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SPECIAL PROPHECY UPDATE NUMBER 125C
June 24, 2003
One or Two Wars Before Armageddon?
As a young man, living in the pre-Hal Linsey books age, I was taught that only one war occurred during the “latter days” before Armageddon. It was a war that began in the Middle East when the antichrist attacked the nation of Israel, and ended some 3 and ½ years later with the final battle of this age – Armageddon. But I now find myself surrounded by a large array of preachers and teachers who are convinced that the war led by Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and found in Ezekiel 38 and 39, occurs before the war that commences some 3 and ½ years before the battle of Armageddon, and that the antichrist is not Gog, but comes out the war led by Gog, and then leads 10 European Union nations against Israel. They teach that when Gog and his armies come against Israel they will be slaughtered, and that Israel will be absolutely successful in thoroughly routing them. Perhaps I overlooked it, but in all my years of looking in many old musty religious archives, I never found a manuscript published before 1812 that taught there were two back-to-back wars just before the battle of Armageddon. It would seem to me that the arrival of Napoleon in Europe set the stage for a shift from bringing the antichrist out of the southern flank of the old Roman Empire to a new scheme of bringing him out of the northern flank. This shift necessitated the invention of two wars. I do not believe the shift should ever have been made. I believe the attack of the antichrist is found in the following Scriptures, and I believe the attack occurs 1260 days before the end of this age at Armageddon.
Ezekiel 38:10,11 – 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:  And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled 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,
Daniel 7:24,25 – And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.  And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
Daniel 11:41 – He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.
Micah 5:5 – And this man shall be the peace, when the Assyrian shall come into our land: and when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men.
Zechariah 13:8 – And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.
Revelation 13:5,6 – And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.  And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.
Revelation 17:12.13 – And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.  These have one mind, and shall give their power and strength unto the beast.
I believe that the following names all apply to the antichrist: He is Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal in Ezekiel 38 and 39, the eleventh horn in Daniel 7, the king of the north in Daniel 11:40, the Assyrian in Micah 5, the seventh wounded head on the beast in Revelation 13, and the eighth head on the beast in Revelation 17.
The 3 and ½ year war in all the accounts follows a certain pattern from start to finish.
(1) The initial attack occurs, and is successful.
(2) After Jerusalem falls, the Lord begins to fight for Israel.
(3) The Lord fights for Israel for 3 and ½ years.
(4) God protects Israel in the Negev during that period.
(5) The Lord leaves most of the enemy bodies on the hills of Israel at the final battle of Armageddon.
Ezekiel 38:8,9 (1) – 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.  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.
Zechariah 13:8 (1) - And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.
Zechariah 14:2,3 (2) – For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city.  Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.
Daniel 7:25 (3) – And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time.
Revelation 12:6 (4) – And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.
Ezekiel 39:1-5 (5) – 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:  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:  And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.  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.  Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord God.
Revelation 19:17-21 (5) – 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;  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.  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.  And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.  And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
Ezekiel 38:1,2 – And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,  Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him,
Gog is a person, the antichrist. Magog is a land, the land of Magog. God tells Ezekiel to set his face against a person, Gog, and against a land, Magog, which is Russia. Gog is NOT the chief prince of Magog (Russia). He is the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. At the time of Ezekiel’s writings the descendants of Magog were settled in Russia, while the descendants of Meshech and Tubal were settled in Syria. The antichrist will come out of Syria to launch the initial attack. Some 3 and ½ years later Magog (Russia) will come down to join him at Armageddon.
To make a long story short – I believe there is only one war, the war that begins when Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, attacks Israel, and ends three and one-half years later when Magog (Russia), along with all of Europe, Eurasia, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa, comes down to join him against Israel at the final battle of Armageddon – Only to find the bodies of their great armies end up as buzzard bait on the hills of Israel.
BUT AM I PREPARED TO BE WRONG? CERTAINLY! WHAT WILL I DO IF THERE ARE TWO WARS? WELL, I WILL JUST SAY I WAS WRONG, AND WAIT FOR ANTICHRIST TO COME OUT OF THE FIRST WAR, THAT IS, IF I AM STILL HERE.
BUT WHAT IF THERE IS ONLY ONE WAR? WELL, ONLY ONE THIRD OF ISRAEL WILL SURVIVE, JERUSALEM WILL FALL, ISRAEL WILL BE DRIVEN INTO THE NEGEV, AND YOU WILL BE WAITING FOR AN ANTICHRIST THAT IS ALREADY ON THE SCENE, THAT IS, IF YOU ARE STILL HERE.
My advice is to be prepared for either eventuality, even one that may be quite different from how many of these verses are commonly interpreted. I think that falls under the category of “watching.”