Here are four biblical facts about Gog and Magog.
Who is Gog?
In Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39 the Lord God tells Isaiah, “Son of man, set your face toward Gog, of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him and say, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal” (Ezk 38:2-3). Is this Russia and the Russian speaking people? If you look at a world map, look at Russia. By far, this nation is the largest nation in the world, so was this God speaking to the Russians, telling them, “I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed in full armor, a great host, all of them with buckler and shield, wielding swords” (Ezk 38:4)? , One thing we know is that God was going to entice Gog to bring out their entire armies against Israel, but in the end, Gog is buried in the battlefield (Ezk 39:11).
Who is Magog?
Ezekiel writes as if Gog and Magog are one in the same (Ezk 38:2-3) because he doesn’t delineate one as being that different from the other in a few places in Scripture, so is Gog and Magog could be a consortium of nations under Russian control that are drawn into an end-time battle, or it is something that’s already occurred. The late President Ronald Reagan, while governor, spoke to California legislators and said, the Soviet Union (now Russia) was an evil empire and he believed that Ezekiel writes about them in chapters 38 and 39. He believed that Gog will lead other nations into a battle against Israel. President Reagan read Ezekiel 38 and 39 and was convinced that this had to be Russia because at the time, the Soviet Union had a much larger reach and powerbase than it does today, although, who can match the Russian’s resources, territory, and military? None can match nation can all three, so Russia could play a large role in the coming future; whether for good or for bad, time will tell.
Are Gog and Magog the Same?
Ezekiel, in writing about Gog and Magog, says “Persia, Cush, and Put are with them, all of them with shield and helmet; Gomer and all his hordes; Beth-togarmah from the uttermost parts of the north with all his hordes—many peoples are with you” (Ezk 38:5-6). Some Bible scholars hold that Rosh which comes from Meshech (Ezk 39:1), means “prince of Rosh,” and is supposed to be Russia, while others say that Meshech is supposed to be Moscow, and Tubal is supposed to be Tobolsk, which incidentally, there is an actual Tobolsk in Russia, however the Jewish historian Josephus identified Gog as the tribe descended from Magog the Japhethite who is mentioned in Genesis 10:21 and refers to brothers of Japheth, Shem and Ham. Japethite’s come from Japheth, one of Noah’s three sons, including Shem and Ham mentioned in Genesis 5:32, 9:18 and 10:1. Even the ancient Assyrians had dealings with Magog, as their court records clearly identified them as Magog, and it was not Russia of course, because Russia didn’t exist at the time, so Ezekiel 38 and 39 could have already been fulfilled, with the exception of Ezekiel 39:25-29.
Should it Matter?
Thankfully, our salvation doesn’t depend on whether Gog and Magog are the same or different or whether they play a role in the end times or whether we understand this prophecy. All that matters is Christ and knowing Him. The Apostle Paul once wrote, “As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away” (1st Cor 13:8), so in the end, what really matters is having trusted in the Savior, so I am not going to speculate about who Gog and Magog is or was, because there is not conclusive evidence to prove who Gog and Magog is today. What matters is that we be ready at any moment for the return of the Son of God in great power and great glory.
Who exactly Gog and Magog are isn’t would be interesting to know, but the most important thing anyone could ever know, is to know Who Jesus Christ is, and that everyone who has not yet repented and trusted in Christ has the wrath of God presently abiding on them (John 3:36b). Paul said, “if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing” (1st Cor 13:2). This much I know; you and I can do nothing without Him (John 15:5).
May God richly bless you,
Pastor Jack Wellman
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