This week we’re looking at the book of Joel. A locust swarm has ravaged the land, devastating Israel both agriculturally and economically. This was a harsh blow for the people who were just getting resettled into their homeland after the exile. Joel tells the people who the locusts are God’s judgment against them for their sin. The dominant theme in the book of Joel is God’s judgment, which is summed up by the phrase “The Day of the Lord.” On this day, God will step in to human history, judge everything that is wrong with the world, and set everything right once again. It is a day of both condemnation and restoration. The only problem is, we are all guilty. We are all deserving of judgment. The only way out is to see our sin for what it really is and return to God through repentance; to trust in the one who is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love. We’ll end with a focus on Jesus as the one who stepped into human history, absorbed the judgment of God, and provided a way to be restored.
Dave’s Main Points
- When Disaster Strikes
- The Day of the Lord
- Rend and Return
- Do an inventory on the depth of your souls. In other words, think deeply about what you think about who you are in the very core of your being. Where does sin enter into the conversation in this area?
- Read The Valley of Vision. Great book of Puritan prayers compiled a few decades ago. Great compass for our souls.
- Dave shared three elements of The Day of the Lord. I have them listed below. Spend some time discussing each of the elements. Are these representative of what you think of when you hear the biblical phrase “The Day of the Lord?”
- God will intervene in human history
- God will way war against all evil and sin
- God will bring restoration: he will make it right
- Dave asked the questions, “Are you embarrassed by God’s judgment?” Are you? In other words, do you try to explain away God’s judgement?
- On the flip side, do you delight in God’s judgment of other people?