July 23 - Joel 2.10-17

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10The earth shakes as they advance;
the sky trembles.
The sun and the moon grow dark,
and the stars no longer shine.
11The LORD thunders commands to his army.
The troops that obey him
are many and mighty.
How terrible is the day of the LORD!
Who will survive it?

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 grain 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 homes 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?'"

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This reading is from The Holy Bible, Today's English Version, Second Edition copyright © American Bible Society, 1992;
Old Testament copyright © American Bible Society, 1976, 1992; New Testament © American Bible Society, 1966, 1971, 1976, 1992.

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