Reading through the Bible together

Monday, August 4, 2014

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When God restores His people it is only natural that forces of evil will rise against them. In chapters 38 and 39 we have the story of a great evil alliance that comes against restored Israel and also with it is the story how God deals with the problem.

The leader of this anti-Israel (anti-God) alliance is named Gog and he comes from the land of Magog. We do not know much about either the person Gog or the location of Magog other than the coalition headed by him is said to come from the far north.  The Bible says after many days ( verses 7,8.and 16) this will happen. Interestingly this terminology of Gog and Magog is used in Revelation 20:7 for the large army arrayed against God at the end of the thousand years. Many interpretations have been made of these verses which we will not discuss here, but the core idea is clear. Before the final restoration of God’s people an evil alliance will come against them, but God will not allow them to have victory over His people.

So it is today.  God’s people should not be surprised by evil opposition. It is inevitable in a world where Satan is active. What should be clear is that just as God’s judgment came against Gog and Magog, God will move in judgment against the evil forces in Revelation.

In this conflict not only are God’s people saved, but God himself is magnified, sanctified, and known for who He really is—even in the eyes of many nations (verse 23).  When that happens, people will find out for sure, as Ezekiel states over and over, that “I am the Lord.” This is what God wants all of us to know, that He is the saving gracious Lord and able to do what is necessary to deliver His people.

Jon Dybdahl
Walla Walla University
United States