1 第五位天使吹號，我就看見一個星從天落到地上，有無底坑的鑰匙賜給它。2 它開了無底坑，便有煙從坑裏往上冒，好像大火爐的煙；日頭和天空都因這煙昏暗了。3 有蝗蟲從煙中出來，飛到地上；有能力賜給牠們，好像地上蠍子的能力一樣，4 並且吩咐牠們說，不可傷害地上的草和各樣青物，並一切樹木，惟獨要傷害額上沒有神印記的人。5 但不許蝗蟲害死他們，只叫他們受痛苦五個月。這痛苦就像蠍子螫人的痛苦一樣。6 在那些日子，人要求死，決不得死；願意死，死卻遠避他們。
20 其餘未曾被這些災所殺的人仍舊不悔改自己手所做的，還是去拜鬼魔和那些不能看、不能聽、不能走，金、銀、銅、木、石的偶像，21 又不悔改他們那些凶殺、邪術、姦淫、偷竊的事。
- 約珥書以蝗蟲災禍的預言（約珥書 1:2-2:11），規勸以色列上下當悔改歸向神。並且強調拒絕悔改，最終將受到審判與可怕結局。惟有由心中徹底悔改，才能從罪的恐怖中得拯救。
1The fifth angel sounded his trumpet, and I saw a star that had fallen from the sky to the earth. The star was given the key to the shaft of the Abyss. 2When he opened the Abyss, smoke rose from it like the smoke from a gigantic furnace. The sun and sky were darkened by the smoke from the Abyss. 3And out of the smoke locusts came down upon the earth and were given power like that of scorpions of the earth. 4They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any plant or tree, but only those people who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads. 5They were not given power to kill them, but only to torture them for five months. And the agony they suffered was like that of the sting of a scorpion when it strikes a man. 6During those days men will seek death, but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them.
20The rest of mankind that were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. 21Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts.
- Joel’s prophecy (Joel 1:2-2:11) of locusts is to call for repentance of the Israelites to return to God. He emphasized the final judgment and terrible consequence of refusing to repent. Only in true repentance are we saved from the terror of sin.
- Despite God’s judgment, those who are temporarily spared still go on their merry way (vv20-21). Pharaoh also refused to repent after the ten plagues. And sometimes, we are just like them. During such times, God is actually forcing us, through difficult circumstances, to look inside ourselves for persistent stubbornness that dismisses such invitation of grace from God. If it’s an honest look, what we see should humble us, and that humility should pave the way to the grace of repentance.
- Sit silently. Allow the Holy Spirit to show areas of my “persistent stubbornness”. Pray for humility to see and grace to repent.
Prayer & Journaling:
Stay with God for a little longer. Continue to converse with God and listen to what he wants to tell me. Then write down any thought and/or prayer in the 2012 “Spiritual Journal” book.