Joel 1:15-20 (JDV)
Joel 1:15 Tragedy on that day! You see, the day of Yahveh is near and will come as a destructive storm from the Almighty.
Joel 1:16 Hasn’t the food been cut off before our eyes, joy and happiness from the house of our God?
Joel 1:17 The seeds lie shriveled in their casings. The storehouses are in ruin, and the granaries are broken down, because the grain has dried up.
Joel 1:18 How the animals moan! The herds of cattle wander in confusion since they have no pasture. Even the flocks of sheep and goats are held guilty.1
Joel 1:19 I call to you, Yahveh, because fire has consumed the pastures of the open country,2 and flames have burned up all the trees of the orchard.
Joel 1:20 Even the wild animals cry out to you, because the river beds are dried up, and fire has consumed the pastures of the open country.
disaster and destiny
There is a lot of good news in Joel, but we have not yet gotten to it. Joel is predicting a serious disaster right when his nation is suffering the after effects of a terrible locust invasion and its corresponding drought. His language pictures the devastation in such vivid detail that it would be hard to deny it, since it was already starting to happen. While you are in such a state, it helps to find meaning in it, even if you have to wait for relief.
Joel’s good news comes after all this bad news because all these terrible things he predicted came true. That fact established him as a true prophet. So, when he later predicts a nation-wide revival where God’s Breath is poured out on this same nation, his words were credible. It would take centuries for that prophecy to be fulfilled, but people had a reason to believe it would.
Lord, we trust your words, because they have already been proven reliable.