Israel, Gog, & Magog


 

 Israel, Gog & Magog


The book “Epicenter” by Joel Rosenberg is a must read!  It is what inspired me to put together this teaching brief, and wanted to pass it on to those who are interested in the future of Israel as told us in the scriptures.

Joel uses a statement that hits the nail on the head for me, as we see Christians who struggle with the tension between politics and our Christian faith, and I quote:

THE THIRD LENS

While it is fashionable in our times to analyze world events merely by looking through the lenses of politics and economics, it is also a serious mistake, for it prevents one from being able to see in three dimensions. To truly understand the significance of global events and trends, one must analyze them through a third lens as well: the lens of Scripture. Only then can the full picture become clearer.


So I begin with a bit of background in Ezekiel 37, including Dakes Study Notes:

By the resurrection of dry bones

Ezekiel 37:4-5 4 Again he said unto me, Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. 5 Thus saith the Lord GOD unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live(MB).

Israel is here symbolized under the figure of a valley of dry bones being brought back to life in the bodies of a great army of men. It pictures scattered Israel being brought back from the nations and living again as a nation themselves, in their own land. –Dake's Study Notes

9 He said to me, "Prophesy to the breath. Prophesy, son of man. Tell the breath, 'GOD, the Master, says, Come from the four winds. Come, breath. Breathe on these slain bodies. Breathe life!"(MB)

These slain -- suggesting violent deaths of people who had once lived. Now they were being made to live again. Of course, the whole picture is symbolic of the nations of Israel who, once alive and in the grace and favor of God, had become dead because of sin, and now were being brought back into proper relationship with God to live again.. —Dake's Study Notes

10 So I prophesied, just as he commanded me. The breath entered them and they came alive! They stood up on their feet, a huge army. 11 Then God said to me, "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Listen to what they're saying: 'Our bones are dried up, our hope is gone, there's nothing left of us. (MB)

Then -- when the vision is completed, the interpretation was given so that there would be no misunderstanding of the true meaning.

The vision concerns Israel, not dead churches or Gentiles, as often taught. These bones are the whole house of Israel, not dried up churches. —Dake's Study Notes

12 "Therefore, prophesy. Tell them, 'GOD, the Master, says: I'll dig up your graves and bring you out alive—O my people! Then I'll take you straight to the land of Israel. (MB)

a [them] The whole house of Israel, not a part of it; hence, there will be no division of the kingdom when this is fulfilled.
 
b [my people, I will open your graves,and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel] (KJ) The whole house of Israel are My people, and I will open their graves and cause them to come out of them, and I will bring them into the land of Israel again.
 
c [graves] The nations where the Jews are scattered are the symbolic graves of Israel. It is from these that all the tribes of Jacob will be gathered. At that time, God will save them and put the Holy Spirit in them, and they will live in His presence eternally.
—Dake's Study Notes

13 When I dig up graves and bring you out as my people, you'll realize that I am GOD. 14 I'll breathe my life into you and you'll live. Then I'll lead you straight back to your land and you'll realize that I am GOD. I've said it and I'll do it. GOD's Decree.' " (MB)

  a [your own land] (KJ) Your own land -- the promised land of Palestine.
 
b [then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it] (KJ) Then -- when all this is fulfilled you (all Israel) will know that I the Lord have spoken it, and performed it. All this remains to be completely fulfilled. Of course it is now beginning to be fulfilled and a sufficient number of Jews have already gone back to their land to make a nation; they have had a nation since A.D. 1948. The prophecy will continue in fulfillment until the whole house of Israel is gathered back at the second coming of Christ to the earth. It is said that about 10,000 Jews or Israelites a month are returning to their own land. Israel is becoming a greater nation every year, but the complete fulfillment of these predictions will not be until the Millennium. The predictions of Ezek. 34:11-31; 36:1-38; 37:1-28 and many other chapters remain to be fulfilled in the future.
—Dake's Study Notes

By the uniting of two sticks

15 GOD's Message came to me: 16 "You, son of man: Take a stick and write on it, 'For Judah, with his Israelite companions.' Then take another stick and write on it, 'For Joseph—Ephraim's stick, together with all his Israelite companions.' (MB)

a [one stick] (KJ)The symbolism here is that of taking two sticks, writing on them the names of the two divisions of the kingdom of Israel, and joining them together in his hand as one stick (Ezek. 37:16-18). The application or truth symbolized is that both divisions of the kingdom will become one nation again upon the mountains of Israel as before the division in the days of Rehoboam and Jeroboam (1Ki. 12). They will be one nation forever under the Messiah.
 
b [Israel his companions] (MB) Note that both Judah and Ephraim, or both divisions of Israel, were called Israel, and that their companions were Israelites. The two divisions were called Judah and Ephraim.
—Dake's Study Notes

17 Then tie the two sticks together so that you're holding one stick. 18 "When your people ask you, 'Are you going to tell us what you're doing?' 19 tell them, 'GOD, the Master, says, Watch me! I'll take the Joseph stick that is in Ephraim's hand, with the tribes of Israel connected with him, and lay the Judah stick on it. I'll make them into one stick. I'm holding one stick.' (MB)

a [Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand] (KJ)—Dake's Study Notes

20 "Then take the sticks you've inscribed and hold them up so the people can see them. 21 Tell them, 'GOD, the Master, says, Watch me! I'm taking the Israelites out of the nations in which they've been exiled. I'll gather them in from all directions and bring them back home.(MB)

a [Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land] (KJ)These words from "Behold" to the end of this verse were chosen to be put on the Zionist medal commemorating the National Federation in 1896 -- a landmark in the history of the Jewish nation. —Dake's Study Notes

 22 I'll make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel, and give them one king—one king over all of them. Never again will they be divided into two nations, two kingdoms. (MB)

a [one nation in the land] All the tribes of Israel will become one nation again. This means that all the Jews of the world, all from the tribes of Israel everywhere, will be gathered back to their own land to live forever under their Messiah

b [upon the mountains of Israel] (KJ) This again states plainly that all the tribes of Israel will live eternally upon the mountains of Israel -- in their own land, Palestine. 
 
c [one king shall be king to them all] (KJ)The "one king" predicted here will be David, who will be over all the tribes of Israel in their national restoration under the Messiah. This is clear from Ezek. 37:24-25; 34:23-24; Jer. 30:9; Hos. 3:5. Christ will be King of kings and Lord of lords over David and all other earthly kings in eternity, and even over all the resurrected kings and priests (Rev. 19:16).
—Dake's Study Notes

 23 Never again will they pollute their lives with their no-god idols and all those vile obscenities and rebellions. I'll save them out of all their old sinful haunts. I'll clean them up. They'll be my people! I'll be their God! 24 My servant David will be king over them. They'll all be under one shepherd. " 'They'll follow my laws and keep my statutes. 25 They'll live in the same land I gave my servant Jacob, the land where your ancestors lived. They and their children and their grandchildren will live there forever, and my servant David will be their prince forever. (MB)

a [even they, and their children, and their children's children for ever] (KJ) This statement, "even they, and their children, and their children's children forever" is another way of stating eternal generations of natural people on earth (cp. Isa. 59:21). —Dake's Study Notes

26 I'll make a covenant of peace with them that will hold everything together, an everlasting covenant. I'll make them secure and place my holy place of worship at the center of their lives forever. (MB)

a [I will make a covenant of peace with them] This will be done by Christ at His second coming (Ezek. 16:60-62; 20:37; 34:25; Isa. 42:6; 49:8; 55:3; 57:8; 59:21; 61:8; Jer. 31:31-33; Heb. 10:16).
 
b [an everlasting covenant] There are several everlasting covenants in Scripture.
 
c [set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore] (KJ) This refers to the millennial and eternal temple, which is described in detail in Ezek. 40:5 -- Ezek. 47:12, and which is stated to be the eternal capital building of the Messiah in Ezek. 43:7. It will be built by Christ at His second coming (Zech. 6:12-13).
—Dake's Study Notes

27 I'll live right there with them. I'll be their God! They'll be my people! (MB)

a [My tabernacle also shall be with them] (KJ) This is different from the temple, and refers to the canopy over all dwellings in the Millennium when the light of the sun will be increased sevenfold and the light of the moon will be as the present light of the sun.  It no doubt also refers to the eternal city of God in the New Earth, the New Jerusalem, the capital city of God, when He personally will move with the city from the planet heaven to the earth after the Millennium, to dwell among men eternally (Rev. 21:3-5). —Dake's Study Notes

28 " 'The nations will realize that I, GOD, make Israel holy when my holy place of worship is established at the center of their lives forever.' " (MB)

a [sanctify Israel] (KJ) Israel will then be set apart for holy uses and will be considered sanctified under the Messiah as He reigns over them and uses them as His missionaries to evangelize the world (Isa. 2:2-4; 11:9; 52:7; 66:19-21; Zech. 8:23; 14:16-21).
—Dake's Study Notes

Here is a quote from Joel Rosenberg’s book relating to the return of the Jews to Israel.

Consider the numbers. When Israel declared her independence on ay 14, 1948, the country’s population stood at only 806,000. Yet by the end of 2005, nearly 7 million people lived in Israel, 5.6 million of whom were Jewish. Thousands more arrive every year. In 2005 alone, some 19,000 Jews immigrated to Israel. In fact, today more Jews live in the greater Tel Aviv area than in New York City, as many Jews live in Israel as in the United States, and it will not be long before more Jews live in Israel than Jews who do not.

Now we come to Ezekiel, Chapters 38 and 39.  In these scriptures the prophecy is that Russia and Iran will attack Israel.  Never before in human history has Russia and Iran been allies.  But in the 1956, 1967, and 1973 Russia armed the Arab world hoping they would annihilate Israel.

 Ezekiel prophesy against the army of Gog

Ezekiel 38: 1 GOD's Message came to me: 2 "Son of man, confront Gog from the country of Magog, head of Meshech and Tubal. Prophesy against him. (MB)

 Gog Is a Person:

1. He is a chief prince of Mechech and Tubal (Ezek. 38:2-3; 39:1).
 
2. Personal pronouns are used of him (Ezek. 38:2-4; 6:11,13-17,21-22; 39:1-7).
 
3. He is leader of the great army that will fight at Armageddon (Ezek. 38:4-9,11-23; 39:1-7).
 
4. He has a mind and thinks thoughts and makes decisions (Ezek. 38:10-12).
 
5. He goes from place to place like other persons (Ezek. 38:8-9,11,15-16,18 -- Ezek. 39:7).
 
 
6. Others recognize him as a person (Ezek. 38:13).
   —Dake's Study Notes

c [Magog] Magog, Mechech, and Tubal were sons of Japheth from whom came the Scythians, Russians, Muscovites, Tibareni, Cappadocians, and other people who predominate in modern northern Europe and Asia. The Septuagint adds Rosh to this list, which is followed by Young, Rotherham, Moffatt and some others who claim that Russia is referred to thus.—Dake's Study Notes

Dake believes that Gog and Antichrist are one and the same, and that Gog invades Palestine twice—the 1st in the middle of the tribulation and the 2nd is the same as the Battle of Armaggedon.

Joel Rosenberg says that Magog is predominantly Russia, and that Meshech and Tubal are former Soviet republics.
 


3 Say, 'GOD, the Master, says: Be warned, Gog. I am against you, head of Meshech and Tubal. 4 I'm going to turn you around, put hooks in your jaws, and drag you off with your whole army, your horses and riders in full armor—all those shields and bucklers and swords—fighting men armed to the teeth.5 Persia and Cush and Put will be in the ranks, also well-armed, as will (MB)

Persia is what we know as Iran.  Rosenberg points out that for the past 2,500 years, Russia and Iran have never had a military alliance—and he says:

This caused many a skeptic to think, See, the Bible has no idea what it’s talking about. The Russians have ways hated the Iranians. The Iranians have always hated the Russians. Here’s no way they are ever going to form an alliance against Israel or anybody else. This just proves the Bible is full of errors.

Today, even the biggest skeptic of Ezekiel’s intelligence would have to admit that a military alliance between Russia and Iran is emerging for the first time in history.
Economic and political ties between Russia and Iran began to deelop steadily in the 1990s. Military ties grew even more rapidly. Tehran was desperate to rebuild its forces after its long war with Iraq. Moscow was desperate for hard cash after the collapse of the Soviet Union and for a beachhead into the oil-rich Middle East. It was a match made in hell.

Cush includes the modern nations of Sudan, Ethiopia, and possibly Eritrea.

 Put includes Libya, Algeria, and Tunisia.

 6 Gomer and its army and Beth-togarmah out of the north with its army. Many nations will be with you! (MB)

Gomer includes Turkey and possibly Germany and Austria.

Beth-togarmah includes Armenia and the Turkic-speaking peoples of Asia Minor and central Asia.

7 " 'Get ready to fight, you and the whole company that's been called out. Take charge and wait for orders. 8 After a long time, you'll be given your orders. In the distant future you'll arrive at a country that has recovered from a devastating war. People from many nations will be gathered there on the mountains of Israel, for a long time now a wasteland. These people have been brought back from many countries and now live safe and secure. 9 You'll rise like a thunderstorm and roll in like clouds and cover the land, you and the massed troops with you. 10 " 'Message of GOD, the Master: At that time you'll start thinking things over and cook up an evil plot. (MB)

a [evil thought] (KJ) The evil thought of Gog will be that of going up against the Jews who dwell safely and are at rest in their own land, "to take a spoil" —Dake's Study Notes

 11 You'll say, "I'm going to invade a country without defenses, attack an unsuspecting, carefree people going about their business—no gates to their cities, no locks on their doors. 12 And I'm going to plunder the place, march right in and clean them out, this rebuilt country risen from the ashes, these returned exiles and their booming economy centered down at the navel of the earth." 13 " 'Sheba and Dedan and Tarshish, traders all out to make a fast buck, will say, "So! You've opened a new market for plunder! You've brought in your troops to get rich quick!" '(MB)

a [Sheba, and Dedan] Sheba, Dedan, and Tarshish were all traders among the nations on land and sea. Here they merely anticipated and expressed the true motive of Gog to fall upon Israel, and that is all that is meant by the verse. Nothing is said here to give us the idea of two sets of nations opposing each other -- one helping Israel and the other invading her, as taught by some. Such questions could be asked by anyone, without even partaking in the war referred to.
 
b [young lions] (KJ) The young lions referred to were the rulers of these trading nations.
—Dake's Study Notes

Sheba and Dedan includes Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, and thr Gulf States.

These represent the coalition against Israel, but notice that that Egypt and Iraq are not mentioned.

Nearly all of Russia’s and Iran’s allies described by Ezekiel are . Nations that today are either predominantly Islamic or have high percentages of Muslim citizens.

 14 "Therefore, son of man, prophesy! Tell Gog, 'A Message from GOD, the Master: When my people Israel are established securely, will you make your move? 15 Will you come down out of the far north, you and that mob of armies, charging out on your horses like a tidal wave across the land, (MB)

a [north parts] (KJ) Gog or Antichrist will come from Syria, and by this time he will have conquered the countries north and east of this ten-kingdom empire, and will lead them all against Israel at Armageddon ( Dan. 11:44; Rev. 16:13-16; 19:19).
 
b [many people with thee, all of them riding upon horses, a great company, and a mighty army] (KJ) By the time this is fulfilled Antichrist will have become ruler of one of the ten kingdoms inside the Roman Empire; will have conquered three others of the ten kingdoms (Dan. 7:8-9,21-25); will have gained control of the other six of the ten kingdoms without war (Rev. 17:9-17); will have conquered Russia and the countries north and east of the ten kingdoms (Dan. 11:44); and will have gathered many other nations through the ministry of the three unclean spirits of Rev. 16:13-16. All these nations will make the many people be under him at the Battle of Armageddon when Christ comes (Zech. 14:1-5; Rev. 19:11-21).
—Dake's Study Notes

16 and invade my people Israel, covering the country like a cloud? When the time's ripe, I'll unleash you against my land in such a way that the nations will recognize me, realize that through you, Gog, in full view of the nations, I am putting my holiness on display. 17 " 'A Message of GOD, the Master: Years ago when I spoke through my servants, the prophets of Israel, wasn't it you I was talking about? Year after year they prophesied that I would bring you against them. 18 And when the day comes, Gog, you will attack that land of Israel. Decree of GOD, the Master. My raging anger will erupt. (MB)

a [at the same time] (KJ) "At the same time," when Gog comes into the land of Israel at the battle of Armageddon, after he has already conquered the countries north and east of his ten kingdoms which are inside the old Roman Empire territory, and not in some previous war in Palestine. This is the only time that God will supernaturally destroy the armies of Gog and the many nations with him. This fact is confirmed by the phrase "in that day," —Dake's Study Notes

19 Fueled by blazing jealousy, I tell you that then there will be an earthquake that rocks the land of Israel. 20 Fish and birds and wild animals—even ants and beetles!—and every human being will tremble and shake before me. Mountains will disintegrate, terraces will crumble. 21 I'll order all-out war against you, Gog—Decree of GOD, the Master—Gog killing Gog on all the mountains of Israel. 22 I'll deluge Gog with judgment: disease and massacre, torrential rain and hail, volcanic lava pouring down on you and your mobs of troops and people. 23 " 'I'll show you how great I am, how holy I am. I'll make myself known all over the world. Then you'll realize that I am GOD.' (MB)

Gog shall be destroyed

Ezekiel 39: 1 "Son of man, prophesy against Gog. Say, 'A Message of GOD, the Master: I'm against you, Gog, head of Meshech and Tubal. 2 I'm going to turn you around and drag you out, drag you out of the far north and down on the mountains of Israel. (MB)

a [I will turn thee back] (KJ) When Gog comes into Palestine this time he will be turned back and completely destroyed. The result will not be thus when he invades Palestine 31/2 years earlier (in the middle of Daniel's 70th week) to take over Jerusalem and the Jewish temple as his capital (Dan. 9:27; Mt. 24:51; 2Th. 2:3-4; Rev. 11:1-2; 13:1-18). God will permit him to drive the Jews out of Palestine and occupy their country for about 3 1/2 years in the last part of the 7-year tribulation period. Then, during this time He will raise up new enemies north and east of Gog's 10 kingdoms to keep him occupied in war so that he cannot concentrate on the total destruction of Israel. At the end of these 3 1/2 years, after conquering these enemies, he will lead the nations against Israel and Jerusalem to do what he intended at the beginning; but before he can take all of Jerusalem he will be defeated by the second coming of Christ (Zech. 14:1-15; 2Th. 1:7-10; Jude 1:14-15; Rev. 19:11-21). This is the time he is to be turned back from his purpose and his armies are to be destroyed -- all but a sixth part.
 
b [sixth part of thee] (KJ) A sixth part of men under Antichrist being spared would mean about 166,667 escaping destruction and 833,333 being destroyed out of every million. We have no way of telling how many millions of men will be in the vast armies of the nations, but there will be many to fulfill 38:22; Rev. 14:20.
 
c [from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel] (KJ) Antichrist's army will come down from the north into Palestine, as the Assyrians, Babylonians, Grecians, and others did in the past. Syria is north of Palestine, and an army from Babylon would come west through that country and then south into Palestine to avoid the desert.
—Dake's Study Notes

 3 Then I'll knock your bow out of your left hand and your arrows from your right hand.4 On the mountains of Israel you'll be slaughtered, you and all your troops and the people with you. I'll serve you up as a meal to carrion birds and scavenging animals. (MB)

a [fall upon the mountains of Israel] (KJ) Gog and his mighty armies will be destroyed at this time, a fact which proves that all of chapters 38-39 refer to Armageddon and the second coming of Christ.
 
 
b [the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured] The same prediction as in Ezek. 39:17-20; Mt. 24:27-28; Lk. 17:34-37; Rev. 19:17-21. The fowls and beasts of the earth will literally eat the flesh and drink the blood of the millions slain at Armageddon.
—Dake's Study Notes

 5 You'll be killed in the open field. I've given my word. Decree of GOD, the Master.' (MB)

a [upon the open field] (KJ)The open field refers to all the land of Palestine and surrounding countries where the hosts of the armies of all nations under Antichrist will be moblized, but mainly to the mountains of Israel (Ezek. 39:17). —Dake's Study Notes

6 "I'll set fire to Magog and the far-off islands, where people are so seemingly secure. And they'll realize that I am GOD. (MB)

a [Magog] It seems that Magog will be the chief hater of the Jews; it is thus singled out along with the maritime countries as the object of God's wrath. This is perhaps why both Gog, the prince, and the land of Magog are mentioned in particular in Rev. 20:7-10 in connection with the last rebellion against God on earth, which will take place 1,000 years later.—Dake's Study Notes

 7 "I'll reveal my holy name among my people Israel. Never again will I let my holy name be dragged in the mud. Then the nations will realize that I, GOD, am The Holy in Israel. (MB)

a [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] (KJ) Three results of Armageddon:
 
1. I will make My holy name known in the midst of My people Israel.
 
2. I will not permit them to pollute My holy name anymore.
 
3. The heathen will know that I am the Holy One in Israel.
—Dake's Study Notes

Israel's victory

8 "It's coming! Yes, it will happen! This is the day I've been telling you about. (MB)

a [the day] "The day" should be taken literally instead of being counted as a period (a number of days), for in Zech. 14:7 it is definitely stated as "one day," meaning the battle of Armageddon will last only that long.
—Dake's Study Notes

 9 "People will come out of the cities of Israel and make a huge bonfire of the weapons of war, piling on shields large and small, bows and arrows, clubs and spears, a fire they'll keep going for seven years. (MB)

a [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] (KJ) After the one-day battle of Armageddon Israel will begin the work of burying the millions of men slain on the battlefield (Ezek. 39:9-16). The prediction is that no wood will be needed from the forests to be used as fuel for seven years, because there will be enough material collected from the battlefield to provide fires that long (Ezek. 39:9-10). In modern life most of those in the cities will no doubt burn the natural gas or use electricity, but there will still be many others depending on wood and other materials for warmth and cooking.—Dake's Study Notes

10 They won't need to go into the woods to get fuel for the fire. There'll be plenty of weapons to keep it going. They'll strip those who stripped them. They'll rob those who robbed them. Decree of GOD, the Master. 11 "At that time I'll set aside a burial ground for Gog in Israel at Traveler's Rest, just east of the sea. It will obstruct the route of travelers, blocking their way, the mass grave of Gog and his mob of an army. They'll call the place Gog's Mob. (MB)

a [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] (KJ) In that day -- after Armageddon, Gog and his armies (that is, five-sixths of his armies) will be buried. It will take seven months to bury such a vast multitude of bodies and dispose of every bone in all the land (Ezek. 39:12-14). Before the most of them are buried men will stop their noses as they pass through the land because of such a stench coming from the decaying bodies.—Dake's Study Notes

12 "Israel will bury the corpses in order to clean up the land. It will take them seven months. 13 All the people will turn out to help with the burials. It will be a big day for the people when it's all done and I'm given my due. 14 Men will be hired full-time for the cleanup burial operation and will go through the country looking for defiling, decomposing corpses. At the end of seven months, there'll be an all-out final search. 15 Anyone who sees a bone will mark the place with a stick so the buriers can get it and bury it in the mass burial site, Gog's Mob. 16 (A town nearby is called Mobville, or Hamonah.) That's how they'll clean up the land. 17 "Son of man, GOD, the Master, says: Call the birds! Call the wild animals! Call out, 'Gather and come, gather around my sacrificial meal that I'm preparing for you on the mountains of Israel. You'll eat meat and drink blood. (MB)

a [Speak unto every feathered fowl, and to every beast of the field] (KJ) This is exactly the same command and concerns the same thing as in Rev. 19:17-18,20). It refers to the calling of all the birds and beasts of the field to eat of the dead bodies of men and animals killed in the battle of Armageddon. Both passages speak of the supper, the great sacrifices, and "My table" that God will make upon the mountains of Israel where the birds and beasts may come to eat until they are full and drink until they are drunken. Jesus referred to this same thing when He said, "wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together" (Mt. 24:27-31; Lk. 17:34-37, notes; see also notes on Mt. 24:40-42; Rev. 19:17-21). This could not possibly refer to any war before Armageddon between Russia and Israel; it refers only to the time of the battle of Armageddon when Christ comes literally to the planet earth with His angels and resurrected saints to take over the governments of this world and reign over them eternally, as described in many scriptures (Joel 2-3; Zech. 14:1-15; Mt. 24:29-31; 2Th. 1:7-10; Jude 1:14-15; Rev. 11:15; 19:11-21).
 
b [feathered fowl, and to every beast of the field] (KJ) This should settle the matter beyond all question as to what is referred to here. Some hold the idea that Mt. 24:27-28 and Lk. 17:34-37 refer to the rapture of saints to meet Christ in the air; but this is impractical, for no amount of explaining could make the "feathered fowl" and "beast of the field" mean saints. How simple and clear the verses become though when we take them literally -- the birds and beasts eating the dead bodies of those slain at Armageddon (Rev. 19:17).
—Dake's Study Notes

18 You'll eat off the bodies of great heroes and drink the blood of famous princes as if they were so many rams and lambs, goats and bulls, the choicest grain-fed animals of Bashan. 19 At the sacrificial meal I'm fixing for you, you'll eat fat till you're stuffed and drink blood till you're drunk. 20 At the table I set for you, you'll stuff yourselves with horses and riders, heroes and fighters of every kind.' Decree of GOD, the Master. 21 "I'll put my glory on display among the nations and they'll all see the judgment I execute, see me at work handing out judgment. (MB)

a [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] (KJ) The four-fold purpose of God in Armageddon:
 
1. I will set My glory among the heathen.
 
2. All the heathen will see My judgment that I have executed upon them (Ezek. 39:21).
 
3. The house of Israel will know that I am Jehovah their God from that day and forward (Ezek. 39:22).
 
4. The heathen will know that the house of Israel was defeated and went into captivity for their sins, and that I dealt with them accordingly (Ezek. 39:23-24).
—Dake's Study Notes

 22 From that day on, Israel will realize that I am their GOD.

Israel, plagued for sins, shall be restored with eternal favor

23 And the nations will get the message that it was because of their sins that Israel went into exile. They were disloyal to me and I turned away from them. I turned them over to their enemies and they were all killed. 24 I treated them as their polluted and sin-sated lives deserved. I turned away from them, refused to look at them. 25 "But now I will return Jacob back from exile, I'll be compassionate with all the people of Israel, and I'll be zealous for my holy name. (MB)

a [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] (KJ) Now (after Armageddon and at the second coming of Christ) will I bring the captivity of Jacob, and have mercy upon the whole house of Israel, that is, those of all 13 tribes that have not yet been gathered from all nations (Ezek. 39:25-29; 37:1-28; Isa. 11:10-12; Mt. 24:31). —Dake's Study Notes

26 Eventually the memory will fade, the memory of their shame over their betrayals of me when they lived securely in their own land, safe and unafraid. (MB)

a [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] (KJ) This explains the "now" of Ezek. 39:25. After Israel has borne her shame and her people have reaped for all their sins, when they dwell safely in their own land, when none will make them afraid, and when I have brought them again from all the people among whom they have been scattered (Ezek. 39:26-27), then shall they know that I am the Lord their God, who caused them to be led away captive among the heathen, and gathered them again to their own land, leaving none of them among the heathen. Neither will I hide My face from them anymore, for I have redeemed them and poured out My Spirit upon them (Ezek. 39:28-29). —Dake's Study Notes


27 Once I've brought them back from foreign parts, gathered them in from enemy territories, I'll use them to demonstrate my holiness with all the nations watching. (MB)

a [again from the people, and gathered them out of their enemies' lands] (KJ) The word "again" proves that this is the second gathering of Israel and that they were gathered once before this. The first gathering was after the Babylonian captivity; the second is now taking place and it will continue until all the Israelites are finally and completely gathered or regathered at the second coming of Christ (Ezek. 39:27-29; Isa. 11:10-12, notes).
 
b [sanctified in them in the sight of many nations] (KJ) Here again God speaks of Himself as being sanctified in Israel, meaning that He is revered by them and they have set Him apart as their only true and living God -- not that He has been cleansed from sin, for He has no sin.
—Dake's Study Notes


28 Then they'll realize for sure that I am their GOD, for even though I sent them off into exile, I will gather them back to their own land, leaving not one soul behind. 29 After I've poured my Spirit on Israel, filled them with my life, I'll no longer turn away. I'll look them full in the face. Decree of GOD, the Master." (MB)


 



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