Joel means “Jehovah is God.” Although the Scripture does not mention his ministry elsewhere, it appears from references to Judah (Joel 3:1,6) and Jerusalem (Joel 2:1,15) that he prophesied in the southern kingdom.

Date and Destination:

Although Joel did not directly date his prophecy like other prophets by listing the kings during whose reigns he ministered, the circumstantial evidence points to the ninth century BC—either during the illegal renegade rule of Queen Athaliah or the early days of the boy king Joash, who had providentially escaped Athaliah’s deadly plot against the royal seed (2 Kings 11-12). Dating Joel’s prophecy to about 830 BC would mark him along with Obadiah among the first of the writing prophets. Notwithstanding the circumstantial evidence, even some conservatives would date Joel to the postexilic period.

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ByJustus Musinguzi

Promoting the annual reading and study of the whole Bible, and teaching the treasures of God's truth that honors God, is saturated with grace, exalts Christ, and is driven by the gospel.

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