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Joel 2:17

    Joel 2:17 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare your people, O LORD, and give not your heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: why should they say among the people, Where is their God?

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    Let the priests, the ministers of Jehovah, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O Jehovah, and give not thy heritage to reproach, that the nations should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the peoples, Where is their God?

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    Let the priests, the servants of the Lord, be weeping between the covered way and the altar, and let them say, Have mercy on your people, O Lord, do not give up your heritage to shame, so that the nations become their rulers: why let them say among the peoples, Where is their God?

    Webster's Revision

    Let the priests, the ministers of Jehovah, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O Jehovah, and give not thy heritage to reproach, that the nations should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the peoples, Where is their God?

    World English Bible

    Let the priests, the ministers of Yahweh, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, "Spare your people, Yahweh, and don't give your heritage to reproach, that the nations should rule over them. Why should they say among the peoples, 'Where is their God?'"

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the nations should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the peoples, Where is their God?

    Definitions for Joel 2:17

    Heathen - People; nations; non-Jews.
    Heritage - Allotment; possession.
    Let - To hinder or obstruct.
    Reproach - Disgrace; shame.
    Wherefore - Why?; for what reason?; for what cause?

    Clarke's Commentary on Joel 2:17

    Let the priests - weep between the porch and the altar - The altar of burnt-offerings stood before the porch of the temple, 2 Chronicles 8:12, and between them there was an open space of fifteen or twenty cubits. It was there that the priests prostrated themselves on such occasions. It was into this place that the priests brought the sacrifice or victim of atonement; and where the high priest laid his hands on the head of the victim confessing his sins.

    Let them say - The following was the form to be used on this occasion, "Spare thy people," etc. And if this be done with a rent heart, etc., "then will the Lord be jealous for his land, and pity his people," 2 Chronicles 8:18. He will surely save, if ye seriously return to and penitently seek him.

    Barnes' Notes on Joel 2:17

    Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep between the porch and the altar - The porch in this, Solomon's temple, was in fact a tower, in front of the holy of holies, of the same breadth with the temple, namely, 20 cubits, and its depth half its breadth, namely, 10 cubits 1 Kings 6:3, and its height 120 cubits, the whole "overlaid within with pure gold" 2 Chronicles 3:4. The brass altar for burnt-offerings stood in front of it 2 Chronicles 8:12. The altar was of brass, twenty cubits square; and so, equal in breadth to the temple itself, and ten cubits high 2 Chronicles 4:1. The space then between the porch and the altar was enclosed on those two sides 2 Chronicles 7:7; it became an inner part of the court of the priests. Through it the priests or the high priest passed, whenever they went to sprinkle the blood, typifying the atonement, before the veil of the tabernacle, or for any other office of the tabernacle. It seems to have been a place of prayer for the priests. It is spoken of as an aggravation of the sins of those 25 idolatrous priests, that here, where they ought to worship God, they turned their backs toward the Temple of the Lord, to worship the sun Ezekiel 8:16. Here, in the exercise of his office, Zechariah was standing 2 Chronicles 24:20-21; Matthew 23:35, when the Spirit of God came upon him and he rebuked the people and they stoned him. Here the priests, with their faces toward the holy of holies and the temple which He had filled with His Glory, were to weep. Tears are a gift of God. In holier times, so did the priests weep at the holy eucharist in thought of the Passion and Precious Death of our Lord Jesus, which we then plead to God, that they bore with them, as part of their dress, linen wherewith to dry their tears .

    And let them say - A form of prayer is provided for them. From this the words, "spare us good Lord, spare thy people," enter into the litanies of the Christian Church.

    And give not thine heritage to reproach - The enmity of the pagan against the Jews was an enmity against God. God had avouched them as His people and His property. Their land was an heritage from God. God, in that He had separated them from the pagan, and revealed Himself to them, had made them His special heritage. Moses Exodus 32:12; Numbers 14:13-16; Deuteronomy 9:28, Deuteronomy 9:9, then Joshua Jos 7:9, the Psalmists Psalm 74; Psalm 79:1-13; 115, plead with God, that His own power or will to save His people would be called in question, if he should destroy them, or give them up. God, on the other hand, tells them, that not for any deserts of theirs, but for His own Name's sake, He delivered them, lest the Pagan should be the more confirmed in their errors as to Himself Ezekiel 20:5; Ezekiel 36:21-23. It is part of true penitence to plead to God to pardon us, not for anything in ourselves, (for we have nothing of our own but our sins) but because we are the work of His hands, created in His image, the prince of the Blood of Jesus, called by His Name.

    That the pagan should rule over them - This, and not the rendering in the margin, use a byword against them, is the uniform meaning of the Hebrew phrase. It is not to be supposed that the prophet Joel would use it in a sense contrary to the uniform usage of all the writers before him. Nor is there any instance of any other usage of the idiom in any later writer . "The enigma which was closed," says Jerome, "is now opened. For who that people is, manifold and strong, described above under the name of the "palmerworm, the locust, the canker-worm" and "the catterpillar," is now explained more clearly, "lest the pagan rule over them." For the heritage of the Lord is given to reproach, when they serve their enemies, and the nations say, "Where is their God," whom they boasted to be their Sovereign and their Protector?" Such is the reproach ever made against God's people, when He does not visibly protect them, which the Psalmist says was as a sword in his bones (Psalm 42:3, Psalm 42:10; add Psalm 79:10; Psalm 115:2 : Micah 7:16); his tears were his meat day and night while they said it. The Chief priests and scribes and elders fulfilled a prophecy by venturing so to blaspheme our Lord, "He trusted in God; let Him, deliver Him now, if He will have Him" (Matthew 27:43, from Psalm 22:8).

    Wesley's Notes on Joel 2:17

    2:17 The porch - That stately porch built by Solomon, 1Kings 6:3. The altar - The altar of burnt - offering, which stood at some distance from this porch, and here are the priests commanded to stand, fasting and praying, whence they might be heard and seen by the people in the next court, in which the people were wont to pray. To reproach - Famine, though by locusts is a reproach to this thine heritage; it will be greater reproach to be slaves to the nations signified by the locusts, therefore in mercy deliver us from both one and the other.