Joel 3:1-16

The Nations Judged

1 “In those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,
2 I will gather all nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat.[a]There I will put them on trial for what they did to my inheritance, my people Israel, because they scattered my people among the nations and divided up my land.
3 They cast lots for my people and traded boys for prostitutes; they sold girls for wine to drink.
4 “Now what have you against me, Tyre and Sidon and all you regions of Philistia? Are you repaying me for something I have done? If you are paying me back, I will swiftly and speedily return on your own heads what you have done.
5 For you took my silver and my gold and carried off my finest treasures to your temples.[b]
6 You sold the people of Judah and Jerusalem to the Greeks, that you might send them far from their homeland.
7 “See, I am going to rouse them out of the places to which you sold them, and I will return on your own heads what you have done.
8 I will sell your sons and daughters to the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the Sabeans, a nation far away.” The LORD has spoken.
9 Proclaim this among the nations: Prepare for war! Rouse the warriors! Let all the fighting men draw near and attack.
10 Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruning hooks into spears. Let the weakling say, “I am strong!”
11 Come quickly, all you nations from every side, and assemble there. Bring down your warriors, LORD!
12 “Let the nations be roused; let them advance into the Valley of Jehoshaphat, for there I will sit to judge all the nations on every side.
13 Swing the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, trample the grapes, for the winepress is full and the vats overflow— so great is their wickedness!”
14 Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision.
15 The sun and moon will be darkened, and the stars no longer shine.
16 The LORD will roar from Zion and thunder from Jerusalem; the earth and the heavens will tremble. But the LORD will be a refuge for his people, a stronghold for the people of Israel.

Joel 3:1 in Other Translations

KJV
1 For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem,
ESV
1 "For behold, in those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,
NLT
1 “At the time of those events,” says the LORD, “when I restore the prosperity of Judah and Jerusalem,
MSG
1 "In those days, yes, at that very time when I put life back together again for Judah and Jerusalem,
CSB
1 Yes, in those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,

Joel 3:1-16 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO JOEL 3

This chapter, which some make the fourth, contains a prophecy of God's judgments on all the antichristian nations at the time of the Jews' conversion, and the reasons of them, Joe 3:1-3; a threatening of Tyre and Zidon, by way of retaliation, for carrying the riches of the Jews into their temples, and selling their persons to the Greeks, Joe 3:4-8; an alarm to prepare for the battle of Armageddon, or the destruction that shall be made in the valley of Jehoshaphat, Joe 3:9-15; and after that an account of the happy state of the church of Christ, their safety and security, plenty, prosperity, and purity, to the end of the world, Joe 3:16-21.

Joel 3:1-16 In-Context

1 “In those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,
2 I will gather all nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat.There I will put them on trial for what they did to my inheritance, my people Israel, because they scattered my people among the nations and divided up my land.
3 They cast lots for my people and traded boys for prostitutes; they sold girls for wine to drink.
4 “Now what have you against me, Tyre and Sidon and all you regions of Philistia? Are you repaying me for something I have done? If you are paying me back, I will swiftly and speedily return on your own heads what you have done.
5 For you took my silver and my gold and carried off my finest treasures to your temples.
6 You sold the people of Judah and Jerusalem to the Greeks, that you might send them far from their homeland.
7 “See, I am going to rouse them out of the places to which you sold them, and I will return on your own heads what you have done.
8 I will sell your sons and daughters to the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the Sabeans, a nation far away.” The LORD has spoken.
9 Proclaim this among the nations: Prepare for war! Rouse the warriors! Let all the fighting men draw near and attack.
10 Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruning hooks into spears. Let the weakling say, “I am strong!”
11 Come quickly, all you nations from every side, and assemble there. Bring down your warriors, LORD!
12 “Let the nations be roused; let them advance into the Valley of Jehoshaphat, for there I will sit to judge all the nations on every side.
13 Swing the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, trample the grapes, for the winepress is full and the vats overflow— so great is their wickedness!”
14 Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision.
15 The sun and moon will be darkened, and the stars no longer shine.
16 The LORD will roar from Zion and thunder from Jerusalem; the earth and the heavens will tremble. But the LORD will be a refuge for his people, a stronghold for the people of Israel.
17 “Then you will know that I, the LORD your God, dwell in Zion, my holy hill. Jerusalem will be holy; never again will foreigners invade her.
18 “In that day the mountains will drip new wine, and the hills will flow with milk; all the ravines of Judah will run with water. A fountain will flow out of the LORD’s house and will water the valley of acacias.
19 But Egypt will be desolate, Edom a desert waste, because of violence done to the people of Judah, in whose land they shed innocent blood.
20 Judah will be inhabited forever and Jerusalem through all generations.

Cross References 43

  • 1. S Deuteronomy 30:3; S Jeremiah 16:15; S Ezekiel 38:8; Zephaniah 3:20
  • 2. Jeremiah 40:5
  • 3. Zephaniah 3:8
  • 4. ver 12; S Isaiah 22:1
  • 5. S Isaiah 13:9; S Jeremiah 2:35; S Ezekiel 36:5
  • 6. S Genesis 11:4; S Leviticus 26:33
  • 7. S Job 6:27; S Ezekiel 24:6
  • 8. Joel 1:5; Amos 2:6
  • 9. S Genesis 10:15; S Matthew 11:21
  • 10. S Psalms 87:4; Isaiah 14:29-31; Jeremiah 47:1-7
  • 11. S Leviticus 26:28; S Isaiah 34:8; S Ezekiel 25:15-17; Zechariah 9:5-7
  • 12. S 1 Kings 15:18; S 2 Chronicles 21:16-17
  • 13. Ezekiel 27:13; Zechariah 9:13
  • 14. S Isaiah 43:5-6; Jeremiah 23:8
  • 15. S Isaiah 66:6
  • 16. Isaiah 60:14
  • 17. Isaiah 14:2
  • 18. S Genesis 10:7; S 2 Chronicles 9:1
  • 19. S Isaiah 23:1; S Jeremiah 30:16
  • 20. S Isaiah 8:9
  • 21. Jeremiah 46:4
  • 22. Isaiah 2:4; Micah 4:3
  • 23. S Numbers 25:7
  • 24. Zechariah 12:8
  • 25. S Joshua 1:6
  • 26. Ezekiel 38:15-16; Zephaniah 3:8
  • 27. S Isaiah 13:3
  • 28. S ver 2
  • 29. S Psalms 82:1; S Isaiah 2:4
  • 30. Mark 4:29
  • 31. S Isaiah 17:5; S Hosea 6:11; Matthew 13:39; Revelation 14:15-19
  • 32. S Jeremiah 25:30
  • 33. S Judges 6:11; S Revelation 14:20
  • 34. Isaiah 13:4
  • 35. S Isaiah 22:1
  • 36. Isaiah 34:2-8; S Joel 1:15; S Zephaniah 1:7
  • 37. S Isaiah 2:4; S Ezekiel 36:5
  • 38. S Job 9:7; S Ezekiel 32:7
  • 39. S Isaiah 42:13
  • 40. Amos 1:2
  • 41. S Judges 5:4; S Isaiah 14:16; S Ezekiel 38:19
  • 42. S Psalms 46:1; S Isaiah 25:4; Zechariah 12:8
  • 43. S 2 Samuel 22:3; Jeremiah 16:19; Zechariah 9:12

Footnotes 2

  • [a]. "Jehoshaphat" means "the " Lord"judges" ; also in verse 12.
  • [b]. Or "palaces"
Scripture quoted by permission.  Quotations designated (NIV) are from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide.