« PreviousContinue »
the end come upon thee, and I will send mine anger upon thee, and will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense upon thee all thine abominations. And mine eyes shall not spare thee, neither will I have pity: but I will recompense thy ways upon thee, and thine abominations shall be in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the Lord.
"Thus saith the Lord God, An evil, an only evil, behold, is come. An end is come, the end is come: it watcheth for thee; behold, it is come. The morning is come unto thee, O thou that dwellest in the land: the time is come, the day of trouble is near, and not the sounding again of the mountains. Now will I shortly pour out my fury upon thee; and accomplish mine anger upon thee; and I will judge according to thy ways, and will recompense thee for all thine abominations.”
Where it speaks of the sounding again of the mountains, or echo of the mountains, that is of the seven mountains on which the woman sitteth. These mountains echoed, or responded to their call, and came and entered into covenant with them, but when the day of doom draws nigh, the mountains or cities of the nations fall, under the pouring out of the seventh vial; and when the nations fall away from their allegiance, the mountains will sound, or echo no more to their call for help.
And mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: I will recompense thee according to thy ways, and thine abominations that are in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the Lord that smiteth. Behold the day, behold, it is come; the morning is gone forth; the rod hath blossomed ; pride hath budded. Violence is risen up into a rod of wickedness: none of them shall remain, nor of their multitude, nor any of theirs; neither shall there be wailing for them. For the seller shall not return to that which is sold, although they were yet alive: for the vision is touching the whole multitude thereof, which shall not return; neither shall any strengthen himself in the iniquity of his life. They have blown the trumpet, even to make all ready; but none goeth to the battle: for my wrath is upon all the multitude thereof. The sword is without, and the pestilence and the famine within: he that is in the field shall die with the sword, and he that is in the city, famine and pestilence shall devour him.
“But they that escape of them shall escape, and shall be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them mourning, every one for his iniquity. All hands shall be feeble, and all knees shall be weak as water. They shall also gird themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be upon all faces, and baldness upon all their heads. They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed: their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord: they shall not satisfy their souls, neither fill their bowels; because it is the stumblingblock of their iniquity. As for the beauty of his ornament, he set it in majesty; but they made the images of their abominations, and of their detestable things therein: therefore have I set it far from them. And I will give it into the hands of the strangers for a prey, and to the wicked of the earth for a spoil: and they shall pollute it. My face will I turn also from them, and they shall pollute my secret place (the holy of holies): for the robbers shall enter into it, and defile it."
The great importance of these Scriptures lies in the fact that the prophet is here describing in plain language the doings of the house of Israel and Judah just before their destruction, when they set up the abomination of desolation in the Temple after taking away the daily sacrifice and when the priests of the idolatrous nations are admitted into the Temple to mingle with the priests of Israel, to eat together of the sacrifices and to drink with them the wine of their drink offerings.
And in view of their terrible wickedness, the prophet continues (verse 23) saying, “Make a chain; for the land is full of bloody crimes, and the city is full of violence. Wherefore I will bring the worst of the heathen, and they shall possess their houses: I will also make the pomp of the strong to cease, and their holy places shall be defiled. Destruction cometh; and they shall seek peace, and there shall be none. Mischief shall come upon mischief, and rumour shall be upon rumour; then shall they seek a vision of the prophet: but the law shall perish from the priest, and counsel from the ancients. The king shall mourn, and the prince shall be clothed with desolation, and the hands of the people of the land shall be troubled : I will do unto them after their way, and according to their deserts will I judge them; and they shall know that I am the Lord.”
THE BOOK OF EZEKIEL
The things which we have thus far treated of, as presented in the first part of the book of Ezekiel, form a kind of preface to the very wonderful visions and prophecies with which his book abounds. The writings of this prophet become exceedingly interesting when we understand that they relate to things future to our day, and that he speaks of things that are yet to arise in the earth; and so many and so various are the things that he treats of that his book may be regarded as a key to the visions of the other prophets who have likewise foretold of the great and mighty events that shall arise in the latter day. In none of his prophecies is this feature more fully manifest than in his prophecy concerning Gog, as found in the thirty-eighth and thirty-ninth chapters of this book. We propose therefore to give special attention to the things of this prophecy.
GOG – THE CHIEF PRINCE OF MESHECH AND TUBAL
(Ezek. 38, 39)
Gog's purpose --- Purpose of God -- Mode of prophetic interpretation Gog called by different names - First, Assyrian - Second, King of northThird, the image in Daniel - - Fourth, The four beasts Fifth, Little horn of goat Sixth, The beast in Revelation Manner of Gog's destruction
- Lake of fire and brimstone - The Lord's glorification — Fire sent on Magog and the Isles — Implements of warfare — Burial of dead — Fruits
of victory for remnant of Israel — Marriage supper of the Lamb — Latter day captivities of Israel - Idolatries of latter days.
“And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: and prophesy against him, and say, Thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: and I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company, with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords: Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya, with them: all of them with shields and helmet; Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands; and many people with thee. Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them."
Gog therefore is the head and chief of this great confederation of nations, kindreds, tongues and people. This confederation consists of many great and mighty nations, and a multitude of smaller nations, and lesser people, but in the aggregate this will form one of the mightiest armies that has ever appeared upon the earth. The period when this great combination is to take place, and the people against whom they come up, is then stated, saying:
After many days thou shalt be visited; in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel which have been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations, and they shall dwell safely all of them.”
While this prophet tells us that this confederation of nations shall ascend, he does not tell us where they ascend from, nor what they afterwards descend into. But another prophet says that they shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition (Rev. 17:8). They come up out of the bottomless pit, or abyss, of nations, and go into perdition upon the mountains of Israel. The magnitude of this great army is indicated by the statement, “ Thou shalt be like a cloud to cover the land” (verse 9). For an army to cover with
their encampments the available parts of Israel's land like a cloud, it may truly be said of them in the words of Joel, speaking of this very army, “His camp is very great ” (Joel 2:11).
The purpose that the commander of this great army and his associates have in view in coming against the house of Israel after the second exodus when they shall have been gathered out of the nations, and when they dwell securely in their own land, is plainly stated. We have already proved that when God brings Israel up out of the nations in the latter days, it will be with a high hand and with an uplifted arm, and that the nations of the earth will be confounded at all their might, as a military power, and how they will quail before the armies of Israel and lick the dust like a serpent, and move out of their holes like worms of the dust; and how Israel, when the mighty God shall plant them again in the holy land, will be high above all people, and under God's blessing will be very wealthy insomuch that they will lend to all nations and borrow of none.
Therefore there will be plenty in those days to tempt the cupidity of those great nations to go up against the wealthy nation and take the spoil. And these great nations will no doubt be keenly alive to the fact that at and since, the time of the second exodus, they have occupied a very subordinate and humble position in relation to the people of Israel, and they may desire by one grand united effort of all the mighty people to measure swords once more with the armies of Israel in deadly conflict, expecting to put them down and to rob their treasuries, for they are called “the robbers of thy people," and the Lord calls them “the worst of the heathen ” (Ezek. 7:24), “brutish men, skilful to destroy" (Ezek. 21:31).
The Lord puts it into the hearts of these nations to do these things, and so it is said, “ The Lord of hosts mustereth the host for the battle. They come from a far country, from the end of heaven, even the Lord and the weapons of his indignation.” And Joel also testifies of them saying, "Before their face the people (of Israel) shall be much pained; all faces shall gather blackness.” It was said when Israel came up out of the land of Egypt, “ There was not one feeble person among all their tribes” (Ps. 105:37). And thus when Israel waxes fat and kicks, forgets God and turns again to idolatry, then the Lord does as he said, namely, brings against them the nations of fierce countenance, and he strengthens them to execute his word, as Joel (2:7) continues, saying, “They shall run like mighty men, they shall climb the wall like men of war, and they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: neither shall one thrust another, they shall walk every one in his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded. They shall run to and fro in the city; they shall run upon the wall; they shall climb up upon the houses; they shall enter in at the windows like a thief. The earth shall quake before them, the heavens shall tremble: the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their shining (that is, the people of Israel, their kings, priests, princes and prophets, and people of the land); and the Lord shall utter his voice before his army; for his
is very great: for he is strong that executeth his word:
for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it."
(Ezek. 38: 10), “Thus saith the Lord God, It shall also come to pass that at the same time shall things come into thy mind, and thou shalt think an evil thought.” (or as the margin hath it, "shalt conceive a mischievous purpose ”). "And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages, I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates, to take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thy hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, which have gotten cattle and goods, that dwell in the midst of the land.”
THE PURPOSE OF GOD
Thus the Lord makes known beforehand the thoughts and intents of the hearts of the great commanders of these mighty armies. But the Lord has a purpose in view that they of themselves discern not, for little do they think that, instead of carrying away back to their own country the spoils of the house of Israel, they themselves are to be for a spoil to the remnant, to those that escape of the house of Israel, of whom the prophet says that they shall spoil those (Gog and his multitude) that spoiled them, and rob those that robbed them, saith the Lord God.
The Lord musters not the host for the battle, neither brings up Gog and his mighty armies like clouds to cover the land of Israel, to glorify the kings, princes, and mighty commanders of these great armies, but to glorify and magnify himself, and to teach those that escape of Israel and those that are left of the nations, that he is God alone, and that there is none else, as also saith the prophet Isaiah (2: 10-12), “Enter into the rock and hide thee in the dust, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty. The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down: and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day. For the day of the Lord of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up, and he shall be brought low (verses 17-18): and the loftiness of man shall be bowed down, and the haughtiness of men shall be made low: and the Lord alone shall be exalted in that day; and the idols he shall utterly abolish.”
Therefore when the Lord has employed Gog and all the nations that he is guard to, to execute his purposes and to punish his own rebellious people as their congregation hath heard in the law, for their departure from his ways, for transgressing his laws, for changing his ordinances, and for breaking his everlasting covenant, and for turning back to the iniquity of their fathers who refused to hearken to the voice of the Lord, who were turned to worship the works of their own hands, and to worship the sun, moon and stars which God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven, as Moses testifies (Deut. 4: 19),– when therefore Gog and his forces have been employed to execute God's righteous judgments upon the rebellious house of Israel according to the law, then the Lord will be glorified in their destruction, even as the Lord says by the hand of Ezekiel in verse 16 of this prophecy, saying, “And I will bring thee against my land, that the heathen may know me, when I shall be sanctified in thee, O Gog, before their eyes.” The prophet