I will sell your sons and your daughters ... for the LORD hath spoken it.
- Joel 3:8
Joel for Skeptics
There's not much to report from Joel. God will burn forests and
dry up rivers, send locusts and caterpillars to eat crops, darken the sun, turn the moon to
blood, and sell sons and daughters into slavery. But if you've read the earlier books in the Old Testament,
you're used that all that by now. The only thing new is that it will all happen soon. Really soon. (It was
supposed to have happened soon after Joel was written, so it's a bit overdue.)
Here are the highlights.
- "Awake, ye drunkards, and weep; and howl, all ye drinkers of wine, because of the new wine; for it is cut off from your mouth."
- "The day of the LORD cometh, for it is nigh at hand." 1:15,
- The animals are perplexed and cry out to God after he torments them by burning their food and drying up the rivers. 1:18-20
- On "the day of the Lord", everything and everyone will be burned to death. 2:3
- People will try to commit suicide but will not be able to. 2:8
- And there will be earthquakes, the sun and the moon will be dark, and the stars will no longer shine. 2:10
- God will repay Israel for the damage the locusts caused -- which he sent! And they
will "praise the name of the Lord." 2:25-26
- He will show off all his magic tricks. Blood, fire, smoke, eclipses. 2:30-31
- "I will sell your sons and your daughters ... for the Lord hath spoken it." 3:8
- "Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruninghooks into spears." 3:10