of the LORD that came to Joel, the son of Pethuel:

  Hear this, you elders;
    give ear, all inhabitants of the land!
  Has such a thing happened in your days,
    or in the days of your fathers?
  Tell your children of it,
    and let your children tell their children,
    and their children to another generation.
  What the cutting locust left,
    the swarming locust has eaten.
  What the swarming locust left,
    the hopping locust has eaten,
  and what the hopping locust left,
    the destroying locust has eaten.
  Awake, you drunkards, and weep,
    and wail, all you drinkers of wine,
  because of the sweet wine,
    for it is cut off from your mouth.
  For a nation has come up against my land,
    powerful and beyond number;
  its teeth are lions' teeth,
    and it has the fangs of a lioness.
  It has laid waste my vine
    and splintered my fig tree;
  it has stripped off their bark and thrown it down;
    their branches are made white.
  Lament like a virgin wearing sackcloth
    for the bridegroom of her youth.
  The grain offering and the drink offering are cut off
    from the house of the LORD.
  The priests mourn,
    the ministers of the LORD.
  The fields are destroyed,
    the ground mourns,
  because the grain is destroyed,
    the wine dries up,
    the oil languishes.
  Be ashamed, O tillers of the soil;
    wail, O vinedressers,
  for the wheat and the barley,
    because the harvest of the field has perished.
  The vine dries up;
    the fig tree languishes.
  Pomegranate, palm, and apple,
    all the trees of the field are dried up,
  and gladness dries up
    from the children of man.

  Put on sackcloth and lament, O priests;
    wail, O ministers of the altar.
  Go in, pass the night in sackcloth,
    O ministers of my God!
  Because grain offering and drink offering
    are withheld from the house of your God.
  Consecrate a fast;
    call a solemn assembly.
  Gather the elders
    and all the inhabitants of the land
  to the house of the LORD your God,
    and cry out to the LORD.
  Alas for the day!
  For the day of the LORD is near,
    and as destruction from the Almighty it comes.
  Is not the food cut off
    before our eyes,
  joy and gladness
    from the house of our God?
  The seed shrivels under the clods;
    the storehouses are desolate;
  the granaries are torn down
    because the grain has dried up.
  How the beasts groan!
    The herds of cattle are perplexed
  because there is no pasture for them;
    even the flocks of sheep suffer.
  To you, O LORD, I call.
  For fire has devoured
    the pastures of the wilderness,
  and flame has burned
    all the trees of the field.
  Even the beasts of the field pant for you
    because the water brooks are dried up,
  and fire has devoured
    the pastures of the wilderness.

(ESV)

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