Short commentary by Tom Gaston
( Subject: Joel’s prophecy and the day of the Lord ).
( KJV ) Joel 2:30 – 32 …..”And I will shew wonders in the heavensand in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood,before the great and terrible day of the Lord come.
And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem
shall be deliverance ( of the Jewish people / Matt. 24:22….”But for the sake of the “elect ” ( Israel ) those days shall be cut short – be cut off,END at the designated time that God had already determined through the prophet Dan. 9:27 )……., as the Lord hath said, and in theremnant ( the “remnant” of the Jewish people ) whom the Lord shall call.”
……..”Wonders in the heavens and in the earth, Blood, fire, and pillars of smoke
These are tribulation judgments which will undoubtedly involve furious and horrendous volcanic activity ( the volcanic ports of the earth will be unleashing fire and pillars of smoke ). The earth will unleash its “blood – Magma / molten rock” due to huge techtonic plate shifting of the earth’s crust which is caused by severe and unprecedented global earthquake activity. The earth will be “split through and shall be shaken violently” – Go ready Isaiah 24:18 – 21 ). During the tribulation period the earthquakes are going to increase ( Matthew 24:7, 8 – the birth pangs ) and will be “off the charts” and “off the richter scale” like the world has never seen before in all of human history. God is going to rip the earth to pieces and totally devastate the whole surface of the earth ( Isaiah chapter 24 ).
The things listed in the verses above of Joel’s prophecy occur……..BEFORE the great and terrible day of the Lord come….which is the very day when Christ returns and shows up in the heavens ( Matthew 24:29, 30 )……”Every eye will see Him” ( Rev. 1:7 ).
Matthew 24:29 – 30………“But immediately after the <sup value="(A)”>tribulation of those days ( the exact END or last day of the 7 years of tribulation ) the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. AND THEN the “sign” of the Son of Man will appear in the sky ( Which is the brightness of His coming ), AND THEN all thetribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky with power and great glory.”
The appearing of Christ in the heavens is the…..”great and NOTABLE day of the Lord ” which is spoken of in Joel’s prophecy and of which the aposle Peter quotes in Acts chapter 2:17– 21. It is simply “Christ’s appearing” at the time of His second advent to the earth, the very day of His return when He “touchs down” with His feet to the earth on the mount of Olives ( Zech. 14:4 ).
Here below are some of the Bible translations from Acts 2:17 – 21 / Joel’s prophecy.
NASV…..Before the great and glorious day of the Lord shall come.
KJV……..before the great and notable day of the Lord come………..( Excellent translation, accurate to the Greek )
NKJV……Before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord come.
RSV……..before the day of the Lord comes, the great and manifestday.
WYC ( Wicliffe )……before that the great and open day of the Lordshall come.
AMP…….before the obvious day of the Lord comes—that great andnotable and conspicuous and renowned day ( Good translation ).
Darby……before the great and gloriously appearing day of [the] Lord come….( Excellent translation in relationship to the Greek )
Philips…..before the coming of the great and notable day of the Lord come….( Excellent translation in relationship to the Greek )
KJ21……… before that great and notable Day of the Lord come…..( Excellent translation, accurate to the Greek )
TLB………..before that awesome Day of the Lord arrives.
NIV…………before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord come.
CEV………..before the great and wonderful day of the Lord appears…..( Excellent translation, accurate to the Greek )
The English term “terrible” ( Strong’s Hebrew # 3372……..”Yare, yaw-ray” ) which is used over in Joel 2:31 in the Old Testament is not listed in the “Strong’s Hebrew Greek Concordance” for the Scripture text of Acts 2:20, but rather the English term which is listed and used in this text is the term “Notable“, which is Strong’s Greek # 2016.
This term “Notable” in Strong’s Greek # 2016…is……epiphanes, ep-if-an-ace’ ;….means…. conspicuous, i.e. ( fig.) memorable; –notable…….( in otherwords the day of Christ’s return to the earth will be an eventful day which will be unprecedented and will “never be forgotten” / the ultimate event of all time ……My emph. T.G. ).
This term “Notable – Epiphanes” comes from the root word of Strong’s Greek # 2014……epiphaino, ep-ee-fah’ee-no
Strong’s Greek # 2014…..epiphaino, ep-ee-fah’ee-no;…….means…..to shine upon, i.e. become ( literally) visible or ( fig.) known;appear, give light…..( would have reference to Christ’s visible returnto the earth ).
So if you look back up at those different translations I have listed you will see that the English term “Notable” ( epiphanes in the Greek ) is being used in three of the translations in the Acts 2:20 which Peter quotes from Joel’s prophecy instead of the English term “terrible” which is ( Strong’s Hebrew # 3372……..”Yare, yaw-ray” ), of which is used in Joel’s prophecy in the Old Testament. This Hebrew term “Yare” means…….”
to fear; mor. to revere; to frighten, fright, be ( make ) afraid, dread ( put in ) fear ( be hand in ) reverence, terrible…). It pictures or describes “reverential fear.” In context it would apply to the second advent of Christ to the earth as it depicts the “attitude” andresponse of all those upon the earth on the day of His return.
The English terms used in some of those Bible translations….Notable, glorious, great and Awesome, wonderful day of the Lord come….etc…etc.” are all describing the very day in which Christ returns to the earth. They are NOT describing the the “opening” of the Day of the Lord at the time of the Rapture of the Church as some are assuming. Many have NOT paid close attention to the text in Acts 2:17 – 21. The are listed as unfolding leading up to Christ’s return to the earth. I like the English word “glorious” which is used inActs 2:20 in some of the translations because it describes how wonderful and glorious it will be when Christ returns to restore the earth.
Do you all remember the apostle Peter’s second sermon to “Israel ” in Acts 3:19 – 21……” Therefore <sup value="(A)”>repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that <sup value="(B)”>times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you ( a reference to Christ’s second advent to the earth ), whom heaven must receive until the period of<sup value="(D)”>restoration of all things ( a reference to the restoration time of the Millennial kingdom ) about which <sup value="(E)”>God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time.
Terrible day ( Joel 2:17 – 21………..”Yare, yaw-ray” ) – Describes the “reverential fear ” that will grip the hearts of all those upon the earth, of the wicked and the righteous alike who will witness the coming of Christ in the heavens at the END of the tribulation period.
Notable day – Describes the return of Christ to the earth which will be conspicuous, memorable, and unforgetable in scope.
Glorious day – Describes how His return will bring great happiness, thankfulness, and joy to those believers who were eagerly waiting for Him to return, at which time Christ will bring restoration, peace, and healing to the earth as He sets up His kingdom for 1000 years.
Great and Awesome day – Describes the overwhelmingness of all the events which will be transpiring and climaxing on the very day of His return ( Matthew 24:29, 30 ).
Can you even imagine the “scene” which those who are upon the earth will be witnessing in “real time” when all of a sudden they see the heavens lit up and opened as they see with their own eyes all of the saints of all time along with all the angels returning with Christ to the earth! What an indescribable and breathtaking scene in the heavens to say the least! Totally unbelievable!
It is very clear then that the upcoming “four blood moons” are NOTthe fulfillment of Joel 2:17 – 21 prophecy as many are trying to suggest, for Joel’s prophecy is specifically describing tribulation events at the time of Christ’s second advent to the earth. Therefore Joel’s prophecy is in complete harmony with Matthew 24;29, 30.
In Christ, Tom Gaston