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Joel Chapter 1

1 The LORD's word that came to Joel, the son of Pethuel.

2 Hear this, you elders, and listen, all you inhabitants of the land. Has this ever happened in your days, or in the days of your fathers?

3 Tell your children about it, and have your children tell their children, and their children, another generation.

4 What the swarming locust has left, the great locust has eaten. What the great locust has left, the grasshopper has eaten. What the grasshopper has left, the caterpillar has eaten.

5 Wake up, you drunkards, and weep! Wail, all you drinkers of wine, because of the sweet wine; for it is cut off from your mouth.

6 For a nation has come up on my land, strong, and without number. His teeth are the teeth of a lion, and he has the fangs of a lioness.

7 He has laid my vine waste, and stripped my fig tree. He has stripped its bark, and thrown it away. Its branches are made white.

8 Mourn like a virgin dressed in sackcloth for the husband of her youth!

9 The meal offering and the drink offering are cut off from the LORD's house. The priests, the LORD's ministers, mourn.

10 The field is laid waste. The land mourns, for the grain is destroyed, The new wine has dried up, and the oil languishes.

11 Be confounded, you farmers! Wail, you vineyard keepers; for the wheat and for the barley; for the harvest of the field has perished.

12 The vine has dried up, and the fig tree withered; the pomegranate tree, the palm tree also, and the apple tree, even all of the trees of the field are withered; for joy has withered away from the sons of men.

13 Put on sackcloth and mourn, you priests! Wail, you ministers of the altar. Come, lie all night in sackcloth, you ministers of my God, for the meal offering and the drink offering are withheld from your God's house.

14 Sanctify 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 to the LORD.

15 Alas for the day! For the day of the LORD is at hand, and it will come as destruction from the Almighty.

16 Isn't the food cut off before our eyes; joy and gladness from the house of our God?

17 The seeds rot under their clods. The granaries are laid desolate. The barns are broken down, for the grain has withered.

18 How the animals groan! The herds of livestock are perplexed, because they have no pasture. Yes, the flocks of sheep are made desolate.

19 The LORD, I cry to you, for the fire has devoured the pastures of the wilderness, and the flame has burnt all the trees of the field.

20 Yes, the animals of the field pant to you, for the water brooks have dried up, and the fire has devoured the pastures of the wilderness.


Verse 1 (LORD)
When rendered in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, "LORD" or "GOD" is the translation of God's Proper Name.
Verse 13 (God)
The Hebrew word rendered "God" is Elohim.

Version: World English Bible

Joel Chapter 1 Guide

Joel was especially a prophet to Judah. The burden of his message was the Day of the Lord. It seems to be one remarkable utterance rather than notes of a ministry covering a long period. A terrible locust plague which had devastated the entire country was the occasion of its deliverance. Joel spoke of things which were evident to those whom he addressed, then predicted an immediate judgment, and finally looked far on to the ultimate Day of the Lord.

In the first division are two sections. The prophet interpreted the meaning of the actual locust plague, and said it was the sign of yet severer judgment that was imminent. In dealing with the actual plague he uttered a call to contemplation, and to humiliation.

The call to contemplation was addressed, in the first place, to the old men, and then to all the inhabitants. In his description of the desolation the names, "palmer-worm," 'locust," "canker-worm," "caterpillar," all refer to locusts. The reference may be to different stages in the development of the locust, or to different varieties of the same family. The thought in the prophet's mind was of the complete destruction by the pest. Singling out the drunkards, the worshippers, the husbandmen, and the vinedressers, he reminded them of the completeness of the devastation, showing how it had affected all classes.

In the call to humiliation he began with the priests, calling them to penitence in the presence of the depletion of the house of God. Then addressing the people, he summoned them to sanctify a fast, and charged them to cry to Jehovah, declaring as his reason the truth which had been the burden of his message, "The day of the Lord is at hand." Finally, he voiced the cry of the people in penitence, "Oh Lord, to Thee do I cry."

From "An Exposition of the Whole Bible" by G. Campbell Morgan.