Bible Society of South Africa

Lydenstyd: Aswoensdag

Eerste lesing

The Locusts as a Warning of the Day of the LORD

1Blow the trumpet; sound the alarm

on Zion, God's sacred hill.

Tremble, people of Judah!

The day of the LORD is coming soon.

2It will be a dark and gloomy day,

a black and cloudy day.

The great army of locusts advances

like darkness spreading over the mountains.

There has never been anything like it,

and there never will be again.

Joel 2:1-2GNBOpen in Bible reader

A Call to Repentance

12“But even now,” says the LORD,

“repent sincerely and return to me

with fasting and weeping and mourning.

13Let your broken heart show your sorrow;

tearing your clothes is not enough.”

Come back to the LORD your God.

He is kind and full of mercy;

he is patient and keeps his promise;

he is always ready to forgive and not punish.

14Perhaps the LORD your God will change his mind

and bless you with abundant crops.

Then you can offer him corn and wine.

15Blow the trumpet on Mount Zion;

give orders for a fast and call an assembly!

16Gather the people together;

prepare them for a sacred meeting;

bring the old people;

gather the children

and the babies too.

Even newly married couples

must leave their room and come.

17The priests, serving the LORD

between the altar and the entrance of the Temple,

must weep and pray:

“Have pity on your people, LORD.

Do not let other nations despise us and mock us

by saying, ‘Where is your God?’ ”

Joel 2:12-17GNBOpen in Bible reader

True Fasting

1The LORD says, “Shout as loud as you can! Tell my people Israel about their sins! 2They worship me every day, claiming that they are eager to know my ways and obey my laws. They say they want me to give them just laws and that they take pleasure in worshipping me.”

3The people ask, “Why should we fast if the LORD never notices? Why should we go without food if he pays no attention?”

The LORD says to them, “The truth is that at the same time as you fast, you pursue your own interests and oppress your workers. 4Your fasting makes you violent, and you quarrel and fight. Do you think this kind of fasting will make me listen to your prayers? 5When you fast, you make yourselves suffer; you bow your heads low like a blade of grass, and spread out sackcloth and ashes to lie on. Is that what you call fasting? Do you think I will be pleased with that?

6“The kind of fasting I want is this: remove the chains of oppression and the yoke of injustice, and let the oppressed go free. 7Share your food with the hungry and open your homes to the homeless poor. Give clothes to those who have nothing to wear, and do not refuse to help your own relatives.

8“Then my favour will shine on you like the morning sun, and your wounds will be quickly healed. I will always be with you to save you; my presence will protect you on every side. 9When you pray, I will answer you. When you call to me, I will respond.

“If you put an end to oppression, to every gesture of contempt, and to every evil word; 10if you give food to the hungry and satisfy those who are in need, then the darkness around you will turn to the brightness of noon. 11And I will always guide you and satisfy you with good things. I will keep you strong and well. You will be like a garden that has plenty of water, like a spring of water that never runs dry. 12Your people will rebuild what has long been in ruins, building again on the old foundations. You will be known as the people who rebuilt the walls, who restored the ruined houses.”

Isaiah 58:1-12GNBOpen in Bible reader
Bible Society of South Africav.4.20.14
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