Joel 2:3
New International Version
Before them fire devours, behind them a flame blazes. Before them the land is like the garden of Eden, behind them, a desert waste-- nothing escapes them.

New Living Translation
Fire burns in front of them, and flames follow after them. Ahead of them the land lies as beautiful as the Garden of Eden. Behind them is nothing but desolation; not one thing escapes.

English Standard Version
Fire devours before them, and behind them a flame burns. The land is like the garden of Eden before them, but behind them a desolate wilderness, and nothing escapes them.

Berean Study Bible
Before them a fire devours, and behind them a flame scorches. The land before them is like the Garden of Eden, but behind them, it is like a desert wasteland—surely nothing will escape them.

New American Standard Bible
A fire consumes before them And behind them a flame burns. The land is like the garden of Eden before them But a desolate wilderness behind them, And nothing at all escapes them.

King James Bible
A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.

Christian Standard Bible
A fire devours in front of them, and behind them a flame blazes. The land in front of them is like the garden of Eden, but behind them, it is like a desert wasteland; there is no escape from them.

Contemporary English Version
Fiery flames surround them; no one escapes. Before they invaded, the land was like Eden; now only a desert remains.

Good News Translation
Like fire they eat up the plants. In front of them the land is like the Garden of Eden, but behind them it is a barren desert. Nothing escapes them.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
A fire destroys in front of them, and behind them a flame devours. The land in front of them is like the Garden of Eden, but behind them, it is like a desert wasteland; there is no escape from them.

International Standard Version
"A fire blazes in their presence, and behind them a conflagration rages. Before they come, the land is like the garden in Eden; after they leave, there is only a barren wasteland. Indeed, nothing escapes them.

NET Bible
Like fire they devour everything in their path; a flame blazes behind them. The land looks like the Garden of Eden before them, but behind them there is only a desolate wilderness--for nothing escapes them!

New Heart English Bible
A fire devours before them, and behind them, a flame burns. The land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them, a desolate wilderness. Yes, and no one has escaped them.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
In front of this army a fire burns. Behind it flames are blazing. In front of it the land is like the garden of Eden. Behind it the land is like a barren desert. Nothing escapes it!

JPS Tanakh 1917
A fire devoureth before them, And behind them a flame blazeth; The land is as the garden of Eden before them, And behind them a desolate wilderness; Yea, and nothing escapeth them.

New American Standard 1977
A fire consumes before them, And behind them a flame burns. The land is like the garden of Eden before them, But a desolate wilderness behind them, And nothing at all escapes them.

Jubilee Bible 2000
A fire devours before him and behind him a flame burns: the earth is as the garden of Eden before him, and behind him a desolate wilderness; neither shall anyone escape him.

King James 2000 Bible
A fire devours before them; and behind them a flame burns: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.

American King James Version
A fire devours before them; and behind them a flame burns: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yes, and nothing shall escape them.

American Standard Version
A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and none hath escaped them.

Brenton Septuagint Translation
Before them is a consuming fire, and behind them is a flame kindled: the land before them is as a paradise of delight, and behind them a desolate plain: and there shall none of them escape.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Before the face thereof a devouring fire, and behind it a burning flame: the land is like a garden of pleasure before it, and behind it a desolate wilderness, neither is there any one that can escape it.

Darby Bible Translation
A fire devoureth before them, and behind them a flame burneth; the land is as a garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness: yea, and nothing escapeth them.

English Revised Version
A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and none hath escaped them.

Webster's Bible Translation
A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; and nothing shall escape them.

World English Bible
A fire devours before them, and behind them, a flame burns. The land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them, a desolate wilderness. Yes, and no one has escaped them.

Young's Literal Translation
Before it consumed hath fire, And after it burn doth a flame, As the garden of Eden is the land before it, And after it a wilderness -- a desolation! And also an escape there hath not been to it,
Study Bible
The Army of Locusts
2a day of darkness and gloom, a day of clouds and blackness. Like the dawn overspreading the mountains a great and strong people appears, such as never was of old, nor will ever be in ages to come. 3Before them a fire devours, and behind them a flame scorches. The land before them is like the Garden of Eden, but behind them, it is like a desert wasteland— surely nothing will escape them. 4Their appearance is like that of horses, and they gallop like swift steeds.…
Cross References
Exodus 10:5
They will cover the face of the land so that no one can see it. They will devour whatever is left after the hail and eat every tree that grows in your fields.

Exodus 10:15
They covered the face of all the land until it was black, and they consumed all the plants on the ground and all the fruit on the trees that the hail had left behind. Nothing green was left on any tree or plant in all the land of Egypt.

Psalm 97:3
Fire goes before Him and consumes His foes on every side.

Psalm 105:34
He spoke, and the locusts came--young locusts without number.

Psalm 105:35
They devoured every plant in their land and consumed the produce of their soil.

Isaiah 9:18
For wickedness burns like a fire that consumes the thorns and briers and kindles the forest thickets which roll upward in columns of smoke.

Isaiah 9:19
By the wrath of the LORD of Hosts the land is scorched, and the people are fuel for the fire. Not one will spare his brother.

Isaiah 14:17
who turned the world into a desert and destroyed its cities, who refused to let the captives return to their homes?"

Isaiah 15:6
The waters of Nimrim are dried up; the grass is withered, the foliage is gone, and the vegetation has vanished.

Isaiah 51:3
For the LORD will comfort Zion and look with compassion on all her ruins; He will make her wilderness like Eden and her desert like the garden of the LORD. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and melodious song.

Ezekiel 36:35
Then they will say, "This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden. The cities that were once ruined, desolate, and destroyed are now fortified and inhabited."

Zechariah 7:14
But I scattered them with a whirlwind among all the nations that they had not known, and the land was left desolate behind them, so that no one could come or go. Thus they turned a pleasant land into a desolation."

Treasury of Scripture

A fire devours before them; and behind them a flame burns: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yes, and nothing shall escape them.

fire.

Joel 1:19,20
O LORD, to thee will I cry: for the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness, and the flame hath burned all the trees of the field…

Psalm 50:3
Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence: a fire shall devour before him, and it shall be very tempestuous round about him.

Amos 7:4
Thus hath the Lord GOD shewed unto me: and, behold, the Lord GOD called to contend by fire, and it devoured the great deep, and did eat up a part.

the land.

Genesis 2:8
And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.

Genesis 13:10
And Lot lifted up his eyes, and beheld all the plain of Jordan, that it was well watered every where, before the LORD destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, even as the garden of the LORD, like the land of Egypt, as thou comest unto Zoar.

Isaiah 51:3
For the LORD shall comfort Zion: he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.

and behind.

Joel 1:4-7
That which the palmerworm hath left hath the locust eaten; and that which the locust hath left hath the cankerworm eaten; and that which the cankerworm hath left hath the caterpiller eaten…

Exodus 10:5,15
And they shall cover the face of the earth, that one cannot be able to see the earth: and they shall eat the residue of that which is escaped, which remaineth unto you from the hail, and shall eat every tree which groweth for you out of the field: …

Jeremiah 5:17
And they shall eat up thine harvest, and thy bread, which thy sons and thy daughters should eat: they shall eat up thy flocks and thine herds: they shall eat up thy vines and thy fig trees: they shall impoverish thy fenced cities, wherein thou trustedst, with the sword.







Lexicon
Before them
לְפָנָיו֙ (lə·p̄ā·nāw)
Preposition-l | Noun - common plural construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6440: The face

a fire
אֵ֔שׁ (’êš)
Noun - common singular
Strong's Hebrew 784: A fire

devours,
אָ֣כְלָה (’ā·ḵə·lāh)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 398: To eat

and behind
וְאַחֲרָ֖יו (wə·’a·ḥă·rāw)
Conjunctive waw | Preposition | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 310: The hind or following part

them a flame
לֶֽהָבָ֑ה (le·hā·ḇāh)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3852: A flash, a sharply polished blade, point of a, weapon

scorches.
תְּלַהֵ֣ט (tə·la·hêṭ)
Verb - Piel - Imperfect - third person feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 3857: To blaze up, flame

The land
הָאָ֜רֶץ (hā·’ā·reṣ)
Article | Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 776: Earth, land

before them
לְפָנָ֗יו (lə·p̄ā·nāw)
Preposition-l | Noun - common plural construct | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6440: The face

is like the Garden
כְּגַן־ (kə·ḡan-)
Preposition-k | Noun - common singular construct
Strong's Hebrew 1588: An enclosure, garden

of Eden,
עֵ֨דֶן (‘ê·ḏen)
Noun - proper - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 5731: Eden -- the garden home of Adam and Eve

but behind them,
וְאַֽחֲרָיו֙ (wə·’a·ḥă·rāw)
Conjunctive waw | Preposition | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew 310: The hind or following part

it is like a desert
מִדְבַּ֣ר (miḏ·bar)
Noun - masculine singular construct
Strong's Hebrew 4057: A pasture, a desert, speech

wasteland—
שְׁמָמָ֔ה (šə·mā·māh)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 8077: Devastation, astonishment

surely
וְגַם־ (wə·ḡam-)
Conjunctive waw | Conjunction
Strong's Hebrew 1571: Assemblage, also, even, yea, though, both, and

nothing
לֹא־ (lō-)
Adverb - Negative particle
Strong's Hebrew 3808: Not, no

will
הָ֥יְתָה (hā·yə·ṯāh)
Verb - Qal - Perfect - third person feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 1961: To fall out, come to pass, become, be

escape
פְּלֵיטָ֖ה (pə·lê·ṭāh)
Noun - feminine singular
Strong's Hebrew 6413: Deliverance, an escaped portion

them.
לּֽוֹ׃ (lōw)
Preposition | third person masculine singular
Strong's Hebrew
(3) Before them . . . behind them.--As with the locusts, so with the invading hosts of enemies: the country is found a paradise, and left a desert.

Verse 3. - A fire devoureth before them; and behind them a flame burneth.

(1) The fire was the extreme drought preceding them; and the flame refers to the devastation of the locusts, for the places laid waste by them presented the appearance of being burnt with fire, the locusts consuming not only the grain and grass, but the very roots.

(2) Or it may refer to the locusts themselves; their destructive power being as though fire spread along before them. and flame swept the ground behind them.

(3) Or the fire may have been literally such, the people, in self-de fence, kindling it to stop, or turn aside, or drive away the advance of the locust-army.

(4) Keil explains this burning heat, heightened into devouring flames of fire, as accompaniments of the Divine Being "as he comes to judgment at the head of his army," like the balls of fire which attended his manifestation in Egypt, and the thunder and lightning amid which he descended at Sinai. The land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness. This reference by the first of the prophets to the first book of the Bible is noteworthy. The country before them, with its fertile fields and valuable vineyards, its fruit trees, and pleasant plants, and various cereals resembled a paradise. As they proceeded the corn was consumed, fruit trees and forest trees alike stripped of leaves and left barked and bare, the grass and verdure withered; so that after them nothing was to be seen but a desolate wilderness. Yea, and nothing shall escape them.

(1) That is, either nothing shall escape the locusts; or

(2) Keil contends that the meaning is that "even that which escaped did not remain to it," and refers lo to the land. 2:1-14 The priests were to alarm the people with the near approach of the Divine judgments. It is the work of ministers to warn of the fatal consequences of sin, and to reveal the wrath from heaven against the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men. The striking description which follows, shows what would attend the devastations of locusts, but may also describe the effects from the ravaging of the land by the Chaldeans. If the alarm of temporal judgments is given to offending nations, how much more should sinners be warned to seek deliverance from the wrath to come! Our business therefore on earth must especially be, to secure an interest in our Lord Jesus Christ; and we should seek to be weaned from objects which will soon be torn from all who now make idols of them. There must be outward expressions of sorrow and shame, fasting, weeping, and mourning; tears for trouble must be turned into tears for the sin that caused it. But rending the garments would be vain, except their hearts were rent by abasement and self-abhorrence; by sorrow for their sins, and separation from them. There is no question but that if we truly repent of our sins, God will forgive them; but whether he will remove affliction is not promised, yet the probability of it should encourage us to repent.
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Alphabetical: a all And at Before behind blazes burns But consumes desert desolate devours Eden escapes fire flame garden is land like nothing of the them waste wilderness

OT Prophets: Joel 2:3 A fire devours before them and behind (Jl Joe.) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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