Is God responsible for natural disasters? Some would say that he punishes us by sending storms and floods. In Joel’s time, Judah was suffering the after-effects of a severe plague of locusts. Joel was in no doubt that God had sent the locusts to chastise the people of Judah for their sinful lifestyles, an indication of the coming ‘great and dreadful day of the LORD’. Speaking of the judgement that would fall first on God’s own people and then on all the nations of world, Joel called everyone to repent. This book seeks to relate these long-ago events.
Michael Bentley worked as a bookshop manager and served in the British army before his call to the ministry. He has a diverse background, which includes freelance religious reporting for national and religious radio and television, being a Religious Education teacher, and holding pastorates in Surrey, South East London, and Berkshire. He is also closely involved with his local community as a member of various committees and councils. His hobbies include singing second bass in the Bracknell Choral Society. Now retired, he still preaches regularly and has a ministry of writing, with numerous books in print including Opening Up Amos, Opening up Zephaniah and Face2face: David. He lives in Bracknell with his wife, Jenny, and has five children and several grandchildren.
Michael Bentley has written an accessible and attractive devotional commentary on Joel—as straightforward and down-to-earth as the prophet himself!
—Canon David Winter, former head of Religious Broadcasting at the BBC
In this volume Michael Bentley ably opens up the book of Joel with interesting observations, convincing explanations, challenging applications, and encouraging exhortations. This Minor Prophet’s message must have a major impact on the life of any reader who carefully considers the clear narrative and ponders the probing questions which conclude each chapter of this little book.
—Dafydd Hughes, Pastor, Grace Reformed Baptist Church, Palmerston North, New Zealand
When he preaches, Michael Bentley has the gift of drawing you in on a helpful and interesting journey of biblical understanding, insight and discovery. Michael’s writing is no different, and this well-written and highly readable commentary on Joel will challenge and encourage you to go deeper with this prophet and with God.
—Revd Alan Bradford, St Michael’s Church, Warfield, Bracknell, UK