Q.

When in God’s prophetic schedule will Russia invade Israel?

A.
Bible scholars have varying views on what the Bible indicates concerning this. Some have pointed out that this event could occur even before the Rapture, now that Israel is a flourishing, bona fide nation (as of 1948). Others put the event during the Millennium, but the majority believe it will occur during the Great Tribulation, with the early part of the seven-year period favored.

The Biblical prophecy concerning Russia’s downfall is found in Ezekiel 38 and 39. We immediately come to this conclusion upon identifying Gog and Magog mentioned in the text. Several times in the prophecy we see that this force comes from the utter-most northern part of the world. We also know that geographically Russia is directly north of Palestine. Furthermore, historians have pointed out that Magog has long been identified as Russia, due to the fact that in Genesis 10 Magog was seen as the second son of Japheth. Josephus, the well-known Jewish historian, showed Magog to be the Scythians, who immigrated to the extreme north, as far north as the Arctic Circle, even settling in the area of Moscow itself. And Rosh, mentioned in verse 3 of chapter 38, has been confirmed by many leading linguistic scholars as referring to Russia.

I believe a logical position to take regarding the time of the Russian invasion of Israel would be that the seven-year Great Tribulation would correspond to the seven years in our passage in the book of Ezekiel. Verses 9 and 10 of chapter 39 indicate that Israel will be gathering weapons (from, we believe, the great invasion and defeat of Russia). At the same time (the first half of the Tribulation), the Antichrist will appear on the scene as a peacemaker to the Jews, and Israel will have peace for three and one-half years. Indeed, the fall of Russia will aid in the Antichrist’s rise to power as he represents the revived Roman Empire. Israel will also welcome the Antichrist’s peace treaty, since she will have just engaged in the battle with Russia and will undoubtedly be weary of war and anxious for peace. This harmonizes well with Daniel 9:27—Daniel’s 70th week.

Do you have feedback or a Bible question to submit? Send to nolson@garbc.org or mail to Norman A. Olson in care of the Baptist Bulletin, 1300 N. Meacham Rd., Schaumburg, IL 60173-4806.

Reprinted from the Baptist Bulletin (October 1988).
© 1988 Regular Baptist Press. All rights reserved.
Used by permission.