Have you seen the videos of the meteorite that hit Russia? Intense. No one even knew that there was any threat posed by it. It wasn’t on the radar like the asteroid shower that just passed earth by-an event Apollo astronaut Rusty Schweickart called a “celestial torpedo across the bow of spaceship Earth.” By comparison, the meteorite was small, yet it injured over a thousand people in Russia-many who were hurt by glass when they ran to the window to see the source of the sonic boom they heard.
There is a prophetic event on the horizon that we are warned about involving Russia. Ezekiel prophesied about an alliance of nations that would surround Israel. Russia will be the head of the confederation. Many call it the Gog Magog war. Whatever the stated reason is for their attempted invasion, their real goal is plunder. Other nations will protest, but none will back up the Israeli nation.
While the names of geographical locations have changed over time, like Persia taking the name of Iran, the Bible focuses on geographical locations when it describes the nations involved in this war. Gog is the leader of Magog. He is the prince of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal(See Ezekiel 38:1-6). These tribes occupied parts of Russia, including parts of Iran and Turkey. To clarify, Ezekiel states three times that these come from “the uttermost parts of the north.” From Israel, the uttermost parts of the north, is Russia. In fact, if you look at a map, Moscow is almost directly north from Jerusalem!
Other nations are involved: Iran, “Cush” (identified as Ethiopia in Scripture), “Put” which is Somalia, Gomer, located in Germany, “Togarmah,” which is Armenia, or Turkey. Iran certainly is an enemy of Israel today. Russia has traditionally been anti-Semitic; indeed, it continues to be so. It is interesting that none of these nations are Arabic.
This prophecy required the fulfillment of another prophecy first: the nation of Israel gathered back in the land in unbelief. This has already occurred. In 1948, Israel once more became a nation after being dispersed throughout the world for centuries. They have come back into the land, and again control Jerusalem. They dwell in the land securely. Security is not due to peace, but a confidence in their own ability to defend themselves.Ezekiel 20:33-38 talks about this regathering in unbelief in preparation for judgment. Ezekiel 36:22-24 and Isaiah 11:1-12 deal with the same return in unbelief. Zephaniah prophesied that this regathering would take place before the Tribulation (see Zephaniah 2:1-2).
What ever is the goal of this Russian confederacy in attacking Israel, God declares His own agenda in Ezekiel 38: “that the nations may know me, when I shall be sanctified in you, O Gog, before their eyes.” Although initially the invasion has success, God is going to intervene in a big way. He will use earthquakes, civil war among the invaders themselves, and a “torrential rain with hailstones, fire and brimstone.” God is going to wipe out the invading armies and the whole world will recognize His intervention. I believe many will turn to Him in faith because of His intercession on behalf of Israel.
The covenant God made with Abraham, and his descendants is still in effect. “I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you.” (Genesis 12:3) Not only will the entire invading army be destroyed, but also the land of Russia itself will experience much destruction. “And I will send fire on Magog, and on them that inhabit the coastlands securely; and they will know that I am the Lord.” (Ezekiel 39: 6). The meteorite that just hit Russia is nothing to compare with the destruction that will fall on that nation one day.
In my book, One Will Be Taken, I chose to depict this war as happening before the Rapture, and a meteorite destroying the Dome of the Rock, as the catalyst for the rebuilding of the Third Temple. Does it have to be so? No, the Rapture is clearly an imminent event. It can happen at any moment. But I do believe this war will happen before the Tribulation, a seven year period of suffering the world has never seen, which will begin the day Israel signs a covenant with the Antichrist.