Hear this, you elders;
give ear, all inhabitants of the land!
Has such a thing happened in your days,
or in the days of your fathers?
 Tell your children of it,
and let your children tell their children,
and their children to another generation.
 What the cutting locust left,
the swarming locust has eaten.
What the swarming locust left,
the hopping locust has eaten,
and what the hopping locust left,
the destroying locust has eaten.
 Awake, you drunkards, and weep,
and wail, all you drinkers of wine,
because of the sweet wine,
for it is cut off from your mouth.
 For a nation has come up against my land,
powerful and beyond number;
its teeth are lions' teeth,
and it has the fangs of a lioness.
 It has laid waste my vine
and splintered my fig tree;
it has stripped off their bark and thrown it down;
their branches are made white.
 Lament like a virgin wearing sackcloth
for the bridegroom of her youth.
 The grain offering and the drink offering are cut off
from the house of the LORD.
The priests mourn,
the ministers of the LORD.
 The fields are destroyed,
the ground mourns,
because the grain is destroyed,
the wine dries up,
the oil languishes.
 Be ashamed, O tillers of the soil;
wail, O vinedressers,
for the wheat and the barley,
because the harvest of the field has perished.
 The vine dries up;
the fig tree languishes.
Pomegranate, palm, and apple,
all the trees of the field are dried up,
and gladness dries up
from the children of man.
(Joel 1:1-12 ESV)
We can see from Verse one that he is the son of Pethuel.
I looked up in the pulpit commentary and learned this " The name Joel signifies "Jehovah is God," or "whose God is Jehovah." We read in Scripture of several of the same name, but the prophet is distinguished as "the son of Pethuel," a name signifying "the sincerity of God," or "godly simplicity."" Further reading from various commentaries doesn't tell me much more than that.
Beyond that we don't know what time period is from and that we think he from Judah as he in very familiar with Jerusalem.
These first few verses seemed to be divided into three sections.
- Locusts are coming, terrible destruction awaits.
- Wake up folks! A terribly bad nation is coming up against for your destruction!
- Repent, repent!!! Be Ashamed! Be mournful!
A pictorial warning is given, helping people see what dangers await. People in Bible Times would have been quite aware of the dangers that locusts presented, how much devastation they can leave behind in a very short period of time. So this pictorial would have made a strong impact.
Then to have it followed up by a nation is coming that will destroy you? It would have helped paint an excellent picture of the danger they were in.
Joel calls the people to repentance. Making it clear that this was for ALL the people.
- tillers of the soil
- anyone who eats anything
All are to repent.
All are to be ashamed.
The implication is given, that if they don't...this terrible destruction is at hand.
This is what we are called to do as people to eh? To repent of the wrongs we do in our life. We are needful of remembering, without repentance our destruction is at hand.
And yes I know it's hard to see it isn't it? To see what long-term results are for how we live, especially if we don't live under the grace of God in our lives.
Believers know that by repenting of our sins, in the turning from the sin we do, our salvation is at hand through the work of Jesus Christ in our lives, on our behalf, that brings us into right relationship with God. Let us then, heed the call of Joel in our lives.
Let us repent. Let us avoid the destruction that is at hand.