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and I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you forth with all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed in full armor, a great company with buckler and shield, all of them handling swords; Bible

“and I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you forth with all your army.” In this prophetic metaphor, Gog and his confederate armies are portrayed as some kind of animal (a crocodile or sea monster has been suggested by scholars, as well as a horse) that has been hooked by God and is being drawn out of his lair to God’s battle. This is a seemingly enigmatic sentence because in the prophecy of Ezekiel 38 and 39, God will destroy Gog and his confederate armies, so if that is the case, why is he turning them, hooking their jaw, and drawing them out to battle? This can be explained from the scope of the whole Bible and the way God consistently uses the idiom of permission throughout the Bible. The actual fact of the situation is that the Devil will draw these enemy armies into the battle (cp. Rev. 16:12-16). God will be working in Israel in the last days to show His glory to the world, and that will provoke the Devil and his hordes to attack Israel. The “you” in this sentence is singular, “you,” not “you all.” This indicates Gog’s leadership in this conspiracy.

[For an explanation of the idiom of permission, see commentary on Exod. 4:21].


Commentary for: Ezekiel 38:4