Destroying locusts are the dominant image of the book of Joel. As it relates to the character of God, the obvious question to ask is, “Who’s in charge?” Joel suggests that God controls the locusts on the “Day of the Lord”
“The day of the LORD is near, the day when the Almighty brings destruction. What terror that day will bring” (1:15). I was surprised to see the NET Bible translation of this verse, “It will come as destruction from the Divine Destroyer.”
Literal locusts that destroy crops today obviously have no leader. Even Proverbs tells us, “Locusts: they have no ;king, but they move in formation” (Proverbs 30:27). Joel’s locusts, however, do have a leader: “The LORD thunders commands to his army. The troops that obey him are many and mighty” (2:11).
Jesus repeatedly told us, “If you have seen me, you have seen the Father,” “The Father and I are one.” Can we imagine Jesus as the king of the locust army? Did Jesus reveal God to be “The Divine Destroyer?” If not, what are we to make of the locusts and their king?
Read Dr. Cole’s Blog: Joel’s Locusts and “The Divine Destroyer”