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Gog and Magog and Armageddon

Gog and Magog are the great final opponents of Israel, as reported in Ezekiel 38 and 39, and Revelation 20. Gog is king of Magog. They are located in Asia Minor, but apparently represent much larger forces. As such, they provide independent verification of the identity of the "little horn" of Daniel.

The greatest opposition to Israel was to always come from one direction: Europe. In prophecy it is called by its ancient name, Magog.

For more prophecies from Ezekiel, click here.
The context: a history of the Gentiles


Confirming the identity of the "little horn"

When I first created this web site, I did not touch the subjects of Gog and Magog. This is a famous "last days" prophecy, but I knew nothing about it, so left it alone. I focused on the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation. The key issue, and the one that required the most study, was the identity of the great opponent of the church before the last days - the "little horn" in Daniel. I started off, like most people, assuming that it was either the Pope or Antiochus IV.

But the more I studied the plainer it became that it could not be either. The only possible contender for the title was Europe, formed from the remains of the Roman empire plus the Germanic tribes which has its origins in Byzantium and the Celtic regions such as Galatia and Thrace.

Eventually I realized that I would have to make some mention of Gog and Magog, if only for the sake of completeness. So I read, about Gog and Magog for the first time. Imagine my surprise to see that, not only were Gog and Magog the principle opponents of God's people at the very end, but they have the same identity as, come from the same place as, the "little horn". Indeed, it would appear that Gog and Magog are simply the little horn (now very big indeed) at the very end.

The scriptural context

Ezekiel 37 is a wonderful prophecy of the restoration of Israel to their homelands, symbolised by the joining of their histories into one. After this, chapters 38 and 39 tell of Gog and Magog, who will make war on Israel after she is restored to her lands. The battle is so great - apparently this is a reference to Armageddon - that afterwards it will take seven months to bury the dead.But Israel will triumph, and the gentiles will see the power of God. After that, Ezekiel finishes his book with a great vision of the temple that is to stand in the millennial period.

Revelation 20:7-8, speaking of the millennium, says:

"And when the thousand years are expire, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, 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."

Who are Gog and Magog?

Gog is described as "Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal" (Ezekiel 38:2). Ezekiel makes Gog sound like an individual. The description in Revelation makes Gog sound like a kingdom. This may be yet another example of using the word "king" to mean a "kingdom", as noted elsewhere. Gog is described in connection with the four corners of the world (represented by east, south, and west - Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya, verse 5), but especially the north: Gomer and Togarmah (verse 6).

Magog was the son of Japheth (Genesis 10:2), and his lands are the lands of the north. Gomer founded those the Greeks called Galatians. Magog was anciently identified with the Scythians. Meshech were the Cappadocians. (See Antiquities of the Jews, 1:6, 1) Tubal is apparently another tribe from the same region, and Togarmah was understood by the Jews to be the Turks, inhabitants of modern Turkey (Asia Minor).

The famous W. F. Albright stated that "Magog is a blend of Manda the regular Mesopotamian designation for northern barbarians and Gog the equivalent." In other words, Gog and Magog have exactly the same meaning as the word Keltoi, or Celt. Gog and Magog are the same barbarian northern tribes we have seen in the context of the "little horn".

If any doubt remained, most scholars are in agreement - the descendants of Gomer became the Celtic or Germanic tribes. (For more detail, see "A Survey of Bible Prophecy" by Ludwigson).

In conclusion, "Gog and Magog" describes the "little horn that became big" at the very end. And since he horn became western civilization, Gog and Magog are just about everywhere, - in other words, all the powerful political and military forces that do not bow the knee to God.

A second opinion

Murrell G. Selden has done some work on Egypt in Old Testament times, and made the following comments about Gog.

"In my view, when the Bible speaks of a gog, it is speaking of the earthly representative of a god (or surrogate for the god). 

"For example, the cartouche of Pharaoh Haremheb said he was the gog of Horus.  Horus was the head of the 9 god group (of false gods) called the Ennead.  So, Pharaoh Haremheb apparently believed that he was the representative on the earth of Horus (earthly king).  Whereas, Osiris was the god of the afterlife world.

"Now, the Bible says that David was Saul was the visible representative of Jehovah.  Jehovah did not want the Israelites to have an earthly king, but it was the people who wanted it.  So, then Saul, David, and Solomon were equivalent to gogs for Jehovah.  But, they were not gogs, because they really were surrogates for Jehovah.  They did have divine powers granted to them.  So, I think that generally the term gog relates to the surrogate of a false god (as opposed to the true God).  To the Egyptians, it was not true in their view, as the Pharaoh really did seem to them to be the essence of a god on the earth.

"Now, what about Magog.  Magog was an ancient land of false gods - a place of idolatry and false worship (in the view of worshippers of Jehovah).  It was located above Jerusalem and may have included all or part of Syria, and it extended around the Black Sea.  You can find maps showing the approximate location by doing a search on "Magog."  So, although this land does not exist now, it metaphorically represents a people or a land of false gods and false worship (just as Egypt and Babylon were centers of false gods).  So, the land of Magog would be any peoples or organization of devoted to false worship.  For example, the Bible refers to the "god of fortresses."  In other words, those who put their faith in military power alone would be worshipers of a false god.  The Soviet Union was like that.  Of course, today we have perhaps the god of cyberspace.  ...

"So, on a global basis, I believe gog of Magog means representatives of governments who have set themselves up as surrogates for false worship.  Magog are their followers.  So, simply stated, gogs are surrogates for false gods.  They are the leaders of people of Magog (false god worshippers).

"So, at the Battle of Armageddon, Almighty God makes war against gog and Magog.  Or simply stated, Jehovah judges and destroys false worship (both the leaders and the followers).  Who are the real ones behind the false gods?  They are the devil and his demons who have used the gogs to get people to worship false gods, but the devil and demons are really the false gods.

"That is my best shot, and I hope you like it.  I don't guarantee anything!  As far as I know, Jehovah did not anoint me to tell this.  Just based on some observations and logic to draw a conclusion.  Merely doing the best I can. "


Armageddon

The purpose of this web site is not to study the future. We should leave that to the prophets. This web site only mentions the future when it is essential to understanding the present. The role of Gog and Magog in Armageddon is clearly set out in Ezekiel, and Armageddon is also explained amply in Revelation and Zechariah, so there is no need to discuss it further here. Go back to the Bible!

However, it is perhaps worth making one obvious comment. Although Gog and Magog / the Little Horn originally come from the region round Byzantium, by the end of the world their influence - now called "western civilisation" - has spread throughout the world.




the bottom line

Gog and Magog are a the final state of the "horn" of Daniel - Europe and its successors

 

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