RUSSIA WILL FIGHT ISRAEL
(Posted July, 2015)
In Ezekiel chapter 38 and 39 there is a confederation of several
countries that will attack Israel in the last days and it is led by Russia.
This article is not something new, many have wrote about this before,
but there are some new thoughts contain herein.
Three times in these two chapters (38:2, 3 and 39:1) there is found the expression, “I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal.” For the Hebrew word translated “chief,” Strong’s Concordance gives “ro’sh” and it is pronounced “roshe.” The 1917 Scofield Reference Bible gives the following footnote for Ezekiel Chapter 38, “That the primary reference is to the northern powers, headed up by Russia, all agree. The whole passage should be read in connection with Zechariah 12:1-4; 14:1-9; Matthew 24:14-30; Revelation 14:14-20; 19:17-21, 'gog' is the prince, 'Magog,' his land. The reference to Meshech and Tubal (Moscow and Tobolsk) is a clear mark of identification.” Josephus (first-century) said, “Magog founded those that from him were named Magogites, but who are by the Greeks called Scythians.” (Antiquities 6:1) Scythians were located north of the Black Sea and north of the Caucasus (Russia). If one does not agree with the location of these place names, still the geographical location is also given, “And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts” (Ezekiel 38:15 and 39:2). For “north parts” Strong’s Concordance gives for north, “north” and for parts, “flank, side, extreme parts, recesses,” or “far north” as it is footnoted in most Bibles. If one draws a line from Jerusalem (where directions in the Bible are taken from) and goes straight north, the line will go through Russian and even near to Moscow or the “far north” from Israel.
It will be a very large army, “And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou, and many people with thee…a great company, and a mighty army” (Ezekiel 38:15, 6). With many nations that will Include “Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them” (Ezekiel 38:5), these countries have had closer ties with Russia than with the west, especially Iran (*“Persia”), who is the first one named in this list to ally herself with Russia. None of these countries are allies of Israel, and the Arab countries do not want Israel in Palestine. (*Before 1935 “Persia” was the official name of Iran in the Western world.)
They will attack Israel, “And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land” (Ezekiel 38:16, “Israel” is mentioned 6 times in Ezekiel Chapter 38, and 12 times in Ezekiel Chapter 39). When will this happen? It has not yet happened, as Russia has never before suffered a defeat in the land of Israel, and one that will devastate them, “And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee” (Ezekiel 39:2). “After many days thou shalt be visited: in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel, which have been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations” (Ezekiel 38:8). After 1,900 years Israel was “brought back…[and came]…out of the nations,” Israel became a nation again in 1948 and which wold fit with the expression “the latter years.” This could not be the battle of Gog in Revelation Chapter 20 which is at the end of the Millennium (See MILLENNIUM), as Israel will have been in her land by that time 1,000 years. There are many good Bible scholars who believe this battle will take place at the battle of Armageddon, at the end of the Great Tribulation (See END TIMES), but I believe it could take place before this. And possibly even lead to the seven-year peace treaty with Israel of the Book of Daniel (See END TIMES), as not only Russia but most of Israel’s enemies will have been soundly defeated making it possible to have such a peace treaty. And even if this were to take place before the Rapture (See END TIMES) and the seven-year Tribulation, it would not destroy the doctrine of the “Imminent Return of Christ” that Christ’s return for us may happen at any moment and that there is no other prophesied event which must occur before Christ's coming. No event must occur, but could occur before Christ returns, as it was also prophesied that “in the latter years” Israel would return to her home land and this has happened. I AM NOT SETTING ANY DATES, only giving possible scenarios; this battle will take place, but may or may not happen in our lifetime.
What will the nations of the world do? They will do what they are doing now, and not be involved militarily, at least not at the start of this campaign. “Sheba, and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions thereof, shall say unto thee, Art thou come to take a spoil? hast thou gathered thy company to take a prey? to carry away silver and gold, to take away cattle and goods, to take a great spoil?” (Ezekiel 38:13) What “spoil” would Russia want from the Middle East? Could it be oil? The Arab nations may even promise Russia a percentage of their oil if she will remove Israel for them. Russia’s fragile economy is propped up by its oil, but if she could have a deciding vote in OPEC, she could well become a very rich nation.
What will be the results of this war? It has already been shown that Russia will end up with only one-sixth of her army (Ezekiel 39:2), but not only Russia will be defeated, “Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands, and the people that is with thee: I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured. Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.” (Ezekiel 39:4-5)
Possibly a nuclear exchange in three locations?
(1) Ezekiel 38:22 says, “And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and I will rain upon him, and upon his bands, and upon the many people that are with him, an overflowing rain, and great hailstones, fire, and brimstone.” This would be the army that will “fall upon the mountains of Israel,” or northern Israel, the direction Russia and most of her allies would come from, as they begin their push towards Jerusalem.
(2) Ezekiel 39:6 says, “And I will send a fire on Magog [Russia],
(3) and among them that dwell carelessly in the isles: and they shall know that I am the LORD.” Strong’s Concordance gives for “carelessly” “security, safety, securely.” Gesenius's Lexicon gives “confidently,” in other words, they will not be expecting it. The word “isles” is translated elsewhere in the Bible as “islands” (Isaiah 11:11) or “country” (Jeremiah 47:4). There are also natural causes for their defeat, as an earthquake, “Surely in that day there shall be a great shaking in the land of Israel; So that the fishes of the sea, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the field, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, and all the men that are upon the face of the earth, shall shake at my presence, and the mountains shall be thrown down, and the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground.” (Ezekiel 38:19-20)
Problems? How are we to interpret the armour of Ezekiel 38: & 39? What are “horses,” “swords,” “bows,” “arrows,” “shields,” “handstaves,” “spears” and “chariots” doing in a modern army? These English words were translated from the Hebrew, which often has other meanings. For example, the Hebrew word for “horses,” according to Strong’s Concordance, is “swallow, swift,” or “horse.” It is something that is faster than man and in Ezekiel's day the fastest (“swift”) things were birds and horses. The same Hebrew word that is translated “horse” in Ezekiel 38: & 39 is used for a bird and is translated “crane” in Isaiah 38:14 and Jeremiah 8:7. The same Hebrew word that is translated “sword” is translated “knife” five times in the Bible, and “dagger” two times, and the same Hebrew word translated “spears” is translated “lancet” in I Kings 18:28, possibly a bayonet? The same Hebrew word translated “shields” is “defence” in Psalm 7:10 and Psalms 89:18. And the same Hebrew word translated “chariots” is translated “wagons” in Ezekiel 23:24. (I claim no expertise in the original languages, though I have had three semesters of Greek and one of Hebrew, but all the above is from Strong’s Concordance which is online at http://www.eliyah.com/lexicon.html) But what words would one expect the Prophet Ezekiel to have used, “tanks” and “jet airplanes”? Words that did not exist when he wrote over 2,500 years ago. The New Testament Greek has a word that is translated “rainbow,” but the Hebrew Scripture says, “I do set my bow in the cloud” (Genesis 9:13), which is the same Hebrew word that is translated “bow” for arrows. When the American Indians first saw trains they called them “iron horses.” They used the vocabulary of their time to describe what they saw. Ezekiel 39:9 says, “And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall set on fire and burn the weapons…and they shall burn them with fire seven years.” There are many things in a modern army that will burn, including the Russian made AK-47 with its wooden stock.
God will be glorified in the fulfilling of this prophesy, “it shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes. Thus saith the Lord GOD; Art thou he of whom I have spoken in old time by my servants the prophets of Israel, which prophesied in those days many years that I would bring thee against them?” (Ezekiel 38:16-17) “And I will set my glory among the heathen, and all the heathen shall see my judgment that I have executed, and my hand that I have laid upon them. So the house of Israel shall know that I am the LORD their God from that day and forward. And the heathen shall know that the house of Israel went into captivity for their iniquity: because they trespassed against me, therefore hid I my face from them, and gave them into the hand of their enemies: so fell they all by the sword.” (Ezekiel 39:21-23)
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