King's Business - 1948-01

f-^ afeótine 7 mansici a n d é d ze h ie i 38

Fourth in a Series of Prophetic Messages

By Louis T. Talbot, D.D.

O UR former studies in this series were based upon- the thirty-sixth and thirty-seventh chapters of Ezekiel; to fully comprehend the thirty- eighth chapter, we must link it with the prophetic events of these preceding chapters. We have seen in chapter thirty-six the divine reason for the world-wide disper­ sion of the nation of Israel; in chapter thirty-seven, the prophecy o f the re­ gathering of this people and the glory they are to enjoy in the reign of Christ on earth. Now in chapter thirty-eight, we come to the consideration of a pow­ erful prince called “ Gog” from the land o f “ Magog,” who will invade Palestine with a vast horde o f men and machines at the end of this age. It is the inva­ sion of the Holy Land by this northern confederacy “ in the latter days” that we shall discuss in this article. In the eleventh chapter of Daniel we read o f “ the king of the north.” This monarch will be displeased with the Antichrist for his invasion o f Egypt and Palestine, and will come “ against him like a whirlwind with chario+s and with horsemen, and with many ships.” Doubt­ less this “ king o f the north” in Daniel’s prophecy is the same person described in Ezekiel thirty-eight as “ Gog” from “ the land of Magog.” And, as we shall see, Gog is the name o f the dictator of the vast country of Russia, which lies to the north of Palestine. It is very important that we read and reread this chapter and the one which immediately follows, for this is indis­ pensable to a right understanding of its meaning. And, as we read, shall we not pray that the Holy Spirit, the only Teacher o f the Word o f God, will guide our hearts into a right comprehension o f the significant truths herein revealed? What a joy it is to know that the blessed Third Person o f the Trinity is here for the express purpose of making these prophecies understood by us! As we ask this o f Him, He delights to make these “ deep things o f God” real to us. No Scripture can be rightly understood apart from the gracious ministration of the Holy Spirit. Who Is Gog? And Where Is Magog? And the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying, Son of man, set thy face toward Gog, o f the land of Magog, the prince o f Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him, and say, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, I am against thee, 0 Gog, prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal (Ezek. 38:1-3 R.V .). The question before us here is the iden­

fore, in this prophecy, Gog is without doubt the prince of Rosh, or Russia; Meshech is Moscow; Tubal is Tobolsk. Tubal or Tobolsk takes its name from the River Tobol. It was the ancient cap­ ital o f the eastern division of the Rus­ sian Empire and may become so again; hence the reference to it here. "Gog . . . the Prince of Rosh" In Ezekiel 38:3, God addresses this person called Gog as the prince or ruler of Rosh. He is the coming dictator of the vast northern confederacy, which will include not only the sprawling empire of the Soviet, but Germany and her de­ pendents as well. Verses 5 and 6 of this chapter identify some o f the nations which will be a part of this great north­ ern confederacy: “ Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them . . . Gomer, and all his bands; the house o f Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people” with Gog. In the last decade, Russia has turned from the ideals and practices of social­ ism to imperialistic totalitarianism. There is no country in all the world more autocratic than the Union o f Soviet Socialist Republics, governed by its man of cold steel, Stalin, and so well repre­ sented by its diplomats, Molotov and Vishinsky. Par from its being a truly Communistic state or socialist govern­ ment, Russia is the rankest kind of auto­ cratic, absolute monarchy. And this is exactly in fulfillment of the prophecy of this Scripture, for here God Himself speaks to a certain “ prince” who repre­ sents the whole of this confederacy of the north. Who is Gog? Gog is the mighty dicta­ tor who will rule over this coalition of countries at the time when the events of this chapter take place. We often find in the Word of God that men are named before they are born. This was true of Josiah, a good king of Judah; Cyrus, a mighty king of Persia, was also named by God long before the day of his birth. Here in Ezekiel God is giving us the very name o f the supreme despot o f that future day. "Behold, I Am Against Thee, O Gog" God speaks against this prince and his infamous regime. We scarcely need ask, “ Why is God against Gog?” For Gog with his ungodly, blasphemous, bla­ tant philosophy will be one of the most God-defying men this world has ever produced. He will belong in the class with the Antichrist, who will rule in that day. In fact, “ the king o f the north” will be

tity of this Gog, referred to in this pas­ sage., Who is he? And where is “ the land of Rosh” ? The great Hebrew scholar, Gesenius, has identified Rosh with mod­ ern Russia, Meshech with Moscow, and Tubal with Tobolsk. He made his identi­ fication through the phonetic similarity o f these names in the Hebrew and in the Russian. Ezekiel tells us in verse 15 (R .V .) that Rosh is in “ the utter­ most parts of the north,” so there can be little doubt of the correctness of the in-



Dr. Louis T. Talbot

terpretation of Gesenius. When God speaks o f “ the east,” He refers to the nations in their relation to Palestine, even as He said through Moses: When the Most High divided to the nations their inheritance, when he sep­ arated the sons of Adam, he set the bounds of the people according to the number of the children o f Israel (Deut. 32:8). Therefore, “ the uttermost parts of the north” from Palestine could mean only Russia and countries in that direction from the Holy Land. The Scofield Ref­ erence Bible has a good footnote on this point: That the primary reference is Ao the northern (European) powers, headed up by Russia, all agree. The whole passage should be read in connection with Zech. 12:1-4; 14:1-9; Matt. 24:14-30; Rev. 14:14-20; 19:17-21. Gog is the prince; Magog is his land. The reference to Meshech and Tubal (Moscow and To­ bolsk) is a clear mark o f identification. It is deeply significant that some years ago the Russian government was moved to Moscow which became Russia’s cap­ ital. This was the more striking because Russia had every reason to keep Lenin­ grad as the capital because of national reverence for the name of- Lenin. There­


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