Turkey was the center of the great Islamic caliphate known as the Ottoman Empire, which reigned over a sizeable portion of the world until it was dissolved at the end of World War I. At the present time it is controlled by a secular government and is considered the geographical, political, and religious connection between Europe and the struggling Islamic nations of the Middle East.

The country has a stable economy and one of the largest standing armies in the world. It has applied for membership in the European Union. It has a defense pact with Israel, but relations between the two countries have been severely strained since the Israelis intercepted a flotilla heading from Turkey to Gaza in 2010. The ships were supposedly only carrying humanitarian aid, but they were in fact bringing illegal weapons.

Turkey figures prominently in Bible prophecy as the land of the seven churches mentioned in the book of Revelation, and as a key ally 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 Turkey

See also:
War of Gog and Magog
Middle East Conflict

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

See more recent articles: After January 1, 2013

U.S. to send troops, Patriot missiles to Turkey

Dec. 14, 2012 - Syria has been accused of using Scud missiles against rebels near the border of Turkey. The United States is sending assistance to protect Turkey and the Incirlik U.S. Air force Base there.
U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta signed the order while en route to Turkey to send two Patriot missile batteries and 400 U.S. troops to operate them.
Source: CNN

Prophetic Significance of Turkey

G.I.s mass on border with Syria - 400 NATO soldiers readying Patriot missiles

Dec. 7, 2012 - As the situation in Syria becomes more unstable and the Syrians have prepared chemical weapons of mass destruction for possible use, NATO is moving troops and missiles to Turkey's border.
At least 400 NATO soldiers from the U.S. and the Netherlands were beefing up Turkey’s border with Syria and readying Patriot missiles.
Source: NY Daily News

Turkey returns fire at Syria for fifth day

Oct. 8, 2012 - After a Syrian shell landed inside Turkey, near the border town of Akcakale, Turkey's military returned fire with at least eight shells aimed at Turkish soil The response was in keeping with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's warning Saturday that Ankara would respond forcefully to each Syrian shell that lands on Turkish soil.
Once close allies, Turkey and Syria have become fierce foes since the uprising against Assad began in March last year. Ankara became one of the harshest critics of Assad's crackdown while Syria accused Turkey of aiding rebels.
Source: Fox
Days of Ottoman Empire are gone, Syria warns Turkey - Times of Israel

UN Security Council Condemns Syrian Attack

Oct. 5, 2012 - On Thursday, the U.N. Security Council condemned the attack on the Turkish city of Akcakale by Syrians. The Turkish parliament then authorized military operations outside its borders if necessary.
The Council said the incident "highlighted the grave impact the crisis in Syria has on the security of its neighbors and on regional peace and stability."
Source: Voice of America

Turkish parliament approves military intervention in Syria

Oct. 4, 2012 - After a cross-border attack that killed five Turkish civilians, the Turkish government approved a government proposal to use military force against Syria. The bill they approved called for ...
“...a one-year-long permission to make the necessary arrangements for sending the Turkish Armed Forces” into Syria in light of the “negative impact of the ongoing crisis in Syria on our national security, as well as on regional stability and security.”
Source: Times of Israel

Turkey and Egypt denounce Syria regime, pledge support for Palestinian cause

Oct. 1, 2012 - Oct. 1, 2012 - At a major meeting of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's ruling party, Egypt's new president encouraged an emerging partnership between Egypt and Turkey. He pledged opposition to Syria's president.
"The events in Syria are the tragedy of the century," Morsi said. "We will be on the side of the Syrian people until the bloodshed ends, the cruel regime is gone and Syrian people reach their just rights."
He also voiced support of the Palestinian cause and opposition to what he called Israel's 'state terrorism.'
Source: Haaretz

Turkey threatens Syria with military retaliation over downed jet

June 26, 2012 - Turkey's prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, warned Syria that the shooting down of a reconnaissance plane on Friday was a hostile act that would not go unanswered. Syrians also shot at a Turkish search-and-rescue plane looking for survivors from the downed jet.
He said the rules of engagement for Turkish forces along the Syrian border had been changed so they would respond more forcefully to threats coming from Syria.
Source:Guardian - UK

World's most powerful imam to rise?

June 18, 2012 - During the closing ceremony of the Turkish Olympics, Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed a desire for his spiritual mentor, Fethullah Gülen, to end his self-imposed exile to Pennsylvania, and return to Turkey. Gülen is considered by many to be the most dangerous Islamist in the world. He oversees a vast network of over 1,000 charter schools in over 140 countries. There are nearly 150 in the United States alone. The Turkish Islamism of Gulen...
...uses a veneer of moderation along with the Western concepts of democracy, interfaith dialogue and tolerance as a cover while it works to achieve its goals of Turkish Islamic dominance and a return to the glories of the Ottoman Empire.
According to some accounts, Gülen and his movement are thought to be worth more than $25 billion, derived largely from the free-flow of money from the Afghanistan opium and heroin trade.
Source: WND
CIA - AGENT : Fethullah Gülen on US - 60 minutes - CBS 60 Minutes

Two Worlds Cracking Up

June 12, 2012 - This insightful article begins with the fact that strategists have long debated whether Turkey would be a “bridge” or a “gully” between Europe and the Arab/Muslim Middle East. Thomas Friedman says that it now looks like it is neither one.
It’s an island — an island of relative stability between two great geopolitical systems that are cracking apart: the euro zone... and the Arab state system that came into being after World War I are both coming unglued.
He goes on to explore why both Europe and the Islamic world are both cracking up at once. He believes that there are two main reasons: "The intensifying merger of globalization and the information technology revolution." In Europe, he observes, "German savers seething at Greek workers, and vice versa." In the Arab world new communication technology caused young adults to see how far behind they were.
Source: Thomas L. Friedman - New York Times

Muslims in Turkey Demand Historic Cathedral Be Turned Into Mosque

June 8, 2012 -
Thousands of Muslims in Turkey, preparing to celebrate the Ottoman conquest of the country 500 years ago, are demanding that authorities allow them to convert the Hagia Sophia museum into a mosque.
Istanbul's Hagia Sophia, which was built in 537 by Emperor Justinian, was the world's most renowned Christian church and the center of Orthodox Chrisianity for more than 900 years [when the city was called Constantinople]. After conquest by the Ottomans it became a mosque in the mid-15th century. In 1934, following WWI, it was turned into a museum and a law was passed that makes it illegal for any religious group to hold services on its grounds.
Source: Christian Post

What Is the Difference between Sunni and Shia Muslims?

Because of the violence between the two major branches of Islam, a prophecy student needs to know the difference between them. The majority of Musllims are Sunni (80 to 90%). Shia (Shi'ite) Muslims are the minority (5 to 20%).

The original difference between the two groups is their concept of the line of authority descending from Muhammad. It is a primarily political distinction but they have accumulated some religious differences over time. About.com gives this introduction:

The division between Shia and Sunni dates back to the death of the Prophet Muhammad, and the question of who was to take over the leadership of the Muslim nation. Sunni Muslims agree with the position taken by many of the Prophet's companions, that the new leader should be elected from among those capable of the job.

The Sunni (from a related Arabic word that means "one who follows the traditions of the Prophet.") accepted the first four Caliphs, starting with Muhammad's friend Abu Bakr, as the rightful successors to lead the Muslim nation. Sunnis accept the writings of these official Caliphs, known as the Hadith ("traditions" of the Prophet's life and spiritual practice). Osama bin Laden was a Sunni Muslim, as are the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Shia (shortened form of the Arabic "Shia-t-Ali" - "The Party of Ali") believe that the rightful successor was the prophet's cousin/son-in law, Ali. Ali and the leaders who followed him were all supposed to have been appointed by either the Prophet Muhammad or Allah himself). There were twelve of these leaders or Imams. Many Shia today are known as "Twelvers" because they believe the Twelfth Imam went into hiding and will return as a messiah at the End of Days. The Shia reject the Hadith and only follow the Qur'an (Koran). Iran's Ayatollah and their President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad are Shia Muslims

Predominately Sunni Areas (Many countries in each area)

Africa - Including recent countries in the news: Egypt, Libya
Arab World - - Including recent countries in the news: Afghanistan, Iraq,
Saudi Arabia, Syria (but its government is controlled by the Alawites, a smaller Islamic split from the Shi'tes more than 1000 years ago)
East Asia
South Asia - Including recent countries in the news: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey

Predominately Shia (Shi'ite) Countries


The Muslim population in Lebanon is about half Shi'ite and half Sunni. Almost 40% of the people are Christian.

Comparison Chart of Sunni and Shia Islam - Religion Facts
What's the Difference Between Shia and Sunni Muslims? - About.com
Sunni-Shia Relations - Wikipedia
Syria's Ruling Alawite Sect - NY Times

Is Turkey's Erdogan becoming the modern Ataturk?
Aug. 1, 2011 - The resignation of Turkey's top four military chief has given the country's Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, greater control over the military.
A historic opportunity has fallen into his hands, and he is grabbing hold of it with both of them. He has managed to impose the civil government authority over the army, and to smash one of the founding principles of Kemal Ataturk's regime.
During Ataturk's reigeme authority was granted to the military to remove governments that did not uphold his principles.
Source: Haaretz

Iron and Clay:
The Revived Roman Empire and a New Islamic Caliphate

Feb. 23, 2011 - Recently there has been a debate among prophecy teachers about the nature of the final world empire. Some say it is a Western union of nations – a “Revived Roman Empire,” while others suspect it will be an Eastern coalition – essentially an Islamic Caliphate.

In Daniel, chapter 2, the major world empires are depicted in a series of dreams and visions. Before this time Egypt and Assyria had already come and gone as world powers. King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream about a giant statue. He asked his wise men to interpret the dream, but they could not. However, Daniel, a devout young Hebrew captive, was given the ability to declare the dream and its interpretation to the king...

...More... Ron's Blog

The Gülen Movement: A New Islamic World Order?
Jun. 1, 2011 - This article and video report explain the great influence of Turkish imam Fetullah Gülen, who has been called the world's top public intellectual and the face of moderate Islam. He lives in Pennsylvania but leads a movement of some 5 million Muslims worldwide in a quest for a supposedly moderate Islamic world system of science and education.

Ariel Cohen, a Middle East analyst with the Heritage Foundation, said this about the movement.

"This is clearly the world according to the Koran, the world according to Islam, the world according to Fetullah Gülen," he told CBN News. "But what he's talking about is not the caliphate, is not the sharia state- -he calls it the New World Islamic Order."
Source: CBN

Surprise! Guess who's biggest Islamic threat

Mar. 12, 2010 - Terror expert Walid Shobat warns that Turkey, a NATO member, is taking a hard turn against Israel. A few months ago a report from Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin indicated that Turkey appeared to be seeking the restoration of the old Ottoman Empire.
The report said Turkey's increasing disinterest in the European Union combined with its efforts to re-establish its influence in Turkic countries of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and its outreaches to Russian, Syria and Iran are cause for concern.
Walid points out that Turkey was the center of the Ottoman Empire, the last Muslim coalition of nations. He explains, "In 1924, the Caliphate was dismantled by the West, and this is why Muslims hate the West... In 1928, four years later, the Muslim Brotherhood was born. This is the umbrella of all the Muslim terrorist organizations."
Source: WorldNetDaily

See earlier Articles: before March, 2012 [Gog and Magog section]

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Turkey - The CIA World Factbook
Turkey - Wikipedia
The Treacherous Trio of Ezekiel 38 - by Mary Miller, Koinonia Institute
Part 2 -
Part 3

Gog and Magog Links

The Magog Invasion - Chuck Missler
Magog Revisited - Missler
Ezekiel 38 - Bill Konig
The Center For Security Policy

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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