Is the battle with Hamas an end times war?
Tim Moore: We remain heavy-hearted due to all of the terrible events that have been transpiring in Israel. We’ve watched in dismay as Hamas terrorists invaded Israel to massacre men, women, and children, and as they took hostages back to the Gaza Strip to try and prevent Israel from engaging. A lot of people watching this unfold have in the past interpreted every conflict with Israel as having the potential of fulfilling a prophetic end times war.
Nathan Jones: Yes, that phenomenon was something that our ministry’s founder, Dr David Reagan, used to note from all the way back in the 1980s. Some skirmish or war would break out in the Middle East and immediately he would get flooded by questions if it was the battle of Armageddon, as most Christians have only ever heard of that prophetic battle. In truth, there are actually nine wars of the end times.
What’s going on now between Israel and Hamas, well, we don’t know just yet if it’ll become prophetic. Israel has waged numerous wars, even as early as when they were founded in 1948. The War of Independence of 1948-49 was followed by the Suez War of 1956. Then came the Six Day War of 1967, the Yom Kippur War in 1973, the Lebanese War in 1982, the First Intifada or Arab Uprising from 1987 to 1993, the First Gulf War of 1990-91, the Second Intifada from 2000-05, the Hezbollah War of 2006, the First Gaza War with Hamas in 2009, the Second Gaza War in 2012, and the Third Gaza War in 2014. This fight could become merely the Fourth Gaza War of 2023. So, no, Israel’s latest war with Hamas is clearly not the war to end all wars — Armageddon.
But, the question remains, will this lead to a prophetic war? That’s what a lot of people have been writing into the ministry asking. What we can tell you is that, no, we do not think at this stage that this engagement between Israel and Hamas is one of the prophesied end times wars. But, it could lead to an actual end times war if it gets bigger.
Tim Moore: It certainly could. This is a timely question as Israel is still in the beginning of its response to Hamas and has been preparing to enter the Gaza Strip.
Just hours following the attack, our friend Pastor Robert Jeffers was on Fox News, and he stated that 39% of Americans believe that we are now living in the end times. So, the message of Bible prophecy has become something that resonates in the hearts of many Christians. They understand that we are living in the season of the Lord’s return.
And yet, it is not our practice to try to tie every single episode in history as we’re living through them into something foretold in Scripture. We merely point out where the prophecies fit within a pattern that is clearly laid out in Scripture. For instance, our Lord Jesus said in Matthew 24 that in the end times, there will be wars and rumors of wars. These wars happen worldwide, of course, but when they happen to Israel they become the focus of the entire world’s attention.
The Birth Pains
Nathan Jones: We must realize how prophetically important it is that Israel is even back in their land again. After all, what nation comes back from the dead after 1900 years. It’s a modern-day miracle! And for the end time prophecies to happen, Israel has to actually be living in their land as prophesied. The Bible prophesied that the Jewish people would return a second time to transform a barren and desolate wasteland and make it bountiful again, which it now is. Prophecy also foretold that once the nation of Israel was reborn, that’s when it would actually begin to experience birth pains. And that’s exactly what’s been happening since May of 1948. The newly reborn nation of Israel has been experiencing war after war as hostile Arab neighbors long to destroy her completely.
Tim Moore: Isaiah 66:7-9 tells the prophecy of these birth pains that would begin after the nations’ rebirth. We know that from the War of Independence, through the skirmishes throughout the 1950s, to the Six Day War in 1967, to the Yom Kippur War, all the intifadas, and the recent struggles with Hezbollah and Hamas — all of these wars are the prophesied birth pains.
The Psalm 83 War
Tim Moore: No nation has had greater animosity towards Israel than the terrorist groups — the Islamists — who are occupying Gaza. I say occupying because Hamas overthrew the government that was in Gaza and then took control. This Mafia-type organization is motivated solely by their hatred for the Jews and Israel. Destroying Israel is Hamas’ only objective, and that’s the same motivation with Hezbollah up in Lebanon. They really don’t want to be a governmental force of good for their own people, as they at times claim, rather their actions show that they are only inspired by their hatred to kill the Jews.
It’s this satanically inspired hatred that causes us to anticipate the next prophetic war to be the Psalm 83 War. Israel will defeat those immediate neighboring nations in a manner that would allow Israel to live securely with cities that don’t even have walls around them. We’re not there yet, but this new war with Hamas could become the precursor to the larger Psalm 83 conflict that would leave Israel even more secure than it is today.
Nathan Jones: Yes, one of the biggest proponents for a Psalm 83 War is eschatologist Bill Salus. I spoke with Bill and asked him if he saw this conflict as the beginning of the Psalm 83 War, or even if other prophecies such as Isaiah 17 and Jeremiah 49 that prophesy Israel destroying the city of Damascus in Syria in one evening, are about to happen. What could destroy a city in one evening but say nuclear weapons? Bill says that it is too early to tell. Maybe this conflict will escalate into a much larger war, but at this point, it remains yet another skirmish that Israel is having to deal with.
As part of the birth pains, the Lord is funneling the politics so that Israel will have no friends to turn to for help as the whole world eventually comes together against it, all so that the Jews turn to God alone for deliverance. So, maybe we are watching the advent of the Psalm 83 War as Israel conquers its hostile surrounding neighbors — Gaza, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Egypt — all those nations that border Israel and yearn for her destruction.
The War of Gog and Magog
Nathan Jones: Following the Psalm 83 War looms a much larger war. We know that behind Hamas is Iran. Another prophetic war that Psalm 83 is leading up to involves Iran — the War of Gog and Magog.
Tim Moore: We believe the following prophetic end times war is described in Ezekiel 38-39. Ezekiel prophesies how Iran allies with Russia and Turkey in what is called the War of Gog and Magog. The leader of this coalition of nations lies north of Israel — Russia — which Ezekiel designates as Gog. This alliance of nations — this axis of evil — also includes the nations in northern Africa and the ‘Stan nations’. Combined, these nations form an outer ring of Islamic aggression. Along with Russia, the Islamic world attempts to gain spoil by plundering Israel in its attempt to destroy her. Israel will defeat the inner ring of hostile Muslim nations according to Psalm 83, but that will lead to a much more massive war with the outer ring of Islamic nations plus Russia.
Obviously, we’re not dogmatic about the timing or even the order of these end times wars. We just know that Scripture foretells that there will be a series of wars in the end times that will inevitably lead to the whole world coming against Israel.
The World For Israel… For Now
Tim Moore: President Biden, whom I greatly disagree with over his support of Iran, having recently given them 6 billion dollars, has to his credit said that on behalf of the United States, we will stand with Israel. Biden gave a personal anecdote about his visiting Israel some 50 years ago while he was already serving in the Senate. Speaking to a leader while in Israel, Biden was taken outside and told to look around for Israel’s “secret weapon.” I thought President Biden was going to say Israel’s secret weapon was that God is on their side, but that’s not where he went because that’s not the way he thinks. Rather, he said Israel’s secret weapon is that they’ve got nowhere else to go. In other words, they fight because there is nowhere else the Jews can flee to but Israel. They’ve been rejected and ejected from every other country.
Israel was born out of the horror of the Holocaust, and now there are people even in our nation who are advocating “gas the Jews,” as we heard students protesting at Harvard University and on the streets of New York. These people are filled with a satanic hatred for the Jewish people. But, at least for now, the United States and other nations are standing with Israel.
However, you have to wonder how long that support will continue once Israel finally enters Gaza to eliminate Hamas. Hamas terrorists purposely hide behind innocent civilians, now including Israeli hostages.
Nathan Jones: The Arabs and the Palestinians, which are pretty much one and the same, are masters at public relations. So, yes, the world right now is saying, “Israel, yeah, we’re behind you!” But, the world is infected with a satanic hatred of the Jews. It’s hard to understand why people hate the Jews so much, well the Bible tells us that it’s satanic in nature.
So, yes, once Israel starts fighting on the ground in Gaza, the tide of public opinion will likely change, and people will become like, “Okay, you’ve overdone it with the Palestinians.” Then there’s a good chance that Hezbollah in Lebanon will jump into this conflict which will then soon morph into the Psalm 83 War. As a result, Israel will enlarge its territory.
What’s interesting about this new war is that we can trace the drones that hit Israel’s borders and the money behind Hamas to Iran and Russia. Ezekiel 38-39 foretells Russia coming down against Israel because it yearns to plunder Israel. Just what does Israel have now that Russia would want? Israel is now a direct threat to Russia’s economy when it comes to selling natural gas, especially to Europe. That “hook in the jaw” God uses to draw Gog down to Israel is already here.
It’s clear that these prophetic wars are so close as every day something happens that reveals their nearness. Of course, we’re not rejoicing that this new Israel-Hamas war is happening, but rather we look to what happens after the Gog-Magog War when God supernaturally steps in and destroys the threat of Russia and Iran and Turkey and Gog’s remaining coalition. The Jews will turn to God, though not yet to His Son. Then, once the Tribulation commences, the whole world will turn against Israel. That means the United States will turn against Israel on that day.
Tim Moore: We do not relish or celebrate the darkness, rather we recognize that because we have read the Word of God and so understand what Christ has revealed through His prophetic word, we know that the world will indeed grow increasingly dark. We will have trouble in this world, and yet these troubles are external to Christians because internally in our hearts we will not be troubled — if we stand on Jesus Christ. Christians have that assurance. All of these end times signs merely demonstrate that Jesus Christ is at the very gates of Heaven and that we are currently living in the season of Christ’s return.
So, again, we don’t celebrate any of these horrors of war. We reject and condemn them and those who are acting satanically, filled with great evil and malice towards the Jewish people. We know God is still on His throne. He is still in control. And He will bring a great remnant of the Jewish people to salvation.
Nathan Jones: How blessed it is to read Psalm 121:4, “Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” The Israelis are not alone, for God is on their side. Of course, the Lord wants them to feel alone so they’ll turn to Him and repent. We know from prophecy that a third of the Jews by the end of the Tribulation will turn to Jesus Christ.
How encouraging, too, that if the Lord is protecting His people, where 60% of the Jews in Israel don’t even acknowledge that Yahweh exists, how much so will Christ take care of Christians. As Psalm 121:5-7 continues: “The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord shall preserve you from all evil; He shall preserve your soul.” What a blessed promise to Christians!
Tim Moore: Christians have so many blessed promises that we should remind each other of them. After all, we’re supposed to encourage one another and all the more as we see the day of Christ’s return drawing near.
In the immediate response to the horror of Hamas’ incursion into Israel, I read from Psalm 7. The last verse contains King David’s affirmation of his faith, “I will give thanks to the Lord according to his righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the Lord most high.” This chapter comes after a Psalm where David is calling on the Lord to defend him from those who mean him harm and wish to destroy him. David still clings to hope.
I would point people also to the prophet Habakkuk. Habakkuk was told of the devastation that would befall his land. Heartbreaking! And yet, at the end of this hymn of praise that Habakkuk had written and set to music, he affirms that even if that agricultural society was decimated, even if their crops were destroyed and all of their flocks were cut down in the fields, he said in Habakkuk 3:18, “Yet I will exalt in the Lord, I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.” We who know the God of our salvation is — Jesus Christ. Regardless of the circumstances in this world, we will rejoice in Jesus.
And then, in verse 19, Habakkuk says, “The Lord God is my strength, and He has made my feet like hinds feet, He makes me walk on high places.” I’m reminded of when we go to the desert areas of Israel and see those little ibexes that climb those mountains, standing on the clefts in the rock that don’t look wide enough to even lay your finger on. And yet, their feet are so sure that they do not fall from those tiny places. Because they have hinds feet they can reach great heights. Likewise, we have been assured that our God is our strength and that He gives us feet that can stand in places where others would fall. We can attain high places even as others are brought low.
And so, we want to give you a word of encouragement. This is not “the” war of the end times, but those wars are coming. Frankly, the end time is coming whether we’re ready or not, so may this be the day when you turn to the Lord Jesus Christ and pray for His salvation. Claim Jesus as your strength and your blessed hope.