“And afterward, I will pour my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days. I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fie and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And everyone who calls on the name of he Lord will be saved; for on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be deliverance, as the Lord has said, among the survivors whom the Lord calls.” (Joel 2:28–32)
The hope for an historical day of the Lord gradually took the shape of future, eschatological (end times) hope. Often the two were intertwined as in this passage. This prophecy found direct fulfillment at Pentecost (Acts 2:16-21), yet ultimate fulfillment awaits the end time, as expressed in the apocalyptic language of the passage.
Some aspects of the prophecy are fulfilled as people accept salvation provided through the work of Christ and the administration of the Spirit. In regards to end times, the prophecy refers to God’s final intervention to complete His redemptive work. In this aspect the day of the Lord includes both judgment upon unrighteousness and reward for righteousness.
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, There are some who think the end times is not true, and others feeling just as fervent in their beliefs, that it will come. One day, we will all know without question, just how true it is. I’m certainly in the group that believes there will come a day of judgment and reward, and that the Lord will set this world back as it originally was, because we have allowed our resources to be misused and abused with no change in sight. Beloved, there will be a day when we stand before our Creator and account for ourselves. I live my life for Him and make efforts daily to reach out to others, that they too, might open their hearts and allow Him in as well. Today, this we pray in Jesus’ precious Name. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“The ‘Light’ of the world knows no power failure.”
“Woe to you who long for the day of the Lord! Why do you long for the day of the Lord? The day will be darkness, not light. It will be as though a man fled from a lion only to meet a bear, as though he entered his house and rested his hand on the wall only to have a snake bit him. Will not the day of the Lord be darkness, not light—-pitch-dark, without a ray of brightness?” (Amos5:18–20)
Keep in mind that Amos’ thought was that the end times was more immediate, rather than futuristic. Most prophets saw the end times as futuristic, and when Jesus came to this earth for His ministry, he ushered in the concept of confession of sin in true humility, to receive forgiveness of such and to then to live a different life that led you into sin in the first place. Amos’ language is apocalyptic and then changes into more of future end times. Still, for those who remain unrepentant for their sins, that day is going to be very harsh. For those who regularly confess their sins with the intent of not continuing to do so, they will receive the peace and comfort of forgiveness, and then they reset their lives to restore their relationship with God through Christ, which makes all the difference. Beloved, all of us fall short of God’s glory, but it is when we recognize what has taken place and account for our sins, that opens the door for the blessed forgiveness.
“Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that day that is coming will set them on fire, says the Lord Almighty. ‘Not a root or a branch will be left to them. But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I do these things,’ says the lord Almighty.” (Malachi4:1–3)
The prophetic hope of a future day of he Lord involved both the expectation of a divine overthrow of evildoers and a vindication and rewarding of he righteous. Some times one, then the other, of these is emphasized. Here, both are given. The fire of judgment will fall on the arrogant and the evildoer for their destruction. Those who reverence God’s name, however, will find that day to be a time of healing, victory, and rejoicing. The main point is that both aspects of that day will be accomplished by the Lord Almighty Himself. Finally did you notice that the Old Testament closes with this chapter with of expectation? Christians play on the English Word sun of righteousness, which equals son of righteousness, which equals Jesus Christ, the Light of the world. Christians are those who know that the true Light is now shining and that the darkness cannot put it out, ever!
Second Thought of the Day:
“Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’” (Matthew7:22-23)
The Old Testament phrase, the day of the Lord, is shortened to “that day.” As we saw in Joel, it refers to the future day of judgment for those whose lives bear evil fruit. It is the day when the faithful and genuine enter the future kingdom.
“That day” will one of separation based on true character as revealed in outward conduct. It will be a day of surprise for those who performed public actions and even demonstrated unusual power but never committed their lived in submission to Christ. You see, beloved, it is not what you say or do, it is whether you have truly submitted yourself to Christ. God knows your heart, and that is what separates those who profess their faith, but have not really submitted themselves to Christ, and those who openly live for Christ, as they fully submitted themselves. “Talk is cheap, but your heart never lies!”