On the last page, we talked about Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39. We covered a future biblical event concerning an invasion by a group of nations. This is found in Ezekiel chapter 38. We covered how all the names we are unfamiliar with are ancestors. These names can be found in Genesis chapter 10. They are descendants of Noah. We went through the historic writers that tied the genealogy of these nations together. We discovered that this future invasion will be led by Russia. The nations involved are Russia, Libya, Ethiopia, Armenia, Turkestan, Iran, and Germany. When these nations invade, God fights on behalf of Israel. Israel emerges victorious. The entire world now knows there is a God because this very event is a testimony of that. God restores Israel for His own name’s sake. If you want to read the first part then click here.
Eze 38:13 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?
We see an invasion by a group of nations. We have already identified who the players are on the last page. When this invasion happens we see that Sheba and Dedan protest. They say to those invading nations that they should not be doing this. The merchants of Tarshish with all the young lions thereof also protest. Sheba and Dedan is the area of Saudi Arabia. There is some debate as to who Tarshish is. Some people try to identify it with Spain. I don’t think it is Spain.
1Ki 10:22 For the king had at sea a navy of Tharshish with the navy of Hiram: once in three years came the navy of Tharshish, bringing gold, and silver, ivory, and apes, and peacocks.
Jer 10:9 Silver spread into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman, and of the hands of the founder: blue and purple is their clothing: they are all the work of cunning men.
Eze 27:12 Tarshish was thy merchant by reason of the multitude of all kind of riches; with silver, iron, tin, and lead, they traded in thy fairs.
Tarshish was a distant port from which Silver, Iron, lead, ivory, monkeys, tin, and peacocks were brought to Israel. From the Akkadian, the word means to be smelted. Herodotus says that it was located “Beyond the pillars of Hercules” (beyond the Mediterranean)
Isa 60:9 Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee.
Tarshish had strong ships that were capable of very long voyages. That’s why Jonah tries to take a Tarshish ship.
Jon 1:3 But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.
Tarshish was an Island. It was a key source of tin. Britannia metal was an alloy of 93% tin, 5% antimony, and 3% copper. It was used in all sorts of utensils and drinking vessels. It was similar in color to pewter, but it was easier to work with than other alloys. It was also harder and stronger. Global commerce from Britain was confirmed by archaeological discoveries dating back to 1500 BC. Tin was exported in large quantities to Europe from Cornwall England during the Roman period.
I know we need more proof. While this is not conclusive, it is possible that Tarshish is Britain. All the young lions thereof could be in reference to all the places that were once occupied by British rule.
Tarshish, Sheba, and Dedan are among a group of nations that protest this invasion as it begins to happen. Their accusation is that these nations are invading to take a spoil
Chapter 39 goes into the cleanup after this great battle. This is the only place in the entire bible that I know of where it goes into great detail about a cleanup after a major battle. I believe there is a good reason for this.
Eze 39:1 Therefore, thou son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal:
Eze 39:2 And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee, and will cause thee to come up from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel:
Eze 39:3 And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.
Eze 39:4 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.
Eze 39:5 Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.
Ezekiel 39:3-5: There are other places in the bible that talk about the birds feasting on flesh after the battle. It is found at the battle of Armageddon as well. Because of this language, many scholars believe that the event in Ezekiel takes place at the same time as the battle of Armageddon. They believe that the battle in Eze38 is part of the battle of Armageddon.
Eze 39:6 And I will send a fire on Magog, and among them that dwell carelessly in the isles: and they shall know that I am the LORD.
Eze 39:7 So will I make my holy name known in the midst of my people Israel; and I will not let them pollute my holy name any more: and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD, the Holy One in Israel.
Ezekiel 39:6-7 God says he will send fire on Magog and on them that dwell carelessly in the isles. The word carelessly in the Hebrew is betach. It means a false sense of confidence. Isles comes from a word that can also be coastlands. The NIV translates this word to mean coastlands. The Phrase my people Israel is one reason why some believe it will take place after the rapture of the church.
Eze 39:8 Behold, it is come, and it is done, saith the Lord GOD; this is the day whereof I have spoken.
Eze 39:9 And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall set on fire and burn the weapons, both the shields and the bucklers, the bows and the arrows, and the handstaves, and the spears, and they shall burn them with fire seven years:
Eze 39:10 So that they shall take no wood out of the field, neither cut down any out of the forests; for they shall burn the weapons with fire: and they shall spoil those that spoiled them, and rob those that robbed them, saith the Lord GOD.
Ezekiel 39:8-10 Israel is going to burn the weapons with fire for seven years. They will use these weapons for fuel. What weapon can be burned for 7 years for power or energy? These weapons have the hint of being nuclear. In fact, it is interesting that a Soviet missile’s warhead shelve life is seven years. Will Israel use the components and materials from undetonated soviet missiles as energy?
Eze 39:11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will give unto Gog a place there of graves in Israel, the valley of the passengers on the east of the sea: and it shall stop the noses of the passengers: and there shall they bury Gog and all his multitude: and they shall call it The valley of Hamongog.
Eze 39:12 And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land.
Ezekiel 39:11-12 it takes 7 months to bury all the bodies from this battle. They bury them east of the sea. (downwind) I believe this to be east of the Dead Sea.
Eze 39:13 Yea, all the people of the land shall bury them; and it shall be to them a renown the day that I shall be glorified, saith the Lord GOD.
Eze 39:14 And they shall sever out men of continual employment, passing through the land to bury with the passengers those that remain upon the face of the earth, to cleanse it: after the end of seven months shall they search.
Ezekiel 39:13-14 “They shall sever out men of continual employment” basically they hire professionals to bury the dead. They bury everything downwind east of the Dead Sea.
Eze 39:15 And the passengers that pass through the land, when any seeth a man’s bone, then shall he set up a sign by it, till the buriers have buried it in the valley of Hamongog.
Eze 39:16 And also the name of the city shall be Hamonah. Thus shall they cleanse the land.
Ezekiel 39:15,16 after this battle if someone sees something the professionals missed when they buried the dead. He does not touch it. He marks the location and has the professionals come to bury the remains.
Eze 39:17 And, thou son of man, thus saith the Lord GOD; Speak unto every feathered fowl, and to every beast of the field, Assemble yourselves, and come; gather yourselves on every side to my sacrifice that I do sacrifice for you, even a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel, that ye may eat flesh, and drink blood.
Eze 39:18 Ye shall eat the flesh of the mighty, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, of rams, of lambs, and of goats, of bullocks, all of them fatlings of Bashan.
Eze 39:19 And ye shall eat fat till ye be full, and drink blood till ye be drunken, of my sacrifice which I have sacrificed for you.
Eze 39:20 Thus ye shall be filled at my table with horses and chariots, with mighty men, and with all men of war, saith the Lord GOD.
Eze 39:21 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.
Eze 39:22 So the house of Israel shall know that I am the LORD their God from that day and forward.
Eze 39:23 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.
Eze 39:24 According to their uncleanness and according to their transgressions have I done unto them, and hid my face from them.
Eze 3922-24 All Nations are going to know that there is a God because of this event and they are going to know who God is. They are going to know the reason why Israel went into captivity and they are going to know why they were restored.
Eze 39:25 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Now will I bring again the captivity of Jacob, and have mercy upon the whole house of Israel, and will be jealous for my holy name;
Eze 39:26 After that they have borne their shame, and all their trespasses whereby they have trespassed against me, when they dwelt safely in their land, and none made them afraid.
Eze 39:27 When I have brought them again from the people, and gathered them out of their enemies’ lands, and am sanctified in them in the sight of many nations;
Eze 39:28 Then shall they know that I am the LORD their God, which caused them to be led into captivity among the heathen: but I have gathered them unto their own land, and have left none of them any more there.
Eze 39:29 Neither will I hide my face any more from them: for I have poured out my spirit upon the house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.
Let’s break this down
- Leftover weapons provide seven years of fuel for Israel. How are weapons burned for fuel or energy?
Professionals are hired to clear the battlefield and bury the dead.
It takes 7 months to clear the land
They bury everything east of the Dead Sea (downwind)
If a traveler finds something the professionals missed he does not touch it. He marks the location and lets the professionals take care of it.
This just happens to be the kind of procedures you can find in the contemporary department of defense documentation for an NBC clean up. (Nuclear Biological Chemical) This is a very contemporary language for a book that is some 2600 years old. I will not say this means nuclear weapons are used in the coming events described in Ezekiel 39. I won’t dismiss it either. I just don’t know for sure what this contemporary language really means. Keep in mind that these same cleanup procedures are used with biological weapons as well. They may not be nuclear at all. In fact, using nuclear weapons goes against the accusation by nations that the goal of this invasion is to take a spoil. If they use nuclear weapons then there is nothing left to take a spoil from.
So how close are we to this event? Where does it sit in the biblical timeline of Bible prophecy? Well, some of the allies are already in place.
The big question here is will Iran get nuclear capabilities? It may not develop its own technology, But the Russians may supply them with what they need for this invasion. You may want to turn down the volume, and please forgive the obnoxious music in the next two videos. The information is good.
ok, now it is safe. You can turn the sound up again
Most all the alliances are in place. We need to see what is going to happen in Libya. Gaddafi had great relations with Russia. We need to watch how the new government will develop its relationship with.
We also need to watch what happens in Turkey. (meshech and tubal) For a long time, Turkey has been trying to be part of the west. Turkey has ongoing negotiations for admittance into the European Union. They went through a lot of changes to get to that point. In 1925 Turkey adopted the western calendar. In 1926 Turkey adopted the Swiss civil code and later the Italian penal code. In 1928 they switched to the Latin alphabet. In 1931 they went to the metric system. In 1934 all Turks were obligated to take a surname and they gave women the right to vote. After world war two Turkey joined all the main western institutions. 1941 Turkey joined NATO. (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) In 1945 they joined the United Nations. In 1947 they Joined the International Monetary Fund. In 1948 they joined the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. (OECD) In 1949 the council of Europe. In 1963 Turkey signed an association agreement with the European Economic Community. In 1987 it applied for full EEC membership. Finally, in 1999 Turkey was recognized as a full EU candidate. Since this time Turkey has been working on becoming a member of the EU. In an effort to do this they began implementing widespread reforms, including a complete overhaul of its penal code. Even Obama has called for the EU to allow Turkey to be a member
The thing that works against Turkey is its refusal to recognize the Island nation of Cyprus. Turkey is also a predominantly Muslim population. I can see two possibilities, Turkey is going to be allowed to be an EU member and be part of the west, or it is going to thrust back to its Islamic roots. The hardline Islamic fundamentalist will take over. If this happens Russia will improve their relationship with Turkey and gain a strategic foothold in the region.
The really big problem is Cyprus. Turkey responded to a military coup and invaded Cyprus in 1974. The northern third of the Island is controlled by the Turkish Cypriots. The southern two-thirds are inhabited by the Greek Cypriots. There is a buffer zone between the two parts that is patrolled by the UN. In 1983 the Turkish held area declared itself the Turkish Republic of North Cyprus. It is only recognized by Turkey. Cyprus is already a member of the EU. The EU benefits only apply to the Greek Cypriot community. Unless Turkey is willing to give up Cyprus it will probably not be a member of the EU. It will fall back to its hardline Islamic roots and align with Russia.
It will be interesting to watch this unfold. Turkey has a population of 70 million people. 60 million people are Muslim. If Turkey joined the EU the Muslim population in Europe would rise dramatically. Opponents of Turkey’s membership like to point out that it would extend the border of the EU to Iraq, Iran, and Syria. There is a big concern about the admittance of an Islamic nation to a historically Christian community. Turkey also makes a good buffer zone for the EU. For all these reasons I think Turkey will one day give up on membership and align itself as an ally with Russia.
At this point, we have discovered all the nations involved in this invasion. We see that they have already aligned and they are forming strong friendships. Their alliances seem to oppose the west. It is the western alliances that will form a protest during the invasion and claim that they have come to take a spoil. One question remains. Where does this event fit on the biblical timetable? There are three points of view when it comes to the timeline of this event
First, Some scholars believe that this will happen at the time the battle of Armageddon happens. They point out the fact that some of the biblical language is the same. They may be correct.
Rev 19:17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;
Rev 19:18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.
Rev 19:19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.
The only problem I see with this is at the battle of Armageddon Jesus returns and sets up his kingdom for a thousand years. When he does this he will set the world back to the way it was before the flood. I don’t understand the need for Israel’s to burn weapons in order to create energy for 7 years. Why would Israel need nuclear power after the return of Christ? Even if this passage does not speak of nuclear power how can Israel burn the modern weapons for seven years for energy?
Second, Some people place this war after the thousand-year reign of Christ.
Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Rev 20:8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
Notice that the circumstances are different. All the nations of the earth are involved in this battle. Ezekiel just has an outside ring of nations from that region as the ones who invade. The invasion is led by the king of the north not the four corners of the globe. No one objects and raises a protest. I suspect that the Magog battle becomes so infamous that this future battle is identified as a battle where God intervenes and so the battle is likened and named after it. It is possible that they are really two separate events. This is what I currently believe.
Third, Then there are those that believe the battle is just around the corner. They believe we are on the horizon of this great battle. Some believe that it will happen before the rise of the antichrist and the 7 year period of his reign. While this explains the 7 years need to burn the weapons for fuel, It does not explain how the Antichrist gains power. Remeber that after this event all the nations will know that there is a God and that he drove Israel into exile and then regathered them again. How can all nations know this and accept the Antichrist? If this event takes place after the rapture of the church but before the 7 year period talked about in Daniel, how can the world know that Israel went into captivity because of their iniquity? There are some problems with this view as well.
There are a few things in the passage found in Ezekiel 38 and 39 that seem to stand out to me. Here they are in no important order.
- Why is there no mention of Syria? Syria is probably one of Russia’s biggest allies.
- All the countries that invade Israel do not border Israel. It takes place at a time when Israel is at peace with their neighbors! The bible says “in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword” So at this point Israel is at peace with everyone surrounding their borders. I can tell you that is not the way it is in Israel today!
- Notice the motive is different. Today, Israel’s enemies have one stated goal. They want to wipe Israel off the map. Saudi Arabia even supports this. When the battle in Ezekiel occurs Saudi Arabia launches a protest and accuses the invading nations of trying to take a spoil. Not only is the goal different, there is something these nations want to possess. The goal of this battle in Ezekiel is not to wipe Israel off the map.
These observations tell me this thing is not around the corner. It will not happen any minute. Although the stage is being set it could still be a long way out. Some other events have got to happen before this one can take place. So what other event listed in the bible takes place before this one? I will talk about it on the next pages. Talk about your cliffhangers.