Published on
April 6, 2024

Joel 2

"After this I will pour out My Spirit on all humanity; then your sons and your daughters will prophesy..."

Author Photo
Steve Wiggins
Author Photo
Steve Wiggins
Read Time
4 minutes
Joel 2
“After this I will pour out My Spirit on all humanity; then your sons and your daughters will prophesy, your old men will have dreams, and your young men will see visions. I will even pour out My Spirit on the male and female slaves in those days. I will display wonders in the heavens and on the earth: blood, fire, and columns of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the great and awe-inspiring Day of the Lord comes. Then everyone who calls on the name of Yahweh will be saved, for there will be an escape for those on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem, as the Lord promised, among the survivors the Lord calls.” Joel 2:28-32 (HCSB)

As I mentioned in yesterday’s devotional of Joel 1, prophecy in the TANAKH (Old Testament) speaks to three measures of time: 1.) The somewhat immediate future, 2.) The first coming of Jesus/His earthly ministry, and 3.) the 2nd coming of Jesus/the establishment of His Heavenly Kingdom. In today’s chapter, the images are clear enough for the average Bible student to decipher because they speak of events that we are familiar with: 1.) The Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem (Joel’s extended generation), 2.) the Roman destruction of Jerusalem (After Jesus’ resurrection in 70A.D.), and 3.) the coming Day of the Lord as depicted in The Revelation.

As in all three periods, a call has gone out for the people to return to the Lord wholeheartedly.  

“‘Even now—this is the Lord’s declaration— turn to Me with all your heart, with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Tear your hearts, not just your clothes, and return to the Lord your God. For He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger, rich in faithful love, and He relents from sending disaster. Who knows? He may turn and relent and leave a blessing behind Him, so you can offer grain and wine to the Lord your God.” Joel 2:12-14 (HCSB)

There are false notions about God in the Church at large. One false assumption is that the God of the Old Testament is different from the New Testament God. Some people believe God used to be angry all of the time, judging sin more frequently than in our time. They also think the New Testament God is loving and kind, not so hasty to judge sin, more like a cosmic grandfather. In today’s chapter, Joel tells us that, even in the days of Uzziah, God was merciful, compassionate, and slow to anger.

Another false notion is that the Old Testament was written to the Jewish people alone. Today’s passage (from the Old Testament) reveals that God has always planned to pour out His Spirit on “all humanity.” In fact, that happened when the Holy Spirit was given on the Day of Shavuot (Pentecost) in Acts 2. Important to note is that “all humanity” does not mean “everybody.” It refers to the fact that people from every nation and tongue will believe in Messiah Jesus, and God will give His Spirit to all who place their faith in His Son’s atoning work. Also, among the survivors are “those who are called,” i.e., Jewish believers are seen mixed with the Gentile believers, yet still distinguished as Jews in the New Jerusalem, as they are, even today.

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