I received the following question:

What is the ‘this’ referred to in Joel 2:28?  The Hebrew word for this is ken.  What is this?

It is difficult to say for certain. “This” could be the prophet’s own days, and he is saying it will come to pass once these evil days are ended. In Acts 2:17, this is explained as meaning “in the last (eschatos) days.” If this is explanatory rather than supplemental, it could tell us that this is what the prophet meant.

It could also refer to the days immediately mentioned in verses 18-27. This would mean that Israel will be restored before the Spirit is poured out on all flesh. One would have to examine to see if this fits other passages. My understanding has been that the Spirit is poured out on all first, and this is one of the things (actually, the major thing) that causes Israel to be restored.

Verses 28-32 could be a restatement of verses 18-27, and be giving further light as to how all these things came about.

Good catch on the “after this.” We will have to consider what exactly this means, and how it fits into the order of events.