2
The Day of Yahweh is Near
1Blow the trumpet#Hebrew “shofar” in Zion,
and sound the alarm on my holy mountain!#Literally “mountain of my holiness”
Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble,
for the day of Yahweh is coming
—it is indeed near.
2A day of darkness and gloom,
a day of cloud and thick darkness,
like the dawn spreads on the mountains,
a great and strong army!
There has been nothing like it from old,
and after it nothing will be again for generations to come.#Literally “until years of generations”
3Before them#Literally “before the presence of it” a fire devours,
and behind them a flame burns.
Like the garden of Eden is the land before them,#Literally “before the presence of it”
and after them it is like a desolate desert,
and nothing can escape them.
4Like the appearance of horses is their appearance,
and like horsemen they run;
5like the sound of chariots on the tops of the mountains, they leap about;
like the sound of a flame of fire
devouring stubble;
like a strong army arranged
in rows for battle.
6From before them#Or “From in front of it,” or “From the presence of it” nations writhe,
all faces turn pale.#Literally “gather paleness”
7They run like mighty warriors,#That is, the “great and strong army” (see 2:2)
they scale the wall like men of war;
each goes on its own way,
and they do not swerve from their paths.
8They do not jostle one another;#Literally “each man his brother”
each goes on its own trail;
and through the falling weapons,#Hebrew “weapon”
they are not halted.
9In the city they rush forth;
on the walls#Hebrew “wall” they run.
Into the houses they climb up;
through the windows
they enter like a thief.
10Before them#Literally “Before the presence of it” the earth quakes;
the heavens tremble;
the sun and the moon grow dark,
and the stars have withheld#Literally “gathered” their splendor
11And Yahweh utters#Literally “gives” his voice before his army,
because his encampment is very large;
strong is the one who carries out his decree,
for great is the day of Yahweh
and exceedingly fearful.
Who can endure it?
A Call to Repentance
12“And even now,” declares#Literally “a declaration of” Yahweh,
“return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, and weeping, and wailing.”
13Rend your hearts#Hebrew “heart” and not your garments,
and return to Yahweh your God,
because he is gracious and compassionate,
slow to anger#Or “patient”; literally “long of anger” and great in loyal love,
and relenting from harm.
14Who knows whether he will turn and relent,
and leave a blessing behind him,
an offering and a libation,
for Yahweh your God?
15Blow the trumpet#Hebrew “Shofar” in Zion,
sanctify a fast, call an assembly;
16gather the people, consecrate the assembly;
assemble the elders, gather the children,
even those who are breast-feeding;
let the bridegroom come out from his private room,
and the bride from her canopy.
17Between the colonnade and the altar,
let the priests, the ministers of Yahweh, weep.
And let them say, “Take pity, Yahweh, on your people.
Do not make your inheritance a reproach,
a byword among the nations.
Why should they say among the nations,
‘Where is their God?’ ”
The Response and Promise of Yahweh
18Then Yahweh became jealous for his land
and took pity on his people.
19And Yahweh answered and said to his people,
“Look at me, I am sending to you
grain, new wine, and olive oil,
and you will be satisfied by it.
I will not give you over any more
as a disgrace among the nations.
20The northerners#Or “The northern army”
I will remove from you;
I will drive them to a desert
and desolate land,
its#That is, the northern army front to the eastern sea,
and its rear into the western sea;
its stench and odor will rise up
because he#That is, Yahweh (see v. 21) has done great things.
21Do not fear, O land,
rejoice and be glad,
because Yahweh has done great things.
22Do not fear, wild animals of the field,
because the pastures of the desert have put forth new green shoots,
because the tree has produced its fruit,
the fig tree and the vine
have yielded their produce.
23Be glad, O children of Zion,
be glad and rejoice in Yahweh your God,
because he has given for you
the autumn rains for your righteousness,#Or “vindication”
and he has poured down#Literally “brought down” for you rainwater,
the autumn and spring rains, as before.
24The threshing floors will be full with grain,
and the vats will overflow
with new wine and olive oil.
25I will repay you the years
that the locust has eaten,
the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter,
my mighty troops that I sent against you.
26And you will eat abundantly and be satisfied,
and praise the name of Yahweh your God,
who has dealt with you wondrously.#Literally “to do a wonder”
My people will never be ashamed.#Literally “will forever not be ashamed”
27And you will know that I am in the midst of Israel,
and I am Yahweh,
your God, and there is no other.
My people will never be ashamed again.#Literally “will forever no longer be ashamed”
Yahweh’s Spirit Poured Out
28#Joel 2:28–32 in the English Bible is 3:1–5 in the Hebrew Bible And it will happen afterward thus:
I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters will prophesy,
and your elders will dream dreams;
your young men shall see visions.
29And also on the male slaves and on the female slaves,
I will pour out my Spirit in those days.
30And I will set#Literally “give” wonders in the heavens, and on earth, blood and fire and columns of smoke. 31The sun will be changed to darkness, and the moon to blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of Yahweh. 32And it will happen—everyone who calls on the name of Yahweh will be rescued, because on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be those who escape,#Literally, “an escape” as Yahweh said, and among the survivors whom Yahweh is calling.
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