Book of Joel
“Joel’s theme is “the day of the LORD.” He makes specific reference to it five times: Joel 1:15; 2:1-2; 2:10-11; 2:30-31; and 3:14-16. Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel all refer to the Day of the Lord. Sometimes they call it “that day.” Zechariah particularly emphasizes “that day.” What is “that day”? It is the Day of the Lord, or the Day of Jehovah. Joel is the one who introduces the Day of the Lord in prophecy. Yonder from the mountaintop of the beginning of written prophecy, this man looked down through the centuries, seeing further than any other prophet saw---he saw the Day of the Lord. The Day of the Lord is a technical expression in Scripture which is fraught with meaning. It includes the millennial kingdom which will come at the second coming of Christ, but Joel is going to make it very clear to us that it begins with the Great Tribulation Period, the time of great trouble [i.e. World War III]. If you want to set a boundary or parenthesis at the end of the Day of the Lord, it would be the end of the Millennium when the Lord Jesus puts down all unrighteousness and establishes His eternal kingdom here on earth [cf. Revelation 20:14-15; 21:1-23].” [THRU THE BIBLE, Vol. III, p.657, col.1, par5, col.2, par. 1-2] “Scholars generally agree that Joel was prophesying in Judah, because of his many references to Jerusalem and his familiarity with the temple. The Book of Amos quotes the Book of Joel, so we know he predates Amos, and Amos prophesied around 790BC. Joel was probably written sometime in the early ninth century [800s BC], which would make him a contemporary to Elisha and Elijah. This would mean that Joel was one of the oldest prophetic books written.” [The Word For Today Bible, (NKJV) p. 1144]
Template for understanding the Day of the Lord
In Leviticus 26 we find God laid out a pattern or template for ancient Israel (and whoever those tribes became as nations, by extrapolation) for national blessings and cursings—blessings, national blessings for obedience, on a national scale or level---and cursings, national curses for disobedience on a national level. In Leviticus 26:1-13 God spells out the blessings for obedience, national blessings for national obedience. But from verses 14-45 God lays out the national curses and calamities that will overtake Israel (and the nations descended from the 12 tribes of Israel) for disobedience on a national level. Verse 16 talks of rampant incurable diseases overtaking the people. Verses 17-18 talks of national defeat in the wars we undertake to fight, a sort of the tipping of the scales from winning our engagements to losing them. Then in verse 19a, which is a part of this, it states “I will break the pride of your power…” But in verse 19b, things get decidedly worse, “I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze.” It’s pretty hard to successfully farm with no rain, so that the earth becomes like bronze. That is the first step to national defeat. The next step is actual military defeat, and resultant enslavement of the population that survives the military conquest. That is covered in verses 20-45 of Leviticus 26. But in Joel chapter 1, verses 1-20 we see this first stage being prophecied about, before the World War III part of the Day of the Lord, which is covered in Joel chapters 2-3. But God through Joel is not predicting some strange new thing in his prophecy. It is exactly following the pattern or template laid out by God to Moses in Leviticus 26. It would behoove you to read all of Leviticus 26 before reading Joel 1-3, as it puts it into perfect perspective. So Joel chapter 1 deals with our ‘heavens becoming like iron and our earth becoming like bronze.’
Verses 1-12, “The word of the LORD that came to Joel the son of Pethuel…
The Land Laid Waste Through Drought & Famine
Hear this, you elders, and give ear; all you inhabitants of the land! Has anything like this happened in your days, or even in the days of your fathers? Tell your children about it, let your children tell their children, and their children another generation. What the chewing locust left, the swarming locust has eaten; what the swarming locust has left, the crawling locust has eaten; and what the crawling locust left, the consuming locust has eaten. Awake, you drunkards, and weep; and wail, all you drinkers of wine, because of the new wine, for it has been cut off from your mouth. For a nation has come up against my land, strong and without number; his teeth are the teeth of a lion, and he has the fangs of a fierce lion. He has laid waste my vine, and ruined my fig tree [prophetically, Israel is the LORD’s “fig tree.”]; he has stripped it bare and thrown it away; its branches are made white. Lament like a virgin girded with sackcloth for the husband of her youth. The grain offering and the drink offering have been cut off from the house of the LORD; the priests mourn, who minister to the LORD. The field is wasted. The land mourns; for the grain is ruined, the new wine is dried up, the oil fails. Be ashamed, you farmers, wail you vinedressers, for the wheat and the barley; because the harvest of the field has perished. The vine has dried up, and the fig tree has withered; the pomegranate tree, the palm tree also, and the apple tree---all the trees of the field are withered; surely joy has withered away from the sons of men.”
Mourning for the Land
Verses 13-20, “Gird yourselves and lament, you priests; wail, you who minister before the altar; come, lie all night in sackcloth, you who minister to my God; for the grain offering and the drink offering are withheld from the house of your God. Consecrate a fast, call a sacred assembly; gather the elders and all the inhabitants of the land into the house of the LORD your God, and cry out to the LORD. Alas for the day! For the day of the LORD is at hand; it shall come as destruction from the Almighty. Is not the food cut off before our eyes, joy and gladness from the house of our God? The seek shrivels under the clods, storehouses are in shambles; barns are broken down, for the grain has withered. How the animals groan! The herds of cattle are restless, because they have no pasture; even the flocks of sheep suffer punishment. O LORD, to you I cry out; for fire has devoured the open pastures, and a flame has burned all the trees of the field. The beasts of the field also cry out to you, for the water brooks are dried up, and fire has devoured the open pastures.” If that isn’t a fulfillment of Leviticus 26:19b I’ll eat my hat. Severe drought, causing massive fires in pasture-lands and woodlands, harvests failing for lack of water, this is all Phase One of the Day of the LORD. And it is promised for God’s people Israel, whoever they are. And by that, I mean all 12 tribes, not just the Jews [see http://www.unityinchrist.com/kings/1.html and http://www.unityinchrist.com/kings/3.html to see who those nations may be now, just a tiny glimmer of a hint]. This is a serious warning. People have said about the awesome firepower the United States has possessed since the end of World War II, ‘Nobody, no nation in the world, could conquer us. We have the power to fry the world many times over. True. But if you’re starving to death, you may not even have the energy to “push the launch button” to that ICBM. Have you ever thought of that? The Tribulation, don’t forget, is God’s punishment of his people for national sin, gross national sin. Remember Leviticus 26:14-45? Did you read that? Have you noticed the fairly large increase in major brushfires in the southern Midwest, throughout Texas, and of forest fires in that region? What if our major aquifers dried up, accompanied by these increasing drought conditions? Since the 1960s, our seven to twelve year surplus in grain has virtually evaporated so that it is down to zero years of surplus. To quote Napoleon, “An army marches on its stomach.” You can’t fight a war or defend yourself on an empty stomach. It is God who will bring his people down, for their gross national sins. And the first phase of that is national drought and the resultant famine that will follow it. And interesting article on this site outlining the global food verses population problem the world is running headlong into is at: http://www.unityinchrist.com/E-Mails/2010/Coming%20World%20Famine.htm. Verses 11-12 is a specific warning to farmers, as well as 19-20. This whole chapter is a serious warning to farmers. Joel chapter one is the opening shots being fired for the beginning of the Great Tribulation. It won’t be bullets, it won’t be incoming ICBM missiles, it will be drought on our farmlands, sustained, powerful drought, and maybe accompanied by the drying up of our subterranean aquifers, which we have been indiscriminately pumping from for decades now. In verses 15-20, God is prophecying through Joel this very serious prophecy about the end-times Great Tribulation, which then continues through the rest of the book. Joel chapters 2-3 go through the final set of curses listed in Leviticus 26, those of national military defeat and captivity at the hands of the attacking nation or world power.
Joel chapter 2 contains three major themes which more or less follow the three themes laid out in the fall Holy Days God gave to Israel in Leviticus 23, Trumpets, Atonement and the Feast of Tabernacles. The whole symbolic-prophetic meaning for the Feast of Trumpets revolves around war, the war to end all wars, World War III. Joel 2:1-11 portrays the initial blitzkrieg attack leveled against Judah (the Israelis) and Jerusalem, as the opening shots of World War III are fired. Joel 2:1-11, “Blow the trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm in my holy mountain! Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble; for the day of the LORD is coming, for it is at hand: a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness, like the morning clouds spread over the mountains. A people come, great and strong, the like of whom has never been; nor will there ever be any such after them, even for many successive generations. A fire devours before them, and behind them a flame burns; the land is like the Garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; surely nothing shall escape them. Their appearance is like the appearance of horses; and like swift steeds, so they run. With a noise like chariots over mountaintops they leap, like the noise of a flaming fire that devours the stubble, like a strong people set in battle array. Before them the people writhe in pain; all faces are drained of color. They run like mighty men, they climb the wall like men of war; every one marches in formation, and they do not break ranks. They do not push one another; every one marches in his own column. Though they lunge between the weapons, they are not cut down [margin: halted by losses]. They run to and fro in the city, they run on the wall; they climb into the houses, they enter at the windows like a thief. The earth quakes before them, the heavens tremble; the sun and moon grow dark, and the stars diminish their brightness. The LORD gives voice before his army, for his camp is very great; for strong is the One who executes his Word. For the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; who can endure it?” Also verses 1-11 symbolizes the whole Tribulation/World War III period. Zechariah 12:1-9 pictures the final part of Trumpets, World War III, where God rescues Judah. Zechariah 12:1-9, “This is the word of the LORD concerning Israel. The LORD, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the spirit of man within him, declares: ‘I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem and immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves. On that day I will strike every horse with panic and its rider with madness,’ declares the LORD. ‘I will keep a watchful eye over the house of Judah, but will blind all the horses of the nations. Then the leaders of Judah will say in their hearts, ‘The people of Jerusalem are strong, because the LORD Almighty is their God.’ On that day I will make the leaders of Judah like a firepot in a woodpile, like a flaming torch among the sheaves. They will consume right and left all the surrounding peoples, but Jerusalem will remain intact in her place. The LORD will save the dwellings of Judah first, so that the honor [King James: glory] of the house of David and Jerusalem’s inhabitants may not be greater than that of Judah. On that day the LORD will shield [King James: defend] those who live in Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the Angel of the LORD going before them. On that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem (cf. read also Zechariah 14:1-15).”
Day of Atonement
Right after these first 11 verses God through Joel advises the Jews (Israelis) to repent in fasting and heartfelt prayer in verses 12-17 of Joel 2. But we see this next set of verses also fits into the pattern of the Day of Atonement, which calls for a national fast and repentance. Joel 2:12-17, “‘Now,’ declares the LORD, ‘return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.’ Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. Who knows? He may turn and have pity and leave a blessing---grain offerings and drink offerings for the LORD your God. Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children, those nursing at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room and the bride her chamber. Let the priests, who minister before the LORD, weep between the temple porch and the altar. Let them say, ‘Spare your people, O LORD. Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?’” This directly cross-references to Zechariah 12:10-14, “And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for him as one grieves for a firstborn. In that day there shall be a great mourning in Jerusalem, like the mourning at Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo. And the land shall mourn, every family by itself; the family of the house of David by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of the house of Nathan by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of the house of Levi by itself, and their wives by themselves; the family of Shimei by itself, and their wives by themselves; all the families that remain, every family by itself, and their wives by themselves.” In prophetic symbolism it is on the Fast, the Day of Atonement, when Satan was symbolically cast way into the wilderness and the Lord’s sacrifice is then applied to all Israel (and by extrapolation, the world, John 3:16). Read the whole chapter of Leviticus 16 which outlines the ceremony the Levitical priesthood had to carry out on the Day of Atonement. The whole nation was also commanded to fast on this day. In Revelation 20, verses 1-3, Satan is locked away from having any influence over mankind for 1,000 years. This all fits the Atonement theme.
The Feast of Tabernacles
As the Day of Atonement, the great fast day in Leviticus 23 follows Trumpets, so the Feast of Tabernacles follows the Day of Atonement. As the putting away of Satan just precedes the Millennial Kingdom of God Jesus will establish at his 2nd coming, so does the Day of Atonement precede the Feast of Tabernacles. So the Feast of Tabernacles represents the future coming Millennial Kingdom of God. And this is what we see represented in Joel chapter 2, verses 18-28, this Millennial Kingdom of God coming upon Israel and the world---the very picture of the Feast of Tabernacles. Joel 2:18-29, “Then the LORD will be zealous for his land, and pity his people. The LORD will answer and say to his people, ‘Behold, I will send you grain and new wine and oil, and you will be satisfied by them; I will no longer make you a reproach among the nations. But I will remove far from you the northern army, and will drive him away into a barren and desolate land, with his face toward the eastern sea; his stench will come up, and his foul odor will rise, because he has done monstrous things.’ Fear not, O land; be glad and rejoice, for the LORD has done marvelous things! Do not be afraid, you beasts of the field; for the open pastures are springing up, and the tree bears its fruit; the fig tree and the vine yield their strength. Be glad then, you children of Zion, and rejoice in the LORD your God; for he has given you the former rain faithfully, and he will cause the latter rain in the first month. The threshing floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with new wine and oil. So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the crawling locust, and the chewing locust, my great army which I sent among you. You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, who has dealt wondrously with you; and my people shall never be put to shame. Then you shall know that I am in the midst of Israel: I am the LORD your God and there is no other. My people shall never be put to shame. And it shall come to pass afterward that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh; your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions. And also on my menservants and on my maidservants I will pour out my Spirit in those days.” God’s Holy Spirit is made available to all from then on during this period of time of the Millennial Kingdom of God, represented by the Feast of Tabernacles. See also Zechariah 14:16-19, “And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up for year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, on them there will be no rain. If the family of Egypt will not come up and enter in, they shall have no rain; they shall receive the plague with which the LORD strikes the nations who do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of all the nations that do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles.” Whenever God mentions something twice in Scripture, that is extra emphasis as to it’s importance. He mentioned the words the Feast of Tabernacles three times in three short verses. How important do you think God’s Holy Days are to him? In Isaiah 66, the period of the 2nd coming is described, and then in verses 22-23, the LORD says, “‘For as the new heavens and the new earth which I will make shall remain before me,’ says the LORD, ‘so shall your descendants and your name remain. And it shall come to pass that from one new moon to another, and from one Sabbath to another, all flesh shall come to worship before me,’ says the LORD.” Combining Isaiah 66:22-23 with Zechariah 14:16-19 gives you the Sabbath command and the Feast of Tabernacles command which are both commanded in Leviticus 23. The Sabbath command is commanded at the very beginning of Leviticus 23 (verses 1-3) and the Feast of Tabernacles is commanded at the very end of the chapter (verses 34-44). This is God’s way of saying the whole chapter of Leviticus 23 will be in full force during the Millennial Kingdom of God. Jesus Christ is going to restore observance of God’s Holy Days as commanded for Israel in Leviticus 23, for all time to come. Personally, I do not think Jesus likes days of worship which came out of paganism. Jesus called himself “the Lord of the Sabbath”, not the Lord of Sunday/Christmas/Easter. I wonder if this is a message for the Church, the Body of Christ? The Holy Days of God in Leviticus have very rich spiritual meaning, symbolism (see http://www.unityinchrist.com/messianicmovement/Holydayshadows.htm).
Verses 1-6, “For behold, in those days and at that time, when I bring back the captives of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will enter into judgment with them there on account of my people, my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; they have also divided up my land, they have cast lots for my people, have given a boy as payment for a harlot, and sold a girl for wine, that they may drink. Indeed, what have you to do with me, O Tyre and Sidon, and all the coasts of Philistia? Will you retaliate against me? But if you retaliate against me, swiftly and speedily I will return your retaliation upon your own head; because you have taken my silver and my gold, and have carried into your temples my prized possessions. Also the people of Judah and the people of Jerusalem you have sold to the Greeks, that you may remove them far from their borders.” We just saw that Joel chapter 2 gave a synopsis going from the beginning of the Tribulation, through the 2nd coming (represented by the Feast of Trumpets), the great national fast of the Israelis (represented by the Day of Atonement), and finally the coming of the Millennial Kingdom of God (represented by the Feast of Tabernacles). In Joel chapter 3 God’s prophecy through Joel zeroes right into the final battle which has been mislabeled the battle of “Armageddon.” This battle will in reality take place in the Kidron Valley in Jerusalem (also called the Valley of Decision or the Valley of Jehoshaphat in prophecy). The staging area where the world’s armies gather to fight the returning Christ will be in the Jezreel Valley area, overlooked by Har Megiddo (in Greek called Armageddon). Once gathered, these armies then march south into Jerusalem, where they are met by the returning Christ. But as Joel points out in verse 2, he will finally draw these world armies into “the Valley of Jehoshaphat.” Since the fourth century the Kidron Valley has been called the Valley of Decision” (Zechariah 14 shows this is the Kidron Valley). Verse 3 shows some of the Israeli Jews have been sold as slaves and sent as far away in slavery as Greece, verse 6 (which is part of the European Community right now). In verses 4-5 it mentions Tyre and Zidon. Now Tyre and Zidon as the Phoenician Empire and race have long since ceased to exist (as Phoenicians living in those two cities). But when Nebuchadnezzar II and Alexander the Great finally demolished Tyre and conquered Sidon, elements of this vast shipping empire were thought to have relocated to Venice (you’ve got a whole navy and merchant marine as your disposal, why hang around and get slaughtered---those who could leave, left). Some went to Carthage, some to Spain and points west, but some, it is believed, went to Venice. Half of Tyre as a huge merchant city was reclaimed land from the ocean, much as they do in Holland. Their engineering of cities in water was excellent. Venice is man-made city engineered and built in the middle of a river next to the ocean. The Venetians became a vast shipping and naval empire for awhile on their own, opposing the massive Ottoman Empire to the east, and then they got absorbed into what is now Italy. In the end-times the economic part of the Beast Empire is called Babylon the Great, described in Revelation 18. Prophetically in Ezekiel Tyre is also symbolically linked to being part of the economic force and power of the Beast, Babylon the Great. Ezekiel 28:1-10 describes this “prince of Tyre in the end times, because the fall of Satan just afterward pins this to the end-times. This did have a smaller historic fulfillment during Nebuchadnezzar’s and Alexander the Great’s time. “The word of the LORD came to me again, saying, ‘Son of man, say to the prince of Tyre: Thus says the Lord GOD: Because your heart is lifted up, and you say, I am a god, I sit in the seat of gods, in the midst of the seas,’ yet you are a man, and not a god, though you set your heart as the heart of a god (behold, you are wiser than Daniel! There is no secret that can be hidden from you! With your wisdom and your understanding you have gained riches for yourself, and gathered gold and silver into your treasuries; by your great wisdom in trade you have increased your riches, and your heart is lifted up because of your riches).’ Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: ‘Because you have set your heart as the heart of a god, behold, therefore, I will bring strangers against you, the most terrible of the nations; and they shall draw their swords against the beauty of your wisdom, and defile your splendor. They shall throw you down into the Pit, and you shall die the death of the slain in the midst of the seas. Will you still say before him who slays you, I am a god? But you shall be a man, and not a god, in the hand of him who slays you. You shall die the death of the uncircumcised by the hand of aliens; for I have spoken,’ says the Lord GOD.” This is not Satan, whom God goes on to describe in Ezekiel 28:11-19. Yahweh then says what he will do to recover and bring back the Jews of Jerusalem and Judah (the Israelis), in verses 7-8 of Joel chapter 3, “Behold, I will raise them out of the place to which you have sold them, and I will return your retaliation upon your own head. I will sell your sons and your daughters into the hand of the people of Judah, and they will sell them to the Sabeans, to a people far off; for the LORD has spoken.” Now we come to the Great Battle that is also described in Zechariah 14:1-15. Verse 15 of Joel chapter 3 directly pegs the timing of this event, “The sun and moon will grow dark, and the stars will diminish their brightness.” It is thought that this directly cross-references to Revelation 16:10, “Then the fifth angel [i.e. the 7 Last Plagues] poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom became full of darkness; and they gnawed their tongues because of the pain.” The 5th of the 7 Last Plagues is Revelation 16:12-14, “Then the sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up, so that the way of the kings from the east might be prepared. And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs coming out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.” This great gathering is also pictured in Joel 3:9-13, “Proclaim this among the nations: ‘Prepare for war! Wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near, let them come up. Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruninghooks into spears; let the weak say, I am strong. Assemble and come, all you nations, and gather together all around. Cause your mighty ones to go down there, O LORD. Let the nations be wakened, and come up to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; for there I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations. Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, go down; for the winepress is full, the vats overflow---for their wickedness is great.” Next, the great battle in the Valley of Decision, the Valley of Jehoshaphat, the Kidron Valley, is depicted in verses 14-16, “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. The sun and moon will grow dark, and the stars will diminish their brightness. The Lord also will roar from Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; the heavens and the earth will shake; but the LORD will be a shelter for his people, and the strength of the children of Israel” (cf. Zechariah 12:1-9). (The Valley of Jehoshaphat and the Valley of Decision are one and the same.)
Beginning of the Millennial Kingdom of God
The next picture which follows right after this great battle is the returned Jesus Christ dwelling in Jerusalem, with the new river system mentioned in Zechariah 14:8 and Ezekiel 47:1-12 being alluded to, along with plenty of rain (verses 17-18). Joel 3, verses 17-18, “So you shall know that I am the LORD your God, dwelling in Zion my holy mountain. Then Jerusalem shall be holy, and no aliens shall ever pass through her again. And it will come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drip with new wine, the hills shall flow with milk, and all the brooks of Judah shall be flooded with water; a fountain shall flow from the house of the LORD and water the Valley of Acacias.” “Acacias” Hebrew: Shittim, found on the other side of the Jordan River. This would make sense, since one of the two rivers flowing out from under the Temple in Ezekiel 47:1-12 flows east into the Dead Sea and makes a huge inland sea of fresh, clear water, teaming with fish, and then flows south down into the Red Sea to heal the oceans. Next the fate of Edom and Egypt, verse 19, “Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom a desolate wilderness, because of the violence against the people of Judah, for they have shed innocent blood in their land.” We see in other prophecies that Edom never recovers nationally or as a people (see Obediah in this series on the Minor Prophets). But Egypt does recover, to become one of the world’s top nations under Israel. All the surviving Jews and Israelis will “dwell forever, and Jerusalem from generation to generation,” verses 20-21, “But Judah shall abide forever, and Jerusalem from generation to generation. For I will acquit them of the guilt of bloodshed, whom I had not acquitted; for the LORD dwells in Zion.” Part of this acquittal of bloodshed Judah was being held guilty of could be for the part played by the Sanhedrin for the slaying of their Messiah, Yeshua haMeshiach. Who knows, an interesting verse. The Lord is back dwelling in Jerusalem, forever, and so are the Jews. What a happy ending for them.