Friday, July 19, 2019

Joel 2:14-16 -- On the Valley of Decision

"Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision.
The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining.
The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel."
Joel 2:14-16

These verses are talking about a time right before/at the Second Coming, and as this chapter shows there will be a lot going on, and all nations will be gathered for war.  And it seems like it is going to be a very black day, with no sun, moon, or stars to help lighten things.

But, as he did in third Nephi, the Lord will speak from the darkness and destruction and be, as it says, the "hope of his people."

Since we know the outcome, the meaning of "the valley of decision" seems a little bit unclear.  It clearly isn't deciding a war, for we know that God will end one right here.  Instead I think, perhaps it will a time for all of the nations to make a decision about what they are going to do about the reality of God in front of them.

Likewise perhaps, all of us need to make a similar decision.  At some point, if we haven't already, we are going to come face to face with the reality of God.  And at that time, we too are in the valley of decision.  Are we going to take that knowledge and make a covenant with God, and work with him to make everything better, or are we going to retreat from that knowledge, trying to deny his shining reality, and continue in our own ways?

Today let's recognize the truth, and instead of putting ourselves first and holding on desperately to our sins, let's covenant with God, and work with him to free ourselves from everything that is holding us back.  Let's allow him to help us become what we have always been meant to be, and better than we can imagine.  Let's lift and help the people around us, and be the good and the Lord's hand in changing things for the better.  Let's make our decision now.

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