The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel. So shall ye know that I am the Lord your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drop down new wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and all the rivers of Judah shall flow with waters, and a fountain shall come forth out of the house of the Lord, and shall water the valley of Shittim. Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom shall be a desolate wilderness, for the violence against the children of Judah, because they have shed innocent blood in their land. But Judah shall dwell for ever, and Jerusalem from generation to generation.( Joel 3:16-20)
In the day of the LORD, the long period of judgment against the Jewish people,( ie ‘the indignation’ and ‘the times of the Gentiles”) comes to an end. The Exile is over, the LORD takes a stand with His people and He roars at the nations from out of Zion.
Israel’s power has finally been broken, and they have come to the end of their own strength,
And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished.(Daniel 12:7)
For the Lord shall judge his people, and repent himself for his servants, when he seeth that their power is gone, and there is none shut up, or left….(Deuteronomy 32:36)
At that point The LORD comes to them as a Kinsman Redeemer and Avenger.He takes their side against their adversaries, and makes war on those who would have slain them.
The Holy land becomes Holy again, as does Jerusalem.
The prodigal nation, has looked upon Him whom they had pierced and mourned for Him…as Zechariah tells us,
And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.(Zechariah 12:10)
Thus the blessing promised earlier in this prophecy, conditioned upon repentance and wholeheartedly turning to the LORD, is poured out upon Israel. Streams flow through the Land and Vineyards and Pasture lands flourish.
A fountain opens up, out of the house off the LORD, which reverses the death that had been upon the Holy Land. It shall water ‘the Shittim’, ie the Acacia valley. Acacia thrive in barren and Desert places and was one of the last encampments of the children of Israel in the wilderness before going into the promised land.
Zechariah predicts another fountain also which will open up in the land on that day…
In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness. And it shall come to pass in that day, saith the Lord of hosts, that I will cut off the names of the idols out of the land, and they shall no more be remembered: and also I will cause the prophets and the unclean spirit to pass out of the land. (Zechariah 13:1-2)
This fountain is one we Christians are familiar with and we often sing of it, such as in Cowper’s famous Hymn,
There is a fountain filled with blood,
Drawn from Immanuel’s veins,
And sinners plunged beneath that flood
Lose all their guilty stains:
Lose all their guilty stains,
Lose all their guilty stains;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood
Lose all their guilty stains. (William Cowpeer,There is a Fountain)
The fountain will also serve another spiritual function, for it will quench the long standing lust for idolatry and false prophecy which has bedeviled God’s people all these centuries.
Egypt and Edom shall be a desolation. Those who have set themselves against Israel, shall themselves be destroyed. Egypt and Edom stand as representatives of the Muslim Arab world, long time bitter enemies of Israel and frequent invaders of modern Israel.
Kiel and Delitsch rightly say in their commentary at this point , The end of the ways of the Lord is eternal blessing for His people, whilst the enemies of His kingdom fall victims to the curse.
All of the specific nations which the Prophecy of Joel chapter three mentions; Tyre and Sidon,(Southern Lebanon) , Philistia, (Gaza), Egypt, Edom (Jordan), and happen to be Muslim and manifest hostility to Israel, currently.
In these modern times, since the rebirth of Israel as a nation in 1948, they have practiced violence, terrorism, intimidation, threatening and war against the children of Judah. They are typical of the Gentile world, which for all of this two thousand year exile of Judah, have taken advantage and been violent against the Jews.
The final verse of Joel’s prophecy,
For I will cleanse their blood that I have not cleansed: for the Lord dwelleth in Zion.(Joel 3:21)
…is a promise from the God of Israel, to treat the blood of the Jews shed with impunity by the nations, as “innocent blood” and thus to avenge it fully, as He has not done until now.