Q. Thank you so much for your websight, I look forward to it everyday. I have learned so much since I started reading what you have to say. My question is will Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38 occur after the rapture?
A. While Psalm 83 could take place before the Rapture, I believe Ezekiel 38 will come after it. I say this because God seems to deal with Israel and the Church separately. Since one outcome of Ezekiel 38 is Israel’s reconciliation with God, the church age will have to be over at that time.
Q. Hi Jack, thanks for all your wonderful work. God bless you. There are some out there who claim that the Ezekiel 38-39 battle is the same as the final Armageddon battle, as a new student of the Bible I am a bit confused, could they be the same?
A. The main problems with the Ezekiel 38 / Armageddon view are that Ezekiel 38:13 mentions several countries standing on the sidelines asking what is going on, while Zechariah 14:2 says that all the nations of the world will line up against Israel for Armageddon. Plus Israel has to believe they’re at peace in the run up to Ezekiel 38, which won’t be the case during the Great Tribulation.
As you may know, I also take the view that Ezekiel 38-39 has to preceed Daniel’s 70th week because it serves as Israel’s wake-up call from God. His world wide call to Jews in Ezekiel 39:28 is what triggers the final migration to Israel and creates the demand for a Temple. That Temple will be built early in Daniel’s 70th week.
Q. I am confused about the difference between Ezekiel 38 &39 and the war of Armageddon. Some say it is the same thing others say no, they are two different wars. It seems to me they are two different wars. but I’m no scholar. Which is correct?
A. There are two clues that make the Battle of Ezekiel 38-39 different from the Battle of Armageddon. The first is that while God brings all the nations of the world against Jerusalem for the Battle of Armageddon (Zech 14:2), several nations are described as sitting out the Battle of Ezekiel (Ezek. 38:13). The second and clearer one is that the Lord uses the Battle of Ezekiel 38-39 as a wake up call to Israel (Ezek. 39:22) which is necessary before the 70th week of Daniel and the Great Tribulation can begin. The Battle of Armageddon is at the End of the Great Tribulation.
Q. Could I ask a follow up on the question about Joel 2 and Ezekiel concerning Armageddon? Could Ezekiel 39:9-13 simply be talking about the clean up after Armageddon? Burning the weapons would seem appropriate seeing how they wouldn’t be needed anymore? I know that biblical scholarship see’s these two events as separate. However, does the old testament speak of Armageddon if Ezekiel is not it? And vice-versa, does the NT speak of Ezekiel’s battle? We accept that during the four gospel accounts of Christ’s life, each gospel of Jesus can sometimes provide very unique information, yet we know them as the same event. Could this not be the case with Revelation and Ezekiel?
A. Here are a couple of reasons why I think Ezekiel 38 and Armageddon are different. First, the list of countries who attack Israel in Ezekiel 38 is very specific, naming only a handful from the general region of the MidEast. But Zechariah 12:3 says that for the Battle of Armageddon the Lord will gather all the nations of the world against Jerusalem.
Second, and more important, The Battle of Ezekiel 38 is where the Lord re-awakens Israel, creating the conditions for the 70th Week of Daniel to begin. As you know, the Battle of Armageddon is at the very end of the 70th Week.
As far as the Old Testament speaking of the Battle of Armageddon, the answer is not by name. But it is referred to in places like Zech. 12:1-9, Zech 14:1-4 and others.
Q. I have a question about the Gog/Magog war. I have a friend who uses the Ezekiel 38:17 verse as proof that “the one spoken about by the prophets” is none other than the AC and that Gog/Magog (Ezekiel 38-39) is just another summary of the Armageddon war. I believe as you do that these 2 wars are different, and I have told them that I thought Haggai and Ezekiel (and possibly Joel) might be the prophets referenced here. What is your take on this verse and who are the prophets that spoke of the Gog/Magog war and are referenced in Ezekiel 38-39?
A. As you know I’ve argued against Ezekiel 38 being the Battle of Armageddon, and the more I study it the more sense that position makes to me.
Setting aside the 7 year burning of weapons that makes sense only if the battle is fought at the outset of Daniel’s 70th Week, Ezekiel 38:13 describes countries that aren’t involved whereas Zechariah 12:3-5 says that all the nations will be aligned against Jerusalem at a time when its residents are following the Lord. That’s not the case with Ezekiel’s battle. It’s the one that upon its conclusion re-awakens Israel to its covenant relationship. (Ezek 29:22) And Ezekiel’s battle isn’t fought in Jerusalem but on the mountains of Israel to the north.
Ezekiel 38:17 describes the Lord talking to Gog. He’s the one spoken about by the prophets, specifically in Amos 7:1 where the Greek translation names Gog as the king of the locusts.
Amos was written over 200 years before Ezekiel. It’s the only place in any translation of the Old Testament where Gog is mentioned by name except in 1 Chron 5:4 where a son of Joel from the family of Reuben is named Gog.
I’m sticking with the early timing for Ezekiel’s Battle.
Q. I have read a few of your responses to the difference between the Magog war and Armageddon, but I ran across a site today that claims to have 50 reasons why they are one in the same. I was wondering if you could comment on this.
A. It doesn’t matter how many reasons a person lists if they’re not accurate. You say you’re read my opinion, so you know I believe Ezekiel’s battle is Israel’s wake up call from God (Ezek 39:22). The 70th Week and the accompanying Great Tribulation can’t begin until Israel is back in covenant with God and the Battle of Ezekiel 38 brings that about.
In addition, only some of the nations are involved in Ezekiel 38 while others sit on the sidelines and question (Ezek 38:13). In Zech 14:2 we’re told that all the nations of the world will be gathered against Jerusalem for the Battle of Armageddon.
And finally, Ezekiel 38 comes at a time when Israel is a peaceful and unsuspecting people (Ezekiel 38:11). The Battle of Armageddon will mark the end of a 3.5 year war to destroy every last Jew on the planet. No matter how long the list in favor of Armageddon is, these three things trump them all.