July 17
‘The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.’ Joel 2:31
Bible reading: Acts 2:14-24 (Go to the Bible passage)
Jesus had promised that the disciples would receive power when the Holy Spirit would come on them (Acts 1:8). When, on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit descended powerfully in the hearts of the apostles and those with them, Peter knew for sure that this was what the prophet Joel had spoken of.
When bystanders started to make fun of them and said they were drunk, Peter stood up with the others and they gave their first testimony, without the encouraging presence of the Lord Jesus, but with the help of the Holy Spirit. ‘This is what was spoken by the prophet Joel!’ They certainly did not have the scrolls at hand, so Peter quoted this entire passage from memory. How much more the Holy Spirit would be able to remind us of the holy scriptures if we would only be more familiar with them.
The prophet Joel wrote a lot about ‘the last days’. And Peter realized that on that day of Pentecost the ‘last day’, the last period of the history of salvation, indeed had come. But when we have recovered from our first enthusiasm about this happening, we yet begin to see that not the whole prophecy of Joel about ‘the last days’ was fulfilled. There was no question of a pouring out of the Spirit on all people, this was only the beginning. The sun did not turn to darkness and the moon did not turn to blood. And to this day, since Pentecost, it is not safe to live on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem. Peter did not even mention this part of the prophesy…
How much still had to happen and how much even nowadays must still happen before the ‘last day’, about which Joel prophesied, will be fulfilled.
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