Saturday, June 26, 2021

2021.06.26 Hopewell @Home ▫ Joel 2:28–32

Read Joel 2:28–32

Questions from the Scripture text: When will this happen (Joel 2:28a)? What will God do (verse 28b)? Onto whom? Who will prophesy (verse 28c)? Who will dream dreams (verse 28d)? Who will see visions (verse 28e)? Upon whom else will Yahweh pour out His Spirit (Joel 2:29)? Then, what will Yahweh show, where? (Joel 2:30a)? What three things on earth (verse 30b)? What two things in the heavens (Joel 2:31a–b, cf. Revelation 6:12)? Before what (verse 31c, cf. Revelation 6:17)? Who will be saved (Joel 2:32a–b)? What will be where (verse 32c)? What establishes/guarantees this salvation (verse 32d)? Who are the ones who end up calling on the name of Yahweh (verse 32e–f, cf. verse 32b)?

There is another Day of Yahweh (Joel 2:31c) coming. This one is coming with the day of the wrath of the Lamb (Revelation 6:16–17). That is the day on which the sun turns to darkness (verse 31a, cf. Revelation 6:12) and the moon to blood (verse 31b, cf. Revelation 6:12). 

But something marvelous becomes apparent, when we compare these two scriptures. The sixth seal in Revelation concludes with, “for the day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?” (Revelation 6:17). But the passage in Joel ends with “whoever calls on the name of Yahweh shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there shall be deliverance” (Joel 2:32).

Who can endure the final day of the Lord? The one whom the Lord spares by the means described in Joel 2:28-29. Something marvelous is initiated on the day of Pentecost. The Lord is now to pour out His Spirit not only upon Israel (Joel 2:27) but upon all flesh (Joel 2:28). 

In Numbers 11:29, Moses had prayed, “Oh, that all the LORD’s people were prophets and that the LORD would put His Spirit upon them!” At Pentecost, that prayer is answered in the apostles’ preaching in all sorts of languages that they had never studied (cf. Acts 2:5–21). Here is conclusive definition of the gift of tongues: it is a form of prophecy, for the apostle identifies the tongues of Pentecost with the prophesying of Joel 2:28–29

Here also is a glorious characteristic of worship in the New Testament age. Though ruling and teaching in the church is reserved for those men whom the Lord gifts and calls for that office, the pouring out of the Spirit shows that Christ has taken His seat as the ultimate Prophet, the ultimate Priest, and the ultimate King. 

And Christ expresses this through those who dwell on the earth in union with Him. All believers have prophetic and kingly functions in the state, as well as prophetic and priestly functions in the church. All believers give an answer for their hope; all believers are royalty on the earth. In taking the supper together, each one who eats the bread or drinks the cup shows forth the Lord’s death. In congregational song in the New Testament, we are filled with the Spirit, and the Word of Christ dwells in us richly, and we admonish one another with Scripture. 

All believers come all the way through the curtain into the Holy of Holies. All believers are members of the priestly choir. All believers eat from the table that has been provided through the sacrifice of Christ. All believers carry on a ministry of intercessory prayer.

So, there is a remnant whom Yahweh calls to Himself (Joel 2:32f) and for Himself by the pouring out of His Spirit (Joel 2:28-29), resulting in their calling upon His Name (verse 32b). And the day of Pentecost heralds the beginning of the age of great ingathering of this remnant from all nations (“all flesh,” Joel 2:28). A day when God extends to all nations that repentance to which He calls them in Joel 2:12-17 and His response which He promises in Joel 2:18-27.

How have you exhibited that calling upon the name of the Lord that comes from the Spirit’s being poured out upon you? How have you fulfilled prophetic, priestly, and kingly functions?

Suggested songs: ARP32AB “What Blessedness” or TPH546 “God of the Prophets!”

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