L. A. Marzulli
Rather than re-invent the wheel, I will post a section from my book, Politics, Prophecy & The Supernatural…. While some of you will disagree, with this and that is fine, this is the view that I hold to.
For those of you who have not read P.P.&S. I would suggest picking up a copy…. I’m posting a lengthy section fro the book here, in hope that it will clear up some misunderstangings regarding Israel.
The Current Political Climate and the Prophetic: A Study of Ezekiel 38-39 Ezekiel 38 and 39 Prophecy: An Overview
There are several points of view regarding WHEN the prophecy of Ezekiel 38 and 39 is to take place. There are some students
of prophecy who place it in conjunction with the Battle of Armageddon, which is discussed in the book of Revelation.
Others place this battle before Armageddon and the seven years of global upheaval prophesized in the book of Daniel, called the
Great Tribulation. For the purpose of this book, I am going to favor the exegesis (interpretation) of the latter point of view.
The Ezekiel 38-39 text is pregnant with meaning, so I am going to comment on certain verses that are applicable to the
scope of this book.
The Main Players: Ezekiel 38:1-3
. . . Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and
prophesy against him, And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief
prince of Meshech and Tubal. There is much discussion about this passage as to the
identity of Gog, in the land of Magog. Where is Magog? Some modern commentators, like Chuck Smith, Chuck Missler,
and Hal Lindsey agree that Magog is a name for the people who lived in the area north of the Caucasus and descended
from the ancient Scythians.1 This corresponds to the modern state of Russia. However there are also other interpretations
that place this area in what is now Turkey. It is important to note that later in the text verse 15 refers to “the north parts.”
If one looks at a map of Israel and goes north, one finds the modern nation of Turkey. North of that is the nation of Russia.
What is of interest is that Russia is presently sending arms to Iran.2 Iran, or Persia (as it was called until modern times), is
the second nation in the list of nations that goes up against a land of “unwalled villages,” (Israel).
Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet: Gomer, and all his bands; the house
of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: [and] many people with thee.
Another group of nations are listed here; Persia, as I mentioned, is the country of Iran. Ethiopia and Libya have the
same modern names as stated in the prophecy. Gomer is Eastern Germany and Poland, while Togarmah could correspond to
Turkey, Yugoslavia, and Romania—the Balkan states. What is interesting about this passage is that Iraq is not mentioned, nor
is Saudi Arabia nor Jordan. If we were to have discussed this several years ago, while Saddam Hussein were still in power,
most of us would have wondered why the nation of Iraq was not amongst those listed in the assault. Especially in light of the
Gulf War, in which Hussein launched scores of Scud missiles into Israel, so there was no mistaking his intentions of ill-will
towards Israel. Yet Iraq is not mentioned in the text. However, as I previously stated, Iran takes the second
“billing” on the list, Gog and Magog being first, and, of course, with all the recent saber rattling by Iranian President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad, his malicious intentions toward the state of Israel have become apparent. For example, in his comments to Iran’s
Holocaust Conference on December 12, 2006, Ahmadinejad said, “Thanks to people’s wishes and God’s will, the trend for
the existence of the Zionist regime is downwards, and this is what God has promised and what all nations want . . . Just as
the Soviet Union was wiped out and today does not exist, so will the Zionist regime soon be wiped out.”3
A few decades ago, Iran was under the rule of Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, the last Shah of Iran. He brought about a
measure of “Western” ideas to the country, which were overthrown by a religious coup in 1979. The Ayatollah Khomeini, exiled in
France for fourteen years, returned triumphantly and promptly created an Islamic state, returning the country to Sharia law
(fourteenth century Islamic jurisprudence). Thousands fled in fear of persecution and death at the hands of the radicals. A
quote taken from Oil & Islam by Farid A. Khavari bolsters the point I am trying to make: “Shortly after Khomeini came to
power, the Iranian people began to have their regrets. On the walls throughout the country appeared these words: Marg bar
mar, ke goftim mar bar shah! Which translates—Death to us, that we said ‘death to the Shah!’”4
* * *
Presently, we have the Iranian government actively seeking nuclear power: a weapon.5 This has been the source of endless
talks in the anemic United Nations. Ahmadinejad has stated openly that he wishes to “wipe Israel off the map.”6 With venom
such as this, the Ezekiel prophecy is especially poignant at this juncture in history. Following is another one of Ahmadinejad’s
more recent comments:
(IHC News, 04 December 2006) In a meeting between Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Hamas-
led Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, the Iranian leader reiterated that Israel’s days
are numbered. “This regime was established in order to force the policy of the United States and Britain on the states in
the region. It can’t even help the establishment of peace and security,” Ahmadinejad said from Tehran on Friday,
01 December 2006.7
* * *
After many days thou shalt be visited: in the [last] 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 always been waste: but is brought forth out of the nations, and they
shall dwell safely all of them.
This verse is describing the return of the Jews to the ancient land of Israel. At the turn of the twentieth century, this part of the
prophecy would have seemed absurd. The idea that Israel would be gathered back into the land would have seemed farfetched.
Remember, the Jews had been scattered amongst the nations, in what is called the Diaspora, for almost 2000 years. The idea that
this conjunct group of people would somehow form a nation was certainly a remote one. Note the mention in this verse of
“the mountains of Israel, which have always been waste.” The Turks denuded the country of trees, i.e. Israel.
“Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes . . . the spell of a curse that has withered its fields and fettered its energies . . . Palestine is
desolate and unlovely . . . It is a hopeless, dreary, heartbroken land,” from Mark Twain’s Innocents Abroad. 8
* * *
The following is an account of what Israel looked like at the turn of the nineteenth century:
The Jews returning to Israel at the end of the last century found a denuded country. The pine and oak forests of
Biblical times had been cut by successive conquerors and laid bare by centuries of uncontrolled grazing. The
final blow came in the 19th century when the ruling Ottoman Turks clear-cut whatever forest remained to
obtain timber for building the trans-Arabian railroad. They left the country more than 97 percent bare.
In the late nineteenth century Mark Twain, the famous American Author, journeyed through Israel and wrote in his
journal about what he saw. Here is an excerpt describing the land in 1867:
Stirring scenes . . . occur in the valley (Jezreel) no more. There is not a solitary village throughout its whole
extent—not for thirty miles in either direction. There are two or three small clusters of Bedouin tents, but not
a single permanent habitation. One may ride ten miles hereabouts and not see ten human beings.
. . . the sort of solitude to make one dreary . . . Come to Galilee for that . . . these unpeopled deserts, these
rusty mounds of barrenness, that never, never, never do shake the glare from their harsh outlines, and fade and
faint into vague perspective, that melancholy ruin of Capernaum: this stupid village of Tiberias, slumbering
under its six funeral palms. Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes . . . desolate and unlovey . . . it is dreamland.9
* * *
Since Israel became a nation, it has planted one hundred eighty-five million trees; it also is the world’s third largest
exporter of fruit and vegetables. The once barren desert of Israel has truly bloomed.
In still discussing Ezekiel 38:8, the reference to “in the latter years” is of the utmost importance. I believe this mention of
“the latter years” is a direct reference to our time period because Israel for the first time in nearly two thousand years is “back” in
their homeland. Therefore, the time for this prophecy of Ezekiel 38 to be fulfilled is now. When the scripture says in the “latter
years” how else can one interpret this? I say this because this passage comes after chapter 37, which describes “dry bones”
(an analogy to Israel) as assembling together and then coming back to life. Since Israel has already been gathered back into
its original homeland, the prophecy of Ezekiel 37 has been fulfilled. The chapter immediately after, 38, describes an attack
on a land of unwalled villages. I cannot drive the following point home enough: since the prophecy of Israel being restored
as a nation has already been fulfilled, the next prophecy to be fulfilled is an attack on the land of unwalled villages (Israel),
and I believe it will happen in my lifetime.
Thou shalt ascend and come like a storm, thou shall be like a cloud to cover the land, thou, and all thy bands,
and many people with thee. Thus saith the Lord GOD; It shall also come to pass, that at the same time shall
things come into thy mind, and thou shall think an evil thought: And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of
unwalled villages. (emphasis added)
In this verse there is a statement that is completely unprecedented in the ancient world, that of a land of “unwalled
villages.” This was unheard of in antiquity. The first thing a tribe or group of people who wanted to build a city would do, in the
ancient world, would be to build the highest, strongest, thickest, wall they possibly could, to keep out invading armies. To try to
inhabit any land without doing this would have been suicidal. The fact that Ezekiel refers to precisely this aspect in the prophecy is
incredible. It was a way of life that did not exist until modern times. As a result, I believe this is another stone that we can mortar into
the formidable wall concerning the accuracy of biblical prophecy.
I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither
bars nor gates, To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now
inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods,
that dwell in the midst of the land. [Now at the time of the invasion] Sheba, and Dedan, and the merchants
of Tarshish, with all of 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, and to take away the cattle and the goods, and
a great spoil? (emphasis added)
Once again, “having neither bars nor gates” is an idea that was
foreign to the ancient world; however, it describes the modern world precisely. In the ancient world sieges were commonplace,
as was just discussed. For example, when Jerusalem was under siege in AD 70, it took the Romans five months to break
through the walls.10 Up until recent times—the latter part of the nineteenth century—using a wall as defense was the mode
of warfare. This type of warfare became obsolete in the Modern Age because of technical advances, specifically the airplane.
Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say unto Gog. Thus saith the Lord GOD; In that day when my people Israel
dwells safely, shalt thou not know it? And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts. (emphasis added)
This verse identifies where “Gog” is from, the far North. Directly north of Israel is Turkey, but Russia is the only country
that lies in the “far north.” I find it incredible that the Russian president Vladimir Putin sells arms to the Iranians. For example,
according to the online source MOSNEWS, in an article titled “Russia in a Hurry to Sell Weapons to Iran”:
“Russia is intensifying efforts to sell weapons to Iran while such sales remain legal amid mounting pressure on
the Islamic state over its controversial nuclear program,” the daily Kommersant said on Monday.
Moscow “has stepped up military-technological cooperation with Tehran,” the business daily said, citing
an unidentified source. It said top officials within Russia’s military-industrial
complex decided to concentrate on arms sales to Tehran for two reasons.
“Firstly, as many weapons as possible must be sold to Iran before an international embargo against this
country comes into force. “Secondly, should the United States decide to go to
war in Iran, Russia wants Iran to be well-armed to ensure that US forces become at least as bogged down there as
they already are in Iraq, the Daily said.11 The Russians have also made it clear that they will side
with the Iranians should the US impose sanctions in order to stop that country’s development of nuclear technology.12 Is the
stage being set for the nations mentioned in the Ezekiel 38-39 prophecy to line up with each other in a loose confederacy?
And thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts, thou, and many people with thee, all of them
riding upon horses, a great company, and a mighty army: And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a
cloud to cover the land; it shall be in the latter days [it’s going to take place 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
Once again the term “latter days” is used. When a passage of scripture repeats a phrase or an idea, it brings more significance;
thus, one should allow such repeated phrases or ideas greater importance. The prophet Ezekiel is driving home the idea that
the invasion of Israel will take place in “the latter days,” or at the end of days. There are some who also would argue that this
war has happened before. The main reason why this “battle” cannot be linked to an earlier time is that the nation of Israel
was not gathered back into the homeland until 1947! Thus, prior to 1947, there was no nation of Israel to invade.
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? And it shall come to pass at
the same time when Gog shall come against the land of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, that my fury shall come
up in my face. For in my jealousy and in the fire of my wrath have I spoken, Surely in that day there shall be a
great shaking in the land of Israel; So that the fish of the sea, the fowls of the heaven, the beasts of the field, and
all of the creeping things that creep upon the earth, and all 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, every wall shall
fall to the ground. And I will call for a sword against him throughout all my mountains, saith the Lord
GOD: every man’s sword shall be against his brother.
Here we have the description of the battle. It is interesting to note several things. One is that there appears to be a great
earthquake. (Whether this alludes to Israel’s use of a thermonuclear device that brings about this earthquake is noteworthy.) The
other is the idea that those who comprise this confederacy of nations, turn on one another, thus, fulfilling the passage stated
above, “every man’s sword shall be against his brother.”
And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; 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. Thus
will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know
that I am the LORD.
These verses refer to what happens in the battle and could allude to a nuclear exchange—I believe descriptions like great
hailstones and fire and brimstone used in the text convey this idea-between Israel and the confederacy of nations that have
descended on her. One point to consider is that when this attack occurs, Israel will most likely respond with the only option it has
available, the use of its atomic arsenal. If Israel does not respond this way, the overwhelming number of forces against it would
overrun the nation and annihilate the populace. The Israeli response of using its nuclear armaments is the only option that
it will have when this scenario occurs. While Israel has never come right out and admitted their nuclear capabilities, there are
numerous articles hinting that they, in fact, have a nuclear arsenal that may have has many as four hundred bombs. An interesting
Google search is Samson Option. This will bring up sites that discuss the concept of Israel’s use of its atomic arsenal.13