Joel 3.1-21 gives us a prophecy about Yehovah’s judgments on the nations during the Messianic Kingdom and the glory coming to Judah and Jerusalem.
v 1…”For behold (take note and see), in those days and at that time (“b’ yamim” or when Messiah comes), when I restore the fortunes (bring back the captives) of Judah and Jerusalem (after Yeshua returns on Yom Kippur at the end of the birth-pains),
v 2…I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the valley of Yehoshaphat (meaning “Yehovah is judge” to the valley of Hinnom or “tophet”-Isa 66.15-24; Matt 25.31-46). Then I will enter into judgment with them there on behalf of my people and my inheritance, Israel (“you’ve done this, or not, to the least of my brethren, you did it, or not, to me”-Matt 25.40, 45), whom they have scattered among the nations (in various times of persecutions and dispersions); and they have divided up my land (for themselves as they saw fit-Assyria, Babylon, Greece, Romans, Moslems, Christianity, the UN, Palestinians, etc).
v 3…They have also cast lots for my people (after they were captured), traded a boy for a harlot, sold a girl for wine that they may drink (typical behavior of the enemies of God toward Israel).
v 4…Moreover, what are you to me, O Tyre, Sidon and all the regions of Philistia (you have no cause to do me or my people harm)? Are you rendering me a recompense (a repayment)? But if you do recompense me, swiftly and speedily I will return your recompense on your head (it will come back on you).
v 5…Since you have taken my silver and my gold (that I gave to Israel), brought my precious treasures to your temples (after plundering the Temple, the palaces, houses, etc),
v 6…and sold the sons of Judah and Jerusalem to the Greeks in order to remove them far from their territory,
v 7…behold (see for yourself), I am going to arouse them from the place where you have sold them, and return your recompense on your head (Israel will return and have dominion over them in the kingdom).
v 8…Also I will sell your sons and your daughters into the hand of the sons of Judah (when Tyre fell, for example, Alexander put some of them in Jewish hands), and they will sell them to the Sabeans, to distant nations (this typifies the uttermost of the nations),” for the Lord (Yehovah) has spoken.
v 9…Proclaim this among the nations (hostile to Israel); prepare a war; rouse the mighty men (get ready)! Let all the soldiers draw near, let them come up (for war in the birth-pains against Israel (Zech 14.1-8)!
v 10…Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears (equip yourselves for battle); let the weak say, “I am a mighty man (a hero; the nations are in a warlike frenzy against Yehovah and his people).
v 11…Hasten and come, all you surrounding nations, and gather yourselves there (the valley of Yehoshaphat). Bring down, O Lord, thy mighty ones (his army-Rev 19.14).
v 12…Let the nations be aroused and come up to the valley of Yehoshaphat (meaning “Yehovah is judge”-to the valley of Hinnom-Rev 14.14-20, 16.14, 19.17-18, 20.8; Jer 7.22-34, 49.1-15; Isa 66.23-24; Zech 14.1-8; Luke 17.33-37; Matt 24.29-31; Matt 25.31-46), for there I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations.
v 13…Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, tread, for the wine press (the valley) is full (of the wicked-Isa 63.1-6); the vats overflow, for their wickedness is great (has reached its height and calls out for vengeance).
v 14…Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision (the meaning of the valley of Yehoshaphat), for the day of the Lord is near (“karav” meaning here and confronting you) in the valley of decision (judgment; the valley of Hinnom and the Kidron; tophet).
v 15…The sun and moon grow dark, and the stars lose their brightness (by the smoke of war; foretelling the judgment of God).
v 16…And the Lord (Yehovah) roars from Zion (terrifying his enemies; he is up close to his enemies), and utters his voice from Jerusalem (as he returns there), and the heavens and the earth tremble. But the Lord is a refuge for his people and a stronghold to the sons of Israel.
v 17…Then you will know that I am the Lord your God (this will be the proof of it), dwelling in Zion my holy (has a kedusha) mountain (a term for the Kingdom of God). So Jerusalem will be holy (have a kedusha) and inhabited only by the righteous), and strangers (“zarim”- those with no relation to the believing community) will pass through it no more (Isa 60.21; Zech 14.21; Rev 22.27).
v 18…And it will come about in that day (when Messiah comes in the kingdom) that the mountains will drip with sweet wine, and the hills will flow with milk, and all the brooks of Judah will flow with water; and a spring will go out from the house of the Lord (the Temple-Ezek 47.1-22-Judah and Jerusalem are types of the kingdom of God) to water the valley of Shittim (this is a barren valley near the border of Moab, the farthest end of Canaan; shittim is “acacia” and taken from the last camp of Israel in Moab before they entered Canaan-Num 25.1; Josh 3.1).
v 19…Egypt will become a waste, and Edom will become a desolate wilderness (Egypt and Edom are types of the world who are against Yehovah and the kingdom), because of the violence done to the sons of Judah, in whose land they have shed innocent blood (Exo 1.16; Amos 1.11; Oba 1.10).
v 20…But Judah will be inhabited forever, and Jerusalem for all generations.
v 21…And I will avenge their blood (wipe out all the wrongs done to Israel) which I have not avenged (as yet; what remained unpunished), for the Lord dwells in Zion (his Shekinah will return when Yeshua comes and he dispenses his grace and mercy from there).