KJB Daily Devotion – Following Jesus Through Every Chapter
Date: Wednesday, September 12, 2018
Chapters: Joel 1-3
Message: Our Merciful, Slow To Anger God
Hello My Friend,
When you stop to think about all the evil, immoral, and corruptible things that are going around the world today you come to realize just how merciful God is, and it takes a lot to get Him angry. Before God chose to destroy the earth with the flood, it had gotten so bad that only eight people out of millions followed Him, and even a couple of those were questionable, but at least they got on the boat. He could destroy the whole earth in the blink of an eye, and yes, He is merciful and slow to anger, but the time will come when it will be destroyed, which is why we need to be prepared right now, and if you think it is bad right now, you do not want to be here during the tribulation that will come even before the destruction. And do not think that death is a way out, all the graves will be open, and we will all stand before Christ in judgment. “Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” – John 5:28-29.
The Book of Joel contains three chapters, the author is Joel and it was written to the people in Judah. The timeline for these events took place approximately 400–380 BC. The purpose of the book was to warn Judah of their sin and need for repentance and to inform them of God’s future restoration for the entire nation. What we are to learn from the book is that even in the midst of God’s chastening, His plans always include restoration. For years I have read this book and thought it was written during the time as Isaiah because many of the commentaries lead to that same conclusion, but they really cannot be sure of that. However, the book itself was written around the same time that Ezekiel prophesied, so it is more probable that this is during that time as well. I believe he was in Judah during that time and God sent him to prophecy there as God describes the state as wasted as everything had been destroyed, even the crops, these are similar to the visions Ezekiel saw.
“The meat offering and the drink offering is cut off from the house of the LORD; the priests, the LORD’S ministers, mourn. The field is wasted, the land mourneth; for the corn is wasted: the new wine is dried up, the oil languisheth. Be ye ashamed, O ye husbandmen; howl, O ye vinedressers, for the wheat and for the barley; because the harvest of the field is perished. The vine is dried up, and the fig tree languisheth; the pomegranate tree, the palm tree also, and the apple tree, even all the trees of the field, are withered: because joy is withered away from the sons of men. Gird yourselves, and lament, ye priests: howl, ye ministers of the altar: come, lie all night in sackcloth, ye ministers of my God: for the meat offering and the drink offering is withholden from the house of your God. Sanctify ye a fast, call a solemn assembly, gather the elders and all the inhabitants of the land into the house of the LORD your God, and cry unto the LORD, Alas for the day! for the day of the LORD is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come.” – Joel 1:9-15.
“for the day of the LORD is at hand,” Jesus will return to claim His people, His throne, and put an end to sin and suffering for good. Those whom have died will be resurrected first and carried to safety, those whom are saved and alive will be raptured up in the clouds. The only ones left remaining on the earth will be those whom never accepted Christ as their Saviour and have to figure things out for themselves. Dead or alive, we will stand before Christ, which is why we must keep telling the lost the Gospel before that time comes. This warning was not just given to us today, it always has been, through Joel, God gave this same warning also.
“Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the day of the LORD cometh, for it is nigh at hand; A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations. A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them. And the LORD shall utter his voice before his army: for his camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word: for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it? Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.” – Joel 2:1-3,11-13.
“And rend your heart, and not your garments,” Appearance means nothing to God, you can change your clothes, but that does not mean you have repented of your sins and are trusting Christ as your Saviour. True repentance comes from the heart, and by the way, when the heart changes so do the garments because we start to become a reflection of Christ. God is so merciful and slow to anger that He gives all a chance to be saved several times before their death, but if they die without knowing Christ as their Saviour, it is too late. “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” – Matthew 7:22-23.
Zion is the hill in Jerusalem on which the temple was built, God will dwell there and it will be the final gathering place for all His people, Jew or Gentile, none will be strangers to God if they repent and ask Christ to save them. God is merciful and slow to anger in that He promised to restore anything we have lost and protect even the vilest of sinners. Through Joel, God assures His people (believers) that while judgment stands, He will restore all that has been lost, and protect them.
“Then will the LORD be jealous for his land, and pity his people. Yea, the LORD will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen: But I will remove far off from you the northern army, and will drive him into a land barren and desolate, with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea, and his stink shall come up, and his ill savour shall come up, because he hath done great things. Fear not, O land; be glad and rejoice: for the LORD will do great things. Be not afraid, ye beasts of the field: for the pastures of the wilderness do spring, for the tree beareth her fruit, the fig tree and the vine do yield their strength. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.” – Joel 2:18-22,32.
“and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.” This is another reason why I believe God was using Joel to speak during the same time of Ezekiel, had this been before Israel was judged the first time then we would not be reading about this, this is actually speaking of when Christ will return and rule the throne from Zion. What a day it will be when we as Christians can walk the earth and not be condemned, ridiculed, or falsely prosecuted because we choose Christ. People make the mistake of thinking that the only people of Israel are descendants of Jacob, this is incorrect. If you were thinking of flesh, then yes, but God does not think of the flesh, never has, He thinks of the soul. When Christ returns, the children of Israel will not longer be Jew or Gentile they will simply be the people of God. Israel has always needed the Saviour too, but today He is in the flesh of Jesus Christ. God confirms this several times, including here, through Joel, in which we discover all His people will join Him in Jerusalem. He invites them to come to Him, and sends our His faithful to go out and find them.
“Assemble yourselves, and come, all ye heathen, and gather yourselves together round about: thither cause thy mighty ones to come down, O LORD. Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about. Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great. Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel. For I will cleanse their blood that I have not cleansed: for the LORD dwelleth in Zion.” – Joel 3:33-16,21.
“for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about.” We are all heathens if you stop to think about it, meaning we are all sinners, and will all stand before Christ for judgment. Those who are saved will be judged and rewarded for what they did after they were saved, while those who are not, there is only one destination, the lake of fire, and this is after they spent some time in hell. God is merciful and slow to anger in that He does not want anyone to end up this way, which is why He sent Christ, we do not have to worry that our own works will save us because His work on the cross it all that we need. How amazing is it that the second we receive Christ as our Saviour we are cleansed, stripped free from all the filth that sin had covered us with, no more strangers to God, but His people. Something else in the passage sticks out, something, if we read the Bible enough we have heard it before, “for the harvest is ripe:” We, who are saved are called to preach the Gospel to the unsaved because the harvest truly is ripe, there are many ready to be saved, but it is up to us to show them how they can be. “Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.” – Luke 10:2.
Jesus Christ Magnified: “And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.” – Joel 2:32.
Today’s Prayer: God, Thank You for your mercy, grace, and that you truly are slow to anger, I think of the life I lived and sometimes even the things I do today and know that I truly do not deserve Your good graces, but am grateful that I can wake up each day knowing that my Saviour lives and because I am solely trusting Him as my Saviour I know I will stand before Him, cleansed, and unblemished. Lord, I know that the harvest is white, and You could send Jesus any day now, lead me and guide me, let me be a faithful laborer to reach as many as I can with the Gospel. Restore unto me the joy of my own salvation and renew a Your Spirit within me as I rejoice in the unending hope I have in knowing that I can stand before You and hear you say, “Well done my good and faithful servant.”. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.
God Bless You, I am praying for you,
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