Prophetic Time-Setting of Ezekiel 38-39:
It is the famous prophecy about the attack of “Gog and Magog” against the nations of Israel in the latter days.
This prophecy begins in Ezekiel 38:1 with the usual introductory words used throughout the book of Ezekiel which indicate a previous prophecy has concluded and a new one is beginning.
This language is the now-familiar: “And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying…,” and this new prophecy continues through Ezekiel 39:29. The language in Ezekiel 38:1 makes it clear that the prophecy contained in Ezekiel 38-39 cannot be a continuation of any prophecy contained in Ezekiel 37. The prophecy which God gave to Ezekiel in chapters 38-39 has a subject matter and time context of its own and it is not a continuation of any previous prophecy in the book of Ezekiel.
At the end of Ezekiel 39, the long string of prophecies in the book of Ezekiel ends, and
its later chapters discuss matters pertaining to the Temple and new land inheritances for Israel’s tribes at the beginning of the millennium. As the final prophecy in a long progression of prophecies in the book of Ezekiel, Ezekiel 38-39 needs to be seen as the climactic prophecy which it truly is.
It is now obvious that the three separate prophecies contained in Ezekiel 37-39 are
not sequential. Indeed, they are in three different, biblical “ages,” and they are written in
reverse time order. The “dry bones” prophecy in the first half of Ezekiel 37 will be fulfilled in a Judgment Age after the millennium concludes and after a second resurrection has occurred.
The “two sticks” prophecy at the end of Ezekiel 37 has a time-setting which occurs at the very beginning of the millennium just after the first resurrection of the saints (including King David) occurs at the return of the Messiah: Jesus Christ/Yahshua. These two prophecies are obviously not in a forward chronological sequence.
The “Evil Alliance” led by Gog:
The subject matter of the Ezekiel 38-39 prophecy reveals many details about a surprise
attack to be launched by an alliance led by “Gog” against the latter-day descendants of the ten tribes of Israel. Who is “Gog” and who are the nations led by Gog who will launch this attack at the climax of our age? The attacking and defending nations named in Ezekiel 38 are so numerous that it will constitute a World War III which will have a destructive nature far in excess of World Wars I and II combined.
Ezekiel 38:1-7 reveals who Gog and its allies are. The first names mentioned are “Gog,
the land of Magog… Meshech and Tubal…” The term “Gog” comes from the Hebrew word
“Rosh” which means “head” or “chief.” It means either the individual who is the “chief” or
leader of this alliance or the nation which “heads” it. The “land of Magog” is identified with the region of Asia which is within the modern territory of Russia. Gog is identified as “the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal.” These entities have long been identified by Christian teachers as designating Russia in the modern world, and they are correct. There is much support for this designation. Ancient words did not have vowels so words can be traced into modern times by their consonants. The consonants of Meshech and Tubal are “M-S(h)-C(h)” and “T-B-L.” The chief city of Russia is Moscow, and the first three consonants of Moscow match the principle consonants of Meshech (i.e. “M-S-C”). The consonants of Tubal (“T-B-L”) can be seen preserved in the Russian city of Tobolsk and the Tobol River in Russia as well as in the Georgian city of Tiblisi, which was long a part of the old Soviet Union. According to Ezekiel 38-39, Russia will lead the attacking alliance. Russia led the USSR in creating an anti-American and anti-Western alliance of Communist nations during the decades of the Cold War. Who are named in Ezekiel 38 as Russia’s latter day allies?
The allies of Russia will constitute a “great company” (verse 4) and verses 5-6 identify
Persia, Ethiopia, Libya, Gomer, Togarmah and many others who are not named. Many of these nations can be identified in the modern world, and most are already cooperating with Russia in the modern world. The allies of Russia will constitute a “great company” (verse 4) and verses 5-6 identify Persia, Ethiopia, Libya, Gomer, Togarmah and many others who are not named. Many of these nations can be identified in the modern world, and most are already cooperating with Russia in the modern world.
Just a reminder from the Part 1 post:
Here are the nations described by the prophet:
Magog – The modern day Russia
Persia – The modern day Iran
Meshech and Tubal, Togarmah – The region known as the modern Turkey
Ethiopia – The modern Ethiopia
Libya – Modern Libya
Gomer – Modern Germany
Persia is the region now called Iran. In ancient times, these people were known as the
Medo-Persians. The word “Medes” is derived from the word for their forbear named “Madai,” a son of Japheth in Noah’s formative family. It was Noah’s family which repopulated the earth after the Deluge and Noah had three sons: Shem, Ham and Japheth. All modern nations have descended from one of these three sons of Noah or from a mixture of these three main branches of mankind. All modern nations have descended from the sons and grandsons of Noah who are named in Genesis 10. A prophecy about Noah’s sons is found in Genesis 9:25-29. It states Shem was to be “blessed of God,” indicating his descendants would grow into prosperous nations and foreshadowing the fact that they would include the “birthright” nations of the tribes of Israel which would later descend from Abraham. Canaan, one of the sons of Ham, was cursed for a specific sin and his descendants were destined to be in a state of servitude or subordination to Shem’s descendants. However, this biblical curse applies only to Canaan’s descendants, not the other branches of Ham’s family. Japheth’s descendants were to be “enlarged,” indicating his descendants would be the most numerous of the three major groupings.
Shem’s descendants generally include Caucasian and European nations as well as Jews, Turks, Arabs, etc. Hamitic nations include the Black- and Brown-skinned nations of Asia and Africa (i.e. ancient Egypt was long known as Mizraim, the name of one of the sons of Ham). The nations of Japheth are identified with the Oriental nations of Asia. The listing of formative nations in Genesis 10 is important because the Bible utilizes these ancient biblical names in Ezekiel 38 to describe the destinies of modern nations.
Iran (Persia) is a radical Islamic nation which has been very anti-American since the
Ayatollahs overthrew the Shah. Iranian leaders refer to the United States as “the Great Satan” and the Israeli nation as “the little Satan.” Iran is building nuclear facilities and European nations led by England, France and Germany have been attempting via diplomacy to motivate Iran to abandon its nuclear industry. These efforts appear to be unsuccessful. Iran obviously does not need nuclear facilities for energy as it is one of the leading nations of OPEC with large reserves of oil. This argues that the real goal of Iran is to build nuclear weapons. Media articles and reports have long identified Russia as the supplier and builder of Iran’s nuclear facilities so Ezekiel 38-39’s identification of Iran as a Russian ally is accurate. The United States has lobbied Russia to cease exporting its nuclear skills to the Iranians, but Russia has “stiffed” these American requests. Media articles have speculated about whether the USA and/or Israel will launch a preemptive strike against Iran to prevent it from becoming a nuclear power. If this happens, Iran will crave revenge against America and be driven ever-closer into an alliance with Russia. However, since Iran is already allied to Russia via its nuclear program and is very anti-American, no preemptive strike is needed to place Iran in the Russian orbit. It is already there, exactly as Ezekiel 38 prophesied.
The next nation named as Russia’s ally is “Ethiopia,” translated in the King James
Version of the Bible from the Hebrew word for “Cush.” Cush’s descendants do include the
nation of Ethiopia in the Horn of Africa, but they are only a small portion of Cush’s
descendants. Most Cushites migrated eastward toward and into the Indian subcontinent and the name of their forefather Cush is still on the “Hindu Kush” mountains along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. The Hindu Kush region is where Al Qaeda had its infamous terrorist training camps that were attacked by the USA. This region is inhabited by tribes with much sympathy for Al Qaeda and the Taliban. While the
USA is attempting to create a pro-Western government in Afghanistan, Islamic warlords control most of the nation.
Pakistan is another Cushite nation sharing the Hindu Kush Mountains. While Pakistan’s
current government is pro-Western, much of Pakistan’s Islamic population is anti-American. India is a Hindu Cushite nation which is Islamic Pakistan’s rival. India is a democracy and that fact would seem to argue against it becoming an enemy of the USA and the West. However, during the Cold War India was largely anti-American and much of its military equipment was imported from Russia. In recent years, India has been drawn closer to the USA and other western nations due to the outsourcing of English-speaking jobs from the USA and the rest of the English-speaking world to India. It is not clear how many of the modern Cushite nations will join Ezekiel 38’s “evil alliance” headed by Russia. Ezekiel 38 specifically prophesies (as we will see) that some Cushites will not join Russia’s alliance so it is not clear which Cushite nations will join Russia’s alliance. India is the biggest “wild card.” Future events will reveal the answer.
TO BE CONTINUED…