II. THE DAY OF THE LORD CHAPTER 2 The Day Approaches 2   1[K] Blow the horn in Zion, sound the alarm on my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble, for the day of the LORD is coming! Yes, it approaches, 2a day of darkness and gloom, a day of thick clouds! Like dawn[L] spreading over the mountains, a vast and mighty army! Nothing like it has ever happened in ages past, nor will the future hold anything like it, even to the most distant generations. 3Before it,[M] fire devours, behind it flame scorches. The land before it is like the garden of Eden, and behind it, a desolate wilderness; from it nothing escapes. 4Their appearance is that of horses; like war horses they run. 5Like the rumble of chariots they hurtle across mountaintops; Like the crackling of fiery flames devouring stubble; Like a massive army in battle formation. 6Before them peoples tremble, every face turns pale. 7Like warriors they run, like soldiers they scale walls, Each advancing in line, without swerving from the course. 8No one crowds the other; each advances in its own track; They plunge through the weapons; they are not checked. 9They charge the city, they run upon the wall, they climb into the houses; Through the windows they enter like thieves.   10Before them the earth trembles; the heavens shake; Sun and moon are darkened, and the stars withhold their brightness. 11The LORD raises his voice at the head of his army; How immense is his host! How numerous those who carry out his command! How great is the day of the LORD! Utterly terrifying! Who can survive it?   Return to the Lord 12Yet even now—oracle of the LORD return to me with your whole heart, with fasting, weeping, and mourning. 13Rend your hearts, not your garments, and return to the LORD, your God, For he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abounding in steadfast love, and relenting in punishment. 14Perhaps he will again relent and leave behind a blessing,[N] Grain offering and libation for the LORD, your God. 15Blow the horn in Zion! Proclaim a fast, call an assembly! 16Gather the people, sanctify the congregation; Assemble the elderly; gather the children, even infants nursing at the breast; Let the bridegroom leave his room, and the bride[O] her bridal tent. 17Between the porch and the altar[P] let the priests weep, let the ministers of the LORD weep and say: “Spare your people, LORD! do not let your heritage become a disgrace, a byword among the nations! Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?’”     The Lord Relents.  18Then the LORD grew jealous[Q] for his land and took pity on his people. 19In response the LORD said to his people:   I am sending you grain, new wine, and oil, and you will be satisfied by them; Never again will I make you a disgrace among the nations. 20The northerner[R] I will remove far from you, driving them out into a dry and desolate land, Their vanguard to the eastern sea, their rearguard to the western sea, And their stench will rise, their stink will ascend, What great deeds the Lord has done! 21Do not fear, O land! delight and rejoice, for the LORD has done great things! 22Do not fear, you animals in the wild, for the wilderness pastures sprout green grass. The trees bear fruit, the fig tree and the vine produce their harvest. 23Children of Zion, delight and rejoice in the LORD, your God! For he has faithfully given you the early rain,[S] sending rain down on you, the early and the late rains as before. 24The threshing floors will be full of grain, the vats spilling over with new wine and oil. 25I will repay you double what the swarming locust has eaten, The hopper, the consuming locust, and the cutter, my great army I sent against you. 26You will eat until you are fully satisfied, then you will praise the name of the LORD, your God, Who acts so wondrously on your behalf! My people will never again be put to shame. 27Then you will know that I am in the midst of Israel: I, the LORD, am your God, and there is no other; my people will never again be put to shame.   III. THE LORD’S FINAL JUDGMENT
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