The World At War With Syria - The Whole Pre-Trib Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39
What I am about to write will no doubt surprise some of you and probably several will think I have gone off the deep end. But with the study I have been conducting several years, I can no longer agree with what many are putting out there regarding a pre-trib battle scenario; specifically the whole Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Scenario.
Just to fill those of you in who may not really be up on this idea, here is the proposed idea in a nutshell…
- Israel is surrounded by enemies
- Israel, through the IDF defeats the immediate surrounding enemies, wins and gains the land.(Psalms 83)
- This then triggers the destruction of Damascus (Isaiah 17)
- Which in turn triggers the Gog Magog War (Ezekiel 38-39)
It is a nice scenario, in fact I have written on it myself agreeing with it. But I cannot agree with it any longer.
I got an email recently from a gentleman asking about a book called Isralestine by Bill Salus. In fact, I have been getting a lot of questions about the book as well as questions about a pre-trib Gog Magog War with everything going on in Syria. I hope to address all of that in this article.
The Psalms 83 idea which originated with Bill Salus is fairly new idea, well Gary Stearman wrote about it back in the mid 1990’s and I assume that the idea did not fly that well because he did not write about it again until recently.
To be frank what Salus has promoted is what has been called a “political fairy tail” and one that has literally ripped scripture out of context. What he did was find three words in Eze 37:10 "exceedingly great army" and then backwards engineered this grand idea that is when he came across Psalms 83 his “ancient blueprint.” This idea does not stand to solid scrutiny and in fact twice Salus has entered debates and twice he refused to defend his position.
Now this is not an intentional “hit piece” on Salus, what I intend to show is the flawed logic in this whole pre-trib Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Scenario. The fact that it is with the Psalms 83 idea that Salus wrote about is what “begins” this new and expanded scenario.
Psalms 83 – A Petition To God
Nowhere in reading Psl 83 do we see the intervention of man as proposed by Salus. Instead we clearly see that in this chapter it is God who intercedes on the behalf of Israel. When you clearly read Psl 83 for what it is, you literally see it as a petition to God asking God to personally intervene and not through the works of man or the IDF as Salus claims. In fact if people would just sit and actually read the entire Psl 83 chapter one would see that. But what amazes me is that no one is really willing to crack open the bible, instead what I am witnessing is what I call “parroting the parrots.” Many have clutched on to this idea as “gospel” because of all the “facts” and footnotes. Where actually it is mere words of men and their books, and not what scripture truly states.
The problem that I have with this entire psl 83 - Isa 17 - Eze 38-39 is that IF this takes place, why does Christ need to return in seven years when Israel can do it themselves?
Israel destroys her neighbors as Salus promotes
Israel destroys Damascus with a proposed nuke as many out there propose
Israel wins the Gog Magog war and burns weapons for seven years.
This is what is being taught and people are buying it.
This, Then That…Then The Rapture… The Real Problem
HERE IS A REAL PROBLEM….It is a fact that many people are using this scenario as a means to predict the timing of the rapture. Sure many will not come out and actually say it openly and boldly stated. Instead it is alluded to and I have heard this idea come from many teachers out there. In fact Tim LeHaye even promotes the idea in the opening scenes of his “Left Behind” movie with Kirk Cameron.
What is being alluded to and even being taught by some is that all we have to do is watch for this sequence of events to take place and then we know the rapture is at hand.
Folks, this is highly un-biblical for no man knoweth the hour. In fact it is this same sort of argument that the Mid and Post tribbers give…What do they say? “We just gotta wait it out.”
Why do we as pre-tribbers condemn the Mid and Post Tribbers when we ourselves are promoting a sequence to predict the rapture just like they are? Isn’t this a double standard?
There is absolutely no sign associated to the Rapture; it is a stand alone event that must take place prior to the tribulation.
Victorious and Emboldened Israel Kowtows to a European?
The many people who are standing on this idea, they are overlooking a major point.
Israel will own everything from the Mediterranean to the Euphrates River, from Turkey to Egypt and to the victor goes the spoils.
Now, I know many Israelis and they are a hard tenacious sort of people. In no way will they gain that much land, power and resources and in turn give it over to some guy from Europe claiming to be the messiah.
The obvious outcome of this scenario, which no one seems to really see is that the Israelis will be emboldened because it was God who stepped in on their behalf. They will see this scenario as a fulfillment of God's promise to Abraham. If any of you have met Israeli's you know that they are a hard, shrewd people and you know that what I say is true. They will stick to their guns because they have God on their side and the whole world knows it.
But again we are discussing a scenario here and it is this sort of logic that people do not think about.
What most people jump to is that this scenario opens the door for the Antichrist to come in and claim the spoils, and “allow” Israel to rebuild the temple. Why does Israel need permission when they own it already and Islam is wiped off the face of the earth?
So out of this, if this took place according to how some of these teachers are presenting and if you take it to the logical conclusion, again I have to ask "Why does Christ need to return in seven years to "rescue" His people when they can basically do it themselves?"
In fact why is there a need for Armageddon when the nations that Israel goes to war with have been destroyed by them (IDF) already?
When we read the scriptures addressing the Day of the Lord / Armageddon, why is it that all the countries mentioned are all Muslim Middle East countries? Not one is a European country.
There is a problem here…God was supposed to wipe out the nations spoken about in Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Pre-Trib Scenario already. I mean that is what is being taught out there right?
Am I to understand that all these countries come back to power and strength in just seven years? That is impossible, even with 1/6 of an army that is left (eze 39). It takes a minimum 18 - 20 years to secure a minuscule amount of the country’s young to equip a minimal army to fight again after all have been wiped out according to the scenario. How can these numbers be attained in just seven years and ready to go to battle at Armageddon?
And here is another point, during this time it is God’s Judgments’ taking place, scrolls, bowls, trumpets, these are wiping out a third of mankind. How can the enemies of Israel regain their numbers to fight again in just seven years?
Are you following the logic as well as seeing the flaws in the whole Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Pre-Trib Scenario.
Some of you are going to say that the whole world will be against Israel, but I have to point out that Israel in this scenario is victorious and owns ALL the land from Egypt over to the Euphrates and to the north of Turkey and the Mediterranean sea. They are victorious.
Why do shrewd, stiff does necked Israeli's need to give it all up when they have no more enemies? They own it all and can do anything they want. The Arab / Muslim threat is now eliminated; at least that is what is being taught. Is it the EU that will rise up and invade Israel? If that is the case, where in scripture can one point to where they (EU Countries) are named like all the rest of Israel's enemies in the last days?
See it is this sort of logic that people are not thinking about. People are not playing the scenario completely out to its logical end. Folks, the God we serve is one of logic and reasoning. Instead there are people out there that have this fairy tale idea that the AC will step in and Israel will kowtow to this guy from Rome.
See if Israel is victorious, there is no one to ask permission to re-build the temple, no need to grovel up to the west because they own the oil, they don't need anyone's permission because they are victorious and the world knows it.
Folks, do you realize the stigma that Israel will have with the world if this is the
Just look at the 6 day war…after that took place no country in their right mind would invade Israel. The world saw that Israel was God's chosen and that her army was the biggest and baddest military in the land.
If the Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Pre-Trib Scenario would take place again as those who teach, no country in their right mind will mess with Israel at all. Because if they do, they run the risk of the same thing happening to their country that happened to Jordan, Lebanon, Persia, Ethiopia, Egypt, ect ect ect. that the Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Pre-Trib Scenario promotes.
Do you see the logic?
Another fact is that the religious Jews are growing in numbers and that the secular Jews are dwindling. So having religious Jews in power that maintain a Zionist attitude, no way will they give up all of the land and spoils when they don't need to.
The problem with this Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Pre-Trib Scenario is that it does not hold up to what scripture teaches. In the last days Israel is not victorious; in fact she is a burdensome stone. She is surrounded by her enemy; she is the center of the world with the temple mount being the prize.
Scripture does not teach a victorious Israel like those that teach Psalms 83 - Isaiah 17 - Ezekiel 38-39 Pre-Trib Scenario. Like I stated before, I used to teach this also, that is until I started to really read scripture in light of scripture and not in light of what I have been taught by men or by the books I have been reading.
What I believe is that the Gog Mag - Armageddon- Day of the Lord is all one in the same that take place at the end of the Tribulation. I have been conducting a mountain of research; in fact here are fourteen reasons why Ezekiel 38 & 39 is Armageddon. I welcome anyone to prove these all of these statements incorrect using proper literal context, solid hermeneutics, logic and reasoning in light of scripture and not what some guy wrote in a book.
Why I believe that Gog Mag - Armageddon are possibly one in the same
(1) Not one statement in these two chapters (38-39) mention a war in Israel before Armageddon [or after]. There is only one major battle addressed in scripture and it is the Day of The Lord.. AKA Armageddon.
(2) The battle of Armageddon is the only war predicted by the prophets that could possibly be referred to in these chapters (Ezek. 38:17). Armageddon is mentioned many times by Isaiah, Jeremiah, Micah, and other prophets before the days of Ezekiel (Isa. 1:25-31; 3:25-26; 13:1-16; 24:21; 63:1-6; Jer. 25:30-33; 30:11,20-24; Joel 2-3; Oba. 1:15-21; Mic. 1:3-4; 2:12-13; 5:5-15; etc.).
(3) The destruction of Gog and his armies (Ezek. 38:18-23; 39:1-6,17-20) compares with similar statements about Armageddon in Joel 3; Zech. 14; Rev. 19:11-21.
(4) Gog will not fall upon the open field until Armageddon (Ezek. 39:3-5; Rev.19:11-21).
(5) The great supper for the fowls and beasts will only be at Armageddon (Ezek.39:4,17-20 with Mt. 24:27-28; Rev. 19:17-21).
(6) The presence of God (as pictured in Ezek. 38:18-21; 39:1-6,17-24) will not be until Armageddon (Isa. 63:1-6; Zech. 14:1-5; Rev. 19:11-21).
(7) The supernatural destruction of Gog and his armies (as described in Ezek. 38:21-23) will not be until Armageddon (Isa. 63:1-6; Joel 2-3; Zech. 14; Rev. 19:11-21).
(8) God will not magnify and sanctify Himself and set His glory among the heathen (as stated in Ezek. 38:23; 39:21-24) until He comes at the second coming of Christ -- at Armageddon (Zech. 14:1-21; Mt. 24:29-31; Rev. 19:11-21).
(9) Gog will not bring the many armies of the nations into Israel to be destroyed until the time of the second coming of Christ, at Armageddon, as referred to in Ezek. 38:18-23; 39:1-7 and proved in Zech. 14:1-5; Rev. 16:13-16; 19:11-21.
(10) The great earthquake of Ezek. 38:20 will not take place until the seventh vial and the second coming (Zech. 14:1-5; Rev. 16:17-21; 19:11-21).
(11) God's presence will not destroy Gog and his army until the second coming, at Armageddon (Ezek. 38:20; 39:2-7 with Zech. 14:1-5; Rev. 19:11-21).
(12) Gog and his army cannot be destroyed in a war in Israel before the second coming, at Armageddon, to fulfill Ezek. 38:18-23; 39:1-7,17-20, and then be destroyed again at Armageddon to fulfill Isa. 63; Joel 2-3; Zech. 14. We must therefore recognize all these passages as referring to the same destruction -- at Armageddon (Rev. 19:11-21).
(13) The burial of Gog and all his armies destroyed in the fulfillment of Ezek. 38-39 will be at the second coming of Christ (Ezek. 39:11-16 with Dan. 7:11; 2Th. 2:8-12; Rev. 19:11-21).
(14) It is at the second coming of Christ that God's glory will be set among the heathen and Israel will be completely gathered and blessed (Ezek. 39:21-29; Zech. 14; Mt. 24:29-31; Rom. 11:24-29; Rev. 19:11-21).
Ok… getting off my soap box now. Hope I gave everyone some food for thought and
that they will really look into what I have presented here with earnest and not just blow it off because it goes against what has been taught and read in books.
If you feel that I am not correct, then please contact me with the evidence you have to present.
In the end we must remember that we serve a God of logic and reasoning, therefore His ways are the ways of logic and not of feelings or emotions. We must look at scripture through the lens of scripture allowing the Holy Spirit to interpret for us. We have got to stop putting square pegs into round holes and this silly backwards engineering and ripping scripture completely out of context like we have done.
I wish to thank T.E. Mitchell for his help with the research with the 14 points; I hope to introduce him as a Prophezine regular contributor in the future.
By Ray Gano
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