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Joel 1 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

The word of the Lord that came to Joel son of Pethuel:

Lament over the Ruin of the Country

Hear this, O elders,
    give ear, all inhabitants of the land!
Has such a thing happened in your days,
    or in the days of your ancestors?
Tell your children of it,
    and let your children tell their children,
    and their children another generation.

What the cutting locust left,
    the swarming locust has eaten.
What the swarming locust left,
    the hopping locust has eaten,
and what the hopping locust left,
    the destroying locust has eaten.

Wake up, you drunkards, and weep;
    and wail, all you wine-drinkers,
over the sweet wine,
    for it is cut off from your mouth.
For a nation has invaded my land,
    powerful and innumerable;
its teeth are lions’ teeth,
    and it has the fangs of a lioness.
It has laid waste my vines,
    and splintered my fig trees;
it has stripped off their bark and thrown it down;
    their branches have turned white.

Lament like a virgin dressed in sackcloth
    for the husband of her youth.
The grain offering and the drink offering are cut off
    from the house of the Lord.
The priests mourn,
    the ministers of the Lord.
10 The fields are devastated,
    the ground mourns;
for the grain is destroyed,
    the wine dries up,
    the oil fails.

11 Be dismayed, you farmers,
    wail, you vinedressers,
over the wheat and the barley;
    for the crops of the field are ruined.
12 The vine withers,
    the fig tree droops.
Pomegranate, palm, and apple—
    all the trees of the field are dried up;
surely, joy withers away
    among the people.

A Call to Repentance and Prayer

13 Put on sackcloth and lament, you priests;
    wail, you ministers of the altar.
Come, pass the night in sackcloth,
    you ministers of my God!
Grain offering and drink offering
    are withheld from the house of your God.

14 Sanctify a fast,
    call a solemn assembly.
Gather the elders
    and all the inhabitants of the land
to the house of the Lord your God,
    and cry out to the Lord.

15 Alas for the day!
For the day of the Lord is near,
    and as destruction from the Almighty[a] it comes.
16 Is not the food cut off
    before our eyes,
joy and gladness
    from the house of our God?

17 The seed shrivels under the clods,[b]
    the storehouses are desolate;
the granaries are ruined
    because the grain has failed.
18 How the animals groan!
    The herds of cattle wander about
because there is no pasture for them;
    even the flocks of sheep are dazed.[c]

19 To you, O Lord, I cry.
For fire has devoured
    the pastures of the wilderness,
and flames have burned
    all the trees of the field.
20 Even the wild animals cry to you
    because the watercourses are dried up,
and fire has devoured
    the pastures of the wilderness.

Footnotes:

  1. Joel 1:15 Traditional rendering of Heb Shaddai
  2. Joel 1:17 Meaning of Heb uncertain
  3. Joel 1:18 Compare Gk Syr Vg: Meaning of Heb uncertain
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Joel 1 Common English Bible (CEB)

Song of lament

The Lord’s word that came to Joel, Pethuel’s son:

Hear this, elders;
    pay attention, everyone in the land!
Has anything like this ever happened in your days,
    or in the days of your ancestors?[a]
Tell it to your children,
    and have your children tell their children,
    and their children tell their children.
What the cutting locust left,
    the swarming locust has eaten.
What the swarming locust left,
    the hopping locust has eaten.
And what the hopping locust left,
    the devouring locust has eaten.[b]
Wake up, you who drink too much, and weep.
Scream over the sweet wine,
    all you wine drinkers,
    because it is snatched from your mouth;
    because a nation, powerful and beyond number,
        has invaded my land.

Its teeth are like lions’ teeth;
    its fangs are like those of a lioness.
It has destroyed my vines,
    splintered my fig trees,
    stripped off their bark and thrown it down;
    their branches have turned white.
Lament like a woman dressed in funeral clothing,
    one who has lost the husband of her youth.
The grain offering and the drink offering are gone from the Lord’s temple.
The priests and the Lord’s ministers mourn.
10 The fields are devastated,
        the ground mourns;
    for the grain is destroyed,
        the new wine dries up,
        the olive oil fails.
11 Be shocked, you farmers;
    howl, you vinedressers,
        over the wheat and the barley,
    for the crops of the field are destroyed.
12 The grapevine is dried up;
    the fig tree withers.
Pomegranate, palm, and apple—
    all the trees of the field are dried up.
Joy fades away from the people.[c]

Call to mourn

13 Dress for a funeral and grieve, you priests;
        lament, ministers of the altar.
    Come, spend the night in funeral clothing, servants of my God,
    because the grain offering and the drink offering
        have gone from the temple of your God.
14 Demand a fast,
        request a special assembly.
    Gather the elders
        and all the land’s people
        to the temple of the Lord your God,
            and cry out to the Lord.

Time of suffering

15 What a terrible day!
    The day of the Lord is near;
        it comes like chaos from the Almighty.[d]
16 Isn’t the food cut off
    right before our eyes?
    Aren’t joy and gladness also gone from our God’s house?
17 The grain shrivels under the shovels;[e]
    the barns are empty.
The granaries are in ruin
    because the grain has dried up.
18 How the animals groan!
    Herds of cattle are in distress
        because there is no pasture for them;
    even the flocks of sheep pant.

The prophet’s prayer

19 To you, Lord, I cry,
    for fire has completely destroyed
        the pastures of the wilderness;
    and flames have burned
        all the trees of the field.
20 Even the field’s wild animals cry to you
        because the streams have dried up;
    the fire has completely destroyed
        the meadows of the wilderness.

Footnotes:

  1. Joel 1:2 Or your fathers
  2. Joel 1:4 The Heb uses several different words for locust; none of the meanings are identical.
  3. Joel 1:12 Or from the sons of men; cf 2:1 Heb the people of the land
  4. Joel 1:15 Heb Shaddai
  5. Joel 1:17 Heb uncertain
Common English Bible (CEB)

Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

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