With all of the alarming events occurring in the Middle East recently, many Christians are questioning how it may all may fit into the "End Times" scenario of Scriptures. And as we said last week, even though the current situation is a far cry from the Last Battle of Armageddon spoken of in prophecy, these current events and many, many others do come together to create an amazingly perfect scenario for the Stage to be set just as Scriptures predict preceding a battle that will begin near the start of the Tribulation—therefore near Christ’s Return.
Today will be the second part to our study of these events, as we look first at the whole picture which Scriptures portray, and secondly, objectively compare current world events in that area to establish how accurately these prophecies are playing out today. Last week was on the history, and current status, of Israel, because Israel always has been, and always will be, the Center of all God is doing on this earth. And the unmistakable, unarguable, "picture perfect" fulfillment of writings about that Nation alone removes question as to whether God was involved in these prophecies. Next, we will look at the other "troubled" nations in current headlines and see how they fair when compared to End Times events.
The Book of Revelation, gives a walk through of how the Last Days will unfold. But for this Study, we will mainly be referring back to a number of OT prophecies as well, because when John wrote Revelation, he pulled from the many, many end time prophecies spoken of by a number of OT prophets and put them all together to show how they would all come to fruition in the final countdown before Christ's Return.
Let's pick up exactly where we left off last week: with Israel reborn: Ezekiel 37:10-14, 21. We saw how this and many other precise prophecies occurred, against all odds in our generation. Now listen as Ezekiel continues prophesying about what occurs next: Ezekiel 39:1-2; Ezekiel 38:1-9. Scriptures say that a powerful army will come down on Israel after the Jews return to their own land, and will "a guard" to smaller nations they have drawn together as an alliance. [guard].
So, this nation is to be a much more powerful nation who provides and guards over the smaller nations as they attack together. There is much evidence as to who this may be: Russia. Many scholars have drawn this conclusion even before they rose to power today. I have heard some say it might be the descendants from where Turkey is today; the only other country from the north since some may think this is a ploy to fit modern day circumstances into ancient prophecy. We will take a moment to give solid credibility to Russia. There is very solid evidence Magog must be Russia from several viewpoints: 1) geography: Ezekiel 39:2 said they will come from the "Far north". The word literally meaning, and often translated, "the uttermost north!" If you go to the farthest northern nation which is inhabited today above Israel, there is only one country in the entire region; it literally almost runs through Moscow. 2) ancestry: Genesis 10 records the sons of Japheth, Noah's son: Genesis 10:2. The lineage of Magog is spoken of by several ancient historians—all of which tie them to the same people: the Scythians. Hesiod, the father of Greek didactic poetry, identified Magog with the Scythians in the 7th century BC. Josephus Flavius, in the first century, claimed the Magog descendants were called by Greeks, "Scythians." The ancient historian Herodotus (484-425 BC), called the "father of history", also connected Magog and the Scythians. Multiple studies and finds by geneticists and archeologists overwhelmingly trace Scythians to modern day Russia. "The first people of Russia, as far back as we can account (ca 7th c. BC), were the Scythians." And lastly, Turkey would not be the Biblical reference for Magog because Turkey is included in the list of nations who will fall under Magog's protection and leadership. So, Magog is Russia.
This brings us to another amazing piece of the prophecy: the fact that Magog had to be a militarily large and superior force in the region, in order to protect and supply the smaller nations. Russia just happens to be in the exact geographical location of Magog, and is the most powerful army in the region. But this next fact should blow you away: even though Russia has the power and the location spoken of in Scriptures, they have been almost non-existent in any of the affairs of these countries, or even in the Middle East since the Cold-War Era. It has been the United States overseeing and supplying many countries in the region. This left many to wonder how Russia could become so involved with these countries without connections or a presence in the area, especially with such a U.S. presence there already. But there has been a massive and rapid shift in every area of the Middle East in the last 15 years, which is far more encompassing and amazing than most in the U.S. have even begun to realize. Listen to these very recent reports: Foreign Affairs, a nonpartisan magazine devoted to analysis of world events, recently quoted in an article: "Russia is on a roll in the Middle East... Throughout the Middle East, from North Africa to the Persian Gulf, Russia is ubiquitous (present everywhere), with its high-level visitors, its weapons, its mercenaries, and its deals to build nuclear power plants... The reemergence of Russia as a major power broker in the Middle East is striking not only in contrast with the United States’ erratic posture in the region but because for a quarter century after the Cold War, Russia had been absent from the region." Now let's take a closer look at the nations that will join this coalition seemingly led by Russia in this Latter Day attack on Israel: Ezekiel 38:5. Look at the modern-day identity of these nations: Persia - Persia changed it's name to Iran in 1935; Ethiopia - Represents ancient Ethiopia and the area of Sudan; Libya - Still represents Libya today; Gomer and Togarmah - Represent modern-day Turkey and possibly Eastern European countries. Every nation listed in this passage is receiving military aid and/or training from Russia today—all of them. The "Many peoples with you..." will include a host of other Israel-hating countries from the Middle East as well. We are all aware of the new relations between Russia, Iran and Syria in recent events, but now with these prophecies of Russia as a major power in the Middle East today. Read the recent report from the Washington Post: "There’s a new power rising in the Middle East, and it needs to be wooed. Three decades after the Soviet Union collapsed and the United States emerged as the undisputed superpower in the Middle East and North Africa, a resurgent Russia is back." This Report goes on to reveals: U.S. Allied leaders from Saudi Arabia and Egypt are now visiting and strengthening ties with Moscow. Turkey has new strong relations with Russia and is purchasing Russia's advanced S-400 missile system. Iraq has new arms deals with Moscow, and has invested with Russia in a strategic oil pipeline linked to Turkey. And Russia has opened an intelligence-sharing center with the Iraqi military in Baghdad. Egypt has recently purchased fighter jets and attack helicopters from Russia, and has given rights to use Egyptian military bases, and has committed to holding joint military exercises together. Syria has allowed Russia to maintain troops on the ground, establish military bases in Syria, and they now have a long-term agreement for a Naval Base at Tartus, giving Russia a strong presence in the Mediterranean Sea. Russia has established a close relationship with the Libyan warlord Khalifa Hifter, and signed new oil deals with Libya. Read the direct quotes from the Washington Report: Literally sounding like they were written with the OT Prophecies: "Russian oilmen, arms dealers and financiers have been fanning out across the region, striking billions of dollars’ worth of deals, reviving old relationships and forging new ones from Libya to the Persian Gulf… Russia has nearly doubled its weapons exports to the region over the past five years, with $24 billion worth of orders due to be fulfilled over the next decade......increasingly it is Russia that is seen as the go-to power for a region consumed by crises and unsure of Washington’s reliability,... Russia has managed to create the perception in the Middle East that it is more powerful, more capable and more relevant than the United States..." So, Russia is in the exact spot prophesied as this King of the North called Magog. It identifies with the historical lineage of the Biblical prophecy; in this generation has established a powerful military foothold in the region of the coming conflict; is already supplying military protection and aid to every country listed over 2600 years ago; is extending that reach to other Muslim neighbors in the area; and has a powerful new relationship with the second listed nation in Biblical prophecy—Iran, the emerging regional leader, and hater of Israel, of which the Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has this to say to the Muslim nations of the Middle East about Israel: “Any other solution is fruitless and infertile… As I‘ve said before, if Muslims and Palestinians unite and all fight, the Zionist regime will not be in existence in 25 years.” “Our stance against Israel is the same stance we have always taken... Israel is a malignant cancerous tumor in the West Asian region that has to be removed and eradicated: it is possible and it will happen… For Iran, the Palestinian cause is not a tactical issue, nor is it a 'political' strategy. It's an issue of beliefs, an issue of the heart and an issue of faith.”
This coming war to take Israel, is to occur just before or at the start of the coming Tribulation period. Scriptures tell us the coming anti-Christ will rise in recognition by making a 7-year Peace Treaty in the Middle East with Israel: Daniel 9:27. How perfectly does this match the world's desire in this moment of time? Peace in the Middle East—this world condition was prophesied 2500yrs ago. This Treaty will either be what makes Israel believe it is safe for a time, preceding the attack, or, it will be a Treaty for Peace which immediately follows the attack on Israel—due to the results of war. I personally feel the Peace treaty may follow the attack. The results of this war are Supernatural. This massive coalition will be completely and utterly destroyed by the literal Hand of God when they march for Israel: Ezekiel 38:18-23;
Ezekiel 39:4-16. Whether the Treaty occurs before or after the attack, it is this Treaty which would seem to signal the beginning of the anti-Christ's seven-year reign on earth; meaning the stage for this war must be set just before the beginning of the Tribulation; which is at the Return of Christ for His Saints. With the information given last week and this week alone—you be the judge, and answer these questions for yourself: Are these prophecies perfectly pictured by the situation in the Middle East today? According to the nations' locations, alignments, abilities, and intentions—all written about over 2500 years ago? If you agree they are, how close does that place us to the Coming of our Lord and Savior? If it is true that He must be coming soon. Have you made a decision about whether He will be your Savior yet? And if you have, are you living for Him as though you truly believe what we have just studied? Matthew 24:42-46.
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