New English Translation
The Locusts' Devastation
1 Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound the alarm signal on my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land shake with fear, for the day of the LORD is about to come. Indeed, it is near!
2 It will be a day of dreadful darkness, a day of foreboding storm clouds, like blackness spread over the mountains. It is a huge and powerful army - there has never been anything like it ever before, and there will not be anything like it for many generations to come!
3 Like fire they devour everything in their path; a flame blazes behind them. The land looks like the Garden of Eden before them, but behind them there is only a desolate wilderness - for nothing escapes them!
4 They look like horses; they charge ahead like war horses.
5 They sound like chariots rumbling over mountain tops, like the crackling of blazing fire consuming stubble, like the noise of a mighty army being drawn up for battle.
6 People writhe in fear when they see them. All of their faces turn pale with fright.
7 They charge like warriors; they scale walls like soldiers. Each one proceeds on his course; they do not alter their path.
8 They do not jostle one another; each of them marches straight ahead. They burst through the city defenses and do not break ranks.
9 They rush into the city; they scale its walls. They climb up into the houses; they go in through the windows like a thief.
10 The earth quakes before them; the sky reverberates. The sun and the moon grow dark; the stars refuse to shine.
11 The voice of the LORD thunders as he leads his army. Indeed, his warriors are innumerable; Surely his command is carried out! Yes, the day of the LORD is awesome and very terrifying - who can survive it?
An Appeal for Repentance
12 "Yet even now, " the LORD says, "return to me with all your heart - with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Tear your hearts, not just your garments!"
13 Return to the LORD your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to anger and boundless in loyal love - often relenting from calamitous punishment.
14 Who knows? Perhaps he will be compassionate and grant a reprieve, and leave blessing in his wake - a meal offering and a drink offering for you to offer to the LORD your God!
15 Blow the trumpet in Zion. Announce a holy fast; proclaim a sacred assembly!
16 Gather the people; sanctify an assembly! Gather the elders; gather the children and the nursing infants. Let the bridegroom come out from his bedroom and the bride from her private quarters.
17 Let the priests, those who serve the LORD, weep from the vestibule all the way back to the altar. Let them say, "Have pity, O LORD, on your people; please do not turn over your inheritance to be mocked, to become a proverb among the nations. Why should it be said among the peoples, "Where is their God?"
The LORD's Response
18 Then the LORD became zealous for his land; he had compassion on his people.
19 The LORD responded to his people, "Look! I am about to restore your grain as well as fresh wine and olive oil. You will be fully satisfied. I will never again make you an object of mockery among the nations.
20 I will remove the one from the north far from you. I will drive him out to a dry and desolate place. Those in front will be driven eastward into the Dead Sea, and those in back westward into the Mediterranean Sea. His stench will rise up as a foul smell." Indeed, the LORD has accomplished great things.
21 Do not fear, my land! Rejoice and be glad, because the LORD has accomplished great things!
22 Do not fear, wild animals! For the pastures of the wilderness are again green with grass. Indeed, the trees bear their fruit; the fig tree and the vine yield to their fullest.
23 Citizens of Zion, rejoice! Be glad because of what the LORD your God has done! For he has given to you the early rains as vindication. He has sent to you the rains - both the early and the late rains as formerly.
24 The threshing floors are full of grain; the vats overflow with fresh wine and olive oil.
25 I will make up for the years that the 'arbeh-locust consumed your crops - the yeleq-locust, the hasil-locust, and the gazam-locust - my great army that I sent against you.
26 You will have plenty to eat, and your hunger will be fully satisfied; you will praise the name of the LORD your God, who has acted wondrously in your behalf. My people will never again be put to shame.
27 You will be convinced that I am in the midst of Israel. I am the LORD your God; there is no other. My people will never again be put to shame.
An Outpouring of the Spirit
28 (3:1) After all of this I will pour out my Spirit on all kinds of people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your elderly will have revelatory dreams; your young men will see prophetic visions.
29 Even on male and female servants I will pour out my Spirit in those days.
30 I will produce portents both in the sky and on the earth - blood, fire, and columns of smoke.
31 The sunlight will be turned to darkness and the moon to the color of blood, before the day of the LORD comes - that great and terrible day!
32 It will so happen that everyone who calls on the name of the LORD will be delivered. For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be those who survive, just as the LORD has promised; the remnant will be those whom the LORD will call.
The LORD Plans to Judge the Nations
King James Version
1 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.
3 A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.
4 The appearance of them is as the appearance of horses; and as horsemen, so shall they run.
5 Like the noise of chariots on the tops of mountains shall they leap, like the noise of a flame of fire that devoureth the stubble, as a strong people set in battle array.
6 Before their face the people shall be much pained: all faces shall gather blackness.
7 They shall run like mighty men; they shall climb the wall like men of war; and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks:
8 Neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded.
9 They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall, they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief.
10 The earth shall quake before them; the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining:
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?
12 ¶ Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:
13 And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
14 Who knoweth if he will return and repent, and leave a blessing behind him; even a meat offering and a drink offering unto the LORD your God?
15 ¶ Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly:
16 Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.
17 Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?
18 ¶ Then will the LORD be jealous for his land, and pity his people.
19 Yea, the LORD will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:
20 But I will remove far off from you the northern army, and will drive him into a land barren and desolate, with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea, and his stink shall come up, and his ill savour shall come up, because he hath done great things.
21 ¶ Fear not, O land; be glad and rejoice: for the LORD will do great things.
22 Be not afraid, ye beasts of the field: for the pastures of the wilderness do spring, for the tree beareth her fruit, the fig tree and the vine do yield their strength.
23 Be glad then, ye children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God: for he hath given you the former rain moderately, and he will cause to come down for you the rain, the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month.
24 And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the fats shall overflow with wine and oil.
25 And I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpiller, and the palmerworm, my great army which I sent among you.
26 And ye shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you: and my people shall never be ashamed.
27 And ye shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the LORD your God, and none else: and my people shall never be ashamed.
28 ¶ And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:
29 And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.
30 And I will shew 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.
32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.