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Bible Pathways - September 21, 2005

September 21


Read Joel 1


In Today's Reading:


Plague of locusts; Joel's call to repentance; Day of the Lord; the Holy Spirit; restoration of Israel; judgment on nations

Joel warned of the impending destruction of Jerusalem. In mercy, the Word of the LORD . . . came to Joel . . . . Blow . . . the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain (Joel 1:1; 2:1). The trumpet was often used to announce solemn days and feasts, and by watchmen to warn of approaching danger (Numbers 10:1-10). But, the sins of the Israelites were an even more serious threat from within than that of the approaching enemy. Because of their sins, God could not bless them nor protect them. The Day of the LORD cometh . . . a great people. . . . A fire devoureth before them . . . nothing shall escape them. . . . They shall run to and fro in the city. . . . The earth shall quake before them. . . . Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn . . . to Me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning (Joel 2:1-12).

The one condition for forgiveness and acceptance by the Lord is genuine repentance. True repentance is threefold. First, it is a sorrow for one's sin against God, as well as against others; second, it is a turning to the Lord and asking His forgiveness for all sins; and third, it is forsaking it to live a life pleasing to Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.

On the Day of Pentecost, the Apostle Peter preached the prophetic meaning of Joel's words, saying: Whosoever shall call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved (Acts 2:21). He concluded his message by saying: Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off (2:38-39). We are among those that are afar off.

The prophet Joel also foretold of the final Day of the LORD that is yet to take place: Alas for the day! for the Day of the LORD is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come (Joel 1:15). It will bring to a close the miserable rule of sinful mankind and finally usher in the glorious reign of Jesus Christ, the righteous King of Peace.

Jesus assured us that when He returned all the tribes of the earth . . . shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory (Matthew 24:30).

Christ Revealed:

As the One who will pour out My Spirit upon all flesh (Joel 2:28) — fulfilled in part on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:16-18).

Word Studies:

1:12 languisheth = wastes away, dies; 1:16 meat = food; 1:17 garners = storehouses; 2:6 gather blackness = turn pale with terror.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcast in honor of Rick Hash and in memory of Kenneth Roy Roberts Jr. · Staff: Clarence Rathbone · Country: Oman (2 million) on the southeastern coast of Arabia · Major languages: Arabic and English · Fewer restrictions on Christian activity than most of its neighbors · 97% Muslim; .5% Christian · Prayer Suggestion: Remember that nothing is too hard for the Lord (Genesis 18:14).

Memory Verse for the Week: Titus 2:13

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