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Israel Plundered And Looted  

Ezekiel 38:12 states that Gog of Magog will "plunder and loot" Israel.  For many good reasons most conservative Bible teachers who hold to the Futurist view of prophecy believe that Gog is a political leader, and Magog is Russia.  So I ask, "what does Israel have that Russia would want to "plunder and loot" her for, and does she have that now?

With this question in mind, I point out two of many end time blessings prophesied to Israel in Deuteronomy 33.  Verse 13 speaks of a blessing that would be found in "deep waters that lie below".  Verse 19 speaks of "treasures hidden in the sand".  What I'm about to say is somewhat speculative and interpretative, but might provide the answer to our question concerning why Russia wants to "plunder and loot" Israel. 

It's been well publicized that Israel has discovered natural gas off her coast in the Mediterranean Sea.  Many say that there's enough natural gas to keep Israel going for decades, if not centuries.  Could this be the blessing of Deuteronomy 33:13 that's found in "the deep waters that lie below?     

Israel has recently discovered oil shale within her borders.  Oil shale is not crude oil as is found in Saudi Arabia.  It's oil that needs to be extracted from shale rock, like the oil found in northern Canada that needs to be extracted from sand.  Getting oil out of sand and rock is messy, expensive, and not environmentally friendly.  Israel appears to be on the verge of finding an relatively inexpensive and clean way to extract this oil out of the shale rock.  If this proves successful, it is estimated by some that Israel could surpass Saudi Arabia in becoming an oil rich nation.  Could this be the "treasures found in the sand" as prophesied in Deuteronomy 33:19?

Oil and natural gas are two of the most sought after commodities in the world today.  It's not hard to imagine a natural gas pipeline heading north from Israel into Europe or Russia.  Russia is struggling to get back on her financial feet since the break-up of the Soviet Union in the 1980's.  Russia may be struggling financially but she is still a military power to be reckoned with.  We shouldn't forget that.  I suggest the reason why Russia wants "to plunder and loot" Israel as seen in Ezekiel 38 is for Israel's oil and natural gas.  

Ezekiel 38:5 lists other nations who join Russia in attacking Israel.  Heading the list of nations is Persia, who has since become Iran.  You will note in Ezekiel 38:12 that only Russia wants to "plunder and loot" Israel.  Only Russia wants to rob Israel.  These other nations seem to have other reasons for mounting this attack with Russia.  These reasons are obvious today.  Iran and the other Islamic states listed in Ezekiel 38:5 don't care about robbing Israel of natural gas or oil, or anything else.  Motivated by religious fervor and their beliefs concerning end time events, these Islamic nations just want Israel blown off the face of the earth.  Russia's plan of attack simply gives them the opportunity to do what they've always wanted to do.

Whether this scenario comes true or not, and it is a scenario, is something to think about.  We must not hide our heads in the sand when it comes to world events and Biblical prophecy.  Jesus specifically commanded us in Luke 21:36 to "watch and pray", and His command is in the context of end time events.  We are told to watch world events to see how they correlate with Biblical prophecy.  As we watch, we pray.  We pray for Jesus' return.  We pray for the peace of Jerusalem.  We pray for unsaved loved ones.  We  pray for anything and everything that concerns the end of this age.  That's what it means to "watch and pray".

Are you watching world events unfold with an eye towards Biblical prophecy?  Do you have your newspaper on your desk alongside your Bible?  Are you praying as you watch the cable news channels?   How many prayer meetings have you attended recently that were specifically dedicated to pray that this age would come to an end?  We pray for all sorts of things in our prayer meetings.  We pray that Bob finds a job, Sue gets a raise, Nick's house sells, Zack's business picks up, and on it goes.  We too often pray as if life will go on forever and we  need as much out of this life as we can get.

You can read scores of different shapes and sizes of prayers in the Bible, but there's one simple little prayer that wraps up the pages of the Bible that many of us miss.  I suggest we imitate the apostle John.  In Revelation 22:20 he prayed,  "come Lord Jesus".  Just three words.  That's it.  It's short, simple, but when prayed from the heart is important and powerful.  May this prayer be found on our lips today as we watch the events of the world unfold before our eyes as the Bible predicted.




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