The Invasion of Locusts1 [This is] the word of the LORD that came to Joel son of Pethuel: 2 Hear this, O elders; and give ear, all who dwell in the land. Has anything like this ever happened in your days or in the days of your forefathers? 3 Tell your children about it, and let your children tell their children— and their children, the next generation. 4 What the devouring locust has left, the swarming locust has eaten; what the swarming locust has left, the young locust has eaten; and what the young locust has left, the destroying locust has eaten. ▼
▼ The precise identification of the four kinds of locusts mentioned here is uncertain.5 Wake up, you drunkards, and weep; wail, all you drinkers of wine, because of the sweet wine, for it has been cut off from your mouth. 6 For a nation has invaded My land, powerful and without number; its teeth are [those] of a lion, and its fangs [are those] of a lioness . 7 It has laid waste My grapevine and splintered My fig tree. It has stripped off the bark and thrown it away; the branches have turned white.
A Call to Mourning8 Wail like a virgin dressed in sackcloth, grieving for the husband of her youth. 9 Grain and drink offerings have been cut off from the house of the LORD; the priests are in mourning, those who minister before the LORD. 10 The field is ruined; the land mourns; indeed, the grain is destroyed; the new wine is dried up, the oil fails. 11 Be dismayed, O farmers, wail, O vinedressers, over the wheat and barley, because the harvest of the field has perished. 12 The grapevine is dried up, and the fig tree is withered; the pomegranate, palm, and apple— all the trees of the orchard— are withered. Surely the joy of mankind has dried up.
A Call to Repentance13 Put on [sackcloth] and lament, O priests; wail, O ministers of the altar. Come, spend the night in sackcloth, O ministers of my God, because the grain and drink offerings are withheld from the house of your God. 14 Consecrate a fast; proclaim a solemn assembly! Gather the elders and all the residents of the land to the house of the LORD your God, and cry out to the LORD. 15 Alas for the day! For the Day of the LORD is near, and it will come like destruction from the Almighty. ▼
▼ Hebrew Shaddai16 Has not the food been cut off before our very eyes— joy and gladness from the house of our God? 17 The seeds lie shriveled beneath the clods; the storehouses are in ruins; the granaries are broken down, for the grain has withered away. 18 How the cattle groan! The herds wander in confusion because they have no pasture. Even the flocks of sheep are suffering. 19 To You, O LORD, I call, for fire has consumed the open pastures and flames have scorched all the trees of the field. 20 Even the beasts of the field pant for You, for the streams of water have dried up, and fire has consumed the open pastures.
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