Miscellaneous Insights
Magog Is Not Russia


Though I don't support his doctrines at all, at the Jack van Impe web site is posted an article (Dec 1996), AND RUMORS OF WARS, Moshe Kohn, a columnist for the Jerusalem Post, writes of the "New interest in Ezekiel in Israel." The article says the he "recently linked the prophecies of Ezekiel and Zechariah with the explosive situation in the Middle East today."

This site then posts this excerpt of Moshe's "All a-Gog" column in an October edition of the Jerusalem Post:

"The war to end all wars is to be launched against Eretz Yisrael by 'Gog of the land of Magog, chief prince of Meshech and Tuval' as foretold in Ezekiel 38 and 39. ...

"We don't know what or who Magog, Meshech, Tuval and Gog are; we only know that Gog and his allies are to come down on Eretz Yisrael from the north. God will then destroy the invaders, and 'I will restore the fortunes of Jacob, and have mercy on the whole House of Israel ... and I will not hide my face from them any more.'

"The New Testament also mentions the Gog/Magog War, in Revelation 20, as the final battle between the rulers of Earth led by Satan and the forces of God. In that version, this war may also be what is known in Christian tradition as the Battle of Armageddon, a place mentioned in Revelation 16:16.

"I don't know about ... prophecy, or about Gog/Magog, or about Armageddon. I do know that the evidence seems conclusive that our neighboring Arab states and our PLO 'peace partner' are itching for 'the mother of all wars' in which they will once and for all remove the Jewish sovereign presence from 'Holy Palestine' and establish the everlasting dominion of Islamic Araby in the land."

Kohn also pointed out that, with the exception of King Hussein of Jordan and the late Anwar Sadat of Egypt, "no Arab leader, no Arab spokesperson, no Arab intellectual or mediacrat has indicated publicly that he or she has a long-range vision of peace with Israel or considers such a vision legitimate." (Ezekiel 38 & 39; Dan. 11:40)

I thought this last paragraph was also particularly interesting because Hussein is the only only with visions of peace for Israel, a stance that the antichrist will take at the beginning of Daniel's 70th week. Furthermore, he has cancer and the prognonsis is not good, which could possibly pave the way for the man who finally accomplishes Hussein's desire.


Many are saying God and Magog are Russia, the king of the North that comes down against Israel in the last days. But, there are those who say they are not Russia, such as this informative web site of The Church of the Harvest:

By Staff Writer

. . . . We contend that if the story line in Daniel is read literally the drama described therein can be found on today's stage of history.

To demonstrate the truth of that, the nations of Ezekiel 38 must also be taken literally. When that is the case, you find that Magog, the place where Antichrist comes from, is right in the heart of the territory that Satan has always controlled.

That territory has come down through history in the hands of many nations; Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Grecia, Rome, Muslim and Hashemite. Those are the Empires and Kingdoms that have occupied the land of the Bible.

Daniels' prophecy concerns the final days of the Jews, and their holy city Jerusalem. The story is very complete, as it starts you out by developing the land area on which the drama is going to play out, along with the information of who the spiritual influences are that are over those lands. He brings us to the end time days, and describes a new kingdom growing up in that very same land, with the very same capital, and the king that sits upon the throne in that kingdom becomes possessed by one of those spiritual influences.

Revelations 13 and 17 directs you at who the spiritual leader is. [Read the Beast behind Antichrist]

But the point of this story is to demonstrate that by taking the territory of Magog, for where it has always been, and right where it still is today, and leave it there, then Daniels' whole story is as clear as a bell, just as God said it would be in it's time. The circumstances evolving in the lands of the Bible on today's stage of history are playing out Daniels' story to the letter.

The following is taken from the work of Carl Ludwigson:

Ezekiel's Gog / Antichrist is the enemy from the north. In the Old Testament, the king of the north has reference to the areas of Syria, Turkey, and Iraq [see Ed's map below; not part of original article]. The word north is used of Syria or the Old Seleucid Empire six times, of Babylon sixteen times, of Assyria one time, and of Iran one time. These are the lands once occupied by Magog, Gomer, Togarmah, Meshech and Tubal.

King of the North geographical references in Scripture

Meshech, Tubal, Togarmah, Dedan and Syria traded with Tyre six centuries before Christ [Ezek.27:13-16]. These lands clearly define the north. The fact that some scholars equate the names of ancient Middle East cities with modern English cognates is appalling. Meshech is NOT Moscow; Moscow just had its 850th birthday.

Some have interpreted the Hebrew word 'rosh' in Ezekiel 38:3, which is translated 'chief', to be a reference to Russia. In the Massoretic text the words 'chief prince' carry the accents Tiphha and Zaqeph-gadol. [See Hebrew text on which the following statements are based on this web page.]

The Tiphha appears under the resh of the Hebrew word 'rosh'; the Zaqeph-gadol appears on top of the sin of the Hebrew word 'nish'.

The Tiphha to the right, underneath the initial consonant of the word 'rosh', or chief, is prepositive and does not mark the tone syllable. See Kautsch and Cowley's *Grammar*, page 61 item 9.

The word 'nish' or prince has the accent Zaqeph-gadol which is disjunctive and indicates a pause. See Kautsch and Cowley's *Grammar*, page 60 item 4b.

So Ezekiel 38:3 should be read as follows: "Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the prince, {pause} chief of Meshech and Tubal:" Rosh is not Russia.

The Hebrew word 'rosh' is translated head or chief 423 times in the Old Testament. Again, it is absolutely appalling how some scholars can equate the English cognate 'rosh' with Russia. Rosh is not Russia.

Thank you Carl Ludwigson for that lesson.

All atlases of the Bible printed before the 1940's [and the Russian scare] show the land of Magog to be in the Northern part of modern day Iraq, just north of Bagdadd.

(Ed's map not part of the original article)

Meshech and Tubal are in the area that today is Turkey and portions of northern Syria as well as northern Iraq.

It is clear that the leader, Gog / Antichrist, will be from Iraq and that he will become the chief prince of that portion of Turkey and the northern part of Syria along with Iraq, which is a good part of the Old Hashemite Kingdom [Hussein of Jordan].

The Hashemite Kingdom is the Kingdom of Muhammad, the prophet of Allah, the other side of the regions spiritual coin. The direct descendent of Muhammad, and the present ruling king of a pseudo Hashemite Kingdom, has vowed to regain his ancestral land, since it was stolen from him in a military junta in 1958. . . .

Gog, from Magog will become Gog when the false deliverer has risen to his power position, and as Daniel puts it, he becomes the eighth ruler out of the seventh kingdom in the succession of kingdoms who had authority over the Jews, and flowed through Babylon. The kingdoms were; Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Grecia, Rome, Hashemite [the seventh, modern day kingdom] and out of it, the eighth ruler ascends the throne, but as the possessor of the little horn, seventh king, who is the Hashemite King. . . .

I think we have demonstrated that Magog is not Russia, and that since it is Magog, it is right in the center of today's stage, and will become the seventh kingdom in the succession of kingdoms flowing through Babylon, and when the evil spirit possesses the King of that seventh kingdom, Antichrist will be on the scene, and the second half of the Great Tribulation, the Great, will be underway.


At another web site (Url is no longer in service) http://www.moscow850.ru/index-e.html, "Moscow turns 850 and keeps living on", we read that it was in 1147 that "Moscow [was] first mentioned in chronicles." At another site, we are told the origins of Russia itself: (http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/douglashartman/862ad.htm"> History of Russia and the former USSR. This link no longer works):

Pre-862 AD (in the beginning) -- Origins of the Russian People -- The vast territory that became Russia was sparsely inhabited by various nomadic tribes prior to the 9th century AD. Among the peoples present in the steppe north of the Black Sea were the Cimmerians, which were conquered by the Scythians in the 7th century BC. The Scythians, in turn were displaced by the Sarmatians in the 3rd century BC. In the early centuries AD, a succession of tribes ruled the area, from the Goths to the Huns, Avars, Khazars, and Bulgars. Prior to 862 AD, the northern region or present-day Russia, which was primarily a region of vast forests, was inhabited by tribes collectively known as Slavs. Scholars differ, but the Slavs probably appeared somewhere between the 1st and 6th centuries AD in ancient Russia. As a result of invasions and possibly demographic influences, the Slavic tribes began a series of migratory movements. The western tribes eventually evolved as the Moravians, Poles, Czechs and Slovaks. The southern tribes became the Serbs, Croats, Slovenes, and the slavicized Bulgars. The Eastern Slavs were differentiated into Great Russians (or simply Russians), Ukrainians, and Belorussians. Though these ethnic groupings became rather permanent identities, different tribes within each group continued to exist. . . .

At some point, Viking merchant-adventures from Scandinavia who were called "Varangians" by the Slavic tribes also began to use the waterborne trade routes through Eastern Slavic regions. It cannot be ascertained whether the successes of the Eastern Slavs attracted the Varangians or whether they had been using these waterways during the time of the settlements of the Eastern Slav. Nevertheless, the Varangians were better-armed and more-organized than the Slavic tribes. The Varangians used their superior military skills to exact tribute from the Slavs and to consolidate their rule at key points along the river trade routes from nearly the Baltic Sea to the Byzantine capital of Constantinople (present-day Istanbul), which was at the time (as it is today) a significant international trading hub between Asia and Europe.

At some point, the Varangian settlers either voluntarily adopted the name Rus', were identified as Rus', or merged with Slavic settlers, who may have been known by the collective name of "Rus'". The preponderance of leading historians assert that Rus' was another name for Varangians, but some accounts suggest the Rus' people were Scandinavians other than the Varangians. To this day, the origin of the word Rus' and the exact composition of the Varangians are hotly disputed topics in academic circles. Irregardless, by the middle 800s AD, both the Varangian settlers and the Eastern Slavic tribes had become known as Rus', and, accordingly, this area was coined the "Land of Rus'." From the Scandinavian rulers came the name Rossiya, or Russia, meaning "land of the Rus'. . . .

At the http://www.russia-travel.com/rushis02.htm Official Site of the Russian National Tourist Office site (link no longer active), we read that originally, Russia was a conglomeration of various tribes and people, with no mention of God or Magog:

The early history of Russia, like those of many countries, is one of migrating peoples and ancient kingdoms. In fact, early Russia was not exactly "Russia," but a collection of cities that gradually coalesced into an empire. I n the early part of the ninth century, as part of the same great movement that brough the Danes to England and the Norsemen to Western Europe, a Scandanavian people known as the Varangians crossed the Baltic Sea and landed in Eastern Europe. The leader of the Varangians was the semilegendary warrior Rurik, who led his people in 862 to the city of Novgorod on the Volkhov River. Whether Rurik took the city by force or was invited to rule there, he certainly invested the city. From Novgorod, Rurik's successor Oleg extended the power of the city southward. In 882, he gained control of Kiev, a Slavic city that had arisen along the Dnepr River around the 5th century. Oleg's attainment of rule over Kiev marked the first establishment of a unified, dynastic state in the region. Kiev became the center of a trade route between Scandinavia and Constantinople, and Kievan Rus', as the empire came to be known, flourished for the next three hundred years.

It hardly seems appropriate to say prophetically that Russia is Gog or Magog, when God would have us see the truth of His prophetic word.