The Day of the Lord
"The Day of the Lord" is a term used throughout the
Old and New Testaments to describe different periods of Gods judgment upon the
earth, upon unbelievers, or upon his unfaithful people. In the Old Testament the prophet
Ezekiel made a number of predictions that Jerusalem would be destroyed in a "Day of
the Lord" at the invasion of Babylon; the prophet Isaiah then prophesied the capture
of Babylon and referred to that day as a "Day of the Lord"; and Ezekiel
predicted the fall of ancient Egypt and described this time as a "Day of the
Any time that God decides to take matters into His own hands, and
inflict punishment or give judgment, can be described as a "Day of the Lord."
When the New Testament refers to this period of punishment and judgment it almost always
refers to the end-times Day of the Lord that will precede the Second Coming of
Jesus Christ. Many Old Testament "Day of the Lord" passages refer to past
events, but many more undoubtedly refer to the final Day of the Lord. When these
Old Testament prophecies are combined with the New Testament prophecies of the Day of the
Lord it is possible to create a vivid picture of what it will include, how it will begin,
and when it will begin in relation to the 70th Week of Daniel and the seals, trumpets and
bowls of Revelation.
Everyone on the face of the earth will know when the end-times Day
of the Lord has begun. It will involve a cataclysmic planetary catastrophe, it will
include an amazing cosmic display and it will also bring about a powerful spiritual
awareness within every individual on the face of the earth. Every person will be touched
with the knowledge that God has intervened and nothing will ever be the same again. In the
wake of the extraordinary events that mark the beginning of the Day of the Lord the world
will witness the rise of the Antichrist, who will offer satisfying explanations and
soothing words to deceive mankind away from the truth of what is happening and away from
the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The Day of the Lord is a controversial subject within the study of
prophecy, and so before we describe exactly when and how it begins we will first put forth
the evidence that leads to our conclusion. The following Biblical descriptions are from
passages 2 that describe the end-times Day of the Lord, which predict
events that will occur during this time of judgment:
Blackout of natural light sources-
Isaiah 13:9-10, "Behold, the day of
the Lord cometh... For the stars of heaven and the constellations thereof shall not give
their light: the sun shall be darkened in his going forth, and the moon shall not cause
her light to shine."
Joel 2:1-11, "...for the day of the
Lord cometh... the sun and the moon shall be dark, and the stars shall withdraw their
shining... for the day of the Lord is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?"
Joel 3:14-15, "for the day of the Lord
is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars
shall withdraw their shining."
A few other texts also offer general
descriptions of darkness, clouds and gloominess during the final Day of the Lord (Joel
2:2, Amos 5:18-20, Zephaniah 1:15).
A shaking of the heavens and the earth-
Isaiah 2:12-21, "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... And they shall go into the holes of the rocks,
and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty,
when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth. In that day a man shall cast his idols of
silver, and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship, to the
moles and to the bats; To go into the clefts of the rocks, and into the tops of the ragged
rocks, for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake
terribly the earth."
Isaiah 13:13, "Therefore I will shake
the heavens, and the earth shall remove out of her place, in the wrath of the Lord of
hosts, and in the day of his fierce anger."
Joel 3:16, "The Lord also shall roar
out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall
shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of
The destruction of the wicked-
Isaiah 13:9, "Behold, the day of
the Lord cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he
shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it."
Isaiah 34:2, "For the indignation of
the Lord is upon all nations, and his fury upon all their armies: he hath utterly
destroyed them, he hath delivered them to the slaughter."
Obadiah 1:15-16, "For the day of the
Lord is near upon all the heathen: as thou hast done, it shall be done unto thee: thy
reward shall return upon thine own head. For as ye have drunk upon my holy mountain, so
shall all the heathen drink continually, yea, they shall drink, and they shall swallow
down, and they shall be as though they had not been."
Zephaniah 1:17, "And I will bring
distress upon men, that they shall walk like blind men, because they have sinned against
the Lord: and their blood shall be poured out as dust, and their flesh as the dung."
The old earth will be destroyed and made new- Zephaniah 1:2-3, "I will
utterly consume all things from off the land, saith the Lord. I will consume man and
beast; I will consume the fowls of the heaven, and the fishes of the sea, and the
stumblingblocks with the wicked: and I will cut off man from off the land, saith the
Zephaniah 1:18, "Neither their silver
nor their gold shall be able to deliver them in the day of the Lord's wrath; but the whole
land shall be devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for he shall make even a speedy
riddance of all them that dwell in the land."
Zechariah 14:8-9, "And it shall be in
that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former
sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the
Lord shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one Lord, and his name
2 Peter 3:10-13, "But the day of the
Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a
great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works
that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved,
what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, looking for
and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be
dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to
his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness."
The four major descriptions above tell us what type of events
will be included within this final "Day of the Lord" period of judgment.
In addition to these descriptions the prophets also tell us of several events which must
occur before the Day of the Lord even begins:
The "falling away"
and the revealing of the "man of sin"-
2 Thessalonians 2:3, "Let no man deceive you by any
means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man
of sin be revealed, the son of perdition."
The appearance of Elijah-Malachi 4:5, "Behold, I will
send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the
The sun will be darkened and the moon will turn red like blood-
Joel 2:31, "The sun shall be
turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of
the Lord come."
The "falling away" is something that is
addressed in chapter ten, and the revealing of the man of sin refers to the Antichrist.
The verses which follow that passage tell us that the "revealing" of the
Antichrist is the same as the "coming" of the Antichrist which, as will be
explained in a later chapter, comes before the 70th Week begins. The appearance of Elijah
must also precede the Day of the Lord, and this leads many to speculate that perhaps
Elijah will be one of the Two Witnesses. And finally, the darkening of the sun and the
moon turning red like blood are signs that are very important in identifying the beginning
of the Day of the Lord within Revelation, as we shall soon see.
The Bible tells us what happens during the Day of the
Lord and it tells us what happens before the Day of the Lord. In addition to
these clues, the Bible also tells us how the Day of the Lord actually begins:
The Day of the Lord will begin with sudden destruction- Isaiah 13:6, "Howl ye; for
the day of the Lord is at hand; it shall come as a destruction from the Almighty."
Joel 1:15, "Alas for the day! for the
day of the Lord is at hand, and as a destruction from the Almighty shall it come."
1 Thessalonians 5:2-3, "... the day of
the Lord so cometh... then sudden destruction cometh upon them..."
The Day of the Lord will begin unexpectedly, "as a
thief in the night"
1 Thessalonians 5:2, "For
yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the
2 Peter 3:10, "But the day of the
Lord will come as a thief in the night..."
The Day of the Lord will begin when people are saying "peace and safety."
1 Thessalonians 5:1-3, "But
of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For
yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For
when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them,
as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape."
Here is a preliminary description of the end-times
Day of the Lord, created from the evidence that we have assembled so far:
The Day of the Lord will be preceded by the prophet
Elijah, the revealing of the Antichrist, and by the cosmic signs of a darkened sun and a
blood red moon. The Day of the Lord will then come unexpectedly, as a thief in the night,
when people are saying "peace and safety." It
will come with "sudden destruction," and during the Day of the Lord the
earth and the heavens will be shaken, there will be a complete blackout of the sun, moon
and stars, the wicked will be destroyed and the old earth will be wiped clean and made new
Some may be asking, "How can the Day of the Lord take
people by surprise when it is preceded by so many obvious signs?" The answer is that
according to Paul 3 it will be unbelievers who are taken by
surprise and not believers. Unbelievers will not pay attention to the preceding signs, and
the two visible cosmic signs come so close to the beginning of the Day of the Lord that
unbelievers will still be taken by surprise. The next section makes this clear.
With the Biblical description of the Day of the Lord given
above, we now turn to the book of Revelation, to pinpoint exactly where it will begin
within the chronology of the seals, trumpets and bowls:
The Beginning of the Day of the Lord within the Book of
Revelation 6:12-17 describes the beginning of the Day of the Lord,
"I watched as he opened the sixth seal. There was a great
earthquake. The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned
blood red, and the stars in the sky fell to earth, as late figs drop from a fig tree when
shaken by a strong wind. The sky receded like a scroll, rolling up, and every mountain and
island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals,
the rich, the mighty, and every slave and every free man hid in caves and among the rocks
of the mountains. They called to the mountains and the rocks, Fall on us and hide us
from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great
day of their wrath has come, and who can stand? "
There are five events which occur in sequence after the sixth seal is
1- A local earthquake at an ungiven location.
2- A darkening of the sun.
3- A blood red moon.
4- A brilliant meteor shower.
5- A great shaking of the earth.
The darkened sun and blood red moon are the fulfillment of the sign
predicted in Joel 2:31. This sign occurs "before the great and the terrible day
of the Lord come." The Day of the Lord must then begin after the sixth
seal's third event.
The fifth event is described as causing every mountain and island to
move out of its place. If taken literally, then certainly this must mean that the entire
earth is moved. When this occurs the sky is darkened, and the stars would then be visible.
The heavens appear to move across the sky as the letters on a scroll are rolled up as it
is being read. Revelation is describing a massive polar-shift type event where the earth
tips over, causing islands and mountains to move from their set places (perhaps their
known latitude and longitude), and the heavens to move across the sky rapidly like a
scroll that is being rolled up. Perhaps the North Star would then be in the west, or the
Southern Cross in the north. When this event occurs the people of the earth react wildly
and flee to the mountains. The passage concludes with their cries of, "...the
great day of his wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?" The people of
the earth know full well that the Day of the Lord has just begun.
Compare mankinds reaction to the polar-shift type event of the
sixth seal, with mans reaction to a similar event predicted in Isaiah 2:12-21,
"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... 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 they
shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the
Lord, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth.
In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made
each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats; To go into
the clefts of the rocks, and into the tops of the ragged rocks, for fear of the Lord, and
for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth."
Isaiah gives a separate prophecy of the same event and he describes the
very same actions of a terrified humanity in response to the great "shaking"
of the earth. Isaiah confirms that this great shaking of the earth is a Day of the Lord
event. From these texts we know that
The Day of the Lord Will Begin with a Great and Terrible
Shaking of the Earth!
The sixth seal of Revelation combines with Joel 2:31 and
Isaiah 2:12-21 to show us that the Day of the Lord will begin after a darkened sun and
blood red moon with a great shaking of the earth by the hand of God. Our description of
the Day of the Lord is now even more complete:
The Day of the Lord will be preceded by the prophet Elijah,
the revealing of the Antichrist, a local earthquake somewhere on the earth, and
by the cosmic signs of a darkened sun and a blood red moon. It will come
unexpectedly, as a thief in the night, when people are saying "peace and
safety." It will come with "sudden destruction" and will first
be felt when God causes a great and terrible shaking of the entire earth.
The next section will describe how a future invasion of the nation
of Israel by a coalition of foreign armies relates to the sixth seal of Revelation and to
the beginning of the end-times Day of the Lord.
The Military Invasion of Israel
The prophet Ezekiel described in his own contemporary language a future
military invasion of the land of Israel. This invasion is to be led by a man named Gog, of
the land of Magog, identified by modern scholars as a reference to present-day Russia. At
the time of this invasion God will be stirred into action to protect His nation and to
show His greatness to Israel and to the rest of the world. Here is the prophecy given by
Ezekiel that has been faithfully passed down for over 2500 years. To the skeptics, God
includes the message, "It is coming! It will surely take place." 4 If the God of Israel is truly the transcendent Creator of
the universe, then the following events will one day be remembered as a part of
The word of the LORD came to me: "Son of man, set your
face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal; prophesy
against him and say: `This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against you, O Gog, chief
prince of Meshech and Tubal. I will turn you around, put hooks in your jaws and bring you
out with your whole army--your horses, your horsemen fully armed, and a great horde with
large and small shields, all of them brandishing their swords. Persia, Cush and Put will
be with them, all with shields and helmets, also Gomer with all its troops, and Beth
Togarmah from the far north with all its troops--the many nations with you.
" 'Get ready; be prepared, you and all the hordes gathered about
you, and take command of them. After many days you will be called to arms. In future years
you will invade a land that has recovered from war, whose people were gathered from many
nations to the mountains of Israel, which had long been desolate. They had been brought
out from the nations, and now all of them live in safety. You and all your troops and the
many nations with you will go up, advancing like a storm; you will be like a cloud
covering the land.
" 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: On that day thoughts will
come into your mind and you will devise an evil scheme. You will say, "I will invade
a land of unwalled villages; I will attack a peaceful and unsuspecting people--all of them
living without walls and without gates and bars. I will plunder and loot and turn my hand
against the resettled ruins and the people gathered from the nations, rich in livestock
and goods, living at the center of the land." Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of
Tarshish and all her villages will say to you, "Have you come to plunder? Have you
gathered your hordes to loot, to carry off silver and gold, to take away livestock and
goods and to seize much plunder?" '
"Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog: `This is what the
Sovereign LORD says: In that day, when my people Israel are living in safety, will you not
take notice of it? You will come from your place in the far north, you and many nations
with you, all of them riding on horses, a great horde, a mighty army. You will advance
against my people Israel like a cloud that covers the land. In days to come, O Gog, I will
bring you against my land, so that the nations may know me when I show myself holy through
you before their eyes.
" 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Are you not the one I
spoke of in former days by my servants the prophets of Israel? At that time they
prophesied for years that I would bring you against them. This is what will happen in that
day: When Gog attacks the land of Israel, my hot anger will be aroused, declares the
Sovereign LORD. In my zeal and fiery wrath I declare that at that time there shall be a
great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the
beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground, and all the people on the
face of the earth will tremble at my presence. The mountains will be overturned, the
cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground...' " Ezekiel
An important part of Ezekiels prophecy has already been
fulfilled: After almost 2000 years of wandering and persecution the Jews have come back to
their land, from all of the nations around the world, and have created their own state, a
new nation of Israel. The previous chapter of Ezekiel, chapter thirty-seven, described
Israel as a hopeless collection of dried bones, but God showed Ezekiel that He would bring
those bones to life,
"Then he said to me: Son of man, these bones are the
whole house of Israel. They say, Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are
cut off. Therefore prophesy and say to them: This is what the Sovereign LORD
says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring
you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I
open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will
live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have
spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD
This is what the Sovereign
LORD says: I will take the Israelites out of the nations where they have gone. I will
gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. I will make them one
nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel." 5
The thirty-seventh chapter of Ezekiel was an amazing prophetic
description of Israel, as she was created as a nation in the seemingly hopeless aftermath
of the Nazi holocaust. The Lord tells us, through the prophet Ezekiel, that this new
nation of Israel will one day be invaded by a coalition of nations that correspond to the
present day Muslim nations of Libya, Iran, Sudan and others, led by Magog, a nation from
the far north. Russia is the nation furthest north from Israel and Moscow is almost
directly due north of Jerusalem.
Prior to this invasion the invaders plot and take notice of Israel.
Ezekiels descriptions of her at this time should be recognized as pertinent to our
"In future years you will invade a land that
has recovered from war, whose people were gathered from many nations to the mountains of
Israel, which had long been desolate. They had been brought out from the nations, and now
all of them live in safety."
"You will say, "I will invade a land of unwalled villages;
I will attack a peaceful and unsuspecting people--all of them living
without walls and without gates and bars."
"In that day, when my people Israel are living
in safety, will you not take notice of it? You will come from your place
in the far north, you and many nations with you
Israel will be invaded at a time when she is living in
peace and safety. However, God will quickly act and take charge of the situation,
"When Gog attacks the land of Israel, my hot anger
will be aroused, declares the Sovereign LORD. In my zeal and fiery wrath I declare that at
that time there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish of the sea,
the birds of the air, the beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground,
and all the people on the face of the earth will tremble at my presence. The mountains
will be overturned, the cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground..."
God will express his anger at the pending invasion of
Israel, but instead of dealing directly with the invaders, He will first immediately cause
a great earthquake in Israel, one that will quickly change to a massive shaking of the
entire earth. This shaking of the earth will cause everyone on the face of the earth to
tremble at Gods presence. It will be an event causing terrible and sudden
destruction, with mountains overturning, cliffs crumbling and walls falling to the ground.
This event is the very same event that is shown at the opening of the sixth seal of
Revelation. It represents the beginning of the great and terrible Day of the Lord.
The similarities between Revelations sixth seal, Ezekiels
description of the earthquake and global disturbance, and Isaiahs prophecy of a
great shaking of the earth in the Day of the Lord are shown in the table below:
|A local earthquake
"I watched as he
opened the sixth seal. There was a great earthquake."
"In my zeal and fiery
wrath I declare that at that time there shall be a great earthquake in the land of
|Shaking of the entire earth
"The sky receded like
a scroll, rolling up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place."
"The fish of the sea,
the birds of the air, the beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground,
and all the people on the face of the earth will tremble at my presence."
ariseth to shake terribly the earth."
|Hiding in the caves
"Then the kings of the
earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and every free man
hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains."
shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth
|Reference to mountains and rocks
"They called to the
mountains and the rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the
throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!"
"The mountains will be
overturned, the cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground."
They cry out to be hidden
from God and Jesus because, "the great day of their wrath has come, and who can
Everyone on the face of the
earth "trembles" at Gods presence (even the fish).
|Men hide "for fear of the Lord, and for the glory of his majesty
Described as the
beginning of Gods day of wrath
Described as a
result of Gods "fiery wrath."
Ezekiels account of the judgment that will fall upon the earth at the time Israel is
invaded corresponds almost exactly with the account given in Revelation of the sixth seal
and the beginning of the Day of the Lord. The only events left out of Ezekiels
account are the cosmic signs of the darkened sun, blood red moon and falling stars, which
we know will occur after the initial earthquake in Israel, but before the shaking of the
Ezekiels account also exactly fulfills the words of Paul
in 1 Thessalonians 5:1-3 who described how the Day of the Lord would begin,
"But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have
no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so
cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden
destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not
The Day of the Lord will begin at a time when Israel
is recovering from war but living in peace and safety, and then God will reach out and
shake the entire earth. This will bring sudden destruction, causing mountains to overturn,
cliffs to crumble and walls to fall to the ground.
The Destruction of Israels Invaders
The parallels between Ezekiels account of the events at
the invasion of Israel and the book of Revelation do not end with the sixth seal. The
great shaking of the earth is only a preliminary judgment and, as may have been noticed,
it is not directed specifically at the invaders, but at the entire earth. The invaders
themselves are dealt with through a subsequent judgment, one that has startling parallels
with the first trumpet judgment of Revelation, which comes about after the seventh seal is
opened. Here is Ezekiels description of that judgment,
"I will summon a sword against Gog on all my
mountains, declares the Sovereign LORD. Every man's sword will be against his brother. I
will execute judgment upon him with plague and bloodshed; I will pour down torrents of
rain, hailstones and burning sulfur on him and on his troops and on the many nations with
him. And so I will show my greatness and my holiness, and I will make myself known in the
sight of many nations. Then they will know that I am the LORD.
You will fall in the
open field, for I have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD. I will send fire on Magog and
on those who live in safety in the coastlands, and they will know that I am the
Revelation gives a separate description of the same events.
The sixth seal of Revelation ends with the great shaking of the entire earth. After that,
the seventh seal is opened and there is a half-hour of silence in heaven. Then seven
angels appear and they are given seven trumpets. Here is what happens after the first
angel sounds his trumpet,
and there came hail and fire mixed with blood,
and it was hurled down upon the earth. A third of the earth was burned up, a third of the
trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up." 7
Ezekiel and Revelation both describe a judgment that includes hail,
blood and fire that is poured down or hurled down upon the earth. Ezekiel tells us that
the invading armies will be destroyed, and that the nation of Magog itself will also be
judged. God will send fire upon that nation, as well as on the "coastlands."
If Magog is indeed Russia, and "the coastlands" refers to the other
invading nations and/or the Mediterranean basin or other unknown areas, then the judgment
of fire in Ezekiel's account could easily fulfill the first trumpet judgment from which
one third of the earth is burned up with fire.
The parallels between Ezekiels account of the destruction of
Israels invaders and the first trumpet judgment of Revelation are examined in the
"I will pour
and it was
rain, hailstones and burning sulfur
and there came
"I will execute
judgment upon him with plague and bloodshed."
and fire mixed
"I will send fire on
Magog and on those who live in safety in the coastlands
"A third of the earth
was burned up
In summary, it becomes clear that the judgments that are described in Ezekiel as coming at
the time of an invasion of Israel are the very same judgments that are described in
Revelation as the sixth seal and first trumpet judgments, which come at the beginning of
the Day of the Lord. The description given in Ezekiel also fulfills the words of Paul
regarding "peace and safety" prior to the Day of the Lord, followed by
"sudden destruction." The parallels could hardly be more evident, and to ignore
them or conclude that these identical judgments might be fulfilled consecutively on two
different occasions seems ludicrous. The pattern of Revelation shows that its judgments
are almost always predicted within the Old Testament as well, and the only logical
conclusion is that Ezekiel 38 and 39 is where Revelations sixth seal and first
trumpet judgments are shown.
The Aftermath of the Invasion
" It is coming! It will surely take place, declares
the Sovereign LORD. This is the day I have spoken of. Then those who live in the
towns of Israel will go out and use the weapons for fuel and burn them up--the small and
large shields, the bows and arrows, the war clubs and spears. For seven years they will
use them for fuel. They will not need to gather wood from the fields or cut it from the
forests, because they will use the weapons for fuel. And they will plunder those who
plundered them and loot those who looted them, declares the Sovereign LORD. On
that day I will give Gog a burial place in Israel, in the valley of those who travel east
toward the Sea. It will block the way of travelers, because Gog and all his hordes will be
buried there. So it will be called the Valley of Hamon Gog. For seven months the house of
Israel will be burying them in order to cleanse the land. All the people of the land will
bury them, and the day I am glorified will be a memorable day for them, declares the
Sovereign LORD. Men will be regularly employed to cleanse the land. Some will go
throughout the land and, in addition to them, others will bury those that remain on the
ground. At the end of the seven months they will begin their search. As they go through
the land and one of them sees a human bone, he will set up a marker beside it until the
gravediggers have buried it in the Valley of Hamon Gog. (Also a town called Hamonah will
be there.) And so they will cleanse the land. " 8
At the end of the invasion, after God has destroyed
all of the armies that have come upon Israel, the people will go out and begin to pick up
the pieces and cleanse the land. For seven months the people of Israel will be burying the
dead, and in addition to this they will take possession of what is left from the
invaders armies. Ezekiel, in his ancient language, tells us that the plundered
weapons will be gathered by Israel, and that these weapons will be used as a source of
fuel. The important point to note is that this captured fuel source will be used by Israel
for seven years. Perhaps Israel captures a ten or even a fifteen-year supply, but they
will only use it as a source of fuel for exactly seven years. This seven-year period
is powerful evidence that the 70th Week of Daniel immediately follows the
destruction of the Magog invasion.
It is hardly a coincidence.
The final seven-year period of the earths rebellious
history, known as the 70th Week of Daniel, begins with the
"confirming" of a covenant with the "many" through the diplomacy of a
Roman leader. This covenant will result in a rebuilt Temple in Israel and a renewing of
the ritual of animal sacrifices. Today, Israel is largely a secular nation, controlled by
a secular press and governed by secular leaders. At the time of the Magog invasion God
shows His disgust for this secular attitude, and this attitude changes only through
Gods actions in destroying the invading armies. Prior to the Magog invasion the
desire for a Temple will be minimal, but after God destroys Israels enemies the
people will turn back to their God, and this new religious zeal will result in a strong
desire for a Temple. Here is what God has to say regarding Israel, their unfaithfulness,
and their new attitude after the miraculous destruction of the invasion,
" I will display my glory among the nations, and all
the nations will see the punishment I inflict and the hand I lay upon them. From that day
forward the house of Israel will know that I am the LORD their God. And the nations will
know that the people of Israel went into exile for their sin, because they were unfaithful
to me. So I hid my face from them and handed them over to their enemies, and they all fell
by the sword. I dealt with them according to their uncleanness and their offenses, and I
hid my face from them. Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will
now bring Jacob back from captivity and will have compassion on all the people of Israel,
and I will be zealous for my holy name. They will forget their shame and all the
unfaithfulness they showed toward me when they lived in safety in their land with no one
to make them afraid. When I have brought them back from the nations and have gathered them
from the countries of their enemies, I will show myself holy through them in the sight of
many nations. Then they will know that I am the LORD their God, for though I sent them
into exile among the nations, I will gather them to their own land, not leaving any
behind. I will no longer hide my face from them, for I will pour out my Spirit on the
house of Israel, declares the Sovereign LORD." 9
The destruction of the Magog invasion comes immediately prior to
the beginning of the 70th Week, and the seven years that Israel utilizes the plundered
weapons for fuel corresponds to the seven years of the 70th Week. The Magog invasion must
precede the 70th Week, because if it were to come at any time after the 70th Week then it
would mean that Israel would be burning old captured weapons of war in the new earth of
the Messianic Kingdom that will be established at the return of Jesus Christ. Why would
Israel need old weapons as a fuel source in the brand new Messianic Kingdom? This
possibility sounds unreasonable at face value, and the words of the prophet Isaiah confirm
that it is entirely impossible:
"And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many
people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into
pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war
any more." 10
There can be no burning of weapons during the Messianic Kingdom because
the Lord will decree at the beginning of His reign that all weapons are to be recycled
into agricultural equipment! The Magog invasion, and the shaking of the earth that
marks the beginning of the Day of the Lord, must precede the beginning of the 70th Week.
The Day of the Lord and the Jewish People
The Apostle Peter predicted in one of his letters the appearance of
skeptics who will be critical of Jesus Christ and of our expectation to see His return,
"First of all, you must understand that in the last days
scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say,
"Where is this 'coming' he promised? Ever since our fathers died, everything goes on
as it has since the beginning of creation." But they deliberately forget that long
ago by God's word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water.
By these waters also the world of that time was deluged and destroyed. By the same word
the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment
and destruction of ungodly men. But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the
Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not
slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not
wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." 11
The reason Jesus Christ delays as long as He has is because He values
every sinner that repents and turns back to Him as precious. On the other hand, God has
made a number of unconditional promises to His special people, the Jews, which He will
always honor. God will delay His wrath for as long as possible, but when Israel, the new
nation which has been regathered back to the promised land, is threatened with military
annihilation, God will be forced to act and to protect His people. This will signal the
beginning of the great and terrible Day of the Lord, and the final seven-year period at
the end of the age will soon follow.
The purpose of the Day of the Lord is one of punishment and judgment,
but it is also meant as a test for Israel. As God describes in the passage from Ezekiel
above, His people have been unfaithful to Him. There is one single sin for which God holds
them accountable. It is a national sin, committed by the nation as a whole, and for which
the nation must unite and repent. The purpose of the Day of the Lord is to bring Israel
back to the Lord through repentance, and only then will Jesus Christ return and make good
on the promise that He has made to make Israel the center of a glorious thousand-year era
of peace. Israels final repentance is shown in Zechariah 12:10,
"And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants
of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have
pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly
for him as one grieves for a firstborn son. "
Below is a chart showing the 70th Week of Daniel and the starting point of
the Day of the Lord in relation to the seals, trumpets and bowls of Revelation:
1. Ezekiel 7 and 13, Isaiah 13, and Ezekiel 30,
2. Scripture quotes are from the KJV unless
3. 1 Thessalonians 5:4
4. Ezekiel 39:8
5. Ezekiel 37:11-22 NIV
6. Ezekiel 38:21-23, 39:5-6 NIV
7. Revelation 8:7 NIV
8. Ezekiel 39:8-16 NIV
9. Ezekiel 39:21-29 NIV
10. Isaiah 2:4
11. 2 Peter 3:3-9 NIV
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