Ezekiel 38, 39: How Soon?

The question still remains–when?  When can we expect this Mideast version of World War III to break out?  As always, the Bible holds the answer.  A renowned Bible scholar, the late Dr. David L. Cooper, wrote knowledgeably about this War of Gog and Magog when he noted–“It is utterly impossible to locate the fulfillment of this prediction after the Millenial Age.  It cannot be placed at the beginning of the Millennium, nor at the end of the Tribulation.  It must, therefore, be located prior to the Tribulation, because there is no other logical place for it to occur since the three other dates are impossible..  This war will occur at a time between now and the beginning of the Tribulation.”

      The Biblical reasoning behind Dr. Cooper’s conclusion is found in Ezekiel 39, where the prophet states that it will take seven years to clear away the rubble and burnt out weaponry left behind by the invading armies.  Verses 9 and 10 describes the process in these words–“And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall make fires of the weapons and burn them, both the shields and the bucklers, the bows and the arrows, and the handstaves, and the spears, and they shall make fires of them seven years; so that they shall take no wood out of the field, neither cut down any out of the forests; for they shall make fires of the weapons; and they shall plunder those that plundered them, and rob those that robbed them, saith the Lord Jehovah.”

      This seven-year period dovetails with the seven years Biblically allotted to the Tribulation, specifically noted in Daniel 9 and Revelation 11.  No similar seven-year period is mentioned anywhere else in the Bible, including following the Battle of Armageddon.  Armageddon, which many people confuse with the Battle of Gog and Magog, is a totally different war.  Gog and Magog involves a limited number of nations in a confederacy to invade Israel, and God uses natural forces to destroy these invading armies.

      But even before the smoke and radiation clears, the world leader the Bible calls the Antichrist will step forward to take rob god of the credit for giving the victory to Israel.  Surprisingly, not only will the rest of the world, including Israel, believe the Antichrist’s boast and go along with his blatant theft of God’s glory, this man of sin will even start believing his own story and self-promoting press‑clippings to see himself as a godlike personage. 

      The European powers, from which the Antichrist comes and gets his power, will unify behind him so that he will be commissioned to step forward and forge a real peace treaty between Israel and her Arab neighbors.  Where before, and even today, neither the Palestinians nor the other Arab and Moslem peoples are serious about resigning themselves to the reality of the Jewish homeland in their midst, in the aftermath of the deadly war and the hundreds of thousands of grieving families throughout their nations, they will at last be ready both emotionally and politically to sit down and sign some kind of interim peace accord with Israel.

      That will be the time when the Antichrist will propose a seven-year period to be agreed to by all sides, the peace treaty spoken of by the Prophet Daniel in Chapter 9, verse 27 of his book–“Then he (the Antichrist) shall confirm a covenant with many for seven years..”   One of the provisions of this peace pact is that the Jews will have the right to build a temple or tabernacle on the old Temple Mount, alongside the Moslem holy places of the Dome of the Rock and the El Aqsa Mosque.  At that time, they will reinstitute the old Biblical sacrifices as commanded in the Book of Exodus.29 and so they will again begin observing Biblical Judaism instead of the Rabbinical Judaism they have observed since the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in A.D. 70.

      But at the midpoint of this seven‑year period, the Antichrist will decide to renege on some of the provisions of the peace treaty he guaranteed to Israel.  He does the unthinkable‑‑he orders his troops to stop the Orthodox Jewish priests from offering their ritual daily sacrifices and their sin offerings.  But if you think this will make all the Israelites unhappy, think again.  There will be lots of worldly unbelieving Jews and unbelieving gentiles who will applaud his action and mock the religious Torah-observant Jews who will protest. 

(taken with thanks from http://www.lasthour.com/GOG-MAGOG.htm)

Note: Let us consider Psalms 24 and 46 and 121. Let us not fear.

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