The Death of the Turkish Republic, the Rebirth of the Turkish Caliphate

by Joel Richardson

In 2004 when I wrote my book Islamic Antichrist, the nation of Turkey was still viewed by virtually all western political analysts as the model government to be replicated throughout the Muslim world. The AKP party, led by Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was looked to as proof positive that moderate Islamist governments were possible. Even Reagan conservatives argued that moderate Islamist governments were the future of the region. If we simply offered people the option between freedom, (albeit with an Islamist veneer) and traditional Middle Eastern authoritarianism, they would always choose freedom. Beyond this, it was argued that the hearts of the Turkish people were very much turning to the West, rejecting the values of the Muslim world to the east.

Despite the reality on the ground however, this was not the future the Bible described for Asia Minor. Twenty five hundred years ago, the prophet Ezekiel foretold a last days invasion of Israel, that would specifically be led by Turkey. In my book Mideast Beast, I carefully work through Ezekiel’s prophecy to show how the Bible doesn’t point to a last days Russian led invasion of Israel, but instead points to an invasion led by Turkey. In order for the false perceptions of the early twenty first century to become the grim reality described in the Bible however, much had to change. These changes, as we’ve now witnessed, took far less time than most could have ever imagined. As recently as 2012, President Obama named Turkey’s current President Erdoğan as one of his top three closest friends among world leaders. A quick five years later, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has emerged as one of the most dangerous dictators of our day.

Since Erdoğan has assumed complete control of Turkey, there are now more journalists in prison there than any other nation on the earth. The AKP led government has assumed complete control over virtually every media outlet in the nation. The President has even sought to arrest his critics in nations as far abroad as Germany and the United States. Erdoğan openly stated that he has imprisoned foreign citizens to use as bargaining chips in his hope that foreign governments will extradite his critics to Turkey for punishment. Well over a hundred thousand of its own citizens have either been indefinitely imprisoned or fired from their jobs on suspicion of supporting opposition perspectives. Throughout the nation, men and woman continue to randomly and suddenly disappear, literally snatched off the streets simply for suspicion of holding critical views of the President. The elderly, those with incapacitating illnesses, pregnant women, and even babies are now routinely incarcerated. The current national roundup of Erdoğan’s enemies, or political opponents is eerily reminiscent of Nazi Germany. Yet this is just the beginning.

We have reached the point where the President of a NATO nation is now openly threatening European nations, while he increases military cooperation with Russia. Turkish forces brazenly attack US allies in northern Syria and Iraq, and the President openly brags about it, taunting us to do anything about it. After sending Turkish troops into northern Iraq, Erdoğan responded to Iraqi President Abadi’s protests by saying, “We do not need your permission!” There is abundant evidence that for the first few years of the ISIS Caliphate, Erdoğan’s government was actually assisting them with everything from medical treatment in Turkey, to logistical support, to actually supplying them with weapons. Instead of working to destroy ISIS on its southern border, Turkey has worked to target the Kurds, the primary group responsible for successfully fighting ISIS these past three years. A prominent AKP sponsored Imam has even publicly called for a Turkish invasion of Jerusalem. Meanwhile, a few dozen nuclear warheads still remain under Turkish control at the Inçirlik Airbase in eastern Turkey. Something has gone deeply, deeply wrong.

How did this all come about? In order to better understand how we got here, we need to step back to the early part of last century, when the Ottoman Empire was crumbling. Often referred to then as, “the sick man of Europe,” Turkey’s economy was a complete quagmire. Meanwhile the industrial revolution throughout the West was in full swing. As developing technologies and the economies of the western world were skyrocketing, Turkey, as the leader of much of the Islamic world was floundering. Enter Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. (Ataturk is actually an honorific title meaning the father of the Turks). Ataturk looked out and contrasted the ascendancy of Europe with the slumping condition of the Ottoman Empire and decided that he had discovered the problem. More than nearly anything else, it was Islam that was holding Turkey back from modernization, advancement, and ultimately competing with Europe. Ataturk reasoned that if a more secular republic could be established, then Turkey would be unfettered to rise just like the West. While maintaining its Muslim cultural identity, the government itself would be free from the antiquated restraints of Islam. And so Ataturk become responsible not only for dissolving the government and office of the Caliph, (the religious-political-military head of the Muslim world located in Istanbul), but also setting in place a rigid system of checks and balances whereby Turkey would forever remain a more secular nation. If any particular government in Turkey become too Islamic, then the secular controlled military would step in and remove them from power. Over the past 80 years in Turkey this has happened several times actually, with the secularist elites in control of the military each time wresting control of the Republic of Turkey back from any overly Islamist oriented governments.

While most students of history are familiar with Ataturk, few are familiar with another looming figure, a contemporary of Ataturk named Bediuzzaman Said Al-Nursî. (Bediuzzaman is also an honorific title meaning something along the line of, “the most wonderful, unique, elevated man of the time”), Nursî was an Imam and theologian who understood well the thought process of Ataturk and sought to counter his efforts to secularize Turkey. Of all the various Islamist thinkers with goals of restoring the Caliphate, Nursî is the dark horse, little known, even among many students of Islamic history. Beside Sayyid Qutb (father of the Muslim Brotherhood), Ibn Taymiyyah (Wahabbism, Salafism), or Abul A’la Maududi (Jamaat-e-Islami), Al-Nursî is easily just as important. In my opinion, Nursî’s methodology was far superior to any of the other fathers of Islamist movements. Unlike the others who emphasized violent jihad to accomplish their goals, Nursî emphasized things like science, good deeds, and interfaith dialogue. In this regard, Nursî is the father of what we could call, “Turkish Islam.” Instead of confronting the Western world with acts of jihad and violent resistance, Nursî sought to create a form of Islam that the West would welcome with open arms, roll the red carpet out for. It worked like clockwork. The West took the bait and swallowed the hook. This was the kind of Islam that the West wanted to champion; a moderated, decaffeinated, Christianized form of Islam.

Taking the baton from Nursî, a highly charismatic imam named Fethullah Gülen, dramatically expanded upon all that Bediuzzaman started. Though preaching a more nationalist message than Nursî, Gülen also preached a Islam intermingled with an emphasis on education, science, charitable acts of kindness and service—and its greatest outreach tool—interfaith dialogue. As wonderful as this may all sound to the modern ear, Gülen is also infamous for having been secretly recorded instructing his followers to “infiltrate the very arteries of the system” of society and government to “lay in wait until the most opportune time” to retake Turkey from the secularists to ultimately re-establish the Turkish-led Caliphate. Ironically, Gülen today lives in rural Pennsylvania, under the protection of the United States government. There are also over 120 charter schools in the US under Gülen’s organization.

With regard to the rise of Erdoğan, What must be understood is that it was specifically this vast throng of Nursî and Gülen supporters who created the very backbone of Erdoğan’s support. The Gülenists had followed their leader’s dictates and infiltrated virtually every sphere of society. It was through this vast support base that Erdoğan rode to power over the past fifteen years. It was not until the summer of 2013, that a dramatic spilt between the Gülenists and Erdoğan emerged. As the regional unrest of the Arab Spring finally reached Turkey, the Islamist government began violently cracking down on its own citizens. A handful died in the protests and thousands were hospitalized. Having been in Taksim Square on May 15, 2013, the night of that years most violent crackdown on the protestors, I can testify that the tactics of the government against its people were absolutely brutal.

Concerned at the heavy handed tactics of Erdogan’s government, from his hideaway in Pennsylvania, Gülen began criticizing Erdoğan. Like any narcissistic dictator, who demand absolute loyalty, Erdoğan would have absolutely none of it. What began as an escalating war of words soon grew into a full blown clash of the titans. Gülen struck first with several high level Erdoğan officials being arrested in multiple nighttime raids. Going for the jugular, the Gülenists targeted Erdoğan’s own son Bilal. To further rub salt into the wound, Gülen’s agents released a secret recording of President Erdoğan on the phone with his son frantically warning him that the police were on their way and that he needed to immediately remove piles of boxes filled with cash from his house. Caught red-handed and utterly embarrassed, Erdoğan claimed the tapes were doctored and although it was obviously his voice, he continues to vociferously deny it to this day. The gauntlet had been cast and for the next few years the secret war between Erdoğan’s AKP supporters and Gülen’s deep-state followers continued to roll over at full boil.

On the night of July 15, 2016, the conflict came to a full head, with the now infamous failed Turkish coup d’état. The attempt to overthrow the government was carried out by a faction within the military with ties to Fethullah Gülen. Despite a night of violent attacks and hundreds of deaths, by morning, Erdoğan had regained control of the nation and crushed the rebellion. Immediately, President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry took to the podium and publicly called on all Turkish political parties and citizens to support Erdoğan and the AKP party.

Since that night, analysts have sought to determine wether the coup was a genuine failed coup or if it was all staged by Erdoğan and his agents. The best analysis seems to indicate that it was likely a controlled coup attempt, one that the AKP run government had advance knowledge of and yet allowed to happen as an excuse to carry out the harsh purge of its political opponents.

This wouldn’t be the first time that the AKP had staged a red-flag event for the purpose of removing its political enemies. On two occasions the government claimed that the leaders of the Turkish military were engaged in a conspiracy to stage a series of terrorist attacks throughout the nation, as an excuse to remove the Islamist led AKP party. Instead, the AKP had hundreds of top military leaders arrested and removed from office. They were all replaced by officers faithful to Erdogan. The AKP had effectively beheaded the only wing of the Turkish government capable of removing a runaway Islamist dictatorship.

It worked perfectly the first time, and it worked even better the second time. Just one year after the failed coup, Erdoğan’s government has arrested over 123,000 citizens, has fired over 145,000, removed nearly 9,000 academics, closed over 2,000 schools, arrested nearly 300 journalists, shut down close to 200 media outlets, and has dismissed close to 5,000 judges. This doesn’t include the increasing number of men and woman who continue to simply disappear, having been literally snatched off the streets never to be seen again. This is unparalleled in modern history. Turkey has experienced its own “Nacht der langen Messer,” or “Night of Long-Knives.” Hitler’s 1934 extrajudicial assault on his own supporters know as “the Brownshirts,” bears a striking resemblance to Erdoğan’s purge of the Gülenists. Although he could not have become President if not for their support, he turned on them and crushed them.

Now that Erdoğan has attained absolute power over Turkey, the moderate character that he played to win the support of the western world is no longer needed. His mask has been removed and his true colors revealed. Now he is free to openly threaten European leaders. As I have been warning for well over a decade, the moderate Islamist who supports democracy was all a facade. His plan, declared nearly twenty years ago, went perfectly according to his plan.As he said then, “Democracy is like a streetcar, you ride it until you get where you need to get, and then you get off.” This is exactly where we find ourselves today.

So what does the future hold?

In 2013, during the height of the Turkish riots, I not only attended one of the protests, but also attended a massive political rally for Erdoğan. This was far and away the largest gathering I have ever been to in my life. As far as the eye could see, there was a throng of supporters waving Turkish flags and chanting their heor’s name: “Recep. Tayyip. Erdoğan. Recep-Tayyip-Erdoğan!” I commented then, and will reiterate now, I have never felt as though I was watching history repeat as clearly as I did that day. The combination of nationalism, Islamism, and over-the-top political hero worship on display that day should be terrifying to anyone with foresight. One would have to have been completely blind not to have seen the dark ghost of Nazi Germany hanging over the crowd that day.

For years, analysts tried to shout down warnings that Erdoğan has a desire to return to the Ottoman era. Today those same critics are taking a fresh look at the man they once made excuses for and even championed. On the day that Erdoğan won the referendum (allowing him to rewrite the Turkish constitution and which effectively brought an end to the secular democratic Republic of Turkey as envisioned by Ataturk), to celebrate his victory, he made a very symbolic statement. Not only did he specifically avoid visiting the tomb of Ataturk, but instead, he visited the tomb of Sultan Selim I. He was making a very clear statement. Known as Selim the Grim, the Sultan ruled the Ottoman Empire from 1512 to 1520. He is most remembered for his expansionist conquest over Egypt, Syria, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia. Erdoğan was sending a very clear message. The era of Ataturk is over. There is a new Sultan Selim the Grim in power.

There is a Turkish proverb that says, “Show the people death, and they will happily embrace malaria.” In other words, compared to the horror of the ISIS Caliphate, a Turkish Caliphate looks quite appealing. Even in the western press, various think tanks and op-ed pieces are now suggesting that the key to Middle Eastern stability is a return to Ottoman regional control—a new Turkish Ottoman order of sorts. As the ISIS Caliphate collapses, and much of the civilized world is breathing a sigh of relief, many others throughout the Muslim world, while acknowledging the horrific excesses of ISIS, also recognize that there is indeed a significant cry through the Muslim world for the restoration of the Caliphate. Having a Caliphate in place is an essential part of Muslim life and doctrine. It is as foundational to Muslims as having a Pope in office is to Catholics. Within Islamic theology and practice, the Caliphate is the very means by which Shariah (“God’s law” as Muslims might say), is be established, safeguarded, and ultimately spread throughout the world. Since that fateful year of 1923 when Mustafa Kemal Ataturk oversaw the dismantling of the Ottoman Caliphate, Islamist thinkers, dreamers, and the organizations they birthed have been strategizing and fighting to see its restoration. As the ISIS Caliphate collapses, there is a much larger shadow rising not only over the Middle East, but also well into Europe. The history of American foreign policy has somewhat been a circus of creating our enemies of tomorrow, today. We did it with the Taliban. We did it with Saddam Hussein. We arguably did it with Osama Bin Laden. Each time, it was a short decade or more before we were at war with the very enemies that we had supported, backed, and even trained. After 16 years in Afghanistan and Iraq, with American military resources drained, and well over 4000 American soldiers dead, one could argue the region is in a worse condition than when we first began. But here’s the kicker; the Taliban and Saddam Hussein are small potatoes compared to Turkey, a nation that has the largest army in the Middle East. If my understanding of Biblical prophecy is correct, this time, the very monster that the United States helped to create, is going to be a lot more than the world can handle.



  • Timothy Gill
    Posted at 08:07h, 13 August

    WOW………you hit that nail on the head!

  • Derek Reynolds
    Posted at 12:16h, 13 August

    My eyes are open!

  • Onesimus
    Posted at 22:02h, 14 August

    “As the ISIS Caliphate collapses, there is a much larger shadow rising not only over the Middle East, but also well into Europe…
    … the Taliban and Saddam Hussein are small potatoes compared to Turkey, a nation that has the largest army in the Middle East. If my understanding of Biblical prophecy is correct, this time, the very monster that the United States helped to create, is going to be a lot more than the world can handle.”

    An interesting observation.

    As for Turkey – is it a coincidence that in the book of Revelation Jesus addressed 7 churches located in what is now Turkey? And one of those churches was based in a city where (at that time according to Jesus), Satan dwelt, and was the location of Satan’s throne.

  • Linda keyes
    Posted at 11:47h, 15 August

    Ah, I was thinking a similar thought to Onesimus.

    I keep hearing that satan’s seat is now in Germany, (And there’s no denying the evil that took place)

    But I’m thinking that the now museum piece, is only a branch stemming from the root, which is still in Turkey, which is certainly sprouting again.

    Just my thoughts.

  • onesimus
    Posted at 19:18h, 15 August

    “I keep hearing that satan’s seat is now in Germany”

    Yes the physical building that Jesus may have been referring to was dismantled and rebuilt in Germany, but I don’t see the spiritual reality being tied to building materials.

    While it was probably a decade ago that I started to consider that the antichrist and his kingdom was likely to be Islamic, its only in the past two years (through reading about WWI) that I started to see significance in Turkey and the former Ottoman Empire.

    I wrote some of my WWI findings relating to the Ottoman Empire and the freeing of “Palestine” here (WWI What Was God Doing?):

  • Linda keyes
    Posted at 06:10h, 16 August

    Ok thanks, I’ll have a read.

    I do believe that satan claims buildings/objects, and understand why the Nazis used the model. Clearly he has many strongholds. I think though he never vacated the original spot in Turkey.

  • Reginald Scott
    Posted at 15:28h, 16 August

    Turkey has 80 million citizens, an army of 500,000. 60 nukes. It is a third the size of the US army, smaller than the Russian army. But if it announces a celiphate we can expect thousands to stream to it as we saw with Daesh. The power of a celiphate seems to be a huge draw. I hope you are wrong Joel. So far your predictions have been alarmingly accurate….

  • Onesimus
    Posted at 16:38h, 16 August

    “But if it announces a celiphate we can expect thousands to stream to it as we saw with Daesh.”

    A disturbing prospect – but all too possible.
    Having the foundation of an already established and strong nation will make such a caliphate much more secure than what Daesh attempted.

  • Steven Vance
    Posted at 15:03h, 17 August

    An excellent article. Loved hearing you at Understanding the Times in Tyler. It was a real treat! God bless you as you continue to serve Him!

  • Deana Rothert
    Posted at 09:04h, 19 August

    I remember watching Benjamin Netanyahu interview with Fox News., couple years back. When asked if IRAN was his greatest fear, he quickly replied his greatest fear was the rise of the Ottoman Empire.

  • Alan Cobb
    Posted at 13:25h, 19 August

    I believe the office of the Caliphate, “Caliph,” [head] suffered the deadly head wound of Rev. 13 when it was abolished in March 1924 and fulfilled that prophecy. I also believe the Ottoman Turk Empire was the fifth Empire of Daniel 2, (seventh overall including Egypt and Assyria) the “feet and toes.” The feet of course not only have toes, but heels as well which refers to the prophecy in Gen. 3:15. It is one of the seven “heads” that was wounded which corresponds with the seven Empires of Daniel 2.

  • KM
    Posted at 14:04h, 20 August

    Hi Joel. As a “worker” in Turkey, I would love to hear your thoughts on how we are to PRAY for these people, to what extent do we risk our lives (or our freedom) for a nation who are, up to this point, generally closed to the Gospel. Can we anticipate a breakthrough of salvation among the Turks? Are there books you would recommend from the experience of believers during Nazi Germany? I know, obviously, that we need to ask the Holy Spirit for wisdom… And the precious millions of refugees who ARE responding to the Gospel and really have nowhere else to go at this point… they must ride the wave of the Ottoman rise if indeed it happens while they wait years for resettlement. Please do pray for us. We need wisdom.

  • Joel
    Posted at 15:28h, 20 August


    Your questions are some I am pondering much in this season. I recently received reports of some genuine breakthroughs among Turks coming to faith. Even if only in the range or a dozen or so in one fellowship, this is a wonderful sign. As for how long one should stay or go is a deeply personal matter and one which must be made in much prayer. It depends on whether you have little ones and family with you or not. Although they do not seem to be going too aggressively after Christians, barring a few at this point, it is not a far off possibility. Stay only if you have truly counted to costs, and are willing to pay the ultimate price, which could be sudden arrest and potential abuse or worse in prison. This is not a decision I can make for anyone.


  • tom grossman sr.
    Posted at 07:53h, 21 August

    Great article, I look forward to seeing you at the Prophetic Church Conference at Grace Community in Arlington TX this weekend. Tom

  • Carlos Leite da Silva
    Posted at 08:42h, 21 August

    I absolutely agree with you, Joel!
    I thank you for you have been for so long bringing people to the right understanding of the Scriptures on this matter.
    I just finished writing a book (yesterday) about Bible prophecies, and several ideas and concepts I use there were inspired by your studies.
    The Book is in Portuguese (I am a Portuguese, living in Brazil). I am a translator, so I expect to have an English version of it within a couple months (it has 327 pages).
    I’m deeply grateful for that light that came to me while God was using you.
    God bless you, brother!

  • Peter Hartgerink
    Posted at 17:17h, 26 August

    Fascinating and convincing. Thank you.

  • Thomas Davies
    Posted at 23:43h, 27 August

    Bought the e-book “Mystery Babylon” and the audible to it what an awesome read my eyes are opened.

  • Lim hock lay
    Posted at 09:34h, 31 August

    It makes real sense.

  • Kenneth Reese
    Posted at 22:24h, 03 September

    Joel, as a teen, and even until recently, I’ve studied ww2 and nazi Germany in great detail. I’ve read countless books and reports of the rise of Hitler, and how he operated. I’ve read some of your books on the Islamic beast and antichrist. Having at one time been a fervent supporter of the European antichrist theology, your studies caused me to rethink things and now I believe the Lord has opened my eyes to what he’s shown you, among some other things. This article really stirred me, as it is indeed almost a replica of the rise of Hitlers Third Reich. In fact, I would go so far as to wonder if Nazi Germany wasn’t a trial run by Satan himself to test his plan for the rise of the Antichrist. It worked then, and he’s putting it into play once again. As the German people unknowingly supported and cheered for a rising monster, so too are the Turkish people doing the same.
    The Lord is using you to show his people what’s to come. I appreciate that you have been humble throughout your journey and the revelations He has revealed to you. We are truly living during the generation Jesus spoke of when he said; “….this generation shall not pass….” May the Lord continue to bless you and your family.

  • Joel
    Posted at 04:31h, 04 September

    Thank you very much Kenneth. Blessings to you as well.

  • Marty Runik
    Posted at 08:22h, 04 September

    Joel do you still feel that Erdogan is not the Antichrist but is possibly setting the stage for him?

  • Ashlyn Sloane
    Posted at 11:34h, 04 September

    In his book, Daniel Revisted, Mark Davidson presents a very cogent argument that Daniel 7 and 8 are future. If he is correct, and I believe he is, then the goat with the prominent horn furiously defeats the ram and then the horn breaks off and 4 horns arise, out of which a little horn grows (which everyone agrees is the antichrist). It would appear that Erdogan may be that prominent horn which means he isn’t the antichrist.

  • marty runik
    Posted at 08:46h, 05 September

    Thanks Sloane. I haven’t read Mark Davidsons work, but I would agree also. The next few years will be very interesting!

  • Afo
    Posted at 16:58h, 01 October

    I really like to see an article from you regarding the political ties of Turkey with Iran and how it relates to both countries wanting to destroy and take over Israel.

  • Joel
    Posted at 16:22h, 02 October

    The Prince of Persia and the Prince of Yavan will never truly get along until one defeats the other.

  • Tim (Onesimus)
    Posted at 16:16h, 08 October

    Hi Joel,
    I don’t know whether you’re aware of the following reported event or whether you have mentioned it previously – the article actually dates back a few years.
    I was initially reluctant to refer to this article because I came across the link on a blog that hasn’t always shown integrity with sources of information, but I found the source of the article was a mainstream newspaper.

    Annoyingly the article can’t be fully accessed without registering for the site – but the accessible first part of the article reports an interesting incident.
    As yet I haven’t found another source to support what the Times article claims.

    Below is the link and the accessible quote found at the link:
    ‘Miracle worker’ Erdogan poised for presidency’
    (August 10 2014, The Sunday Times)

    THE Turkish leader, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, was making a campaign speech in Istanbul last week when he noticed a woman in the crowd had fainted.

    After ordering supporters to bring her to him, he reached down to touch her, at which point she recovered, seizing his hand.

    “God is great!” the woman shouted. The crowd roared in approval.

    To his supporters, Erdogan is a miracle worker and the saviour of Turkey. For his opponents, however, the adulation has gone to his head. After 11 years in power as prime minister, there seems no limit to his ambitions.

  • Clark Gear
    Posted at 09:22h, 29 October

    Joel, some have called the election of Trump/Pence a grace period for the western Church to repent and respond w the Gospel prior to the great tribulation. Do you have any way of getting your writing into the hands of The US administration. You could be a Daniel of our day.

  • David Wehmeyer
    Posted at 15:28h, 22 November

    There are still a few things about the seventh and final eighth beast empires that still need to be defined. What empire would the seventh be that would have only lasted for a short while, Revelations 17:8-13. This leader also come out of the abyss and is one of the previous seven beast empires leaders. Who fits this description that everyone will recognize when he is revealed again? After all he is one of only seven previous empire leaders that has ever lived. He also has to be a white caucasian since he is a descendant of Japheth.

    In Ezekiel we see that the Antichrist must be a descendant of Japheth one of Noah’s three sons. Ezekiel 38 describes him as Gog from Magog. In the table of Nations found in Genesis chapter ten we see that Magog was a grandson of Japheth and that would make him a white caucasian. He certainly is not semitic in his lineage or he would be a descendant of Shem.

    Everything makes sense except I still need to justify these prophetic passages as well. So who can be a white caucasian who is the head of the eighth and final beast empire and the head of the Islamic Caliphate Nation Coalition. All prophecy must be fulfilled in its literal sense or its not prophecy.

    Can anyone shed light on these questions?

  • Joel
    Posted at 16:18h, 22 November

    Your questions contain a few false assumptions. The first error is assuming that the seventh is the empire that will last only a short time. Why is Satan enraged? Because he knows his time is short. That which is short is the final phase of that empire, the eighth, the Antichrist phase of the empire. The Scriptures repeatedly define that empire as lasting only as short time. Only a couple verses later, it again reiterates this when it says the ten kings will give their authority to the beast for “one hour.” The “beast” from the abyss is a demonic spirit behind the seventh empire that comes back as the leader of eighth. Again, the seventh and the eighth are essentially one and the same. Two phases of the same empire. This is made clear in the legs and feet of Daniel 2 as well as the beast and horns of Daniel 7. Its actually quite simple.

    Ezekiel is not pointing to ethnic blood lines. He is pointing to geographic locations from which the Antichrist would come. Otherwise you would also have to say that he is an Assyrian (Micah 5), Babylonian (Isaiah 14), Tyrian, etc.

    I hope this has resolved your questions.

  • David Wehmeyer
    Posted at 09:22h, 23 November

    I can see your explanation of the spirit of the antichrist from a previous empire leader as valid. I still have difficulty seeing your explanation of Ezekiel 38 not specific to lineage rather than geography. The nations mentioned in Ezekiel 38 are very specific and it is by their lineage that they are defined. With the table of nations in Genesis 10 even more defines their specific heritage and characteristic they possess. Assyria will be part of the whole of the final beast empire but in Micah it is not a clear reference to the Antichrist lineage. Again in Isaiah 14 it is not a direct reference to the Antichrist lineage as in Ezekiel as it is identifying a member nation of the final empires make-up. We know that all of the previous beast empires will be a part of the final beast empires make-up. But Ezekiel gives us more than geography though the geography is a part of his message. He also give us insight to a specific lineage of this final beast empire heritage of its leader and his three nation power base. All of which are descendants of Japheth in Genesis 10. This cannot just be geography. Ezekiel had a very specific purpose for defining these nations by the descendants of Noah’s three sons Shem, Ham, and Japheth. There will be some of every one of the three sons of Noah represented in the final beast empire. This is pointed out by Ezekiel. But Ezekiel gets very specific as to where this leader of his prophecy comes from by lineage not just geography. In Ezekiel’s time Magonite descendants did live in Northwestern Turkey. But to dismiss the specificity of how Ezekiel calls out this leader by naming them by their lineage is in my humble opinion not sound prophecy hermeneutics.

    I don’t know the answer to this but I am sure that the Antichrist will be a descendant of Japheth. We just do not yet see how this will be fulfilled at the present time. Joel thank you for your continued efforts to voice the truth of God’s Word.

    David .

  • Joel
    Posted at 16:40h, 23 November

    I would have to disagree. Ezekiel never specifies lineage. There is no portion of the text where the phrases “descendants of” or anything similar are ever used. Quite to the contrary. Gog is referred to as being “from Magog,” which nearly every historical scholar and commentary acknowledges likely means “from the land of Gog.” Further, the emphasis on the text is repeatedly on the invader being “from the far north.” To say the emphasis is not on geography is to ignore the text itself. Further yet, other non Japhetic peoples are listed. The notion for example that by specifying “Persia” the Lord was not pointing to modern day Iran, but rather “white” Indo-Europeans is a stretch at best. Yet ethnically this is the case. So again, in my view, I see nothing within the text that would point to ethnicity. In fact, all emphasis is on geography. The four points of the compass are highlighted, with the leader repeatedly emphasized as coming from the far north. The term used is actually tied to amounting in Turkey. Again, if you demand an ethnic interpretation here you would be far more justified to see such in Micah where the Antichrist is specifically called “the Assyrian” from “the land of Assyria.” In my opinion, the notion that Antichrist will be an ethnic descendant of Japheth is simply without biblical merit. Not that it is impossible. There is simply no biblical merit. Of course, only time will tell, and God knows best.

    Blessings, Joel

  • David Wehmeyer
    Posted at 08:26h, 27 November

    Respectively Joel, I would have to disagree. The table of nations in Genesis 10 with the descendants of Noah’s three sons and their descendants listed is to much just to write off as not important. Ezekiel would have been very familiar with this passage of Scripture. He uses these specific names in his prophecy in chapter 38 to define what he is trying to get across. I see your point about the final beast empire being an Islamic Caliphate that mirrors the Ottoman Empire. I have no problem with this at all. There are and there was some of all three of Noah’s three sons that were Islamic even of the line of Japhet. There still is. But to dismiss that Ezekiel has no purpose when he specifically describes the leader of this empire as Gog a title from Magog a linage is in my opinion irresponsible. I am not saying your overall analysis is not valid. I see very much your biblical connection as to where and what the final beast empire will be made up of. I agree with you. I too believe the Bible points to Islam as the satanic counterfeit to the Christian gospel. All I am saying is that just as you have to take all prophecy as literal as possible if it is to be prophecy rather than speculation. I believe Ezekiel gave us some very specific descriptions for a very important purpose. We may not have all the pieces of the puzzle figured out yet but I am convinced that God’s Word will be fulfilled literally. I am not so quick to dismiss passages detailed information in order to make them fit my theological school of thought. Geography is important but so to is the lineage Ezekiel specifically points out about the make-up and the geography of the final beast empire. I am convinced that something will develop that will make it all come together in the exact details Ezekiel gave us in chapter 38.

    Finally, you miss my point entirely when you state I do not think geography is important. I not only think it is important like you do I think it is vital. But I also think that the description of the ancestral make-up of this final beast empire is just as vital. I also think that the final beast empire will comprise some nations of all three son’s of Noah, not just semitic in its make-up. But will be comprised of Shem, Ham and Japheth. I believe all of the previous beast empires of the past. Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Meade and Persia, Greece, Roman and Ottoman, will have representation in the final eight empire. I believe they will come from the land of the North as the power base for the empire as a whole. I do not see europe and certainly not America as the driving force of the final empire. It will come from Turkey and the surrounding nations of Israel. I basically see everything as you do with the one caveat. The leader of this final empire will be a Islamic Japhetic leader. I just don’t yet see how it will all come together yet.

    Your statement “Yet ethnically this is the case. So again, in my view, I see nothing within the text that would point to ethnicity. In fact, all emphasis is on geography.” is to disregard why Ezekiel used Genesis Chapter 10 as the names to describe the people groups that make up this final beast empire. I do agree with your statement ” The four points of the compass are highlighted, with the leader repeatedly emphasized as coming from the far north. The term used is actually tied to amounting in Turkey.” I do not believe the far north is Russia. I do believe its Turkey like you do. Then your statement “if you demand an ethnic interpretation here you would be far more justified to see such in Micah where the Antichrist is specifically called “the Assyrian” from “the land of Assyria.” The point I would make here is. You can use the same logic you answered my question on concerning the leader coming out of the abyss. You said, ” The “beast” from the abyss is a demonic spirit behind the seventh empire that comes back as the leader of eighth. Again, the seventh and the eighth are essentially one and the same. ” I would say that the beast behind all of the previous beast empires is the same spirit and will come back to be the eighth and final empire leader.

    By the way, I just ordered your books “MidEast Beast” and “The Islamic Antichrist”. I look forward to reading them. It is very refreshing to read someone who is taking the Scriptures for what they say in context and not make them say what is clearly not there. I appreciate you dedication to the Word of God and you responses to my questions. Thank you Joel.

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