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Joel – God’s Wake Up Call Joel 2:12-32. News Headlines : A Wake Up Call about the coming Day of the Lord. Joel: Background We know very little about Joel Joel means  “Jehovah is God” Joel may be one of the earliest prophecies  around 830 B.C.

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Joel – God’s Wake Up Call Joel 2:12-32

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joel god s wake up call joel 2 12 32
Joel – God’s Wake Up CallJoel 2:12-32
  • News Headlines:
  • A Wake Up Call about the coming Day of the Lord.

Joel: Background

  • We know very little about Joel
  • Joel means  “Jehovah is God”
  • Joel may be one of the earliest prophecies  around 830 B.C.
  • Joel probably lived in Judah during the reign of King Joash.

Joel doesn’t cry out against the particular sins of the nation

  • A positive, godly influence of the reigning high priest – Jehoiada (2 Kings 11,12)
  • The message from God: a warning that a life of sin and disobedience leads to judgment.
  • 5X: speaks of “the day of the Lord”
  • Joel 1:15 – The Day of the Lord is near
  • Joel 1:20 – The Day of the Lord is coming
  • Joel 2:11 – The Day of the Lord is great; it is dreadful

Joel 2:31 – The coming of the great and dreadful Day of the Lord

  • Joel 3:14 – The Day of the Lord is near
  • God gives His people a much needed “Wake Up Call”.
    • Dealing With Ruin
    • A Call to Repentance
    • God’s Promised Restoration

1. Dealing With Ruin

  • First half of the prophecy: a great invasion that will come on the nation of Judah.
  • A swarm of locusts would devastate the land.

Such devastation pales in comparison to the judgment God was going to bring on His disobedient people.

  • Joel 1: 5,8,11 [NIV] - Wake up, you drunkards, and weep! …wail because of the new wine, for it has been snatched from your lips…Mourn like a virgin in sackcloth…Despair, you farmers, wail, you vine growers; grieve for the wheat and the barley, because the harvest of the field is destroyed. Put on sackcloth, O priests, and mourn.

Calamity comes through God’s judgment for sin

  • The people need to “wake up” and turn their lives back to Him.
  • Joel 1:14, 15 [NIV] – “Declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Summon the elders and all who live in the land to the house of the Lord your God and cry to the Lord. Alas, for the day of the Lord is near, it will come like destruction from the Almighty.”

We often try to interpret why disaster happens to us.

  • Reality of life: bad things happen in this world.
  • We serve a sovereign God and we believe that He is in control of all aspects of life.
  • He can orchestrate natural disasters or He allows tragedy to happen
  • There are valuable lessons to learn through calamities:

a. Gratitude for God’s Provision

  • The locust invasion taught the people of Judah something about God’s character.
  • God Jehovah Jirah – God Our Provider
  • What the Lord so graciously provided, was now taken away.
  • Joel calls the people to WAKE UP and realize WHO it was that provided for their daily needs.
  • Joel 1:19 [NIV] – “To You, O Lord, I call, for fire has devoured the open pasture and flames have burned up all the trees of the field.”

Are you taking all the wonderful blessing from God for granted?

  • Are you thankful for what you do have OR
  • are you always disappointed / constantly bitter about what you don’t have?
  • Are you able to experience loss, tragedy, trials and still be able to say with gratitude Thank You Lord for what you have given me?
  • Philippians 4:6 [NIV] - Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

b. Respect for God’s Power

  • God will use whatever it takes to get our attention.
  • Joel 2:11 [NIV] – “The Lord thunders at the head of his army, his forces are beyond number, and mighty are those who obey his command.”
  • “God is not beyond using bugs or anything else to teach us lessons of His provision and power. A lot of things He has designed for our comfort in life, but He is not embarrassed to make us terribly uncomfortable when we need to learn more about Him. Our character means more to Him than our comfort, and lessons learned in calamity are one means of maturing our character.” David Hubbard

It is the Lord who gives and the Lord who takes away.

  • Is that the attitude of your heart?
  • Joel is calling the people of God to WAKE UP and be prepared for the coming Day of the Lord.
  • The Bible is clear that there is a coming Day of the Lord and it is a day of judgment.
  • Those who have rejected Christ  a day to fear.
  • Those who have trusted Christ  God will still hold us accountable for how we lived for Him but our sin will be covered by the shed blood of Jesus Christ.

2. A Call to Repentance

  • Joel 2:12-13 [NIV] “Even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God.
  • Disasters are never accidents.
  • God uses tragedy to get our attention  He may be pointing us to a need for repentance.
  • Ultimately, His desire is to change us.

Such an outward act might seem noble but inner transformation in our heart is what God is looking for.

  • Joel 2:13,14 [NIV] - He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. Who knows? He may turn and have pity and leave behind a blessing— grain offerings and drink offerings for the LORD your God.

God hates evil and will punish wickedness because He is just and holy.

  • Everyone who truly turns their heart toward Him seeking His forgiveness – seeking His mercy will be shown compassionate and grace.
  • God reaches out to us and invites us to turn to Him:
  • Joel 2:12 [NIV] - “Return to me with all your heart”
  • Is God calling out to your this morning to return to Him?

3. God’s Promised Restoration

  • Joel 2: 21,23,26,27 [NIV] – “Be not afraid, O land; be glad and rejoice. Surely the LORD has done great things…for he has given you the autumn rains in righteousness…You will have plenty to eat, until you are full, and you will praise the name of the LORD your God… Then you will know that I am in Israel, that I am the LORD your God, and that there is no other; never again will my people be shamed.”

Even more significant than the outward restoration God promises to bring restoration to our lives from the inside.

  • Joel 2:28-29 [NIV] - “And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days.

Day of Pentecost: the arrival of the Holy Spirit was the beginning of the fulfillment of this prophecy.

  • God intended to see furrowed hearts and to water them with his poured-out Spirit so that hearts would blossom and bear good fruit. The Spirit would come with power for the people of God, empowering them to live for his glory. This happens with obedience. (Dan Schmidt “Unexpected Wisdom”)

Practical Application:

  • Trials and tragedy should always lead us to self-examination and repentance
  •  turn our hearts back to God
  • God will restore things in our lives.
  • We are living in the time of the Holy Spirit a rich treasure more valuable than anything
  •  our comforter, teacher, counselor
  • Romans 10:13 [NIV] - And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved.”

The Day of the Lord is still coming.

  • Joel 2:30-31 [NIV] – “I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD.”
  • Every person will give an account for his/her life when Christ returns.
  • Best preparation: Live for Christ now!

Joel 3.16 – the Lord will be a refuge for his people.

  • A great encouragement to everyone who has fully turned their hearts to God through Christ.
  • Have you fully turned your heart to Christ?
  • Joel 2:32 - Everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be saved.”