This is Daniel Whyte III with The Scripture & The Sense Podcast #388, where I read the Word of God and give the sense of it based on an authoritative commentary source such as the Bible Knowledge Commentary. This podcast is based upon Nehemiah 8:8 where it says Ezra and the Levites “read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.” The aim of this podcast is that through the simple reading of the Word of God and the giving of the sense of it, the church would be revived and the world would be awakened.
Today we are reading Joel 3:1-3.
1 For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem,
2 I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.
3 And they have cast lots for my people; and have given a boy for an harlot, and sold a girl for wine, that they might drink.
That was Joel 3:1-3. Now here is the sense of it.
The Matthew Henry Commentary reads:
The priests were to alarm the people with the near approach of the Divine judgments. It is the work of ministers to warn of the fatal consequences of sin, and to reveal the wrath from heaven against the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. The striking description which follows, shows what would attend the devastations of locusts, but may also describe the effects from the ravaging of the land by the Chaldeans. If the alarm of temporal judgments is given to offending nations, how much more should sinners be warned to seek deliverance from the wrath to come! Our business therefore on earth must especially be, to secure an interest in our Lord Jesus Christ; and we should seek to be weaned from objects which will soon be torn from all who now make idols of them. There must be outward expressions of sorrow and shame, fasting, weeping, and mourning; tears for trouble must be turned into tears for the sin that caused it. But rending the garments would be vain, except their hearts were rent by abasement and self-abhorrence; by sorrow for their sins, and separation from them. There is no question but that if we truly repent of our sins, God will forgive them; but whether he will remove affliction is not promised, yet the probability of it should encourage us to repent.
The Bible Knowledge Commentary reads:
Verses 1–8 are a judgment speech against the nations. They contain accusatory elements, as well as an announcement of judgment. In the future day of the Lord Judah and her enemies will be carefully distinguished. The Lord will restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, in fulfillment of Moses’ promise. At the same time God will gather the nations for judgment. The site of the judgment will be the Valley of Jehoshaphat, mentioned only in Joel 3:2, 12. Whether such a geographical site was known by this name in ancient Israel is not certain. Some scholars suggest it is a yet-future valley, to be formed by the splitting of the Mount of Olives at the Messiah’s return. At any rate, the importance of the name is not in its geographical location, but in its meaning, “the Lord judges.” The reason for God’s judgment is the nations’ treatment of His covenant people, My people. The nations had scattered the Lord’s people, sold them as slaves to distant lands, and divided up His land. “Scattered” seems to refer to the Babylonian Exile. Even though the Lord Himself assigned the land to Israel’s enemies, He still held these nations guilty for their failure to recognize His sovereignty and for their cruel treatment of His people.
Thank you for listening to the Scripture & The Sense Podcast. Remember to read the Word of God each and every day and pray without ceasing to God for wisdom to understand it and apply it to your life. Most importantly, believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved. Please stay tuned for a complete presentation of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ so that you can get your soul saved from Hell to that wonderful place called Heaven when you die. May God bless you and keep you is my prayer.