Joel 1; Joel 2; Joel 3

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Joel 1

1 This is what the LORD said to Joel, son of Pethuel.
2 Listen to this, you leaders! Open your ears, all inhabitants of this land! Nothing like this has ever happened in your lifetime or in your ancestors' lifetime.
3 Tell your children about it. Have your children tell their children. Have your grandchildren tell their children.
4 What young locusts leave, mature locusts will eat. What mature locusts leave, adult locusts will eat. What adult locusts leave, grasshoppers will eat.
5 Wake up and cry, you drunks! Cry loudly, you wine drinkers! New wine has been taken away from you.
6 A strong nation attacked my land. It has too many soldiers to count. They have teeth like lions. They have fangs like grown lions.
7 They destroyed my grapevines. They ruined my fig trees. They stripped off what they could eat, threw the rest away, and left the branches bare.
8 Cry loudly like a young woman who is dressed in sackcloth, mourning for the man she was going to marry.
9 Grain offerings and wine offerings are no longer brought to the LORD's temple. The priests, the LORD's servants, mourn.
10 Israel's fields are ruined, and the ground is dried up. The grain has been destroyed. The new wine has dried up. The olive oil has run out.
11 Be sad, you farmers! Cry loudly, you grape growers! Mourn for the wheat and the barley. The harvest is destroyed in the field.
12 The grapevines are dried up. The fig trees are withered. The pomegranate, palm, and apricot trees, as well as all the trees in the orchards, have died. Yes, the joy of these people has died too.
13 Put on your sackcloth and mourn, you priests. Cry loudly, you servants of the altar. Spend the night in sackcloth, you servants of my God. Grain offerings and wine offerings are withheld from your God's temple.
14 Schedule a time to fast! Call for an assembly! Gather the leaders and everyone who lives in the land. Bring them to the temple of the LORD your God, and cry to the LORD for help.
15 This will be a terrible day! The day of the LORD is near, and it will come like destruction from the Almighty.
16 Food disappears right before our eyes. Happiness and rejoicing disappear from our God's temple.
17 Seeds shrivel up in their shells. Storehouses are destroyed. Barns are ruined. The grain has dried up.
18 The animals groan. Herds of cattle wander around confused. There's no pasture for them. Even flocks of sheep are suffering.
19 O LORD, I cry to you for help! Fire has burned up the open pastures. Flames have burned up all the trees in the orchards.
20 Even wild animals long for you. Streams run dry. Fire has burned up the open pastures.
GOD'S WORD® is a copyrighted work of God's Word to the Nations. Copyright © 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Joel 2

1 Blow the ram's horn in Zion. Sound the alarm on my holy mountain. Everyone who lives in the land should tremble, because the day of the LORD is coming. Certainly, it is near.
2 It is a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and overcast skies. A large and mighty army will spread over the mountains like the dawn. Nothing like this has ever happened. Nothing like this will ever happen again.
3 In front of this army a fire burns. Behind it flames are blazing. In front of it the land is like the garden of Eden. Behind it the land is like a barren desert. Nothing escapes it!
4 The soldiers look like horses. They run like war horses.
5 As they leap on mountaintops, they sound like rattling chariots, like crackling fire burning up straw, and like a mighty army prepared for battle.
6 People are terrified in their presence. Every face turns pale.
7 They run like warriors. They climb walls like soldiers. They march straight ahead. They do not leave their places.
8 They do not crowd one another. They keep in their own lines. Even when they break through the defenses, they do not break their ranks.
9 They rush into the city. They run along the wall. They climb into houses. They enter through windows like thieves.
10 The earth quakes in their presence, and the sky shakes. The sun and the moon turn dark, and the stars no longer shine.
11 The LORD shouts out orders to his army. His forces are very large. The troops that carry out his commands are mighty. The day of the LORD is extremely terrifying. Who can endure it?
12 "But even now," declares the LORD, "return to me with all your heart-- with fasting, crying, and mourning."
13 Tear your hearts, not your clothes. Return to the LORD your God. He is merciful and compassionate, patient, and always ready to forgive and to change his plans about disaster.
14 Who knows? He may reconsider and change his plan and leave a blessing for you. Then you could give grain offerings and wine offerings to the LORD your God.
15 Blow the ram's horn in Zion. Schedule a time to fast. Call for an assembly.
16 Gather the people. Prepare them for a holy meeting. Assemble the leaders. Gather the children, even the nursing infants. Grooms leave their rooms. Brides leave their chambers.
17 The priests who serve the LORD cry between the altar and the entrance to the temple. They say, "Spare your people, O LORD. Don't let the people who belong to you become a disgrace. Don't let the nations ridicule them. Why should people ask, 'Where is their God?'"
18 Then the LORD became concerned about his land, and he had pity on his people.
19 The LORD said to his people, "I am going to send grain, new wine, and olive oil to you. You will be satisfied with them. I will no longer make you a disgrace among the nations.
20 "I will keep the northern [army] far from you, and I will force it into a dry and barren land. The soldiers in front will be forced into the eastern sea. The soldiers in back will be forced into the western sea. A foul odor will rise from the dead bodies. They will stink." He has done great things!
21 Land, do not be afraid. Be glad and rejoice. The LORD has done great things!
22 Wild animals, do not be afraid. The pastures in the wilderness have turned green. The trees have produced their fruit. There are plenty of figs and grapes.
23 People of Zion, be glad and find joy in the LORD your God. The LORD has given you the Teacher of Righteousness. He has sent the autumn rain and the spring rain as before.
24 The threshing floors will be filled with grain. The vats will overflow with new wine and olive oil.
25 "Then I will repay you for the years that the mature locusts, the adult locusts, the grasshoppers, and the young locusts ate your crops. (They are the large army that I sent against you.)
26 You will have plenty to eat, and you will be full. You will praise the name of the LORD your God, who has performed miracles for you. My people will never be ashamed again.
27 You will know that I am in Israel. I am the LORD your God, and there is no other. My people will never be ashamed again.
28 "After this, I will pour my Spirit on everyone. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your old men will dream dreams. Your young men will see visions.
29 In those days I will pour my Spirit on servants, on both men and women.
30 I will work miracles in the sky and on the earth: blood, fire, and clouds of smoke.
31 The sun will become dark, and the moon will become as red as blood before the terrifying day of the LORD comes."
32 Then whoever calls on the name of the LORD will be saved. Those who escape will be on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem. Among the survivors will be those whom the LORD calls, as the LORD has promised.
GOD'S WORD® is a copyrighted work of God's Word to the Nations. Copyright © 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Joel 3

1 "In those days and at that time, I will bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem.
2 I will gather all the nations. I will bring them down to the valley of Jehoshaphat. I will judge them there. They scattered the Israelites, the people who belong to me, among the nations. They divided my land.
3 They threw dice for my people. They traded boys for prostitutes. They sold girls so that they could buy wine to drink.
4 "Now what do you have against me, Tyre and Sidon and all the regions of Philistia? Are you paying me back for something I have done? If you are paying me back, I will quickly pay you back for what you have done.
5 You took my silver and my gold. You brought my finest treasures to your temples.
6 You sold the people of Judah and Jerusalem to the Greeks. That way you could send them far away from their land.
7 I am going to make them leave the place where you sold them. I will pay you back for what you have done.
8 I will sell your sons and daughters to the people of Judah. They will sell them to the people of Sheba, a nation that is far away." The LORD has spoken.
9 Announce this among the nations: Prepare yourselves for war. Wake up the warriors. Have all the warriors come near and attack.
10 Hammer your plowblades into swords and your pruning shears into spears. Weaklings should say that they are warriors.
11 Hurry from every direction, and gather there, all you nations. O LORD, bring your soldiers.
12 Wake up, you nations. Come to the valley of Jehoshaphat. There I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations.
13 Cut them down like grain. The harvest is ripe. Stomp on them as you would stomp on grapes. The winepress is full. The vats overflow. The nations are very wicked.
14 There are many, many people in the valley of decision. The day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision.
15 The sun and the moon will turn dark. The stars will no longer shine.
16 The LORD will roar from Zion, and his voice will thunder from Jerusalem. The sky and the earth will shake. The LORD will be a refuge for his people. He will be a stronghold for the people of Israel.
17 "You will know that I am the LORD your God. I live on my holy mountain, Zion. Jerusalem will be holy. Foreigners will never invade it again.
18 On that day new wine will cover the mountains. Milk will flow on the hills. Water will flow in all the brooks of Judah. A spring will flow from the LORD's temple. It will water the valley of Shittim.
19 Egypt will become a wasteland. Edom will become a barren desert. This is because the nations were cruel to Judah. They murdered innocent people in their land.
20 People will always live in Judah. People will live in Jerusalem from now on.
21 I will punish those who murder." The LORD lives in Zion!
GOD'S WORD® is a copyrighted work of God's Word to the Nations. Copyright © 1995 by God's Word to the Nations. All rights reserved. Used by permission.