The Common Man's Prospective
Articles and Writings
E. C. Marsh
P.O. Box 342
Saint Ansgar, IA 50472
Who is Gog and Magog?
Gog of Jezekiel (Ezekiel)
In the Bible and in secular writings Gog is usually associated with Magog.
Something got my interest the other day and I started laying out all the pertinent references that I could find and see if I could come to a conclusion. This is more of a listing of references for study other than any firm conclusion.
Magog is one of the sons of Japheth the son of Noe (Noah).
Strong's Hebrew 1463: Gowg gohg of uncertain
derivation; Gog, the name of an Israelite, also of some northern nation:--Gog.
Strong's Greek 1136: Gog gogue of Hebrew origin (1463); Gog, a symbolic name for some future Antichrist:--Gog.
The below passages and references are what I was able to find referring to Gog.
LXXNumbers 24:7 There shall come a man out of his seed, and he shall rule over many nations; and the kingdom of Gog shall be exalted, and his kingdom shall be increased.
At first reading it would look like there is a mistranslation in the Septuagint until we realize that the kingdom of Gog is part of the "Curse of Balaam" against Israel. The King James has a completely different reading and mentions Israel's king becoming higher than Agag.
LXX Amos 7:1 Thus has the Lord God shewed me; and, behold, a swarm of locusts coming from the east; and, behold, one caterpillar, king Gog.
The locust are coming from the East and one caterpillar, king Gog.
Jezekiel 38:2 Son
of man, set thy face against Gog, and the land of Magog, Rhos, prince of Mesoch
and Thobel, and prophesy against him,
LXX Jezekiel 38:14 Therefore prophesy, son of man, and say to Gog, Thus saith the Lord; Wilt thou not arise in that day, when my people Israel are dwelling securely,
LXX Jezekiel 38:17 Thus saith the Lord God, to Gog; Thou art he concerning whom I spoke in former times, by the hand of my servants the prophets of Israel, in those days and years, that I would bring thee up against them.
LXX Jezekiel 38:18 And it shall come to pass in that day, in the day when Gog shall come against the Land of Israel, saith the Lord God,
LXX Jezekiel 39:1 And thou, son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, Thus saith the Lord; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, Rhos prince of Mesoch and Thobel:
LXX Jezekiel 39:6 And I will send a fire upon Gog, and the islands shall be securely inhabited: and they shall know that I am the Lord.
LXX Jezekiel 39:11 And it shall come to pass that in that day I will give to Gog a place of renown, a tomb in Israel, the burial-place of them that approach the sea: and they shall build round about the outlet of the valley, and there they shall bury Gog and all his multitude: and the place shall then be called the burial-place of Gog.
LXX Jezekiel 39:15 And every one that goes through the land, and sees a man's bone, shall set up a mark by it, until the buriers shall have buried it in the valley, the burial place of Gog.
The Jezekiel Passages
1 Chronicle 5:4 The sons of Joel; Shemaiah his son, Gog his
son, Shimei his son,
In the King James there is a Gog that appears to be in the genealogy of Ruben. The LXX has someone named Gug although it is still hard to figure out the genealogy. I am not sure who this Gog or Gug's family is.
KJV Revelation 20:7-9 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog, and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
A reference to Gog from the Pseudepigrapha Book of
Jubilees. This is the only reference I find in the (so called) Lost and
Forgotten Books. I do not find any reference to Gog in the writings of the 1st.
century Apostolic Fathers, Josephus, or Philo.
Jubilees Chapter 8: And for Japheth came forth the third portion beyond the river Tina to the north of the outflow of its waters, and it extends north-easterly to the whole region of Gog, and to all the country east thereof.
Biblically, Gog is a reference to some of the descendants of Japheth.
"Son of man, set thy face against Gog, and the land of Magog, Rhos, prince of Mesoch and Thobel, and prophesy against him,".
Writings of the Church Fathers
Ambrose (340 - 379 A.D.) claims that Gog is the Goths. A war is at hand between
the Goth's and Romans and using propaganda you want to demonize your enemies in
the eyes of the people. There are other writings by the "Church Fathers" but
this is the only one that I found with an interesting twist.
"St. Ambrose assures Gratian of victory, declaring that it has been foretold in the prophecies of Ezekiel. This hope is further stayed upon the emperor's piety, the former disasters being the punishment of Eastern heresy. The book doses with a prayer to God, that He will now show His mercy, and save the army, the land, and the sovereign of the faithful.
That Gog is the Goth, whose coming forth we have already seen, and over whom victory in days to come is promised, according to the word of the Lord: "And they shall spoil them, who had been their despoilers, and plunder them, who had carried off their goods for a prey, saith the Lord. And it shall be in that day, that I will give to Gog"-that is, to the Goths-"a place that is famous, for Israel an high-heaped tomb of many men, of men who have made their way to the sea, and it shall reach round about, and close the mouth of the valley, and there [the house of Israel shall] overthrow Gog and all his multitude, and it shall be called the valley of the multitude of Gog: and the house of Israel shall overwhelm them, that the land may be cleansed."
Other writings about Gog
There are many legends and fables referring to Gog and Magog but I am not able to find any good evidence or clues to help put this together. Mainly, Gog seems to be a name that is attached to an enemy for (like Ambrosia) propaganda purposes. Just as in World War I the Germans were referred to as "Huns".
Gog has referred to many people over time such as the Goths, Celts, Russians, Jews, Mongolians, Khazars, and many of the European countries. It just depends on what side of the fence the name caller is on.
Gog and Magog in British Mythology
Gog and Magog figures based on the British mythology, located in the Royal Arcade, Melbourne (wikipedia)
"Given this somewhat frightening Biblical imagery, it is somewhat odd that
images of Gog and Magog depicted as giants are carried in a traditional
procession in the Lord Mayor's Show by the Lord Mayor of the City of London.
According to the tradition, the giants Gog and Magog are guardians of the City
of London, and images of them have been carried in the Lord Mayor's Show since
the days of King Henry V. The Lord Mayor's procession takes place each year on
the second Saturday of November.
The Lord Mayor's account of Gog and Magog says that the Roman Emperor Diocletian had thirty-three wicked daughters. He found thirty three husbands for them to curb their wicked ways; they chafed at this, and under the leadership of the eldest sister, Alba, they murdered them. For this crime, they were set adrift at sea; they were washed ashore on a windswept island, which after Alba was called Albion. Here they coupled with demons, and gave birth to a race of giants, among whose descendants were Gog and Magog." What is up with this?
It is impossible for me to come to a pattern on who the people represented by Gog are. Magog is associated with Gog who was a son of Japheth, who was a son of Noe (Noah). According to the LXX chronology around 6,000 years ago the sons of Noe spread out to different areas of the world. 6,000 years is a long time and who can tell which people today represent the decedents of Shem, Ham and Japheth.
The Word tells us,
OT. Gog is the leader of a people represented by some of the descendants of Japheth. He is a king that will be coming from the East and comes make war with the Land of Isreal. And God sends fire on Gog and his army.
NT. The army is like the sands of the sea and comes from the four quarters of the earth, surrounds the saints and the beloved city. Fire comes down from heaven and devours Gog and his army.
These two short summaries tell me that there are two different battles at different times referring to Gog. Same conclusion but two different descriptions of battles.
The observations of a people could help us identify this future army. But until we know more, everything needs to be looked at as the propaganda against an enemy of the writer or story teller.