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The Day of the Lord

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The Day of the Lord

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The Day of the Lord
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The prophetic key of the Day of the Lord appears prominently in both Old and New Testaments. During this day reserved for the wicked (Proverbs 16:4), God pours out unparalleled judgment on humanity and the ‘Day of the Lord' is always associated with God's judgment. Note the unbridled fear of men (bolded text) and anger of God (underlined) in the following passages:

Howl ye; for the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty. Therefore shall all hands be faint, and every man's heart shall melt: And they shall be afraid: pangs and sorrows shall take hold of them; they shall be in pain as a woman that travaileth: they shall be amazed one at another; their faces shall be as flames. Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it. (Isaiah 13:6-9)

For this is the day of the Lord GOD of hosts, a day of vengeance, that he may avenge him of his adversaries: and the sword shall devour, and it shall be satiate and made drunk with their blood: for the Lord GOD of hosts hath a sacrifice in the north country by the river Euphrates. (Jeremiah 46:10)

The great day of the LORD is near, it is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice of the day of the LORD: the mighty man shall cry there bitterly. That day is a day of wrath, a day of trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, (Zephaniah 1:14-15)

These descriptions make Amos's proclamation very intriguing:

Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light. (Amos 5:18)

Apparently, there was confusion among the Jews concerning the Day of the Lord with some believing that it would be a time when Israel receives good things (light) including becoming the head and not the tail. Since this is not the case, how is this confusion possible? Perhaps, the use of similar phrases in reference to both Jesus reign and God's judgment causes some of this confusion. Often ‘that day' refers to the day of God's judgment. Unlike ‘Day of the Lord', ‘that day' also refers to Jesus' millennial reign. The following passages clearly show the duality of ‘that day':

And in that day they shall roar against them like the roaring of the sea: and if one look unto the land, behold darkness and sorrow, and the light is darkened in the heavens thereof. (Isaiah 5:30)

In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem, Fear thou not: and to Zion, Let not thine hands be slack. The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing. I will gather them that are sorrowful for the solemn assembly, who are of thee, to whom the reproach of it was a burden. Behold, at that time I will undo all that afflict thee: and I will save her that halteth, and gather her that was driven out; and I will get them praise and fame in every land where they have been put to shame. (Zephaniah 3:16-19)

In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness. (Zechariah 13:1)

As these passages show, ‘that day' refers to both the dreadful ‘Day of the Lord' and the following millennial reign of Jesus.

How long are the ‘Day of the Lord' and ‘that day'? The 70th week of Daniel provides an important clue:

Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy. Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. (Daniel 9:24-27)