Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979, Iran has been the champion of the Shi'ite branch of Islam. Now their leadership harbors a deep hatred for the United States, whom they call "The Great Satan," and Israel, "The Little Satan."

Even though they have immense supplies of oil, they have claimed to need nuclear power as well. It is now admitted by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the United Nation's nuclear watchdog, that their goal is the development of nuclear weapons. At the beginning of 2012 experts believe that it will take only a year or less for them to become a deadly threat to Israel, the Middle East, and United States.

Iran figures prominently in Bible prophecy because they are the direct descendants of the Persians, who are mentioned in Ezekiel 38 as key allies of Magog, a powerful nation in the North that many prophecy scholars have tentatively identified as Russia. Together with other nations, these allies will engage Israel in a future war against Israel. See The War of Gog and Magog.

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Current Events

Prophetic Significance of Iran

See also:
War of Gog and Magog
Middle East Conflict
The New Cold War

Notice: Sources often remove their news links after a period of time. Some of them move older stories to a subscription-only section. Even if the story is no longer on line, our summary will still be available on this page.

Names translated from other languages may have different spelling, depending on the source.

See later Articles: since Oct. 1, 2012

Fordo sabotage enabled Netanyahu to move Iran red line to spring 2013

Sept. 30, 2012 - In his U.N. General Assembly speech this week Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu indicated that the "red line" for taking action against Iran's nuclear development might be pushed back to the spring or early summer of 2013. This is apparently the result of the successful sabotage of the power lines supplying Iran's Fordo facilities on Aug. 17.
The disruption of the underground enrichment plant's power supply caused several of the advanced IR-1 and IR-4 centrifuges producing the 20-percent grade uranium to burst into flames.
However, Iran has responded by airlifting thousands of their elite Al Qods Brigades into Lebanon and Syria to be deployed near Israel's borders. Meanwhile Syria has apparently moved some of their chemical weapons out of storage making them a greater threat to Israel.
Source: DEBKAfile
From Sept. 18, 2012 - Exclusive: Iran arrests 3 Fordo sabotage suspects who entered from Azerbaijan - DEBKAfile

Prophetic Significance of Iran

Exclusive: Ahmadinejad's End Times Speech to the U.N... Mahdi will “soon” reign over world

Sept. 26, 2012 - In his last speech to the UN General Assembly, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said it was time “to voice the divine and humanitarian message…to you and to the whole world,” that soon God will send Imam A1-Mahdi [the Twelfth Imam] to earth to “bring about an eternally bright future for mankind." He said this great change would come about without waging wars.
Shia eschatology experts say the opposite is true... Islamic theologians say Muslim political leaders today are supposed to set into motion... chaos and carnage to hasten the arrival of the Twelfth Imam.
Source: Joel Rosenberg
Transcript of Ahmadinejad's speech - Policy Mic
Ahmadinejad hails imminent arrival of ‘Ultimate Savior, Jesus Christ’ - Al Araybia News

Ahmadinejad goes out with whimper, not bang

Sept. 26, 2012 - Taking the microphone at his last United Nations General Assembly meeting, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad complained about Zionism and imperialists, and called for a new order.
“The current abysmal situation of the world and the bitter incidents of history are due mainly to the wrong management of the world and the self-proclaimed centers of power who have entrusted themselves to the devil,” Ahmadinejad said.
Source: Fox

Barack Obama warns UN over Iran nuclear weapons

Sept. 25, 2012 - In his speech today to the UN General Assembly President Obama said that a nuclear-armed Iran "is not a challenge that can be contained". He vows that "the United States will do what we must to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon," with the backing of "a coalition of countries."

He also spoke about the violent wave of protests in Islamic countries and the death of Americans in Libya. He said, "Today, we must declare that this violence and intolerance has no place among our United Nations."

Source: BBC
The Path to War With Iran - The United States, Iran are on a collision course, and neither side is blinking. - National Journal
Obama urges UN to reject 'violence and intolerance' amid Mideast unrest - Fox
Romney assails Obama's foreign policy - USA Today

Ahmadinejad declares Israel will be 'eliminated' as world leaders gather at UN

Sept. 25, 2012 - There are 120 world leaders in New York for the United Nations General Assembly, but Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is getting the most attention. He is scheduled to speak at the United Nations on Wednesday. In the meanwhile he has made headlines with numerous interviews. He says,
Israel has "no roots" in the Middle East and will be "eliminated." International efforts to stop a bloody civil war in Syria amount to "meddling." And he may even break bread with Occupy Wall Street.
On Sunday night UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Ahmadinejad to tone down his rhetoric, but he has not complied.
Source: Fox

Iran commander: Israeli strike could trigger WWIII

Sept. 23, 2012 -
Brig.-Gen. Amir-Ali Hajizadeh, commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps’s aerospace division, told state-owned Al-Alam TV that an Israeli strike on Iran could “trigger World War III.”
He claimed that an Israeli strike would provide a "historic opportunity for the Islamic Revolution to wipe [Israel] off the face of the earth,” and reclaim the lands occupied by Israel for the Palestinians.
Source: Jerusalem Post

Iran's Revolutionary Guard: Israel Will Launch War

Sept. 22, 2012 - Speculation is mounting that Israel could launch air strikes on Iran before U.S. elections in November. The commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Mohammad Ali Jafari, said that Israel will eventually attack Iran. He said, "A war will occur, but it's not clear where or when it will be."
Israel, which bombed an Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981 and launched a similar strike against Syria in 2007, has threatened to do the same in Iran if diplomatic efforts fail to stop the nuclear work it believes is aimed at getting weapons capability.
Source: NewsMax

Iran official: 'Big war' Means Mahdi's Coming!

Sept. 20, 2012 - Iran's Mashregh news, which is run by the Revolutionary Guards, reports that Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi said that Iran is "ready for a big war." He added, “Of course this confrontation has always continued; however, since we are in the era of The Coming, this war will be a significant war.”
Shi’ites believe that at the end of time great wars will take place, and Imam Mahdi, the Shi’ites’ 12th imam, will reappear and kill all the infidels, raising the flag of Islam in all corners of the world.
Source: WND
Iran's time 'running out,' says U.N. - WND
West warns Iran: Time for negotiations running out - Jerusalem Post

Iran claims its nuclear facilities could now survive enemy ‘missile attacks and raids’

Sept. 19, 2012 - Fereydoun Abbasi, Iran's nuclear chief, admitted that “terrorists and saboteurs” had destroyed powerlines in order to try to derail Iran's nuclear program. However, he added that their nuclear facilities could now survive an enemy attack.
The enrichment facility at Fordo, about 70 kilometers (40 miles) south of Tehran, is of particular concern to Israel because it is buried deep into a mountainside to protect it from attack.
Source: Times of Israel
Amid talk of military confrontation, IDF launches surprise exercise in the north - Times of Israel
UK Joins Persian Gulf Naval War Games amid Iran-Israel Tensions - Three British warships joins 30-nation minesweep exercise, seen by military analysts as warning to Tehran to toe the line - International Business Times
Could US be behind Iran power line blasts? - YNet News

Armada of naval power massing in the Gulf as Israel prepares an Iran strike

Sept. 16, 2012 -
In preparation for any pre-emptive or retaliatory action by Iran, warships from more than 25 countries, including the United States, Britain, France, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, will today begin an annual 12-day exercise.
The armada of warships is an unprecedented show of force in the Strait of Hormuz as Israel and Iran move towards the brink of war. If Iran were allowed to block passage of oil tankers there it would have a catastrophic effect on the fragile economies of Britain, Europe the United States and Japan.
Source: Telegraph - UK
Guard Chief: Israel Destroyed if Iran Attacked - NewsMax

Iran nuclear: UN watchdog IAEA rebukes Tehran

Sept. 14, 2012 - Member states of the UN nuclear agency has passed a sixth resolution against Iran's nuclear activities. The wording of this latest resolution expressed "serious concern" about Tehran's refusal to suspend uranium enrichment. Thirty-one of 35 member states voted in favour of the resolution.
Cuba opposed the measure and Egypt, Ecuador and Tunisia abstained. All four countries are members of the Non-Aligned Movement, of which Iran is currently the rotating president.
Source: BBC

Israel could send Iran ‘back to the stone age’ with electromagnetic bomb

Sept. 9, 2012 - An American expert told London's Sunday Times that Israel has the capability of using an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP)bomb if necessary. The device would be detonated above the ground, creating an electromagnetic pulse that would “disrupt all the technological devices working on the ground,” and would send Iran “back to the stone age.”
Source: Times of Israel

Iranian Pastor Nadarkhani Acquitted, Freed

Sept. 9, 2012 - After holding him for more than 1,000 days in jail, and threatening him with a death sentence, Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani was released.
Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) reported Saturday (Sept. 8) that Nadarkhani, in jail since 2009, was acquitted of apostasy -- that is, converting from Islam to Christianity -- but found guilty of evangelizing Muslims... Nadarkhani said he never was a Muslim.
He had already served enough time in prison to pay for the conviction on evangelizing Muslims, so he was released.
Source: Religion Today

Canada closes embassy in Iran, to expel Iranian diplomats

Sept. 7, 2012 - Calling Iran the biggest threat to global security, Canada's Foreign Minister John Baird, announced the suspension of diplomatic relations with Iran. Iran has 5 days to close its embassy and evacuate its diplomats.
Baird cited Iran's nuclear program, its hostility toward Israel and Iranian military assistance to the government of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, which is locked in civil war with rebels. He also said Iran is a state sponsor of terrorism.
Source: Chicago Tribune
Iran says may retaliate for Canada's "hostile" cut in ties - Yahoo

IAEA report: Iran blocking access as it doubles number of centrifuges at Fordo, covers Parchin

Aug. 31, 2012 - Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency are not being allowed to check the Fordo site in Iran where more than 2,000 centrifuges are now operational.
Fordo is "obviously for nuclear weapons hedging, to preserve centrifuges in case of an attack" on other, more vulnerable facilities, added Mark Fitzpatrick, an expert on Iran's nuclear program.
Source: CBS

Netanyahu brands Tehran summit ‘a stain on humanity’
UN chief Ban, in Iran for Non-Aligned Movement meeting, calls on hosts to halt ‘offensive’ threats against Israel

Aug. 31, 2012 - Israeli Prime Minister Bemjamin Netanyahu berated the meeting of more than 200 non-aligned nations in Tehran. He said that those nations are, in effect,
“...saluting a regime that not only denies the Holocaust but pledges to annihilate the Jewish state, brutalizes its own people, colludes in the murder of thousands of innocent Syrians and leads millions in chanting ‘Death to America, death to Israel’.”
Source: Times of Israel
Russia ready for broader cooperation with Non-Aligned Movement - Itar-Tass

Iran must decide - nuclear bomb or survival

Aug. 28, 2012 - Israel's Vice Prime Minister Moshe Ya'alon participated in a commemoration ceremony for the victims of the recent terror attack in Burgas, Bulgaria, where Jews and Israelis were targeted. He blamed Iran and their murderous proxy Hezbollah for inciting terrorism and hoping to wipe Israel off the map.
"We mustn't take any option off the table. And, before it is too late, we must force the violent, tyrannical Iranian regime to face a dilemma: A bomb or survival."
Source: YNet News
Poll: Most Americans expect Mideast war soon - WND

Iran's supreme leader orders fresh terror attacks on West

Aug. 23, 2012 -
Iran's Supreme Leader has ordered the country's Revolutionary Guards to intensify its campaign of terror attacks against the West and its allies in retaliation for supporting the overthrow of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
"The West" means America, the Zionists, and Britain. Allies of the West are Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and others who support the rebels in Syria.
Source: Telegraph - UK
Iranian leaders in Israel’s sights after calling for its destruction -DEBKAfile
IDF chief of staff warns Iran following recent threats which he says show 'underestimation of our capabilities' - YNet News

Top US general: Washington and Jerusalem don’t see eye to eye on Iran threat timetable

Aug. 20, 2012 -
The US military’s top general said late Sunday that Israel and the US see the Iranian threat differently, admitting that Washington and Jerusalem are on “different clocks” regarding Tehran’s nuclear ambitions.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have made it known that they would prefer for the US to take the lead in a pre-emptive strike against Irans's nuclear facilities. Gen. Martin Dempsey, head of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, said that he understands Israel’s concern because their very existence is in question, but he implied that the US would like to persuade Israel not to launch a unilateral strike. The US prefers that sanctions should be given more time to work.

Source: Times of Israel
Will America forsake Israel, again? - Editorial recounting how the US has let Israel down repeatedly over the years. - Jerusalem Post

Egypt President Mursi 'to visit Iran'

Aug. 19, 2012 - Egypt's new president Mohammed Morsi is expected to visit Iran for a meetings of the Non-Aligned Movement at the end of August. If he does make the trip, it will be the first visit by an Egyptian head of state to Tehran since the 1979 Iranian revolution.
Source: BBC

‘US message to Israel: Don’t rely on us to finish the job in Iran’

Aug. 13, 2012 - White House spokesman Jay Carney said,
“We continue to believe there is time and space for diplomacy, the opportunity remains for Iran to take advantage of this process.”
An unnamed source in the Obama Administration told Israel’s Channel 2 News that the US would help defend Israel against a counterattack from Iran, but could not be expected to finish the job of destroying Iran's nuclear sites.
Source: Times of Israel

Attack on Iran Means Regional War, Says Ex-IDF General

Aug. 13, 2012 - Former IDF Operations Commander Yisrael Zif, speaking on Israeli Army Radio, warned that an Israeli military attack on Iran would ignite a regional war. He said that the situation was much more complicated that the aerial strike on the Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981. He joined other critics who are decrying a “worrisome lack of security” in the government, illustrated by the numerous statements coming from the offices of the Prime Minister and the Defense Ministry.

In yesterday's Atlantic Magazine, Jeffrey Goldberg echoed Ziv’s warnings. He said an Israeli attack now might be "trading a theoretical war later for an actual war now."

Goldberg listed six other reasons against an Israeli military attack, ranging from the risk of the deaths of innocent people, both Iranian and Israeli, to a possible “disaster for the U.S.-Israel relationship.”

Source: Israel National News

Iran earthquake relief efforts begin after 250 killed

Aug. 12, 2012 - Two earthquakes in Iran have killed at least 250 people, injured more than 2,000, and caused damage in more than 100 villages.
The 6.4 and 6.3 quakes struck near Tabriz and Ahar in in East Azerbaijan province on Saturday afternoon, followed by dozens of aftershocks.
Relief operations are underway.
Source: BBC
Update 8/13/12 - Iran earthquake death toll passes 300 day after search for survivors called off - CBS

Israel's Barak: A nuclear Iran is taking shape before us. Time for decisions is short

Aug. 10, 2012 - In a radio interview Defense Minister Ehud Barak said “a nuclear Iran is taking shape right before our eyes.” He also said,
"I am aware of an American intelligence finding... that brings American intelligence assessments [of the current state of the Iranian nuclear program] very close to ours. This makes the Iranian question... extremely urgent,"
Source: DEBKAfile
Iran’s nuclear program designed to ‘finish off’ Israel, Hezbollah MP says - Times of Israel
US-Israel rift over Iran nuclear red line deepens - Israel Hayom
Report: Saudis Threaten to Shoot Down Iran-Bound Israeli Planes - Arutz Sheva
'US has not told us of Saudi plans to intercept Israeli planes' - Israel Hayom

Syria's embattled Assad appears on TV for first time in two weeks

Aug. 8, 2012 - Rumors that Syrian President Bashar Assad was ill or dead were dispelled yesterday when he appeared on Syrian state TV. He was meeting with Saeed Jalili, head of Iran's Supreme National Security Council.
"Iran will not allow the axis of resistance, of which it considers Syria to be an essential part, to be broken in any way," Syrian television quoted Jalili as saying.
The "axis of resistance" describes Iran's anti-Israel alliance with Syria and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Iran and Hezbollah are primarily Shiite in belief and Syrian leaders belong to the Alawite faith which is an offshoot of Shiite Islam.
Source: NBC

Netanyahu to Panetta: Time Running Out on Iran

Aug. 2, 2012 - U.S. defense secretary Leon Panetta has made at least nine visits to Israel this year. Yesterday he met with Israel's defense minister Ehud Barak and then with prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu. In the latest meeting Panetta was still urging Israel to be patient with the world sanctions against Iran. One day earlier Netanyahu said that he still hadn’t reached a decision about a pre-emptive strike against Iran's nuclear facilities. At a press conference after their meeting Netanyahu told Paneta,
…You yourself said a few months ago that when all else fails, America will act. But these declarations have also not yet convinced the Iranians to stop their program... time to resolve this issue peacefully is running out.
Source: Front Page Magazine
Former Israeli spymaster: Iran should be worried - Fox
Ahmadinejad Ramadan speech: Annihilate Israel - WND

Mofaz hints at Netanyahu plan to attack Iran

July 24, 2012 - Shaul Mofaz, leader of Israel's opposition party, accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is planning to attack Iran.
Mofaz, who led his Kadima party out of the coalition last week, declared that Kadima wanted no part in “operational adventures” planned by Netanyahu, which he said would endanger Israelis.
Source:Times of Israel

Clinton: US will use ‘all its power’ to prevent nuclear Iran

July 17, 2012 - After meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton told reporters that Iran has not yet changed their thinking after three rounds of talks with international negotiators.
“Iran’s leaders still have the opportunity to make the right decision,” she told reporters, adding “we will use all elements of American power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.”
Source: Times of Israel
Iran’s Ahmadinejad boasts increased enrichment capabilities: 11,000 centrifuges now active - Times of Israel

U.S. moving submersibles to Persian Gulf to oppose Iran

July 11, 2012 - The US Navy has purchased SeaFox unmanned underwater craft that can detect and destroy mines. They are about 4 feet long and weigh less than 100 lbs. They may be deployed in the Persian Gulf to keep Iran from closing the strategic Strait of Hormuz. Tightening sanctions on Iran's banking and energy sectors could cause Iran to attack oil tankers or platforms in the area.
The U.S. already has sent two aircraft carriers and a squadron of F-22 fighters to the Persian Gulf, and is keeping two U.S. army brigades in Kuwait.
Source: Los Angeles Times

Iran: There will be war – and we'll win

June 30, 2012 - Gen. Hossein Salami, the deputy chief commander of Iran's Revolutionary Guards said during a television interview that there soon will be war – and that Allah will ensure his forces are victorious.
The Revolutionary Guards have more than 1,000 ballistic missiles capable of reaching all U.S. bases in the region, all of Israel and some capitals in Europe.
Source: WND

After an Israeli Strike on Iran

June 26, 2012 - Islamic expert Daniel Pipes reports on a study of the probable response of Iran to a premptive strike by Israel. Their conclusion is that Iran would engage in a short phase of high-intensity response that would not result in many casualties, and then return to the same kind of terrorist activity that already exists, and "would not be the apocalyptic event some foresee.”
This analysis makes a convincing case that the danger of nuclear weapons falling into Iranian hands far exceeds the danger of a military strike to prevent this from happening.
Source: National Review Online

Election of Islamist as Egyptian president raises concerns in Israel

June 25, 2012 - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to the announcement that Muslim Brotherhood candidate Mohamed Morsi has won the elected office of President of Egypt.
"Israel appreciates the democratic process in Egypt and respects the results of the presidential elections. Israel looks forward to continuing cooperation with the Egyptian government on the basis of the peace treaty between the two countries."
Source: The Washington Post
Morsy: I will work to expand bilateral ties with Iran - Jerusalem Post

Putin arrives in Israel to discuss Iran, Syria

June 26, 2012 -
With the Muslim Brotherhood now in charge in Egypt and Syria in flames, Russian President Vladimir Putin makes his first visit to the volatile region on Monday since becoming president again in May, with a quick two-day journey to Israel and Jordan.
Putin will meet with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, and then with a larger gathering of staff and other ministers. He will attend the dedication of a monument to the Red Army for its victory over Nazi Germany, join President Shimon Peres for a state dinner, and visit Bethlehem while he is in the country.
Source: Jerusalem Post
Israel President Says Russia Can Help Mideast Peace - RiaNovosti
Iran general: Military strike would be end of Israel - Jerusalem Post

Israel won’t attack Iran while West pursues current diplomatic effort

June 23, 2012 - The third round of talks between representatives of the United Nations Security Council, plus Germany, with representatives of Iran took place in Moscow this week, but it ended without agreements. An unnamed Israeli official told reporters that Israel will not attack Iran before the West finishes the last two rounds of talks with Iran. He said,
“Of course we are going to wait, what else can we do?” the official, who asked to remain anonymous, said. To attack before the current diplomatic avenue of engagement was exhausted was unthinkable."
He also explained that it had been clear from the beginning that there would be five rounds of nuclear talks with Iran, and it would not be known what Iran would do until the end of the process. The next talks will take place in July.
Source: Times of Israel

'Iran, Russia, China, Syria plan 'largest' war game'

June 19, 2012 - Iranian and Syrian news outlets are reporting that the largest war games exercise ever conducted in the Middle East will take place soon, and will include their two countries, Russia and China! The operation will employ 90,000 troops from the four countries, plus 400 aircraft, 1,000 tanks and "hundreds of rockets."
The report appears to have originated on Arabic language Syrian media outlet ShamLife, which said the war-games were scheduled in less than a month's time.
The information was re-broadcast by Iran's semi-official Fars News Outlet, also quoting "informed sources" claiming that the exercises will involve ground troops, air forces and naval forces.
Source:Jerusalem Post

Iran: We arrested 20 for killing nuke scientists

June 17, 2012 - Iran claims to have arrested at least 20 agents tied directly to Israel for participating in the assassination of three of their nuclear scientists: Majid Shahriari, Mostafa Ahmadi Roshan and Reza Qashqaei.
Source: Jerusalem Post

Fresh Iran nuclear talks to be held this week

June 4, 2012 - This Friday Iran will meet with officials from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to discuss its nuclear activities. IAEA chief Yukiya Amano is expected to ask Iran for access to its Parchin facility near Tehran because of suspicions that experiments related to nuclear weapons were conducted there.
More talks between Iran and six powers - Britain, the US, China, Russia, France and Germany - are due to be held in Moscow next month.
Source: BBC
Putin to meet Iran's Ahmadinejad in China: Kremlin - Yahoo
Islamic world must have nuclear weapons, says Iran - Daily Caller

Iran official hints Dimona reactor may be targeted

June 2, 2012 - Iranian General Yahya Rahim Safavi says that an attack from Israel is not likely because conditions are not right between the U.S. and Israel.
However, in case of an attack, "we will act against their military operation smartly, proportional to any damage that they inflict on us ... meaning we will hurt them as much as they hurt us." This may suggest that Iran would attempt to target the Dimona reactor.
Source: YNet News

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Excerpts from

Connecting the Dots: A Handbook of Bible Prophecy

Pages 141-142
- The Aggressors of the War of Gog and Magog - Ezekiel 38:1-4

According to Ezekiel, an alliance of enemies will attack Israel in the End Times. The leader will be Gog of the land of Magog, who is the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. He is assisted by Persia, Cush, Put, Gomer, Beth T ogarmah, and other nations. Most of these names are listed in the genealogies of Genesis 10. Gog is not listed in Genesis 10, but he is evidently the head of the land of Magog, who is mentioned as a son of Japheth, one of Noah's sons. It is known that Japheth traveled north from Mt. Ararat after the flood. Hesoid, a Greek writer of the 7th century BC, and contemporary of Ezekiel, identified Magog with the Scythians and southern Russia. Flavius Josephus, a 1st century Jewish historian said that Magogians were called "Scythians" by the Greeks. Philo, a 1st century Greek identified Magog with southern Russia.Commentators from the turn of this century and before have generally identified Gog and Magog with Russia even though, at the time, they could not explain why Russia would turn against God's people. They conjectured that perhaps the time would come when there would be animosity between Russia and Israel. Rosh ("head", "chief") sounds like Russia. Meshech sounds like Moscow or Mushkovi, the old name for Russia. Tubal sounds like Tobolsk.

- The Target: Israel - Ezekiel 38:2-12

This is the only time in history that this could be said of Israel, that they were brought back from many nations. It is true that they were brought back from Babylon and Persia in the Old Testament, but it is only since the Zionist movement, which began in the late 1800's, that Jewish people have returned from nations all over the world. They had been scattered abroad even in New Testament times. On the Day of Pentecost, for example, the various languages spoken by the Apostles, when the Holy Spirit came upon them, represented the many lands where they had settled. But they had not returned to stay. This really never happened until the amazing events that led to the rebirth of Israel in 1948. What thoughts would come into Russia's mind to make them want to attack Israel? A consideration of Russia's instability and the plans of some of their leaders for expansion throughout the Mediterranean area is given below. Israel has always been a key land bridge between Russia's allies and is presently an enemy of some of those allies. Any number of scenarios in the always-volatile Middle East politics could lead to a Russian attack in the future.

- Russia's Allies - Ezekiel 38:5-6

Persia is now known as Iran, and there is an amazingly close relationship now between Russia and Iran. Cush is Ethiopia, Put is Libya, Gomer and Beth Togarmah may well be Turkey and/or other Islamic nations like those once part of the Soviet Union.

It is interesting that Mizraim, the forefather of Egypt is apparently missing from this lineup. This, of course, fits the current world scene, with Egypt being the first Arab nation to make peace with Israel.

- Israel's Allies - Ezekiel 38:13

Israel's allies appear to be few and feeble. Some of Saudi Arabia was populated by Sheba and Dedan. The merchants of Tarshish could be England and English colonies. In that case, The United States could even be included since we were once an English colony. These allies ask why Russia and its allies are coming, but do not appear to deter them.

- The Outcome - Ezekiel 38:22

The quick end of this future war will be with God's judgment. It could be God's personal power, raining literal fire and brimstone, as in the days of Sodom, or it could be God using nation against nation, as he often did in the Old Testament, to precipitate a nuclear exchange.

And with pestilence and with blood I shall enter into judgment with him; and I shall rain on him, and on his troops, and on the many peoples who are with him, a torrential rain, with hailstones, fire, and brimstone. - Ezekiel 38:22 (NIV)

The next chapter of Ezekiel continues to give details of this great conflict. Again, it is a scene of utter destruction.

"And I shall strike your bow from your left hand, and dash down your arrows from your right hand. 4 "You shall fall on the mountains of Israel, you and all your troops, and the peoples who are with you; I shall give you as food to every kind of predatory bird and beast of the field. 5 "You will fall on the open field; for it is I who have spoken," declares the Lord GOD. 6 "And I shall send fire upon Magog and those who inhabit the coastlands in safety; and they will know that I am the LORD." - Ezekiel 39:3-6 (NIV)

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