Revelation Unfolding/Program 3
|By: Dr. Jimmy DeYoung; ©2009|
|Ezekiel 38 and other biblical prophecies reveal numerous countries who will align themselves in battle against Israel in the last days. Who are these nations? In what ways are these nations already setting the stage for this Ezekiel 38 War today?|
Today, world leaders are creating new laws and policies to try and solve the global economic crisis; the growing threat of nuclear weapons from Iran, Afghanistan, and North Korea; the Palestinian and Israeli conflict over implementing a two state solution; and the resurgence of Russia’s military. Do these four problems have a connection with what the biblical prophets predicted will happen in the future? Recently, President Obama met with world leaders to try and fix the global economic crisis. The European Union called for the establishment of a “global governance [that] would subject all financial market activities around the world to regulation and be backed by… inescapable sanctions against violators.” Could today’s events be leading toward the global control and governance the Bible predicts will take place in the last days? And could Iran’s threats to wipe Israel from the face of the earth, the world’s efforts to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and Russia’s military resurgence all be pointing toward the final world events the Bible predicts will occur before Christ returns? My guest for this series is journalist Dr. Jimmy DeYoung, who has lived and reported from Jerusalem since 1993. You will also hear part of our interview with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu concerning the threats Israel is currently facing. Join us for this special edition of the John Ankerberg Show.
- Ankerberg: Welcome to our program. My guest is Dr. Jimmy DeYoung, and we’re talking about the world events that are taking place in light of biblical prophecy. And things are happening. We’ve got a world economic crisis that we’re facing. And what we want to talk about today is some of the nations in the Middle East. Why is our world right now seeming to pull their support away from Israel? Why are they abandoning Israel? Obviously, you know, they’ve got a new prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and we interviewed him; you’re going to hear some clips from that in a moment. But, Jimmy, I want you to present the big picture to our folks. And I’d like to start with something else that has happened recently. In his inaugural address in January, President Obama pledged to reach out to the Muslim world. He made this promise again, and he actually urged countries around the world to try to reach out to Islam across the world. This included trying to bring Turkey, the country of Turkey, into the European Union. What’s going on, and how does this relate to the prophet Ezekiel and what he predicts about end time events?
- DeYoung: Well, I must remind everybody that the word Islam is not used in the Bible. But the nations that embrace Islam as their religion, many of those nations are mentioned by name in the prophetic passages in God’s Word. You mentioned Turkey, for example. If you go to an ancient Turkish map, biblical times, Turkey was divided into four sections: Meshech, Tubal, Gomer, Togarmah. That’s Ezekiel 38, verses 2 and 6, where it mentions those four different entities. And then, of course, as you continue to look through the book of Ezekiel, and in chapter 38, it not only talks about Turkey, but in that second verse of chapter 38, it talks about Magog. Now a study of biblical geography would indicate that is Russia. And then in verse 5 it says Persia. Now that was the biblical title for three nations we know today, and until 1936, they were known as Persia, today they’re known as Iran, Afghanistan and Pakistan. And they’re going to be a part of the coalition of nations that are going to come to destroy the Jewish state in the last days. And then, of course, it mentions in some translations Cush and Put, or maybe it’s Ethiopia and Libya. Well, it’s talking about Cush or Ethiopia, would refer to three of the African nations: Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan. And then Put, or Libya, is referring to Libya. Colonel Kaddafi, everybody is aware the leader of that nation, who by the way, claims to be King of Kings because he’s now also the head of the African Union. So, this brings these nations into focus. As we look at all that’s unfolding in our world, you have to add Syria and Egypt from over in Daniel 11, and you also would add Saudi Arabia and Lebanon from the book of Psalm, chapter 83.
- Ankerberg: Alright, talk about why some of the European leaders do not want Turkey to come into the European Union even though President Obama has asked that they accept Turkey into the Union.
- DeYoung: It would be the gateway to the Islamic world entering into the European Union. It was interesting when President Obama made that suggestion, urged the European Union to include Turkey, immediately President Sarcosi of France and even Angela Merkel of Germany, quickly came to the front and said, “President Obama, we like you, but you do not direct who we will include in the European Union.” They made it definite. In fact, I think it was probably the only negative statement that any of the European Union leaders had with President Obama. Turkey, if indeed they are included in the European Union, they are the bridge between the East and the West, between Europe and Asia. And indeed that’s exactly what President Obama suggested, that they would be the bridge between the West and the Islamic world. So he was signaling, in fact, even to the European Union: open up, allow Turkey to come in; you’ll have the Islamic world entering in as well.
- Ankerberg: Quickly explain that after Prime Minister Netanyahu was inaugurated into office, he challenged President Obama, America, and the European countries to do something about Iran, which is another one of the countries that are mentioned in Ezekiel 38. Talk about those two things. What did the prime minister say?
- DeYoung: Prime Minister Netanyahu is living with this threat of the Iranian nuclear capability. In fact, the entire Middle East, ultimately the European Union, and even America, are under that threat. But right now, on a 24/7 basis, the Israeli people, which of course Prime Minister Netanyahu now leads as the prime minister of the country, they’re facing this on a daily basis. They need to deal with it: the threat of them developing a nuclear weapon of mass destruction; the fact that are they going to back up the statements of their President: “we’re going to wipe Israel off the face of the earth”. They continually hear the rhetoric coming out of Iran: that Israel is a non-entity; that their existence is going to be short-lived. So they have to deal with this. So Netanyahu, I think, made a very smart move. He threw it in the lap of the President of the United States: you’re either going to have to step up to the plate, deal with them, shut this threat down, or we’re going to have to go in and do it.
- Ankerberg: Alright, we gave some very, very interesting quotes from the prime minister of Israel last week. And as we’ve talked, we were stunned ourselves when we heard him make these statements, and we wondered why our American press does not cover these kinds of statements. They do not cover what their real concerns are. So, I want the folks to hear what would the world be like if Iran does acquire nuclear weapons, according to the prime minister of Israel. Listen very carefully.
- Netanyahu: If Iran acquires nuclear weapons, everything that we’ve been talking about will pale in comparison. Because the power to extend power, to threaten, to realize the threats, to make good on the threats, will be on a level that we have not seen, nor one that we can readily imagine. It will put the oil reserves of the Gulf under their sway. They could easily bring down governments or fold them into their realm. They will inspire and encourage the radicals in the various Islamic communities that they’re targeting around the world. And they will be in turn inspired by the fact that, obviously, the acquisition of nuclear weapons is a providential sign of the coming victory of the true believers. And, of course, they might make good on their twisted ideas of ending Zionism and extending their realm by other means. So this is a threat to the entire world, and it cannot be seen as anything but that.
- Ankerberg: Jimmy, I don’t know about you, but when I heard him say this, I was absolutely stunned. This is not fairy tales, this is not make-believe. When you’re sitting in Israel and he says this is the place where they want to wipe you off the face of the earth, it does something to you. How did you feel?
- DeYoung: Well, it certainly does indeed do something to you. But not only is Netanyahu making this statement, every Israeli political leader is on board with him. They’ve seen the Israeli Intel; they know exactly what is happening. And don’t just think that President Ahmadinejad of Iran is out there front, boasting about what he thinks he can do. He does not say one word unless the Supreme Council, the ayatollahs, give him direction. They are motivated by an Islamic faith that says they’ve got to set up a world-wide caliphate and the only thing that’s in their way is Israel. And by the way, Bible prophecy states the exact same thing.
- Ankerberg: We’re going to take a break and when we come back we are going to let you hear some of the most important information that I think you can hear. The question is this, if Iran does get the bomb and the unthinkable happens, that a nuclear attack or a nuclear exchange takes place, do you know that our military analysts in the Pentagon have actually put out the statistics of what they think will happen, how many people will die, and how many nations will get involved in that fight. We’ll talk about all that when we come right back.
- Ankerberg: Alright, we’re back. We’re talking with Dr. Jimmy DeYoung, and we’re talking about what the prophet said is coming in the last days. And we are comparing that with the world events that are facing us right now. And what we want to talk about is, what would the world be like if Iran does get the bomb and the unthinkable happens, that is, a nuclear exchange with Israel occurs. Do you know that we have an American national security analyst who also served as a Director of Intelligence in the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Defense. He has estimated how many people would die, how many nations would be involved. I want you to hear what he has to say he thinks might be right up ahead.
- Anthony Cordesman, an American national security analyst who has also served as a Director of Intelligence Assessment in the Office of the U.S. Secretary of Defense has written: If Tehran gets the bomb and a nuclear exchange with Israel occurs, some 16 million to 28 million Iranians would be dead within 21 days, and between 200,000 to 800,000 Israelis would die. Jordan would also suffer severe radiation damage from an Iranian strike on Tel Aviv. He estimates that it is theoretically possible that the Israeli state, economy and organized society might just survive, but Iran would not survive as an organized society.
- Further, Cordesman expects that Israel would need to keep a reserve strike capability to ensure no other power can capitalize on the Iranian strike and might target key Arab neighbors such as Syria, Egypt, and the Persian Gulf states. He goes on to say a full-scale Israeli attack on Syria would kill up to 18 million people within 21 days, and a Syrian recovery would not be possible. At the same time, a Syrian attack on Israel with all of its chemical and biological warfare assets could kill up to 800,000 Israelis. But, he says, Israeli society would still recover.
- Then if there is an Israeli attack on Egypt, Cordesman does not give a death toll here, but believes it would certainly be in the tens of millions. He does say, it would mean the end of Egypt as a functioning society.
- Then Cordesman says we must recognize that the oil wells, refineries and ports along the Gulf would also be targets in the event of a mass nuclear response by an Israel convinced that it was being dealt a potentially mortal blow. The resulting nuclear contamination would mean the permanent loss of oil from the Middle East. He sums it up this way: Being contained within the region, such a nuclear exchange might not be Armageddon for the human race; but it would certainly be Armageddon for the global economy. Martin Walker of United Press International has stated that Anthony Cordesman’s analysis spells out the end of Persian civilization, quite probably the end of Egyptian civilization, and the end of the Oil Age.
- Alright, Jimmy, the threats to Israel are very real. And our political leaders are talking quite openly about the seriousness of this threat that the entire earth is facing. And I found it interesting that Anthony Cordesman mentioned these countries: Iran, Syria, Egypt and the Persian Gulf states. How does this fit in with the alignment of the nations that the Bible prophets talked about?
- DeYoung: You know, I’m not sure whether Tony actually did the statistics on that from geopolitical events that he knows about, or was he reading from the prophetic Word of God? Because when you mention those nations, you’re talking about Syria; that’s in the book of Daniel, chapter 11, starting in verse 40 there. We talk about Egypt being wiped off forever; Isaiah talks about that happening in his prophecy. And of course, again, Daniel 11 talks about Egypt as well. And then you talk about the other nations that are mentioned in Ezekiel 38. We’re seeing this thing come together like never before in the history of the world. Never has it been a day just like today, John.
- Now, the word Armageddon was used in that quote as well. We’re not talking about the Battle of Armageddon, as Saddam Hussein said, “the mother of all battles.” That takes place at the end of a seven year period of great judgment upon the earth. In addition to that, God is not going to allow the Jewish people to be wiped off the earth. In fact, He will dispatch an archangel, Michael the archangel, Daniel 12:1, will come to protect the Jewish people. The prophet Daniel was told that this would be a terrible time of judgment for the Jewish people. Howbeit, He will not let them be annihilated. And of course, Jeremiah refers to it as the time of Jacob’s trouble.
- This is all going to happen and it’s going to happen right after an event in history called the rapture, when Christians leave this earth, go into the heavenlies. The Antichrist appears. that’s this leader coming out of the revived Roman Empire, most likely the European Union. He will confirm a peace agreement with the Jewish people and their enemies, their neighbors, who want to kill them, wipe them off the face of the earth today. Israel will think their Messiah has come. They will believe the lie of Satan, and they will lay down their arms. They will say they are dwelling safely in the land. That’s Ezekiel 38:8. Verse 11 talks about the military might of Israel being laid aside. It says that the Jewish people will be living in unwalled cities. Now that’s the only way Ezekiel could describe what he was talking about. They had no F-16; they didn’t have the Merkava tank; they didn’t have the Apache helicopter, they had a wall around the city. But when they laid down those walls of the city, when they’re at rest, when they’re dwelling safely in the land, that’s when this alignment of nations from Ezekiel 38, Daniel 11, Psalm 83, that’s when they attack. And that could be very early on.
- Ankerberg: Alright. People say, “I don’t see Israel laying down their weapons to anybody.” But you were in Israel when something like that actually took place. You went just when Saddam Hussein was raining his rockets down on Israel. Talk about that and why you think this could actually happen in the future.
- DeYoung: This was a precursor to what is actually going to happen. When I was there as a journalist covering the first Gulf Crisis back in 1991, I remember putting on the gas mask, running into a sealed room, when the alarm of an incoming SCUD would sound across the entire nation. Well, at that time, the then Secretary of State, James Baker, and later on, Lawrence Eagleburger, would come into Israel. And what the United States was saying to Israel, “Do not get involved in this war. We will protect you. Don’t worry about it; we’ve got these SCUD protection missiles, the Patriot Missile, that will stop all incoming SCUDs.” And Israel, basically, sat back. For the first time in 4000 years they did not return attack on a nation that was attacking them. Thirty nine SCUDs, John, came into Israel. Saddam, who said, “I’m going to wipe Israel off the face of the earth,” he made that statement at that time. And Israel just sat back, laid down their arms, did not return attack. I think that was a precursor to what’s going to happen right at the beginning of the Tribulation period after the Antichrist confirms a peace treaty with Israel and all of her neighbors.
- Ankerberg: And that brings up the question you’ve already gone by, but people always ask, when will we know that we’ve hit the last days that this is all going to take place?
- DeYoung: We see all of these nations getting themselves ready to attack the Jewish state. Never have all of these nations formed a coalition. Individually these nations have come at Israel in previous wars and over the centuries. But never all of these nations that are mentioned in God’s prophetic Word prepared to join in an alignment to come in and to destroy the Jewish state. That’s the first indicator. And, of course, the talk of peace: every world leader wants to bring peace to the Middle East. With that talk in mind, we are quickly approaching that time Bible prophecy said will happen.
- Ankerberg: Next week we’re going to continue this conversation and we’re going to allow you to hear other portions of the interview that we had with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. And now we’re going to talk about the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and the plans for peace in the Middle East. What does the prime minister, what do some of the government leaders think about this conflict that’s going on and how does this relate to what the Bible says will happen in the future? I hope you’ll join us then.