Summary: The reasons for God’s judgments and our response t them.

Joel 2:1-13

“The Judgment of God”

1. The Reason For God’s Judgment (1-11)

• Judah’s indifference to their sin.

• Vs. 1 A new warning to the people of Jerusalem, the trumpet was the alarm of coming danger (Numbers 10:9)

o The people would have understood that something terrible was approaching  get ready!

o The Day of the LORD  God’s judgment both present and future.

• What we find in verses 2-9 is a description of the next plague that was going to come upon the people.

• Vs. 2 A day of clouds and thick darkness (locusts so thick that they would block out the sun)

o Swarms of locusts can cover up to 70 miles and be 1 mile thick.

o Would stretch from the Mediterranean Sea to east of the Dead Sea.

o “There hath not been ever the like,” much like the first plague described in 1:2.

o Future Judgment: Matthew 24:21

• Vs. 3 Before and After: Garden of Eden to a desolate wilderness.

o Largest single swarm, 1954 Kenya, 10 billion locusts.

o Recorded 50 swarms, weighing approximately 100,000 tons.

• Vv. 4-5 Looks and sounds like horses pulling chariots.

• Vs. 6 The people would be so scared that their faces would grow flush.

• Vs. 7 Joel goes on to compare the locusts to an invading army  “like”

• Vv. 8-9 They cannot be stopped or contained.

• Vs. 10 We now move from this temporal judgment of God to the future judgment of God (Matthew 24:29).

• Vs. 11 Now the LORD stands before His people with this final warning.

o “He is strong that executeth His word.” In other words you better believe He is serious.

o God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that is what he reaps.

o “Who can abide (endure) it?”  No one!

2. The Reply To God’s Judgment (12-13)

• Lord save me!

• Vs. 12 God says well if you know you can’t endure, REPENT!

o Turn your heart to me and I will save you!

2 Peter 3:9 (NASB95)

9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

• As our Father God gives us a choice.

• We must all do it God’s ways:

o Acknowledgment

o Separation

o Judgment

o Repentance

o Salvation

• Vs. 13 It must be a heart changing moment, not some superficial act of worship.

• The Pharisees were the experts in this type of external religious piety.

• Jesus warned often against doing this very thing.

Matthew 23:25-28 (NASB95)

25 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence. 26 “You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may become clean also. 27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 “So you, too, outwardly appear righteous to men, but inwardly you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.

• I don’t care if you belong to every church in southwest Ohio, or if you go to church every single day of your life……It all means nothing unless we clean the inside of the cup.

• Jesus says clean the inside first and then the outside will become clean also.

o For so long we seemed to get that backwards.

o Righteousness works from the inside out.

• “Turn unto the LORD your God;” quit trying to do it alone, struggling to clean up the outside problems of your life.

• “Who can abide it?”  Only those who have repented and given their hearts to the Lord Jesus Christ.

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