Is flotilla battle signaling start of �Gog and Magog�?

WorldNet Daily (Link) - Bob Unruh (June 4, 2010)

A council of rabbis in Israel says their nation�s conflict with Turkey over a flotilla of �aid� ships headed for the blockaded Gaza Strip controlled by the terrorist Hamas organization just may be the beginning of the �Gog and Magog process where the world is against us, but which ends with the third and final redemption.�

The announcement comes today from the Rabbinical Council of Judea and Samaria, whose statement was reported by Israel National News.

WND columnist Greg Laurie just months ago explained the biblical reference to Gog and Magog, in the book of Ezekiel, as a prophecy that a �large force,� will attack Israel from the north.

�We don�t know why or exactly when this will take place. But this much I know: There is a lot going on in our current headlines that leads me to believe it could happen at any time,� he wrote then, at the end of 2009.

�What does this mean to us? A lot. When Magog and her allies attack Israel, God will intervene and decimate the armies of Magog and its allies. Because of this, the Bible tells us, the Jewish people will give glory to God. Today, many Israelis are atheists. Certainly you will find very few Jewish people who believe in Jesus as their Messiah, although there are some. But they do have a determination to return to their homeland. They realize that they can look to no other nation for their protection or security and have returned to Israel, thus fulfilling prophecy from Scripture. But when the Holy Spirit is poured out on Israel after God drives back the invading armies of Magog, the Bible predicts there will be a revival in which numerous Jewish people will come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah,� Laurie explained.

According to the INN, the council stated, �the legitimacy of our people is not derived from the nations of the world and their poisonous traditions, rather from the Torah of Israel which teaches us that [Israel] �is a people that shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations.��

The council, which was assembled by Rabbi Zalman Melamed of Beit El and is supported by religious Zionist rabbis in the regions of Samaria and Judea, included a blessing for soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces.

It also suggested an emergency government be developed to lead during a time of conflict.

INN explained it interprets the �Gog and Magog� reference as a �vision of a war where the world is united against Israel that will precede the final redemption of Israel and the world.�

The explanation continues, �The prophecy�s symbolism involves a prince called Gog of Magog, leader of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal, who leads a coalition that includes Persia (Iran), Cush, Phut, Gomer, and Beit Togarmah against Israel.�

According to Ezekiel 39, Israel is successful against the attackers:

And thou, son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say: Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal; and I will turn thee about and lead thee on, and will cause thee to come up from the uttermost parts of the north; and I will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel; and I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand. Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands, and the peoples that are with thee; I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort and to the beasts of the field, to be devoured.

The INN report continued with quotes that God will have compassion on Israel, �and they shall dwell safely in their land, and none shall make them afraid.�

Laurie explains that the existence of the nation of Israel, created on May 14, 1948, is a miracle in itself.

�Never has a nation been able to maintain its national identity 300 to 500 years after being from its homeland � until Israel,� he wrote. �Today, one will look in vain for the descendants of the Hittite nation or the Babylonian nation, although they were major powers in the ancient world. In fact, were it not for the Bible, the Hittites never would have been remembered by history, having sunk deep into the sands of time. There was a time that scoffers ridiculed the Bible for even mentioning the Hittites, as it was thought they were a fictional people. But in the 19th century, archaeologists confirmed the accuracy of Scripture when they uncovered irrefutable evidence of the extensive Hittite empire,� he said.

�You won�t find any Hittites today � or Babylonians, for that matter. But not so with Israel. How did the nation survive when the mighty Hittites, Babylonians and others vanished? Because God promised they would. In his book, �What in the World Is Going On?� David Jeremiah writes, �The return of the Jews to Israel in 1948 was an astounding event unprecedented in world history. Never had a decimated ancient people managed to retain their individual identity through almost 20 centuries and re-establish their nation in their original homeland. This event was specifically prophesied, and it happened exactly as foretold.��

Laurie called it a �super-sign� in history.

�Events predicted in the Bible that have already transpired include Israel�s scattering; Israel�s regathering; Israel�s regaining of Jerusalem; Israel�s isolation; and Israel�s being attacked. The Bible tells us that the final conflict of humanity will be centered on Jerusalem and the Middle East,� he said.

�It is really amazing when you think about the fascination with Jerusalem and Israel, yet it was predicted long ago. God has promised a blessing for those who bless Israel, and a curse on those who don�t,� Laurie said.

�Could these events from our headlines of today explode and culminate in the scenario we read about in the Bible? Yes, they could. Will they? I don�t know. We have to be very careful in interpreting current events,� Laurie said.

�But this I do know: Jesus Christ is coming back. It could happen at any time. It could happen this year or this month or this week. It could happen today,� said Laurie, the senior pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, Calif., which is one of the largest churches in America.

Israel�s conflict with a Turkish fleet sailing for the blockaded Gaza has turned largely around the world on reports of the �massacre� by Israelis against the �peace� activists aboard the flotilla, even though video of the event reveals otherwise.