Summary: The extent God will go to in order to wake His people from thier apathy.
“The Wake-up Call”
o Understanding prophetic writings.
o More than foretelling future events.
o Purpose of the prophet (God’s covenant)
o Covenant prosecutors with a message of judgment and blessing.
o Offers a fuller picture of the ministry of God’s prophets.
o Prophecy takes on a deeper meaning understanding the context in which it is written.
• The Prophet Joel (vs. 1)
o Not much is known about this prophet, his name means “the LORD is God.”
o No reference to a king or specific ruler.
o Language and theme indicates he was a contemporary of Amos and Micah, Joel then is most likely written during the 8th Century B.C. after the fall of Israel to Assyria.
• The Warning (2-3)
o Something big had just happened.
o God was trying to shake the people out of their state of complacency like never before.
o “Hear this………all inhabitants of the land.”
o Everyone had to hear and understand God’s message because everyone was affected by it.
o “Hath this been in your days…”
o The uniqueness of what has taken place is like nothing they had ever seen before.
o Vs. 3 This was something that was to be passed down from generation to generation, so that what God was trying to teach them would not be in vain.
Psalm 78:6-8 (KJV)
6 That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children: 7 That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments: 8 And might not be as their fathers, a stubborn and rebellious generation; a generation that set not their heart aright, and whose spirit was not stedfast with God.
o How about in our day, does God still use outstanding circumstances sent under His divine control as a warning to a nation? 9/11
o How about in our individual lives, what does God do when He is trying to tell us something and we are not listening?
Hebrews 12:7-8 (NKJV)
7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? 8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.
• The Invasion (4)
o Locusts had invaded, eaten and stripped the land bare.
o Joel could be referring to a literal invasion of locusts or speaking metaphorically of an invading army.
o Which ever you ascribe to the fact remains that the land was left bare.
o Clear reference to God’s judgment of sin (Revelation 9:7-8)
• The Wake-Up Call (5-7)
o Vs. 5 It is a call to repentance they had broken God’s covenant to which God had said there would be consequences (Deuteronomy 28:38-42).
o Vs. 6 Again Joel is either referring to the invasion of real locusts calling them a nation, or to the invasion of the Assyrians, either of which was to be a wake up call to Judah.
o Vs. 7 The destruction of the land was a clear message from God whatever comes between God and His people, He will remove it (wine).
o This is true of any sin, God will go to any lengths to bring us to repentance and a right relationship with Him.