Joel is a very prophetic book. It is speaking of this day of the Kingdom. Joel chapter two is especially good. Verses one through eleven has to do with the army of the Lord.
Joel 2:11 And the Lord shall utter His voice before His army: for His camp is very great: for he is strong that executeth His Word: for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?
We’re entering a time called the day of the Lord. It is a great and terrible day for those who are experiencing it.
Some years ago when I was in South Carolina I was invited to minister the Word at a particular church in another state. On the way there I was looking to the Lord concerning what He would have me speak, and He gave me the first verse in Joel chapter two. It is the verse we have on the cover of The Trumpet. Blow ye the trumpet in Zion is what God spoke to my heart. Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain…. From that time on the ministry changed. The Lord made it clear to me that it was among His people where the trumpet needs to be blown. It is among His people where the alarm needs to be given, because the people of God as a whole have become very lukewarm, settled on their lees. It's hard to get them stirred up! They are satisfied with religion; like the Laodiceans they think they are rich and have need of nothing. So all this time the Lord has had that Word burning in my heart.
Joel 2:1 Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain…
He didn’t say to go down to the Philistines and speak the Word of the Lord, or to go tell the scribes and Pharisees. No, those in the holy mountain. You know, of course, that the word “mountain” in the Scriptures speaks of kingdom. The “mountain of God,” for example, speaks prophetically of the Kingdom of God. So when He says to sound an alarm in His holy mountain, He is saying, “Sound an alarm in My Kingdom. Sound it among My people, get them stirred up.”
Joel 2:1 …let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the Day of the Lord cometh, for it is nigh at hand…
Many Christians speak of the Day of the Lord as a time of great tribulation that takes place sometime in the future. Of course, they usually speak of it as something others will experience and not themselves. The Day of the Lord is the day when He requires His Lordship over you. Is that required when Christ is received as Savior? Obviously not, because the majority don’t submit to Him as Lord. They receive the forgiveness of sins and then continue to do their own thing.
Proverbs 3:5-7 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine
6 In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.
7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil.
The most difficult thing for a Christian to do is to really trust the Lord. People, and I speak of Christians, usually will trust first their own reasoning and ideas. As long as your carnal mind is the lord over you, He isn’t! It is one thing to say, “I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord.” It is quite another thing to be directed by the input from the Lord rather than your own understanding.
Lean not unto thine own understanding. Before we became Christians we were all led by the reasonings of our own mind. We understood by the way we were educated, by our environment, and by the way we were raised up. We learned to be motivated and influenced by the way we felt, emotionally and mentally. Then when we became Christians we continued to function in the same way. Even though we read the Bible, prayed, and attended church, for the most part we continued to be motivated and influenced by our own reasoning. Being directed by the Holy Spirit is not something that happens automatically when we become Christians. We have to learn how to be led by the Spirit. Even if you have received the Holy Spirit with the gift of tongues, it doesn’t mean necessarily that the Spirit is leading you or that you are living in the Spirit.
Isaiah 26:13 O Lord our God, other lords beside Thee have had dominion over us: but by Thee only will we make mention of Thy name.
We’ve had many lords. There are many kings in your earthen nature that have been ruling over you, and the Lord shall destroy these kings as He comes forth in your life. He is coming forth conquering and to conquer. And I saw, and behold a white horse: and He that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto Him: and He went forth conquering, and to conquer. Revelation 6:2. That is not the Lord riding on a white horse in the sky somewhere. It is Him coming forth in your life to conquer your carnal nature, to bring down the Babylon in you, to bring judgment on the harlot that is in you, and to conquer your carnal mind because it is enmity against God. Not only is the human mind not in subjection to the Lord, it can’t be! The carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. Romans 8:7. If you are looking for an antichrist, there it is! That is the one thing that hinders us more than anything else. But the Day of the Lord is dawning, and the Day of the Lord is when He says, “Alright, I’ve been winking while you were doing your own thing. Now you will have to bow to My Lordship.”
The Day of the Lord is not just a time in the future that this world will eventually reach. It is a time when He requires His Lordship over us. The Lord is saying, “Look, I got you out of Egypt. I redeemed you; I bought you. You are My possession. From this point on you have to live in Me and I have to live in you.” Many Christians will dig in their heels, continuing to do their own thing. Thus Peter said, For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of the Lord (I Peter 4:17). This is where the Lord is going to come first to begin His Day. This thing of calling Him Lord and not submitting to His Lordship is coming to an end. Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Thy name? and in Thy name have cast out devils? and in Thy name done many wonderful works? Matthew 7:21-22. Who is it that does these kinds of things in the name of the Lord? Christians! And not just the bottom run-of-the-mill Christian either. These are among those who believe in that kind of ministry. But the Lord is coming forth saying, “The Day of the Lord is at hand.” The Day of the Lord may begin for you before it begins for someone else.
Jesus entered the temple and ran out those who were desecrating it on two occasions. The first time was during the beginning of His ministry (John 2:13-16). He wasn’t meek and mild Jesus then. He made a scourge and drove them all out, saying, Take these things hence; make not My Father’s house an house of merchandise. He did the same thing again near the end of His ministry (Matthew 21:12-13). He cleaned out the temple twice, at the beginning of His ministry and again at the end of His ministry. This is prophetic! The beginning of the Church Age was the first cleansing. He moved through the apostles and prophets and established His church. Then with the passing of time the Dark Ages came and the church was just a ritualistic thing with no life in it. Well, He is coming through to cleanse it again, not as an individual but through a people. He is bringing forth a many-membered Body, a people in which He will be glorified (II Thessalonians 1:10). That Christ-Body will go through the church of the religious world in this day cleansing it for a habitation of the Spirit, for the Day of the Lord is at hand.
The Day of the Lord is a time when the living Word will be proclaimed. The Gospel of Salvation has been preached since the Reformation, but we have just come to the time when His Lordship is proclaimed. There are two commissions in the Scriptures. One is the Gospel of Salvation in the sixteenth chapter of Mark. Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. Mark 16:15-16. The other is the Gospel of the Kingdom found in Matthew. All authority is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always. Matthew 28:18-20.
Religious groups are always eager to propagate their particular brand of Christianity. When Russia opened its doors, practically every religious organization rushed over there to get theirs planted. God help us! Man’s organizations are going to come down. The Day of the Lord is upon us. Blow the trumpet in Zion! Sound an alarm in His holy mount! Fear and trembling will grip the hearts of men.
Hebrews 12:26 He hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth
only, but also heaven.
Revelation 6:12-14 Lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood;
13 And the stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind.
14 And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.
Joel 2:30-31 And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.
31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible Day of the Lord come.
Many make these natural happenings, looking for some cataclysmic things to take place in the earth. I suppose it is possible for these things to take place in the natural. But ultimately the Lord is speaking of His coming forth in His people as He cleanses His temple. Ecclesiastes 3:11 says that He has set the world in the heart of man. So when the Lord begins coming forth in your life and in the life of His church, He is going to bring down the sun, the moon, the stars, and all things that symbolize your little world. He is going to bring down your world and establish His world in you. There will be a new heaven and a new earth within you. The Lord establishes, first of all, His Kingdom within His people. He is going to rule and reign, not from a temple in Jerusalem, but from the heart of His many-membered Body. That is why Joel says, Blow a trumpet in Zion.
What is meant by the trumpet? The trumpet represents prophecy. But not prophecy in the sense that we’ve known it in the past. Prophecy such as, “Yea, I the Lord say unto thee such and such…saith the Lord,” has come to an end. That doesn’t mean people aren’t still doing it; it just means that it isn’t effective any more. Prophetic utterance of the Kingdom goes beyond predictive prophecy; it goes beyond a ministry of information. It must now be a ministry of His life and Spirit. The words we speak must be freighted with the presence of the Lord, so that when the spoken words are heard they are not just hearing a language that presents an idea, but they are receiving His life. It is in this way that the Lord is coming forth in a people: When He shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believe. II Thessalonians 1:10. Do you want Him to be glorified and admired in you? It will cost you something. It will cost your life! It will cost you your little world! Any day now the Lord could explode in this earth and just destroy religion completely. In case you missed it, “this earth” is you and me.
My wife and I were talking the other day. The more involved we get in a walk with the Lord the more phony religion seems to be, just plain phony. This whole concept, “Receive Jesus Christ as your Savior and He is going to bless you and do for you. He will give you a good job, bless you financially, and bless your projects. One day you will go to heaven, live in a mansion, walk on streets of gold, dangle your feet in the river of life, and live a life of ease.” Not so! What a fairy tale! It isn’t that way! He wants a people He can live in. I’m not talking about, “I’ve got Jesus in my heart.” I’m talking about the Lord living in you. I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me. Galatians 2:20.
There was no way at all that man could ever come to God. So God came to man. He became a man, and then paved a way back to deity so we could follow Him in. He blazed a trail. Christ emptied Himself, took the form of a bondservant, and was made in the likeness of men (Philippians 2:7). And as a man He became divine. He became as we are so we could become as He is. The fullness of this is not on an individual level, but it is realized in the many-membered Body of Christ. The promises of God, all that has been prophesied of the plan of God has its fulfillment in the Body of Christ, not in individuals. How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity…for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for ever more. Psalm 133.
Why is the Day of the Lord a great and terrible day? Well, when He begins invading your life you will know. People in the religious world talk about the work of the cross and dying out to self, but for the most part they don’t know. They just don’t know! I’ve seen far more Christians running from it than I’ve seen taking it up. Yet the Lord said, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. Matthew 16:24. If any man will come after Me…. What does that mean? Does it mean to follow along behind Him in His steps? No! It means to become as He is, same nature.
If you want to become as He is, the first thing you must do is deny self. We read about that in Proverbs 3:5. Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. Deny self! Our biggest problem is self! Deny self! Then take up your cross. The purpose of the cross is for you to die on it. And you will need help to do that. You can get on the cross and put a nail in each foot and in one hand but you still have a free hand. You will need a brother or a sister to put that last nail in. You will need help to die on the cross. It takes a Body; we help one another.
The Day of the Lord is at hand! And we’re blowing a trumpet, because that is what the Lord laid upon our hearts. Sound an alarm in My holy mount! You say, “What about those people out there in the world?” Don’t worry about those people out there in the world. Let’s get our hearts right! All these evangelistic movements aren’t getting anywhere. We’ve had nearly 500 years of evangelism since the Reformation that’s done very little. God is looking for a people that will give themselves to Him so He can come forth in their lives. Then they will have something to minister. There are many young people running out to do their thing for Jesus and not really accomplishing anything. I’ve used the following illustration many times: A young man wants to be a great surgeon. He is driven to the point of being very selfish and self-centered in his quest. He goes to school, applies himself to his books, pre-med, and all the training needful to become that surgeon. He cuts out the entertainment life, and to some extent he even neglects his family. He gives himself to one thing! What about all those people he could be helping during this time? Doesn’t he care about them? Of course he does, but without the training he could tend to some cuts and bruises. So he gives himself totally to becoming, and the day comes when he is a great surgeon. Now he is able to really help people. Listen, it is what you become in God that really counts - not what you do, but what you become. When you become what God wants, then He can move through you and accomplish the greater works. He doesn’t need anybody to do things for Him. He just needs people He can move through. And that is what the Body of Christ is all about.
Joel 2:1-2 Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain:
let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the Day of the Lord cometh, for
it is nigh at hand;
2 A day of darkness and of gloominess, a day of clouds and of thick darkness, as the morning spread upon the mountains: a great people and a strong; there hath not been ever the like, neither shall be any more after it, even to the years of many generations.
Sound an alarm in My holy mountain! Blow a trumpet in Zion! Why? because that is where He is headed. Look out Christians! Here comes the Lord! I tell you, it’s going to be a terrible day with a lot of trembling! A day of darkness and of gloominess! Yes, gloom and darkness to the old flesh nature. But you know what Paul said, For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Romans 8:18.
I’ve never known God to be so serious. Probably He has always been this serious, and I’m just becoming aware of it. Look out there in the Christian world. There just isn’t much happening; same old thing every Sunday in most churches. You go in, sing a few songs, listen to the deacons pray, the preacher preach, and go home. “God’s not doing anything. We need to pray for revival,” they say. He is doing something! Listen, God is not going to come down and bless your thing. He is not going to bring revival to where you are. You have to move up to where He is. The latter rain that brings forth maturity already is. It is not a matter of waiting for the time that God is going to pour out His Spirit. It is already poured out. It is a matter of moving in to where it already is. Acts 2:1 says, When the Day of Pentecost was fully come… But the Greek reads, When the Day of Pentecost was being fulfilled…What fulfilled it? Was it when that particular day of the month came? No! It was when those disciples in the upper room moved into the place, spiritually, where it was happening. They say, “Pray for revival!” No, move up to where it already is. It isn’t revival we need anyway. Revival is for those who had life and died. We need life that hasn’t been had yet.
Romans 4:17 …God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
Do you understand prophetic perfect in the Hebrew? The Hebrew language doesn’t have past, present, and future tenses like our English does. It has perfect and imperfect. Imperfect means it is not yet completed and perfect means that it is completed. But many times God speaks of things that have not yet happened in the past tense. For example, in Isaiah 9:6 He says, Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given…. He is speaking of Jesus hundreds of years before He was born as though His birth had already taken place. That is prophetic perfect. It is also called prophetic assurance, because assuredly it will happen because God said it.
Everything that will happen is already set. It’s not that God has to do something in the future that He hasn’t done. It’s already done! Everything is set! His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness. II Peter 1:3. It is a matter of appropriation! That is why Enoch could be translated. He prophesied, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints. Jude 14. Enoch entered into a day that had not taken place yet. How could that be? By revelation he was aware of something that others were placing in the future as a present thing. That is the principle the Lord revealed to Abraham, “All that you see I will give you” (Genesis 13:14-15). What you see by revelation is yours in the present.
Ecclesiastes 3:15 That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.
What is He saying? He is saying it is already done. In God there is no past, present, and future. He is eternal! And as we come into Him we will become aware of eternity, too. It’s happening! Even as we are coming forth in the Lord in this day. Our thinking is changing. We’re beginning to see things differently. We’re beginning to understand that things we thought of as future are now. And the reason we are beginning to see things differently is because the Lord is coming forth in His temple. He is purifying us. Blow ye the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in My holy mountain: let all the inhabitants of the land tremble: for the Day of the Lord cometh, it is nigh at hand.
Copyright © 2000 by Henry DuBose