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Joel 3

The Lord Will Judge the Nations
1At that time I, the Lord, will make Judah and Jerusalem prosperous again. 2Then in Judgment Valley#3.2 Judgment Valley: The Hebrew text has “Jehoshaphat Valley,” which means “Valley of the Lord's Judgment.” This valley is mentioned here and in verse 12, but nowhere else in the Bible. I will bring together the nations that scattered my people Israel everywhere in the world, and I will bring charges against those nations. They divided up my land 3and gambled to see who would get my people; they sold boys and girls to pay for prostitutes and wine.
4 # Is 23.1-18; Ez 26.1—28.26; Am 1.9,10; Zec 9.1-4; Mt 11.21,22; Lk 10.13,14; Is 14.29-31; Jr 47.1-7; Ez 25.15-17; Am 1.6-8; Zep 2.4-7; Zec 9.5-7. You people of Tyre and Sidon#3.4 Tyre and Sidon: Two Phoenician coastal cities. and you Philistines, why are you doing this? Are you trying to get even with me? I'll strike back before you know what's happened. 5You've taken my prized possessions, including my silver and gold, and carried them off to your temples.#3.5 temples: Or “palaces.” 6You have dragged the people of Judah and Jerusalem from their land and sold them to the Greeks.
7But I'll make the people of Judah determined to come home, and what happened to them will happen to you. 8I'll hand over your sons and daughters to the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the Sabeans,#3.8 Sabeans: The people of Seba, a region in southwest Arabia. who live far away. I, the Lord, have spoken!
Judgment in Judgment Valley
9Say to the nations:
“Get ready for war!
Be eager to fight.
Line up for battle
and prepare to attack.
10 # Is 2.4; Mic 4.3. Make swords out of plows
and spears out of garden tools.
Strengthen every weakling.”
11Hurry, all you nations!
Come quickly.
Ask the Lord to bring
his warriors along.#3.11 Ask … along: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.
12You must come now
to Judgment Valley,#3.12 Judgment Valley: See the note at 3.2.
where the Lord will judge
the surrounding nations.
13 # Rev 14.14-16; Rev 14.19,20; 19.15. They are a field of ripe crops.
Bring in the harvest!
They are grapes piled high.
Start trampling them now!#3.13 grapes … now: People trampled grapes with their bare feet to squeeze out the juice.
If our enemy's sins were wine,
every jar would overflow.
14Crowds fill Decision Valley.
The judgment day of the Lord
will soon be here—
15no light from the sun or moon,
and stars no longer shine.
16 # Am 1.2. From the heart of Jerusalem
the Lord roars like a lion,
shaking the earth and sky.
But the Lord is a fortress,
a place of safety
for his people Israel.
God Will Bless His People
17I am the Lord your God.
And you will know I live on Zion,
my sacred hill,
because Jerusalem will be sacred,
untouched by foreign troops.
18On that day, fruitful vineyards
will cover the mountains.
And your cattle and goats
that graze on the hills
will produce a lot of milk.
Streams in Judah
will never run dry;
a stream from my house
will flow in Acacia Valley.#3.18 Acacia Valley: In the plains of Moab, northeast of the Dead Sea.
19Egypt and Edom were cruel
and brutal to Judah,
without a reason.
Now their countries will become
a barren desert,
20but Judah and Jerusalem
will always have people.
21I, the Lord, live on Mount Zion.
I will punish the guilty
and defend the innocent.#3.21 I will … innocent: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text.

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