|Rend your hearts rather than your garments, and turn back to Hashem your God. For He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger, abounding in kindness, and renouncing punishmentJoel 2:13 (The Israel Bible™)
קִרְעוּ לְבַבְכֶם וְאַל־בִּגְדֵיכֶם וְשׁוּבוּ אֶל־יְהֹוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם כִּי־חַנּוּן וְרַחוּם הוּא אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם וְרַב־חֶסֶד וְנִחָם עַל־הָרָעָה
Hear the verse in Hebrew
v’-kir-U l’-vav-KHEM v’-al big-day-KHEM v’-SHU-vu el a-do-NAI e-lo-hay-KHEM kee kha-NUN v’-ra-KHUM HU E-rekh a-PA-yim v’-rav KHE-sed v’-ni-KHAM al ha-ra-AH
Divine Attributes of Mercy
The prophet Yoel (Joel) tells the Children of Israel that all is not lost; if they repent, the impending disaster can be averted. However, repentance must not focus on external behavior, but must consist of a genuine change in one’s thoughts and actions. Although tearing one’s clothing is a sign of mourning, Yoel cautions that those type of actions must reflect internal feelings of remorse. He then references the divine attributes of mercy detailed in Exodus 34:6-7. By mentioning these divine attributes, Yoel reminds his people that God gives second chances, and hints to them how they should behave in order to once again gain favor in His eyes.