Joel 2* God's judgments. (1-14) Exhortations to fasting and prayer;blessings promised. (15-27) A promise of the Holy Spirit, and offuture mercies. (28-32)1-14 The priests were to alarm the people with the nearapproach of the Divine judgments. It is the work of ministers towarn of the fatal consequences of sin, and to reveal the wrathfrom heaven against the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men.The striking description which follows, shows what would attendthe devastations of locusts, but may also describe the effectsfrom the ravaging of the land by the Chaldeans. If the alarm oftemporal judgments is given to offending nations, how much moreshould sinners be warned to seek deliverance from the wrath tocome! Our business therefore on earth must especially be, tosecure an interest in our Lord Jesus Christ; and we should seekto be weaned from objects which will soon be torn from all whonow make idols of them. There must be outward expressions ofsorrow and shame, fasting, weeping, and mourning; tears fortrouble must be turned into tears for the sin that caused it.But rending the garments would be vain, except their hearts wererent by abasement and self-abhorrence; by sorrow for their sins,and separation from them. There is no question but that if wetruly repent of our sins, God will forgive them; but whether hewill remove affliction is not promised, yet the probability ofit should encourage us to repent. 15-27 The priests and rulers are to appoint a solemn fast. Thesinner's supplication is, Spare us, good Lord. God is ready tosuccour his people; and he waits to be gracious. They prayedthat God would spare them, and he answered them. His promisesare real answers to the prayers of faith; with him saying anddoing are not two things. Some understand these promisesfiguratively, as pointing to gospel grace, and as fulfilled inthe abundant comforts treasured up for believers in the covenantof grace. 28-32 The promise began to be fulfilled on the day ofPentecost, when the Holy Spirit was poured out, and it wascontinued in the converting grace and miraculous gifts conferredon both Jews and Gentiles. The judgments of God upon a sinfulworld, only go before the judgment of the world in the last day.Calling on God supposes knowledge of him, faith in him, desiretoward him, dependence on him, and, as evidence of the sincerityof all this, conscientious obedience to him. Those only shall bedelivered in the great day, who are now effectually called fromsin to God, from self to Christ, from things below to thingsabove.
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