This great prophecy describes a major power north of Israel (“out of the north parts,” Eze. 38:15; 39:2) that will create a strong military alliance and attack Israel and be destroyed by God.
As for the timing, it is clear that it is for a time when Israel thinks herself safe and disarms. It is when Israel “shall dwell safely” (Eze. 38:8, 11, 14; 39:26). This is repeated four times for emphasis and it certainly does not describe this present hour. Israel’s cities don’t have walls, but Israel has better than that. It has one of the most formidable militaries on earth. In fact, it is very possible that Israel could defeat Russia and her allies. Russia has a strong military and a strong leader, but I would put my money on Israel.
There is no doubt that Gog/Magog is Russia. She is the only great power north of Israel, and the nations aligned with Gog/Magog point to Russia, particularly Persia (Iran), Ethiopia, and Libya, which are named in the prophecy.
These nations have close military ties with Russia even today.
Russia has a long history of persecuting Jews. Many of the early Jewish returnees to Israel were escaping Russian pogroms. “Pogrom” means “to wreck havoc” and refers to “large-scale, targeted, and repeated anti-Jewish rioting.”
A time is described in prophecy when Israel will feel safe and disarm, and that is when the Antichrist makes his seven-year “peace” covenant with her. It is then that the Third Temple will be built, as described in the first verses of Revelation 11, and “peace and safety” will be proclaimed globally and the nations will rejoice, but it will prove to be a delusion. “For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape” (1 Thessalonians 5:3).
After three and a half years, the Antichrist will show his true colors as the greatest hater of Israel in history; he will break the covenant and set himself up as God in Israel’s temple, and the persecutions will be terrible.
We have documented this extensively in The Future According to the Bible.
We would counsel God’s people in the strongest terms to avoid those who focus on a conspiratorial approach to Bible prophecy and who are devoted to analyzing current events as signs and are perpetually in a state of carnal disquiet.
There are general signs of the nearness of Christ’s return, such as Israel back in the land and the Temple Institute’s plan to build the temple, but there are no exact signs that will give the timing of Christ’s coming for His Church. It is always imminent. We can “see the time approaching” (Heb. 10:25), but that is all we can see. We cannot even know the decade.
That’s not our business. Christ has given the churches their marching orders. “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Matthew 28:18-20).
We see that this program is enforce until “the end of the world,” referring to the church age. We are somewhere at the end, but we haven’t reached the end, so we keep working.
This is a very large, never-ending job that requires the dedication of every saint if it is to be done right, and this is what God’s people need to focus on like a laser and not waste precious, fleeting time with things of little to no eternal importance. The time lost cannot be recaptured. If God’s people don’t do God’s will today, it won’t be done. It is treasure lost.
I don’t hesitate to say that, from my experience, a large percentage of fundamentalists and independent Baptists are wrong about these things, and that is because most members of such churches are not serious Bible students and are not prayer warriors and neither are their pastors. Their minds are more filled with sports, the vanities of social media, conservative politics, homely projects, fun and games, than with the pure Word of God. It gives me no joy to say this, and I only mention it in an attempt to help.
It’s not Gog/Magog time; it is wake up time!
“But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:4-9).
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Way of Life Literature
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Publisher of Bible Study Materials