In Part 1, we began to get a handle on the history of Islam and its founder. Now we’ll reveal Islam’s role in biblical eschatology. Let’s continue this academic presentation by evangelist Nathan Jones!
Islam’s Role in Biblical Eschatology
When considering the rapid advancement of Islam around the world, a frequent question arises: “Will Islam inevitably conquer the world?” Based on all indications and by every statistic, Islam appears to be well on its way to indeed conquering the world. That would result in churches eventually becoming mosques and children of every faith being forced to convert to Islam or die for refusing. That is the direction the world is plunging towards right now.
Or, is it? Bible prophecy would argue — no. Praise the Lord! The world’s children will not eventually all be forced into converting to Islam for a few reasons. Islam has an end according to the Bible.
The Regathering of the Jewish People
One of the things about Islam growing more and more powerful in the world is that — no matter how much Satan uses Islam for evil, God will turn its deeds to good. For example, one of the side effects of Islam becoming more influential in the world and greatly increasing the persecution of the Jewish people has been the resulting regathering of the Jewish people back into the land of Israel. This is in fulfillment of God’s promise that the Jews would one day return to their land in two predicted eschatological regatherings of Israel: one in unbelief in preparation for the Tribulation period, which is well underway today, and the second one in faith in preparation for millennial blessing (Isaiah 11:12; Micah 2:12).43
It could be argued then that Islam is unintentionally helping Bible prophecy be fulfilled. God is using Islam to force the Jewish people to leave some 80-90 different nations and trek back to their homeland, for He says:
“When I have gathered the house of Israel from the peoples among whom they are scattered, and am hallowed in them in the sight of the Gentiles, then they will dwell in their own land which I gave to My servant Jacob” (Ezekiel 28:25).44
With the Jewish people making aliyah by the tens of thousands and returning to the land that God has promised them, Israel as a nation was at last was reborn on May 14, 1948, and took back control of Jerusalem during the Six Day War on June 5-10, 1967. The result was the fulfillment of Zechariah 12:2-3 which prophesied the Jewish control of Jerusalem would become a cup that causes all of the surrounding neighboring nations, which all happen to be Islamic today, to become intoxicated with a religious passion to possess it.45 Israel would then face three prophetic wars, according to the Dispensational and Premillennial eschatological framework, that would appear to absolutely remove Islam as a viable religion in the end times.
The Psalm 83 War
The first end-times war strikes at the geographical heart of Islam and is commonly titled by its main proponent, Bill Salus, as the Psalm 83 War.46 This war centers on Israel dealing at last with its hostile bordering neighbors of Egypt, Syria, Lebanon, Gaza, and Jordan, which Salus calls the “inner ring.” The continuous skirmishes and strenuous status quo tenuously balanced between Israel and her neighbors cannot provide lasting peace. No nation desires to exist under the daily threat of calls for annihilation by an imminent missile attack. And so, according to Asaph the Seer’s prophecy in Psalm 83, once his imprecatory prayer calling down judgment and justice upon Israel’s enemies is finally fulfilled, Israel should control those bordering nations and gain a brief peace.
This peace stands as a vital prerequisite for Israel entering the second prophetic war — the Gog-Magog Battle of Ezekiel 38-39 — placing Israel into a peaceful and unsuspecting state. Since 1948, Israel has had to engage in many wars and ongoing skirmishes with its bordering neighbors and has not yet reached that peaceful precondition, therefore Psalm 83 is a prophecy still yet to be fulfilled. And once this prophetic war is over, Islam’s dominance in the Middle East will be severely curtailed.
The Gog-Magog War
The second prophetic war which follows is found in Ezekiel 38 and 39. The Gog-Magog War is one of the best described prophetic wars in all of the Bible, covering two whole chapters. This catastrophic war will cause the world to radically change geopolitically.
Briefly explained, the Gog-Magog War tells how Russia (Ros) along with Iran (Persia), Turkey (Meshech, Tubal, Gomer, Beth-Togarmah), Libya (Put), and other Islamic-dominated countries will form an “outer ring” coalition of nations.47 This coalition will be led by a personage called Gog who will seek war against Israel to plunder her, likely for obtaining the vast gas reserves off of the coast of Israel.48 Gog rises from the former Soviet bloc nations, those which the first-century Jewish historian Josephus identified as settled by Magog of “the Magogians, thus named after him, but who by the Greeks are called Scythians.”49 Israel appears undefeatable after the Psalm 83 War, and so all of those nations combine into a juggernaut coalition in order to attempt to plunder and destroy Israel.
Due to the uncountable number of soldiers which comprise these joint armies — these hordes — leave Israel with no military possibility of standing up against them. By sheer numbers, the nation of Israel appears doomed.
But, no, Ezekiel’s prophecy reveals that God will make His grand appearance back on the earth, not physically, but He personally annihilates the invading hordes. His direct reentry into world affairs is for the purpose that there will be no denying that God was behind this divine rescue. God intervenes against the invading coalition using biblical types of judgments such as fire and brimstone, turning the armies against each other, and decimating them by earthquakes. God even rains fire down on the homelands of these invading nations. The entire coalition of Islamic armies, along with Russia, are practically utterly destroyed. The resulting Islamic world map after the Gog-Magog War shows the Islamic influence gutted throughout the entire Middle East and Northern Africa.
The Conventional War
The third prophetic end-times war should hammer the nail in the coffin of Islamic influence. Revelation describes a horrific time period coming called the Tribulation. This seven-year time period will experience God pouring out his wrath upon the earth. God’s judgments during the Tribulation include a rise of a global dictator whom the Apostle John calls the Antichrist (1 John 2:18).
Daniel prophesies that the Antichrist would rise to power out of the people who currently comprise the European Union (Daniel 9:26-27). Russia and the Middle East would no longer be world players due to God’s crushing hand during the Gog-Magog War.50 And, since the world’s current superpower — the United States of America — appears to have sat out the Gog-Magog War, this shows a weakening in the West, possibly due to the Rapture or a financial collapse (Ezekiel 38:13). China’s strength is only foretold to rise at the end of the Tribulation, so that leaves a power vacuum in the world at the onset of the Tribulation (Revelation 16:12). The remaining world power could only be the Revived Roman Empire waiting right there to fill the power vacuum, as Daniel 2 prophesied.
The Bible describes that during the Tribulation there will be four dominant religions. Christianity will continue, made up of those Tribulation Saints who accepted Christ after the Rapture of the Church. Then there’s Judaism, for the Antichrist spends much of his time persecuting both the Tribulations Saints and the Jews. Revelation describes a Harlot religion, potentially a conglomeration of world religions that ride on the “back” of the Antichrist, so to speak. She seems in charge, but the Antichrist is just using her for his own ends. True to form, halfway through the Tribulation, the Antichrist violently embarks on stomping out all competing religions and he sets himself up solely to be worshiped.
Surprisingly, considering Islam’s might in the world today, no mention of Islam is made during the Tribulation. For a religion that is based on having to destroy one’s enemies for Allah’s honor, and then Allah so conclusively loses every single end time war, a strongly viable case can be made that these three end-time wars are going to gut the faith of many Muslims before the Tribulation begins.
And, that third and final war that should end Islam is called the Conventional War. Revelation 6 reveals that the Antichrist, after he assumes power, begins annihilating a quarter of the world’s population, which would be nearly two billion people in today’s numbers. When one religion cannot have other religions competing with it, especially a militaristic religion like Islam which demands no other religion exists besides itself, the only path ahead is to annihilate all the competition. The biggest populations of Muslims in the world live not in the Middle East, as many believe, but in the Asian nations of Indonesia and Bangladesh. A likely scenario explains how the Antichrist spends the beginning of his reign annihilating Islam’s influence within these largely populated regions so that no competing religion sets itself up against a truly global ruler.51
How tragic that two billion people will die from the Antichrist’s Conventional War and the horrible consequences of consolidating his global empire (Revelation 6:8). But after that war, Islam’s dominance will have disappeared from the world map.
In following these three biblical end-time wars to their ultimate end, the conclusion reveals that Islam as a force in the world does not have much of a future left to it. Should even this prophetic scenario not play out as the framework proposes, the inevitable return of Jesus Christ will put an end to all competing religions, but the worship of Jehovah God alone.
A Psalm 83 War could break out at any minute, along with the destruction of Damascus as prophesied in Isaiah 17. These world-shaking events could occur at any minute. The Gog-Magog alliance of nations already exists. Europe is so fragile that they are ready for a strong leader to take over. Every prophetic piece has fallen into place. And so, according to biblical eschatology, Islam has very little time left to it.
In the seventh and final part of this series on Islamic eschatology, we’ll list six methods on how to reach a Muslim for Jesus Christ.
43. Andy Woods, The Middle East Meltdown: The Coming Islamic Invasion of Israel, (Taos, NM: Dispensational Publishing House, Inc., 2016), 55-56.
44. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum, The Footsteps of the Messiah: A Study of the Sequence of Prophetic Events (San Antonio, TX: Ariel Ministries, 2004), 121.
45. Hal Lindsey, The Everlasting Hatred: The Roots of Jihad (Murrieta, CA: Oracle House Publishing, 2002), 229.
46. Bill Salus, Isralestine: The Ancient Blueprints of the Future Middle East Policy (Crane, MO: Anomalos, 2008).
47. Tim LaHaye & Ed Hindson (Eds.), The Popular Encyclopedia of Bible Prophecy (Eugene, OR: Harvest House Publishers, 2004), 119-120.
48. Luke Baker, “Israel Asks Itself the $150 Billion Question,” Reuters, (May 25, 2011), https://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/25/us-economy-israel-steinitz-idUSTRE74O38R20110525.
49. Flavius Josephus, Antiquities, 1.6.1.
50. John Phillips, Exploring the Future: A Comprehensive Guide to Bible Prophecy, (third ed) (Grand Rapids, IL: Kregel, 2003), 347-348.
51. Hitchcock, 91.