How do you know that Gog and the Antichrist will not be the same person?

Email Received:

I am inclined to believe that the characters and countries of Ezekiel 38 and 39 are the same characters and armies of the Antichrist. How do you know that Gog and the Antichrist will not be the same person?

Ted’s Response:

As I describe in my Final Battles commentary, I absolutely do not believe that Gog and the Antichrist will be the same person. For one thing, Gog will be buried in Israel (Ezekiel 39:11). However, the beast (Antichrist) will be tossed alive into the fiery lake of burning sulphur (Revelation 19:20). Furthermore, it generally is accepted that virtually all of Daniel 11:36-45 is talking about the Antichrist. In verse 40, it speaks of the "king of the North" storming out against him. I feel that, most likely, this "king" will be Gog.

Also, Gog and his armies will come against Israel (Ezekiel 38:14-17). However, the beast and his armies will gather together, just before their ultimate destruction, preparing to come specifically against the Lamb (Revelation 17:12-14)—the Anointed One, Who will be sitting as King in Jerusalem at that time. This is exactly what Psalm 2:1-6 describes.

The massive bloodbath, in which the Lord Jesus will trample the armies of Gog/Magog in the "winepress" of God’s wrath (Isaiah 63:2,3; Joel 3:13; Revelation 14:19,20, 19:15), will not be the same as the Battle of Armageddon. In the latter, the beast and the kings of the earth will gather at Armageddon, to come against Jesus and His armies; but they will be overcome (Revelation 16:16, 17:14, 19:19), and the beast (Antichrist) and false prophet will be thrown alive into the lake of fire (19:20). Being in the lake of fire, this would preclude him from being Gog, who will lead an attack on Jerusalem a thousand years later (20:7-9).

When Gog attacks Israel, Jesus will still be in heaven. He will return to save Israel and Jerusalem from those attackers. But when the Antichrist plans to attack Jesus, it is because Jesus already will have returned to earth. Having arrived at the blowing of the Seventh Trumpet, He will be sitting on His throne in Jerusalem, ruling and reigning. Jesus will be directing angels to be pouring out the Bowl Judgments upon the kingdom of the beast (Revelation 16:10). As a result, the beast and his followers will gather together at Armageddon (16:16), planning to come against Jesus, in an effort to make Him stop punishing them. Psalm 2:1-12 is a prophetic description of this.

Jesus will return 1,260 days (Revelation 11:3, 12:6) following the point during the 70th Week when the abomination that causes desolation will be set up. Then, He will pour out the Bowl Judgments for 30 days. So 1,260 days + 30 days = 1,290 days (Daniel 12:11), at the end of which the Battle of Armageddon will take place. This will be the "time of the end" (Daniel 12:4), and it is at that point that Daniel 12:11 will be fulfilled.

John witnessed Jesus, in the future, on His white horse in heaven, and immediately recorded that He "judges and makes war" (Revelation 19:11). In just that one verse, Jesus will have traveled from heaven to earth and will be making war against the armies attacking Jerusalem. His garments will be stained with blood because He will be treading the winepress of God's wrath (Revelation 19:11,13,15; Isaiah 63:1-3). This does not depict the Battle of Armageddon; instead, this is the winepress of Gog/Magog, and the birds will eat the flesh of all the attackers (compare Ezekiel 39:4,17,18,20 with Revelation 19:17,18).

After all of that is completed, then the beast and his armies will gather 30 days later to make war against Jesus—the Rider on a white horse, who evidently will appear in the plain of Megiddo on the same horse on which He had emerged from heaven—and their flesh will be eaten by the same birds (Revelation 19:19,21) who ate the flesh of the trampled Gog/Magog armies. During those same 30 days, Israel will be mourning for having killed their Messiah (Zechariah 12:10)—whom they will recognize as Yeshua/Jesus, since He will have just saved them from their attackers—just as they mourned for Aaron and Moses (who were "types" of the Messiah to come) for 30 days after they died (Numbers 20:28,29; Deuteronomy 34:5-8).

More about the distinction between Gog and the Antichrist can be found in the Assyrian section of my Beasts commentary and in the Gog vs. Antichrist section of my Final Battles commentary. Also, you can read another of my email responses: Is "the Assyrian," mentioned by Isaiah and Micah, the Antichrist?

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