Remaining Prophetic Events

I have famously stated that “with the exception of the Temple being built, circumstances are now in place” for the Lord to call His Church home. There is some disagreement on this point.

There are two major prophecies which many Bible students feel must take place before the Rapture of the Church and/or the Great Tribulation.

The first major prophecy, the Attack of Gog and Magog, found in Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39, is thought by many to take place before the Great Tribulation. The reason for this is in Ezekiel 39:9, which prophesies that Israel will collect the weapons of fallen Magog and will burn them for seven years. Some believe this seven year period will be the Tribulation.

I disagree for two reasons. It is illogical for a nation to destroy captured weapons while they are at war. In the 1948 War of Independence, Israel used captured Arab armaments against the Arabs. Also, the principle of two witnesses is found throughout God’s Word. There is only one mention of this seven year period relating to Gog and Magog in Scripture, and that is not enough upon which to base such a doctrine.

The second major prophecy is that of Psalm 83. This psalm, written by Asaph, is directed against the immediate neighbors of Israel. These neighboring countries declared that Israel should be “cut off from being a nation” (verse 4) and “let us take possession of the houses, or pastures or abodes (na’ah – Strong’s H4999) of Israel.” That is exactly what the neighbors of Israel have been stating recently. This psalm calls for the destruction of those neighboring lands, so that men may know that Jehovah is the Most High God. (verse 18)

Some Bible students believe that Israel must destroy its neighboring enemies before the Day of the Lord. I am not aware of any Scripture that indicates this. In fact, the Philistines (Palestinians) are promised destruction at the Appointed Time. (Isaiah 14:31) Edom (Jordan) is promised destruction by the Lord Himself. (Isaiah 63:1) This will be on the Day of the Lord.

Even though Israel is a nation once again, a remarkable event, there is prophecy of the sons and daughters of Israel beginning carried back to the Land of Israel. At this time they are allowed to come to Israel, but then they will be brought back to the Promised Land. But this is a Kingdom event and is not necessary to take place before the Rapture of the Church or the Great Tribulation.

My knowledge of prophecy is not exhaustive, but I am not aware of any remaining prophecy that must be fulfilled before the Lord calls us home. In the words of the late Brother J. R. Church, Keep looking up!”

And praise the Lord always!

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