« הקודםהמשך »
The prophet proceeds in recording the words of the Most High to Gog, in Ezek. xxxviii, And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armor, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords. This text suggests not only the entire control, which God will exercise over Gog, but also the greatness of the numbers of the mixed multitudes under him. Other passages of Scripture speak of them as being the kings of the earth, and of the whole world. * behold in those days, and that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all mations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat.t
The prophet proceeds to give a summary list of the nations in this coalition under Gog: Persia, Ethiopia, and Lybia with them; all of them with shieids and helmets: Gomer and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands, and many people with thee. Vast mixed multitude! Let us trace them. Persia is at the head of the catalogue. Persia is situated on the east of the Ottoman empire; and is of the same religion, the Mohammedan: And as it is of late thought that the Afghans in Persia are the ten tribes of Israel, who will then have quitted their Persian territories, and gone to the land of their fathers, the Persians will readily be induced to unite in the coalition against Israel in Palestine. Perhaps they will claim them as their subjects; as the ancient Egyptian monarch did the tribes of Israel, when they were fleeing from his territories.
Ethiopia and Lybia: These names are noted, as in connexion with the infidel Power, in his preceding expedition into the east. Dan xi, 43; And the Lybians and Ethiopians shall be at his steps. It is natural then to expect them to be in this final coalition. But who are the Ethiopians here mentioned? A considerable part of Africa is comprised under the name of Ethiopia, Upper, and Lower: The former including Nubia, and Abyssinia: The latter all the kingdoms south of the equinoctial line. But it is not probable that this vast territory, so far to the south, can be the Ethiopia in the coalition under Gog. The original Ethiopia, or Cush, was in the northwestern parts of Arabia. Here, east of the northern parts of the Red Sea, Cush, the son of Ham, took up his residence. From him those regions, in the Stony Arabia, were called the land of Cush, or Ethiopia. Here Moses married his Ethiopian wife. * This is nearly in the line pursued by the infidel-Power in his preceding expedition.t These northwestern Arabs, it is natural then to suppose, will be the Ethiopians in the coalition under Gog. Probably they will be induced to unite, in hopes of rich plunder.
*Rev. xvi, 14, and xix, 19.
+Joel iii, 1, 2.
Lybia comprises the States of Barbary. The Hebrew word for Lybia here, is Phut. But Phut, the son of Ham, Martin, in his Philological Library, informs, took up his residence in the western parts of Africa, on the Mediterranean, in the country of Mau. ritania, now Morocco and Algiers, where we find a city Putea, and a river Put. Pool on this passage informs, that Lybia here means “a people of Africa, either now subjects of, or confederate with the Turks.” As the Lybians are said to be at the steps of the Infidel Power, at the time of the overthrow of the Turks; as the States of Barbary are now subject to the Turks, and are the only powers of any note west of Egypt; and as the Lybians in the prophecy under consideration must be supposed to be of some note, to have been predicted, three or four and twenty centuries ago, to be in the coalition under Gog, the Barbary powers must have been designed by the Lybia or Phut in this place.
Gomer and all his bands: Gomer, the oldest son of Japhet, peopled Galatia, Phrygia, and some regions round about the Euxine Sea. Thence his descendants penetrated into Europe; and, according to Brown, they peopled Hungary, Germany, Switzerland, France, Spain, Portugal, and Britain. Some of the Scots and
*Numb. xii, 1.
+ Dan. xi, 40-43.
Irish, the Picts particularly are supposed to have been of the same origin. Martin is not so full upon the descendants of Gomer. But he informs that the ancient Gomerites and the Galatians were the same: That from Galatia they sent colonies into Europe, and settled Germany; from which they spread themselves into France, where they were called by the Greeks Galatiæ, or Gomerites, by the Latins Celtæ, and by the Britons Gauls. Thus the name Gauls is derived from Gomer. And from Germany, or France, Martin informs, came the first inhabitants of Great Britain. France, being the only people of importance who retain the name of their primitive ancestor, or an evident derivation from it, must be the people meant by Gomer. Gomer, and all his bands: i. e. The Gauls and all their empire. It was the original inhabitants of France, and some of her neighboring nations, who descended from Gomer. They in process of time became mixed with their barbarous invaders from the north, the descendants of Magog, as has been shown. They now therefore answer to both the names. The two names of the French illustrate this idea; Gauls, or Gomerites; French, or Franks, a clan of the descendants of Magog. Brown informs,* that the ancient Gomerites in France and Switzerland were long a terror to the Romans; but were conquered by them; and were finally swallowed up by the descendants of Magog; meaning the floods of the aorthern barbarians.
But some may inquire, whether more is not included in the clause, Gomer and all his bands, than the nations included in the present French empire? The original inhabitants of Britain, after the fiood, were from Gomer's line.t The Welsh in Britain call themselves Cumri, Cymro, or Comeri. These also are ancient Britons, who upon the invasion of England by the Saxons, from the north of Germany, in the sixth century, were driven into Wales. It is evident then, that the first inhabitants of Britain were Gomerites. If therefore France is included in Gomer and all his bands, notwithstanding her being overrun by the northern invaders, because her original inhabitants were Gomerites; why must not Great-Britain, and consequently the United States, be likewise included, notwithstanding that Britain, after it was settled by the Gomerites, was afterward overrun by the Saxons, and then by the Normans; and the present English have descended from some of them? Reply. Should Britain and the United States fall under the French Empire, they would answer, with sufficient precision, to the description of Gomer, and all his bands, both as being, in their primitive ancestors, the descendants of ancient Gomerites; and as then belonging to the bands of the Gaelic Empire. But we devoutly trust, that gracious Heaven does not design the subjugation of our land, nor of that of our ancestors, to that devouring power. We may hope for exceptions under this general prediction. The great body of the Church of Christ is now found in these two nations, the distant ramifications of Gomer's line. And “Oft has the Lord whole nations blest, for his own Church's sake.” But how many nations will event. ually be found included in the bands of Gomer, time alone will disclose.
* Dictionary of the Bible. + The present Gaelic multitudes, in the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, are a remnant of this people. The above denomina. tion of their dialect is, no doubt, a derivation from the name Gomer. This people are descendents from the ancient Celtæ, or Gomerites. Says the secretary of the Society in Scotland for propagating Christian knowledge, relative to a new edition of the Bible in the Gaelic language, -"I will not enter into the question, how far the preservation of that ancient dialect of the Celtic, the language of our forefathers, the primitive inhabit, ants of this island, is an object of just desire.- Surely while the Cellic, whether in the Irish, Welsh, or Gaelic dialects, is the existing language of great bodies of remote and ignorant peo. ple, no wise and good man will refuse to give them the means of instruction in the only language in which they are capable of receiving it.” See the Panoplist for Sept. 1805, p. 167.
The house of Togarmah: Togarmah, a grandson of Japhet, peopled Phrygia, Cappadocia, Turcomania, some parts of Armenia, and Paphlagonia. No doubt Asia Minor is here included, and probably the chief of the countries of the present Turkish or Ottoman em.
pire. Of the north quarters and all his bands. This may be read in apposition with the house of Togarmah; and leave out the of: The house of Togarmah; the north quarters, and all the bands of the north: Many of the Tartars, and perhaps the Russians. And many people with thee. Many others promiscuously united.
Here is a traversing round Palestine, from Persia on the east, to Arabia on the south; and to the west, through the north of Africa; then to the north, through the southern and middle nations of Europe; then round to the east, through Asia Minor, and the Turkish empire; then away indefinitely to the vast regions of the north; and many others beside! Amazing combination, collected from at least three of the quarters of the globe, to destroy and plunder the Hebrews, recovered from their long dispersion; a combination excited by the threefold agency of the dragon, the beast, and the false prophet, and prepared for the battle of that great day of God Almighty.* This is indeed gathering the na. tions and assembling the kingdoms, to pour out upon them the Divine indignation.t I will gather all nations and tongues, and they shall come and see my glory. For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle.j And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies gathered together to make war against him, that sat on the horse, and against his army.
Various motives no doubt will be found operating among the various nations and tribes thus uniting; such as enmity against the Christian religion; rage at the restoration of the Hebrews; rage at their conversion to Christianity; rage against some rival nation, who will have been aiding in their restoration or conversion, and may
be ready to afford them further assistance; a desire among the fragments of different denominations, as Papists and Mohammedans, to meliorate their own broken cause; and an expectation of rich plunder. The latter will be a prime motive among many of these confederates, as we learn in the course of this chapter,
#Rev. xvi, 13, 14. + Zech. ii, 8. Isai. Ixvi, 18.
şZech. xir, 2. Rev. xix, 19.