Russia, Russia, Russia. That is what we heard as part of a trumped-up accusation of Russian collusion against the 45th president by his scheming opposition. The supposed collusion was prominent in the news and was refuted by President Trump by mimicking “Russia, Russia, Russia.” It all turned out to be nothing, a false political hit job against a political opponent where willful lying and deception was the tactic.
More recently the Wagner paramilitary group showed signs of insurgency in Russia. This was portrayed in our media as Russia fracturing under the pressure of the Ukrainian war. But President Putin was able to resolve the issue peacefully and gracefully. Russia is not the brittle disjointed nation our media so often portrays them as.
As we look at Russia I prophecy lets also remember that the people of Russia are a beautiful warm people despite the direction God’s word says their leaders will lead them. It is the people of a nation that are too often victimized by their government.
Russia has the largest boundaries of any nation on earth. Its land mass covers eleven (11!) times zones.
Russia is a military power:
Russia has one of the largest militaries in the world. It ranks fifth by active military personnel, which was measured at over 830 thousand, following China, India, the United States, and North Korea. After the dissolution of the USSR, Russian troops were deployed in the Russian region of Chechnya, as well as in Georgia, Syria, and Ukraine, among other territories. In February 2022, the Russian invasion of Ukraine began, and in August 2022, President Vladimir Putin signed a decree increasing the size of the Russian Armed Forces to over two million from 2023. The Army was one of the most trusted public authorities in the country, as per nearly 80 percent of Russians. 
Russia is a prominent player in world geopolitics.
Russia in History
Russia and 1917. In 1917 the Russian Romanov dynasty of Tsar monarchy was replaced by a Communist Revolution. At that point Russia became known as the Soviet Union composed Russia and 14 surrounding countries.
Russia and WWII. Russia was an ally of the United States in WWII. Russia played a critical part in victory over Nazi Germany serving to force Germany to fight a war on two fronts effectively dividing Germany’s forces. It should be noted that Russia began the war as an ally of Nazi Germany. It wasn’t until Adolf Hitler in Operation Barbarossa invaded Russia that Russia changed sides to ally with the other nations opposed to Germany and the Axis Powers (Germany, Japan, and Italy).
The Soviet Union versus the United States. At the end of WWII, the Soviet Union took an antagonistic stance against nations in the west. The USSR (i.e. The Union Soviet Socialist Republics), began seeking to spread their Communist (Atheist) Worldview throughout the world. This was resisted by the United States primarily and the other democracies in the West.
The End of the Soviet Union. At the end of 1991, December 26th, 1991, the Soviet Union Collapsed. The presiding president of the United States during this time was Ronald Reagan who in a speech near the “Iron Curtain” wall separating East from West Germany, said the iconic words, “Mr. Gorbachev tear down this wall.”
Victory for the West, Catastrophe for the East. While the Western democracies looked at the fall of the Soviet Union as one of the greatest victories in history, some in the east such as Vladimir Putin said it, “was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century” and has fueled separatist movements throughout Russian territory. As a result, leaders such as President Putin have been slowly but surely trying to restore the boundaries of the old Soviet Union by way of direct conquest or clandestine influence and insurrection of those nations previously under Soviet control, e.g. Georgia, Chechnya, North Caucasus, and most recently, Ukraine.
The common bond of Antisemitism. After 1948, antisemitism reached new heights in the Soviet Union under Josef Stalin. In fact, one of the things that binds together the old Soviet Union territories to this day is antisemitism. Ukraine as a matter of fact, besides being a nation known for its political corruption, immoral sex trafficking, and money laundering purposes for the world, is a nation that also has those who identify with the Nazi antisemitism of old. This is important to understand as we progress in our study and see what the Bible says about Russia in the End Times.
Russia, Turkey, and Iran. In recent years Russia has allied itself with Turkey and Iran in what they see as “an alliance for good.” This threesome is united by a common enemy, the United States.  This alliance creates a further threat against Israel and is a sign of moving closer to a scenario seen in Ezekiel 38 and an attack on Israel.
Russia and the Ukraine. Most recently Russia has been in the news as President Putin has invaded the Ukraine in an attempt at reunification of the old Soviet bloc. He has already annexed Crimea and crept into the Republic of Georgia. Russia is on the move.
Russia and Europe. Putin has maneuvered Europe (and NATO nations such as Germany) into energy dependence on Russian oil and energy. This strategy has made European resistance to Putin’s invasive actions with old Soviet Bloc nations harder for European nations to resist.
The Life Lesson Learned from Invasions
The scriptures which involve Russia speak of an overwhelming invasion of Israel by a Russia-led contingency of nations. It is an overwhelming hoard led by Russia that comes against Israel. A promise of God in scripture is that when the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD will raise up a standard against him (Isaiah 59:2). The Spirit works in times of invasion.
Because of the tendency of human beings to rely on their own strength and wisdom (which is foolishness to God – 1 Corinthians 1-2), God usually has to bring people to a point where they exhaust their own personal resources. Truly someone has said, MAN’S EXTREMITIES ARE GOD’S OPPORTUNITIES. In Ezekiel 38-39 God will use an invasion from the North to exhaust the resources of His people. What we see in these chapters is God bringing His people to their extremity in order to create a saving opportunity.
When Jesus began His ministry He read from a portion of Isaiah 61:1-2a (cf. Luke 4:16-22). He stopped at the point which goes on to speak of Gods vengeance. But as we continue in the passage we also see Him also speak of “beauty for ashes.” Look at the verses:
Isaiah 61:1–3 (NKJV)
61 “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me,
Because the Lord has anointed Me
To preach good tidings to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives,
And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord,
And the day of vengeance of our God;
To comfort all who mourn,
3 To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes,
The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.”
God breaks us down and humbles us through trials. But then He makes us into something beautiful. It is through trials and testing that our faith is proven genuine (e.g. 1 Peter 1:6-9). That is what’s involved in much of the prophetic plans of God.
What Does the Bible Say About Russia?
Magog. Did you know that the Bible speaks about Russia? In the Table of Nations found in Genesis 10 Magog is mentioned as one of the sons of Japheth who was one of the three sons of Noah (Genesis 10:2). “Magog” means land of Gog. The word “Gog” means mountainous. Gog is referred to as the “prince of Rosh, Meshech, tubal, and Magog” (Ezekiel 38:2). This is all important because these people groups migrated to the far north of Israel and coincide with geographical location of modern-day Russia. This is the starting point of our study of Russia in scripture.
That “Prince of Rosh” points to Russia is attested by numerous historical sources such as Jerome, Pliny, Herodotus, and Josephus. They understood Rosh to be linked to the Scythians who lived north of the Taurus mountains. This is in close geographic proximity to Russia.
Russia the Head of an Epic Invasion of Israel
In Ezekiel 38-39 we have an account of an epic invasion of Israel. Of all the invasion mentioned in scripture, this invasion is the most detailed. There is no other war, not even Armageddon, that is given such space and detail in scripture. Russia is believed to be the instigator and leader of the enemy alliance that comes against Israel in this invasion.
God is against Gog. Because of this Russia is believed to be involved in an End Times invasion of Israel that will result in God making Himself known to the world. Russia will lead a coalition of enemies in an attack against Israel. The prophecy of the attack is found in Ezekiel 38-39. The leader of this attack is “Gog, of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal” (Ezek. 38:2). God instructs Ezekiel, “Son of man, set your face against Gog.” God is against Gog.
The context of the Gog of Magog invasion of Israel. In Ezekiel 36-37 we see the regenerative power of God and how He shows this power by resurrecting the entire nation of Israel. This resurrection of Israel began after WWII and the Holocaust, Nazi Germany’s Final Solution attempt to genocidally wipe out Jews from the face of the earth. This resurrection was partly fulfilled on May 14th, 1948, when Israel returned to the Land and was reestablished as a nation. Think of it, prophecy fulfilled, right before our eyes, in our lifetime! Ezekiel prophesied approximately 2500 years before the fulfillment of this prophecy. When we see fulfilled prophecies like this and others, it gives us hope that the rest of God’s prophetic plans will be fulfilled. God fulfills and keeps His promises.
In 1948 the prophecy of Ezekiel 36-37 was only partly fulfilled. Ezekiel 36-37 tells us not only of the return of a nation but of a spiritual regeneration of a nation. As yet this has not occurred. Israel for the most part has rejected Jesus as Messiah and has a high proportion of atheists and agnostics. How will this be reversed and the remainder of the spiritual aspect of the prophecy be fulfilled? I believe the answer lays within the confines of Ezekiel 38-39.
When we look at the way God works with people we see He is a very patient God. We also see that human beings tend to try to take control of their own destiny rather than depend upon God. This was a primary factor that led to the downfall of Israel and Judah. The same is true for the regathered nation of Israel of today. The victories they experienced in 1948 to reestablish themselves as a nation and in 1968 when they won back control of Jerusalem gave Israel great self-confidence. But later in the early 70s an alliance of surrounding enemies waged a war on Yom Kippur that threatened the existence of the nation. If it were not for the apparent Divine intervention Israel would have been destroyed. God used this later event to begin the shaking up of His people to their need to depend upon Him. Unfortunately, as the decades have passed Israel has become a nation that is depending more on diplomacy than the Divine power of God and has begun a process of relinquishing land for peace. This isn’t going to work. No political alliance is going to protect Israel or bring her and her people lasting peace that will only come from God.
Who Are the Invaders?
Ezekiel 38:1-6 – “Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying,2 “Son of man, set your face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him,3 “and say, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal.4 “I will turn you around, put hooks into your jaws, and lead you out, with all your army, horses, and horsemen, all splendidly clothed, a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords.5 “Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya are with them, all of them with shield and helmet;6 “Gomer and all its troops; the house of Togarmah from the far north and all its troops—many people are with you.”
Who are the participants amongst the invading armies in this battle? Gog means literally “mountain.” Magog, Gomer, Tubal and Meshech were sons of Japheth who was the third son of Noah (Genesis 10:1-2). Togarmah was the son of Gomer and the grandson of Japheth (Genesis 10:3). These people migrated to the north of Israel, and it is believed they settled in the area of the Caucasus (literally “Gog’s fort”) around the Black Sea or what was once the southern part of the Soviet Union and Russia today.
The descendants of Magog divided into peoples who migrated to Europe and Asia. Magog is also believed to be the area of the ancient Scythians who were a ferocious warring people. Lexicographers connect “Rosh” with modern day Russia, “Meshech” with modern day Moscow and “Tubal” with modern day Tobolsk. Gog is therefore believed to be the head of a confederacy of which Russia is the most prominent player.
The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge states the following on these verses:
“Gog. i.e. mountain, in reference to the Caucasus mountains, chief seat of the Scythian people. Rather, “Gog (the prince) of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal.” By Magog is most probably meant the Scythians or Tartars, called so by the Arabian and Syrian writers, and especially the Turks, who were originally natives of Tartary (inhabiting parts of Russia and central and western Siberia), and by Rosh, the Russians, descendants of the ancient inhabitants on the river Araxes or Rosh. Josephus concurs in identifying Magog with the Scythians (Ant. i. vi. 1). But compare “Og” (Dt 3:1-13). 1 Ch +5:4. Re 20:8, 9. Magog. Jerome identifies Magog as the “Scythian nations, fierce and innumerable, who live beyond the Caucasus and the Lake Maeotis, and near the Caspian Sea, and spread out even onward to India.” Ge 10:2. 1 Ch 1:5.” 
“Persia” mentioned in verse five is identified with modern day Iran. “Ethiopia” can refer to an area of Africa but is also used to refer to a portion of Arabia. “Libya” or Put is usually associated with the African nation but is possibly a nation adjacent to Persia. “Gomer” mentioned in verse six is identified as that European nation of Germany. “Togarmah” mentioned in verse six also is identified as modern-day Turkey or Armenia.
The KJV Bible Commentary states regarding the nations likely involved here:
“According to numerous scholars, the nations and peoples banded together under the leadership of Gog are: Rosh, being the Russian nation; Meshech, being Moscow; Tubal being Tobolsk; Persia, being today’s Iran; Ethiopia or Cush, being an Arabic nation contiguous to the northern powers; Libya or Put being not the North African nation, but also an Arabic nation contiguous to the northern powers; Gomer, being modern-day Germany; and Togarmah, being what is named in modern times as Turkey or Armenia.”
In light of the above we see a confederacy of nation groups all of which have a history of being perennial enemies of Israel. Such a force will cause the world as well as Israel to take notice.
When Will the Invasion Come?
Ezekiel 38:7-9 – “Prepare yourself and be ready, you and all your companies that are gathered about you; and be a guard for them.8 “After many days you will be visited. In the latter years you will come into the land of those brought back from the sword and gathered from many people on the mountains of Israel, which had long been desolate; they were brought out of the nations, and now all of them dwell safely.9 “You will ascend, coming like a storm, covering the land like a cloud, you and all your troops and many peoples with you.” (Emphasis added.)
When we look at the context of Ezekiel we see a chronology that has Israel dispersed and “scattered among the nations” of the world (Ezekiel 36:19 see chapter all of chapter 36) and then we see the prophetic promise of God fulfilled by the regathering and resurrecting the nation of Israel (Ezekiel 37). Next we see the account of a future invasion from the North (Ezekiel 38-39) and then in the final nine chapters we have an account of the Millennial Temple (Ezekiel 40-48). This would seem to indicate that the invasion depicted prophetically in Ezekiel 38-39 occurs sometime after the regathering of Israel but before the millennial reign of Christ on earth (Revelation 20).
In the future. In verse eight the phrase “latter years” (38:8) is used and in verse sixteen the phrase “latter days” (38:16). These phrases are used to refer to the period in which this prophetic invasion will occur. These phrases point to the future and exclude any historic interpretation. There is no historical event in Israel’s history from the beginning to the present which fits the elements of this prophecy. This invasion is something that will occur in the future prophetic calendar. But when in the prophetic calendar does this battle occur?
Israel exists as a nation at peace and prosperous. Verse 8 tells us Israel will have been regathered to her land. This is likely a reference to the return of Israel to the Land after WWII. It also describes Israel as being “a land of unwalled villages” (38:11). In ancient times cities were protected by walls. The reference therefore to “unwalled villages” points us to more modern or “latter years.”
“Unwalled villages” also implies a time of peace. From its rebirth in 1948, Israel’s neighbors have sought to destroy Israel militarily. The 1967 and 1973 wars backfired on Israel’s enemies and led to her being strengthened. Since those early attacks Israel has become a nuclear power with one of the strongest military forces in the world. Israel’s military is ranked 18 out of 145 nations. Israel’s formidable military secures her safety. 
Since the Russian led confederacy comes to “take plunder and to take booty” (38:12-13), it implies that Israel will have established itself economically. Israel is among the top 20 economies in GDP per capita for the first times. In June of 2023 Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel is growing and looks to be one of ten healthiest economies in the world very soon. Recently a natural gas field estimated to be 68 billion cubic meters was discovered off the coast of Israel. With tremendous natural gas deposits found off the coast of Israel and a nation whose economy is one of the strongest in the western hemisphere, its understandable how enemies would lust after Israel to enrich themselves.
Having said all of this, it seems the pieces of the puzzle for this prophetic conflict are falling into place. This Gog of Magog invasion could happen soon.
When Doesn’t this Invasion Occur?
Not at the end of the Millenium. Revelation 20 speaks of one final battle where Satan is let loose on the earth. Some associate the Ezekiel 38-39 conflict with the Revelation final battle. But this Is not likely for the following reasons. It’s not likely that this invasion takes place at the beginning of or during the millennium because the Bible states that wars will cease, and weapons will be destroyed during Christ’s reign (Isaiah 2:1-4; 9:4-5). Ezekiel 38-39 also do not mention Jesus standing up or the heavens and earth fleeing away. It’s not likely that after this final battle God’s people would spend seven years burying the carcasses of the Magog army.
Furthermore, it does not appear that the Gog and Magog mentioned in Revelation 20:8 is the same as that mentioned in Ezekiel 38-39. In Ezekiel God brings Gog forth while in Revelation Satan brings Gog forth (Ezekiel 38:4). Based on the contexts of each book, the event in Revelation occurs at the end of the millennium while that in Ezekiel seems to occur before the millennium. In Ezekiel Gog is from the north while in Revelation he is from “the four corners of the earth.”
Not Armageddon. I do not believe Ezekiel 38-39 describes the Battle of Armageddon. Sometimes what isn’t mentioned is just as important as what is mentioned in interpreting a passage. For instance, Ezekiel 38 and 39 do not mention anyone having sores or the mark of the beast. There is no mention of the seas and waters of the world having bene turned to blood. There is no mention of the sun being intensified and burning the flesh of men. There is no mention of the sun, moon and stars refusing to shine. There is no reference ot the Euphrates River drying up and the kings of the east or the kings of the world joining the conflict. There is no mention of unclean spirits. There is no mention of Antichrist, Babylon, Egypt, or Jerusalem. And there is no mention of the Second Coming of Jesus. Ezekiel 38-39 does not speak about a Tribulation or “time of Jacob’s Trouble.” Instead it describes a time of peace and safety. Therefore I believe it’s unlikely that the conflict described in Ezekiel 38-39 is the battle of Armageddon.
Armageddon is the battle mentioned in Revelation 16:16 which occurs at the end of the seven-year Great Tribulation. There are distinct differences between the invasion depicted in Ezekiel 38-39 and that of Armageddon. The invasion of Gog culminates at “the Valley of Hamon Gog” (literally, “multitude of Gog”) located by the Mediterranean sea (Ezekiel 39:1), whereas Armageddon occurs in the Jezreel Valley adjacent to the city of Megiddo which is 15 to 20 miles inland. In the invasion by Gog definite parties are mentioned whereas the battle of Armageddon is engaged in by antichrist and the world powers of the day generally against Christ (Joel 3:2; Zephaniah 3:8; Zechariah 12:3; 14:4). Gog comes specifically from the north whereas the Armageddon armies come from all over the world (Ezekiel 38:6, 15; 39:2). The purpose of Gog is to plunder while the battle of Armageddon involves the opposing Christ (Revelation 19:19). Gog is the leader of the invasion in Ezekiel whereas antichrist is the leader at Armageddon (Ezekiel 38:2; Revelation 19:19). Gog and his allies are destroyed by eruptions in nature while antichrist is defeated by the “sword of His mouth” at Armageddon (Ezekiel 38:18-39:8; Revelation 19:15). God makes use of other armies to destroy Gog while He alone destroys antichrist (Ezekiel 38:21; Isaiah 63:3-6). Based on this evidence it appears that what we see depicted in Ezekiel 38-39 and the book of Revelation are referring to two different events.
So when does this invasion occur? I believe there are two possible answers to this question.
Prior to the Tribulation?
It is possible that Ezekiel 38-39 refers to a battle that could take place before the Tribulation. It’s possible that the Gog of Magog war is a lynchpin that connects the rebirth of Israel, The Rapture of the Church (1 Thess. 5:13-5:10), and the coming of the Millennial Kingdom of Jesus Rev. 20).
Why would God prescribe such an invasion prior to the Rapture and Tribulation? Does such a scenario destroy the imminency of the Rapture? No. We do not know when this war would occur. We can see the signs of it, the pieces of the prophetic puzzle fitting in to place, but we don’t know when it happens. We do not know the specific day or hour of the Rapture, but we are exhorted to know the “times and seasons” (1 Thess. 5:1f.). The Ezekiel 38-39 conflict would be a clear sign that we are in the season of the Lord’s return.
But why would God ordain such a conflict prior to the Rapture and Tribulation? Part of the purpose of God in this war is to make Himself known in an unmistakable way to the world. Perhaps this war would be eye-opening to many who have yet to receive Christ as Savior. Perhaps this war is God’s last chance opportunity to escape His Tribulation wrath extended to the world. Certainly God will impressively reveal Himself in the crushing of Gog and his forces. If such a victory by God is ignored, it would expose and verify the obstinate rejection of Him by people in this world. This therefore might be one final redemptive outreach by God, one final gracious effort to win the hearts of the sinners in this world.
During the Tribulation?
A second option for the placement of the Ezekiel 38-39 war is in the first half of the Tribulation. While the phrase “last day” relates primarily to the resurrection and judgment of mankind (John 6:39-40,44,54; 11:24; 12:48), and “last days” refers primarily to Israel’s being blessed in the kingdom age (Isaiah 2:2-4; Micah 4:1-7), the phrases “latter years,” and “latter days” appear to refer to the Tribulation period just prior to the last days or Kingdom Age (cf. Deuteronomy 4:27 and 30).
- Deuteronomy 4:27,30 – “And the Lord will scatter you among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the Lord will drive you.30 “When you are in distress, and all these things come upon you in the latter days, when you turn to the Lord your God and obey His voice” (See also Daniel 2:28; 8:19,23; 10:14; 11:40 in their context.)
Therefore, we begin to see that the invasion mentioned in Ezekiel 38-39 is possibly set in the seven-year period referred to as The Tribulation. The Tribulation is the seventieth week (i.e. set of seven-year epochs) mentioned in Daniel 9:24-27. In Daniel 9 God speaks to Daniel of 490 years of prophetic plans pertaining to Israel. The first 483 led up to the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem. The final remaining seven years is described in scripture as a time of God’s outpoured wrath on the Christ-rejecting world as well as an effort by God to awaken His people to Jesus as their Messiah.
This seven-year Tribulation will be preceded by the Rapture of the Church. Because born again believers in Jesus as Savior are saved from the wrath of God (e.g. Romans 5:9; 1 Thess. 1:10; 5:9; Rev. 3:10), and because the Tribulation is a time of God’s outpoured righteous wrath on a Christ-rejecting world, Jesus will return to remove His bride the Church from this world before God’s righteous wrath is poured out.
When the church is taken out of the way at the Rapture, Antichrist will then be able to rise to power and prominence. He will rise to power by way of a tremendous unprecedented diplomatic achievement, peace in the Middle East! Daniel’s prophecy speaks of a seven-year covenant made by antichrist with Israel (Daniel 9:27). Israel will one last time enter into a political alliance aimed at achieving peace with her neighbors. It didn’t work in the time of Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel and it won’t work in the future. This may be the (false) safety alluded to in Ezekiel 38:8. Daniel states that halfway through this seven year covenant the Antichrist will break the covenant and the result will be devastation (Daniel 9:27; Revelation 12). Antichrist will deify himself and attempt to force all mankind to bow before him in worship via the satanic pseudo incarnation (2 Thessalonians 2:4; Revelation 13).
The Beginning of the Tribulation?
If Ezekiel 38-39 occurs in the Tribulation, the invasion mentioned might fit into the beginning point of the seven-year Tribulation. Ezekiel 38-39 could be related to Revelation 12 where it states:
- Revelation 12:13-17 – “Now when the dragon saw that he had been cast to the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male Child.14 But the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent.15 So the serpent spewed water out of his mouth like a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood.16 But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth.17 And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”
In this passage we have a similar involvement of nature. God uses natural disaster to destroy Gog (Ezekiel 3818-39:8). God uses nature to protect His people (Revelation 12:16).
The invasion of Ezekiel occurs during a time of relative peace for Israel (38:8) which may be a reference to the false peace based on the eventual breaking of the covenant between Israel and Antichrist (Daniel 9:27). In the book of Daniel a battle refers to the “king of the North” who will come against Antichrist (Daniel 11:40) and Antichrist will rise to world domination apparently in part due to his successfully putting down this king of the North (Daniel 11:41-45). In Revelation 13:7 Antichrist is pictured as having world dominance, this could not be so if a competitor with the strength of Gog were still around. Therefore Gog must have been defeated prior to Revelation 13. In Revelation 19 Jesus Second Coming occurs in time to save Israel from the onslaught of antichrist at Armageddon. In Revelation 19:20 Jesus’ victory refers only to Antichrist and the False Prophet being captured; Gog is not mentioned. Surely this insinuates that Gog is no longer on the scene by the time of Armageddon and has likely been destroyed previously in another battle.
Consider this. God has provided prophetic revelation in Ezekiel 38-39 of His destruction of Gog and his forces. It is a mighty and glorious display of God’s power in nature. But, what if the Antichrist stepped in and usurped the credit for this victory over Gog? What if he presented himself as the “Savior” of Israel and champion of the world against the tyrannical Gog? In such a scenario the Ezekiel 38-39 war becomes the instrument of Antichrist’s coming on the scene to impress the world and Israel. What if Israel was so impressed, that they were willing to enter into a seven-year covenant with this Antichrist? What if they, as a result of such a perceived victory, they looked at Antichrist as their messiah-Christ? “Antichrist,” doesn’t mean opposite-of-christ but rather instead-of-Christ. Yes, Antichrist is powered by Satan, but he will be the ultimate diplomatic deceiver and in such a scenario the Ezekiel 38-39 conflict could fit.
When will Ezekiel 38-39 occur? We have said that sometimes what isn’t mentioned is just as important as what is mentioned in interpreting a passage. Maybe its significant that Ezekiel 38-39 and its placement in God’s prophetic plans is left vague or not clearly delineated by God. Maybe we will just have to continue to watch the prophetic pieces of the puzzle fit into place all the while watching for the return of the Lord for His bride the Church.
The Most Important Part for Russia
It would be easy to get caught up in the prophetic details of such a study. It would be easy to forget the Russia is a country of 147,182, 123 people. I know some of those real-life people. They are not just numbers. Some of them are brothers and sisters in Christ, some are not. But shouldn’t we be praying for the people of Russia? Shouldn’t we be praying for the salvation of the Russians whether they are in high positions or not? Yes we should be praying for their salvation. We should pray for a revival to take place in Russia. God’s prophetic plan of Ezekiel 38-39 is sure; it will happen. But we don’t know when it will happen and maybe, just maybe, our gracious loving God will do a mighty work in Russia and its people before that Ezekiel 38-39 scenario kicks in. Pray for the salvation of Russians. I pray many are joined to the Bride of Christ and we can all ascend to our Savior in the near future. That is the most important part for Russia.
In Part 2 of Russia, Russia, Russia we will look further into Ezekiel 38-39 asking and answering such questions as why invade Israel? Why will God allow Such an Invasion? What Weapons will God Use? Why Such a Wrap Up? And What Is God’s Purpose in All of This? Until Part 2, watch and pray for the return of Jesus. Test all things with God’s word. Throw away the falsehoods and garbage. Cling to what is true to God and His word. Russia is important in God’s prophetic plans, but being righteous through faith in Christ is the most important thing. It is Jesus Who can give us beauty for ashes no matter how singed our lives become. Make sure you know Jesus, and everything else will fit into place.
Jerome H. Smith, editor, The new treasury of scripture knowledge [computer file], electronic edition of the revised edition of The treasury of scripture knowledge, Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1992 by Jerome H. Smith.
 J. Dwight Pentecost, Things To Come, (Grand Rapids Michigan: Académie Books, Zondervan Pub. House, 1958) p. 326-330).
Jerry Falwell, executive editor; Edward E. Hinson and Michael Kroll Woodrow, general editors, KJV Bible commentary [computer file], electronic ed., Logos Library System, (Nashville: Thomas Nelson) 1997, c1994.
 J. Dwight Pentecost, Ibid., p. 344-345
 J. Dwight Pentecost, Ibid., pgs. 350-355.