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Home » Daily Gospel, Daily Readings, Old Testament, Prophets

Locusts and Demons

Submitted by on Friday, 7 October 2011No Comment


Today’s Readings

  • Reading I:  Joel 1:13-2:1 (passim)
  • Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 9
  • Gospel Reading: Luke 11:15-26

The Book of Joel

The Book of Joel is dated to about the 4th century BC, and the prophet’s ministry, to some time before that but within the time of the second temple, and after Obadiah (5th century BC).

Below is an illustration of how the book of Joel is presented during Friday and Saturday of the 27th Week of Ordinary Time (Year I).



A great plague of locusts occassions the prophetic oracle of Joel. Here, the insects are pictured like an invading army, spreading as they approach. Just as the sun’s rays fill the valley with light at dawn, so too, locusts fill up the sky and the earth in their attack. The sight must have been so terrible that Joel describes it in apocalyptic terms as "the Day of the Lord."

Demonology and Exorcism


Along the way to Jerusalem, Jesus continues to drive away demons. But while others ask for more signs (cf. v. 29), some others cast doubt on the authority by which He casts out impure spirits. This tract on exorcism has been placed here by Luke because as Jesus nears Jerusalem, resistance to him becomes increasingly more human.

The response of Jesus to the accussation that he casts by the power of Beelzebul (The Lord of the Flies) is answered in three ways:. The first answer assumes that He is of Beelzebul: if he is of Beelzebul and he is casting out demons, then there must be a division within the former’s kingdom. The casting out of demons therefore is a sign of the weakening of the Devil’s kingdom and its imminent collapse. The second answer continues the previous assumption that He is of Beelzebul, but he casts doubt on the authority of other exorcists on Judaism. If there is one exorcist found who is working with Beelzebul, perhaps there were others too? The third answer, works on a condition: If it comes to light that Jesus is not of Beelzebul, but is working with authority coming from God, then it is a sign that the reign of God has proleptically come.

More from The Bible Journal

Luke 11:15-26
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg Greek
15But some of them said: He casteth out devils by Beelzebub, the prince of devils.
16And others tempting, asked of him a sign from heaven.
17But he seeing their thoughts, said to them: Every kingdom divided against itself, shall be brought to desolation, and house upon house shall fall.
18And if Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because you say, that through Beelzebub I cast out devils.
19Now if I cast out devils by Beelzebub; by whom do your children cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges.
20But if I by the finger of God cast out devils; doubtless the kingdom of God is come upon you.
21When a strong man armed keepeth his court, those things are in peace which he possesseth.
22But if a stronger than he come upon him, and overcome him; he will take away all his armour wherein he trusted, and will distribute his spoils.
23He that is not with me, is against me; and he that gathereth not with me, scattereth.
24When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through places without water, seeking rest; and not finding, he saith: I will return into my house whence I came out.
25And when he is come, he findeth it swept and garnished.
26Then he goeth and taketh with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and entering in they dwell there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first.

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