Joel 2

The Terrible Visitation

1 1Blow a trumpet in Zion, And sound an alarm on My holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, For the 2day of the LORD is coming; Surely it is near,
2 A day of 3darkness and gloom, A day of clouds and thick darkness. As the dawn is spread over the mountains, So there is a 4great and mighty people; There has 5never * * been anything like it, Nor will there be again after it To the years of many generations.
3 A 6fire consumes before them And behind them a flame burns. The land is 7like the garden of Eden before them But a 8desolate wilderness behind them, And nothing at all escapes them.
4 Their 9appearance is like the appearance of horses; And like war horses, so they run.
5 [a]With a 10noise as of chariots They leap on the tops of the mountains, Like the [b]crackling of a 11flame of fire consuming the stubble, Like a mighty people arranged for battle.
6 Before * them the people are in 12anguish; All 13faces [c]turn pale.
7 They run like mighty men, They climb the wall like soldiers *; And they each 14march [d]in line, Nor do they deviate from their paths.
8 They do not crowd each other, They march everyone in his path; When they [e]burst through the [f]defenses, They do not break ranks.
9 They rush on the city, They run on the wall; They climb into the 15houses, They 16enter through the windows like a thief.
10 Before them the earth 17quakes, The heavens tremble, The 18sun and the moon grow dark And the stars lose their brightness.
11 The LORD 19utters His voice before 20His army; Surely His camp is very great, For 21strong is he who carries out His word. The 22day of the LORD is indeed great and very awesome, And 23who can endure it?
12 "Yet even now," declares the LORD, "24Return to Me with all your heart, And with 25fasting, weeping and mourning;
13 And 26rend your heart and not 27your garments." Now return to the LORD your God, For He is 28gracious and compassionate, Slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness And 29relenting of evil.
14 Who knows 30whether He will not turn and relent And leave a 31blessing behind Him, Even 32a grain offering and a drink offering For the LORD your God?
15 33Blow a trumpet in Zion, 34Consecrate a fast, proclaim a solemn assembly,
16 Gather the people, 35sanctify the congregation, Assemble the elders, Gather the children and the nursing infants. Let the 36bridegroom come out of his room And the bride out of her bridal chamber.
17 Let the priests, the LORD'S ministers, Weep 37between the porch and the altar, And let them say, "38Spare Your people, O LORD, And do not make Your inheritance a 39reproach, A byword among the nations. Why should they among the peoples say, '40Where is their God?' "

Deliverance Promised

18 Then the LORD will be 41zealous for His land And will have 42pity on His people.
19 The LORD will answer and say to His people, "Behold, I am going to 43send you grain, new wine and oil, And you will be satisfied in full with them; And I will 44never again make you a reproach among the nations.
20 "But I will remove the 45northern army far from you, And I will drive it into a parched and desolate land, And its vanguard into the 46eastern sea, And its rear guard into the 47western sea. And its 48stench will arise and its foul smell will come up, For it has done great things."
21 49Do not fear, O land, rejoice and be glad, For the LORD has done 50great things.
22 Do not fear, beasts of the field, For the 51pastures of the wilderness have turned green, For the tree has borne its fruit, The fig tree and the vine have yielded in full.
23 So rejoice, O 52sons of Zion, And 53be glad in the LORD your God; For He has 54given you the early rain for your vindication. And He has poured down for you the rain, The early and 55latter rain as before.
24 The threshing floors will be full of grain, And the vats will 56overflow with the new wine and oil.
25 "Then I will make up to you for the years That the swarming 57locust has eaten, The creeping locust, the stripping locust and the gnawing locust, My great army which I sent among you.
26 "You will have plenty to 58eat and be satisfied And 59praise the name of the LORD your God, Who has 60dealt wondrously with you; Then My people will 61never * be put to shame.
27 "Thus you will 62know that I am in the midst of Israel, And that I am the LORD your God, And there is 63no other; And My people will never * be 64put to shame.

The Promise of the Spirit

28 "65It will come about after this That I will 66pour out My Spirit on all 67mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your old men will dream dreams, Your young men will see visions.
29 "Even on the 68male and female servants * I will pour out My Spirit in those days.

The Day of the LORD

30 "I will 69display wonders in the sky and on the earth, Blood, fire and columns of smoke.
31 "The 70sun will be turned into darkness And the moon into blood Before the 71great and awesome day of the LORD comes.
32 "And it will come about that 72whoever * calls on the name of the LORD Will be delivered; For 73on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem There will be those who 74escape, As the LORD has said, Even among the 75survivors whom the LORD calls.

Images for Joel 2

Joel 2 Commentary

Chapter 2

God's judgments. (1-14) Exhortations to fasting and prayer; blessings promised. (15-27) A promise of the Holy Spirit, and of future mercies. (28-32)

Verses 1-14 The priests were to alarm the people with the near approach of the Divine judgments. It is the work of ministers to warn of the fatal consequences of sin, and to reveal the wrath from heaven against the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. The striking description which follows, shows what would attend the devastations of locusts, but may also describe the effects from the ravaging of the land by the Chaldeans. If the alarm of temporal judgments is given to offending nations, how much more should sinners be warned to seek deliverance from the wrath to come! Our business therefore on earth must especially be, to secure an interest in our Lord Jesus Christ; and we should seek to be weaned from objects which will soon be torn from all who now make idols of them. There must be outward expressions of sorrow and shame, fasting, weeping, and mourning; tears for trouble must be turned into tears for the sin that caused it. But rending the garments would be vain, except their hearts were rent by abasement and self-abhorrence; by sorrow for their sins, and separation from them. There is no question but that if we truly repent of our sins, God will forgive them; but whether he will remove affliction is not promised, yet the probability of it should encourage us to repent.

Verses 15-27 The priests and rulers are to appoint a solemn fast. The sinner's supplication is, Spare us, good Lord. God is ready to succour his people; and he waits to be gracious. They prayed that God would spare them, and he answered them. His promises are real answers to the prayers of faith; with him saying and doing are not two things. Some understand these promises figuratively, as pointing to gospel grace, and as fulfilled in the abundant comforts treasured up for believers in the covenant of grace.

Verses 28-32 The promise began to be fulfilled on the day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit was poured out, and it was continued in the converting grace and miraculous gifts conferred on both Jews and Gentiles. The judgments of God upon a sinful world, only go before the judgment of the world in the last day. Calling on God supposes knowledge of him, faith in him, desire toward him, dependence on him, and, as evidence of the sincerity of all this, conscientious obedience to him. Those only shall be delivered in the great day, who are now effectually called from sin to God, from self to Christ, from things below to things above.

Cross References 75

  • 1. Jeremiah 4:5; Joel 2:15; Zephaniah 1:16
  • 2. Joel 1:15; Joel 2:11, 31; Joel 3:14; Obadiah 15; Zephaniah 1:14
  • 3. Joel 2:10, 31; Amos 5:18; Zephaniah 1:15
  • 4. Joel 1:6; Joel 2:11, 25
  • 5. Lamentations 1:12; Daniel 9:12; Daniel 12:1; Joel 1:2
  • 6. Psalms 97:3; Isaiah 9:18, 19
  • 7. Isaiah 51:3; Ezekiel 36:35
  • 8. Exodus 10:5, 15; Psalms 105:34, 35; Zechariah 7:14
  • 9. Revelation 9:7
  • 10. Revelation 9:9
  • 11. Isaiah 5:24; Isaiah 30:30
  • 12. Isaiah 13:8; Nahum 2:10
  • 13. Jeremiah 30:6
  • 14. Proverbs 30:27
  • 15. Exodus 10:6
  • 16. Jeremiah 9:21; John 10:1
  • 17. Psalms 18:7; Joel 3:16; Nahum 1:5
  • 18. Isaiah 13:10; Isaiah 34:4; Jeremiah 4:23; Ezekiel 32:7, 8; Joel 2:31; Joel 3:15; Matthew 24:29; Revelation 8:12
  • 19. Psalms 46:6; Isaiah 13:4; Jeremiah 25:30; Joel 3:16
  • 20. Joel 2:25
  • 21. Jeremiah 50:34; Revelation 18:8
  • 22. Jeremiah 30:7; Joel 1:15; Joel 2:1, 31; Joel 3:14; Zephaniah 1:14, 15; Revelation 6:17
  • 23. Ezekiel 22:14; Malachi 3:2
  • 24. Deuteronomy 4:29; Jeremiah 4:1, 2; Ezekiel 33:11; Hosea 12:6
  • 25. Daniel 9:3
  • 26. Psalms 34:18; Psalms 51:17; Isaiah 57:15
  • 27. Genesis 37:34; 2 Samuel 1:11; Job 1:20; Jeremiah 41:5
  • 28. Exodus 34:6
  • 29. Jeremiah 18:8; Jeremiah 42:10; Amos 7:3, 6
  • 30. Jeremiah 26:3; Jonah 3:9
  • 31. Haggai 2:19
  • 32. Joel 1:9, 13
  • 33. Numbers 10:3; 2 Kings 10:20
  • 34. Joel 1:14
  • 35. 1 Samuel 16:5; 2 Chronicles 29:5
  • 36. Psalms 19:5
  • 37. 2 Chronicles 8:12; Ezekiel 8:16
  • 38. Exodus 32:11, 12; Isaiah 37:20; Amos 7:2, 5
  • 39. Psalms 44:13; Psalms 74:10
  • 40. Psalms 42:10; Psalms 79:10; Psalms 115:2
  • 41. Zechariah 1:14; Zechariah 8:2
  • 42. Isaiah 60:10; Isaiah 63:9, 15
  • 43. Jeremiah 31:12; Hosea 2:21, 22; Joel 1:10; Malachi 3:10
  • 44. Ezekiel 34:29; Ezekiel 36:15
  • 45. Jeremiah 1:14, 15
  • 46. Zechariah 14:8
  • 47. Deuteronomy 11:24
  • 48. Isaiah 34:3; Amos 4:10
  • 49. Isaiah 54:4; Jeremiah 30:10; Zephaniah 3:16, 17
  • 50. Psalms 126:3; Joel 2:26
  • 51. Psalms 65:12, 13
  • 52. Psalms 149:2
  • 53. Isaiah 12:2-6
  • 54. Deuteronomy 11:14; Isaiah 41:16; Jeremiah 5:24; Habakkuk 3:18; Zechariah 10:7
  • 55. Leviticus 26:4; Hosea 6:3; Zechariah 10:1
  • 56. Leviticus 26:10; Amos 9:13; Malachi 3:10
  • 57. Joel 1:4-7; Joel 2:2-11
  • 58. Leviticus 26:5; Deuteronomy 11:15; Isaiah 62:9
  • 59. Deuteronomy 12:7; Psalms 67:5-7
  • 60. Psalms 126:2, 3; Isaiah 25:1
  • 61. Isaiah 45:17
  • 62. Leviticus 26:11, 12; Joel 3:17, 21
  • 63. Isaiah 45:5, 6
  • 64. Isaiah 49:23
  • 65. Acts 2:17-21
  • 66. Isaiah 32:15; Isaiah 44:3; Ezekiel 39:29; Zechariah 12:10
  • 67. Isaiah 40:5; Isaiah 49:26
  • 68. 1 Corinthians 12:13; Galatians 3:28
  • 69. Matthew 24:29; Mark 13:24, 25; Luke 21:11, 25, 26; Acts 2:19
  • 70. Isaiah 13:10; Isaiah 34:4; Joel 2:10; Joel 3:15; Matthew 24:29; Mark 13:24; Luke 21:25; Acts 2:20; Revelation 6:12, 13
  • 71. Isaiah 13:9; Zephaniah 1:14-16; Malachi 4:1, 5
  • 72. Jeremiah 33:3; Acts 2:21; Romans 10:13
  • 73. Isaiah 46:13; Romans 11:26
  • 74. Isaiah 4:2; Obadiah 17
  • 75. Isaiah 11:11; Jeremiah 31:7; Micah 4:7; Romans 9:27

Footnotes 17

Chapter Summary


In this chapter a further account is given of the judgment of the locusts and caterpillars, or of those who are designed by them, Joe 2:1-11; the people of the Jews are called to repentance, humiliation, and fasting, urged from the grace and goodness of God, his jealousy and pity for his people, and the answer of prayer that might he expected from him upon this, even to the removal of the calamity, Joe 2:12-20; a prophecy of good things, both temporal and spiritual, in the times of the Messiah, is delivered out as matter and occasion of great joy, Joe 2:21-27; and another concerning the effusion of the Spirit, which was fulfilled an the day of Pentecost, Joe 2:28-29; and the chapter is concluded with the judgments and desolations that should come upon the land of Judea after this, for their rejection of Christ, though the remnant according to the election of grace should be delivered and saved from the general destruction, Joe 2:30-32.

Joel 2 Commentaries