Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Son of man, set your face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him, and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I am against you, O Gog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal. I will turn you around, put hooks into your jaws, and lead you out, with all your army, horses, and horsemen, all splendidly clothed, a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords. Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya are with them, all of them with shield and helmet; Gomer and all its troops; the house of Togarmah from the far north and all its troops—many people are with you. – Ezekiel 38:1-6
Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “On that day when My people Israel dwell safely, will you not know it? Then you will come from your place out of the far north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great company and a mighty army. You will come up against My people Israel like a cloud, to cover the land. It will be in the latter days that I will bring you against My land, so that the nations may know Me, when I am hallowed in you, O Gog, before their eyes.” Thus says the Lord God: “Are you he of whom I have spoken in former days by My servants the prophets of Israel, who prophesied for years in those days that I would bring you against them? – Ezekiel 38:14-17
With the latest developments in Turkey of an unsuccessful coup last night, and a renewed alliance with Israel after six years of open animosity, can we see anything in the Scriptures that shine some light on this? Turkey was the seat of the Islamic Ottoman Empire/Caliphate for more than 600 years in the Middle East, supposedly dissolved completely in 1922, in the aftermath of WW1. The Ottomans ruled in Israel (Palestine) for 400 years. Islam is a religion of the sword, and was established in direct opposition to the truth of the triune God, Yehovah, and against His Word that is the Bible — both Old and New Testaments –, and against His Son, the Lord and Messiah Jesus, and against His people, the Jews and Christians, and against His city, Jerusalem, and against His land — the Land of Canaan which YHVH covenanted to give to the Children of Jacob/Israel as an everlasting possession, the Land of Israel.
Islam is being revived with a vengeance, and terrorizing the whole world. They are at war among themselves over the ‘rightful heir’ to the Caliphate, and the spiritual war is ultimately between Satan in the person of the coming Antichrist, and between YHVH, God Most High (El Elyon) in the person of Jesus Christ/Yeshua the Messiah. God the Father has given all things to His beloved Son, Yeshua, and to all who believe in Him for salvation. For this, the devil is in a rage, and out to destroy everyone he can. The Muslim jihadist cry of “Allahu Akbar” actually means Allah is greater, not God is great, as usually reported. Greater than whom?! Which God?! (Dan 11:36-37; 2Thes 2:1-4)
Israel is looking for peace in any human way possible. Therefore, she will never really have peace, until she returns to YHVH her God, through repentance and faith in her only Savior, Jesus. (This is similar to the story of Joseph with his brothers in Egypt.) Israel is making agreements with several Islamic countries in a joint effort to combat terror (which can not succeed, since Islam promotes jihad, which for most of us expresses itself in terror to bully and intimidate others into submission. Turkey, which became secularized following WW1, under the leadership of Mustafa Kamal Ataturk, has, under the current leadership of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, returned to being again a more religious and political Islamic country again. The coup attempt last night was an effort by some of the military to restore the secularized Islamic character of the State. It failed, and retribution will be swift and brutal, and Erdogan will consolidate his grip on power more firmly.
Why is this of interest? The prophet Ezekiel was given a Word of YHVH for us living in the latter days. Twice in chapter 38, which speaks of Gog and the preparation for the war and invasion against Israel in the Land of Israel, the Holy Spirit gave Ezekiel the words translated as the “farthest north”, in vv 6 and 15. Many commentators have said that this refers to Russia, since it is north of Israel. Yet all the commentators agree that the reference in v. 15 to Togarmah is located in Asia Minor, i.e., part of Turkey. (Asia Minor is also the area where the seven churches in Revelation were located.) So, if the “farthest north” is Asia Minor in v. 15, that same Hebrew expression in v. 6 must refer to the same “far north” country, that is Turkey!
Let us awaken to the events swirling around us, as prophecy and current events increasingly come together to help us understand the times in which we live, and what the Body of Messiah should do in light of that. “You heard Me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you before it happens, so that when it does happen, you will believe. I will not speak with you much longer, for the prince of this world is coming, and he has no claim on Me. (Jn 14:28-30)
This article originally appeared on Streams in the Negev, July 16, 2016, and reposted with permission.