1 I am Joel, the son of Pethuel. This is a message that Yahweh gave to me.
2 You leaders of Israel, listen to this message!
Nothing [RHQ] like this has ever happened during the time that you have lived,
or the time when your ancestors lived.
3 Tell your children about it,
and tell your children to tell it to their children,
and tell your grandchildren to tell it to their children.
4 I am talking about the locusts that have eaten our crops.
The locusts came in great swarms;
as they hopped along,
they cut and ate the leaves of the crops
and they destroyed everything.
5 You people who are drunk, wake up!
Wake up and wail loudly,
because all the grapes are ruined,
and so there will be no new wine!
6 Huge swarms of locusts have entered our country.
They are like a powerful army
that has a huge number of soldiers, with the result that no one can count them.
The locusts have teeth that are as sharp as the teeth of lions.
7 They have destroyed our grapevines and our fig trees
by stripping off and eating all the bark,
with the result that the branches are white and bare.
8 Cry, like a young woman cries when the young man to whom she was engaged has died.
9 There is no grain or wine for us to offer as sacrifices at the temple.
So the priests who serve Yahweh are mourning.
10 The crops in the fields have been ruined;
it is as though [PRS] the ground is mourning.
The grain has been destroyed, there are no grapes to make wine, and there is no more olive oil.
11 You farmers, grieve!
You who take care of grapevines, wail,
because the grain has been destroyed,
and there is no wheat or barley growing.
12 The grapevines and the fig trees have withered,
and the pomegranate trees and palm trees and apricot trees have also withered.
The people are no longer joyful.
13 You priests, put on rough sack clothes and wail.
You who serve God by offering sacrifices on the altar,
wear those rough sack clothes all night to show that you are mourning,
because there is no grain or wine for the people to bring to the temple of God.
14 Tell the people that they should ◄fast/abstain from eating food►.
Tell the leaders and the other people to gather at the temple
and to cry out to Yahweh there.
15 Terrible things are happening to us!
It will soon be the time when Yahweh, who is the almighty God, will punish us,
when he will cause us to experience more disasters.
16 Our crops are already gone,
and no one is rejoicing at the temple of our God.
17 When we plant seeds, they do not grow;
they dry up in the ground,
so there are no crops to harvest.
The barns are empty;
there is no grain to store in them.
18 Our cattle groan as they search for a pasture with some grass to eat,
and the sheep bleat as they suffer.
19 Yahweh, I cry out to you,
because our pastures and our forests have dried up in the hot sunshine.
20 Even the wild animals cry out to you
because the streams have all dried up.