The vast majority of professing Christianity DOES NOT understand this prophecy of Ezekiel 38-39 because they have been deceived into thinking of this as exclusively a tribulation pre millennial fulfillment.
Obviously Satan does not want his Babylon the Great to be revealed for what it is, and does want to confuse, obfuscate and deceive everyone about the tribulation and the part that various peoples play in it. Satan wants the whole world to worship the final false prophet and political ruler and so need to misdirect people into thinking some other is the monster and his agents are the true, loving, godly, peaceable folks who are acting only out of a desire for peace.
What better distraction than to set up the New Europe as the great, godly, righteous, peace loving system and distract professing Christians to think of the Asian nations as the monsters of the tribulation? Since other scriptures say clearly that the armies of Asia shall sweep down to Jerusalem for the final battle, a little false teaching on this prophecy convinces the professing Christians that the final false prophet is a great miracle working man of God and that the evil of the tribulation is coming from Asia.
I think that most of the church of God brethren know that Herbert Armstrong was correct about the New Europe rising up as the final beast power along with the miracle working final false prophet in the Vatican. However in observing the professing Christian community we see a certain coming together to respect the Papacy and a complete lack of understanding of Ezekiel 38-38. They see the Asian nations as fulfilling the tribulation, while they see the Roman Catholic / Protestant and professing Christians as the good guys; which deception will be crowned by the soon coming miracle working pope.
They do not understand that Ezek 38-39 is a prophecy of the events late in the tribulation and not about starting and through the whole trib. Therefore they are ignorant of the imminent New Europe and its prophetic ramifications. They will welcome the rise of a church state federal Europe as a great peace entity, not understanding that it leads mankind in rebellion against any zeal to keep the Word of God; just like those claiming to be the church of God today are leading the brethren into idolatry!
This Ezek 28-39 prophecy is duel, about events late in the tribulation and other events immediately after the 1,000 year millennium.
Since this prophecy is mainly about Gog and Magog we should begin by identifying them.
Gen 10:2 Now these are the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth: and unto them were sons born after the flood.
2 The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.
3 And the sons of Gomer; Ashkenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah. Refer to the related peoples of Burma, Thailand and the Khmer of Cambodia
Javan [Ionia] is identified as the Greek tribes, which settled in Greece, Crete, and various Mediterranean coasts.
4 And the sons of Javan; Elishah [settled in the Greek Peloponese], and Tarshish [Crete], Kittim [Cyprus, modern Larnica] and Dodanim [Rhodes] .
5 By these [by the son’s of Javan, the Greek tribes; the isles of the Med Sea were colonized] were the isles of the Gentiles divided in their lands; every one after his tongue, after their families, in their nations.
That leaves Magog, Madai, Tubal, Meshech, and Tiras unidentified in this passage, the case is the same in the following passage.
The Madai are identified as the Medes who ruled with the Persians and are now located in Ukraine, where a struggle is going on between Russia and the EU for control of the Medes.
Meshech is simply an old spelling for Moscow the capitol of Russia today.
Likewise Tubal is the old spelling of Tobolsk the capitol of Siberia today.
Magog are the Mongolian and Chinese people.
Not relevant in this prophecy, Tiras fathered seafaring men who discovered and founded the western hemisphere and produced that nations generally referred to as indigenous tribes. When they first arrived from Europe they founded great and prosperous civilizations like the Toltec’s, Maya and the Inca as well as the Deni and other nations. It was due to their savagery in wars and human sacrifices brought with them, that the sons of Tiras split into many tribes across the America’s. They then fell to the bloody swords of the Roman Catholic Conquistadores, and tens of millions more died in the “Great Dying” brought by the diseases the Spaniards brought with them.
1 Chronicles 1:5 The sons of Japheth; Gomer, and Magog, and Madai, and Javan, and Tubal, and Meshech, and Tiras.
6 And the sons of Gomer; Ashchenaz, and Riphath, and Togarmah.
7 And the sons of Javan; Elishah, and Tarshish, Kittim, and Dodanim.
In v 1 Gog is identified is identified as the chief ruler of Moscow, and Siberia; the land of Magog being with him.
This is a DUEL prophecy: First fulfilled at the end of the tribulation; and later fulfilled AFTER the millennium. Ezekiel 38 is dominantly post millennium, and Ezekiel 39 is dominantly end of tribulation.
Ezekiel 38:1 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, 38:2 Son of man, set thy face against Gog, [and against] the land of Magog, [Gog being the chief ruler of the rulers of the nations of Asia] the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,
The Biblical account of the tribulation and the Asian armies.
Keep this biblical account of Asia during the tribulation in mind, and compare it to the prophecy of Ezek 38-39 as we study it out. Doing this will help you to separate the two fulfillments.
To avoid the deception of the New Europe, Babylon the Great; which has overcome most professing Christians: Remember that the beast and false prophet first conquer Israel / Egypt and later in the third year attack Asia, Dan 11:42
God is against the people of Asia for their pride and wickedness; therefore God will cause the beast ruler of the New Europe to attack Asian in the third year of his kingdom. Asia will endure the loss of millions in the European nuclear attack, and will be forced to respond striking and devastating Europe and then pouring through the Middle East to attack the final false prophet and the beast at Jerusalem. In doing this the Asian armies will destroy the New Europe and all her Mideast allies. Finally the Asian armies will take half of Jerusalem Zech 14, and then Messiah the Christ will come to destroy all the enemies of the righteousness of zeal to learn and keep the whole Word of God.
This is a period of great tribulation and bloody war; compare that to the time setting of this prophecy which takes place AFTER all Israel has come back to the land and is living in abundance. At this time only PART of JUDAH has returned and they are in constant warfare and insecurity.
This prophecy is Dual; with a fore-type fulfillment late in the tribulation, which is being used to deceive professing Christians into thinking the abomination to sit in the papacy is godly while the evil comes from Asia. This attitude may well be used to help religiously justify Europe’s initial attack on Asia, as righteous Europe defending against the wicked of Asia.
Yes this will happen in part, late in the tribulation! Later it will be fulfilled in its fullness after the millennium!
At this point the prophecy absolutely refers to the period AFTER the millennium.
Here this Ezekiel prophecy is NOT about the bloody tribulation; rather it refers to a time when all are at peace and living in abundant safety.
38:3 And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech [Moscow] and Tubal [Tobolsk, Siberia] : 38:4 And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords:
With Russia will come the Iranians, the Southeast Asians, the Mongolians of the north; and Ethiopia and Libya will be with them, while in the tribulation Libya and Ethiopia will be allies of the enemy of Asia, the king of the North! A totally different situation.
38:5 Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet: 38:6 Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee.
38:7 Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them.
Here the term “latter years” refers to the period AFTER the millennium and not to the “latter days’ which refers to the millennium.
38:8 After many days thou shalt be visited: in the 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 been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations, and they shall dwell safely all of them.
Revelation 20:7 is the key to understanding Ezekiel 38-39
Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
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.
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.
Ezekiel 38:9 Thou shalt ascend and come like a storm, thou shalt be like a cloud to cover the land, thou, and all thy bands, and many people with thee.
38:10 Thus saith the Lord GOD; It shall also come to pass, that at the same time shall things come into thy mind, and thou shalt think an evil thought:
Satan tempts the nations to be led by Gog [a type of Satan] to try to despoil and seize the great riches of post millennial Israel! Notice the time period, all Israel has been brought to the promised land and living is total security and abundance because of their zeal to keep the whole Word of God. nothing about being captive and massive suffering in great tribulation here!
38:11 And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled [undefended land] villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates, 38:12 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.
38:13 Sheba, and Dedan [India] , 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?
Jesus Christ will bring up the nations of Asia that he might one more time demonstrate his power!
38:14 Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say unto Gog [The ruler of the nations of Magog and a type of Satan], Thus saith the Lord GOD; In that day when my people of Israel dwelleth safely, shalt thou not know it? 38:15 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: 38:16 And thou shalt come up against my people of Israel, as a cloud to cover the land; it shall be 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 eyes.
Then Jesus Christ the Messiah, ruling as King of kings shall destroy these armies.
38:17 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? 38:18 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.
Then the king of kings shall thunder and shake the earth in his wrath and shall cause the invaders to turn upon and kill one another.
38:19 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; 38:20 So that the fishes of the sea, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the field, and all creeping things that creep upon the earth, and all the 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, and every wall shall fall to the ground. 38:21 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.
Then the real Jesus Christ will rain hail and fire upon the invaders.
38:22 And I will plead against him with pestilence and with blood; and 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. 38:23 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.
Yes this will happen in part late in the tribulation! Later it will be fulfilled in its fullness after the millennium!
Only one sixth of the invaders will survive.
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: 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: 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.
This prophecy now expands to concern the period late in the tribulation as well as the post millennium.
This verse alludes to Rev 19. The coming of Christ, so the prophecy is indeed dual; but not to the glorifying of the final false prophet as it is being used by the professing Christianity.
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. 39:5 Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD. 39:6 And I will send a fire on Magog, and among them that dwell carelessly [securely] in the isles: and they shall know that I am the LORD.
The coming of Messiah and the deliverance of Israel will turn them to true godliness! They will not again rebel at the keeping of every Word of God as physical and spiritual Israel does today.
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. 39:8 Behold, it is come, and it is done, saith the Lord GOD; this is the day whereof I have spoken.
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: 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.
The graves of Gog in Israel.
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.
39:12 And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land. 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. 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.
39:15 And the passengers [travelers] 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. 39:16 And also the name of the city shall be Hamonah. Thus shall they cleanse the land.
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;
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.
The kings of the east along with the remaining forces of the new Europe will turn and fight Christ at his coming.
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.
Ezekiel 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. 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. 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. 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.
All the earth will see the power and glory of Messiah the Christ when he does this thing and defeats the massive armies gather to fight against him at his coming; they shall then have a repeat lesson after one thousand years.
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.
Israel shall then turn to the Eternal in sincere repentance and the nations of the earth shall know that Israel was corrected by the Eternal and shall also turn from their wickedness to the Mighty One of Jacob.
39:22 So the house of Israel shall know that I am the LORD their God from that day and forward. 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.
It is because of our wickedness that we are corrected.
39:24 According to their uncleanness and according to their transgressions have I done unto them, and hid my face from them.
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; 39:26 After that they have borne their shame, [been corrected for their sin] and all their trespasses whereby they have trespassed against me, when they dwelt safely in their land, and none made them afraid.
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; 39:28 Then shall they know that I am the LORD their God, which caused them to be led into captivity among the heathen [for all our abominations]: but I have gathered them unto their own land, and have left none of them any more there.
Then God will pour out his spirit on all Israel, Jer 31:31 and on all flesh Joel 2:28.
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.