States in Bible Prophecy
David R. Reagan
is the United States in Bible prophecy? It is a question
I am asked wherever I go. It is only natural that we should
wonder. Since the United States is not mentioned specifically
by name in Bible prophecy, people have resorted to their
imaginations to find our nation in the Scriptures.
A “tall and smooth people”?
have pointed to Isaiah 18 which speaks of a people “tall
and smooth” who are “feared far and wide.” The passage further
states that this is a “powerful nation whose land the rivers
divide.” The chapter ends by stating that the people of
this nation will bring “a gift of homage” to the Lord when
He returns to reign from Mt. Zion.
these verses speak of a powerful nation whose land is divided
by a great river, some have jumped to the conclusion that
the nation is the United States since it is divided by the
the opening verses of this chapter indicate it is speaking
of “Cush,” the ancient name of Ethiopia. At the time Isaiah
wrote this passage, Ethiopia was a part of the Egyptian
empire and the river referred to is undoubtedly the Nile.
A “village” of Tarshish?
one of the most popular passages where people claim to
have found the U.S. is in Ezekiel 38 where the prophet
describes an invasion of Israel that will be launched in
the end times by a nation “from the remote parts of the
north.” The descriptive verses about the northern power
make it clear that this nation is Russia. What is not so
clear is where the U.S. fits into this invasion.
who find us in the passage point to Ezekiel 38:13 which
says that “the merchants of Tarshish and all its villages”
(or “young lions” depending on translation) will speak out
against the invasion. The argument is that Tarshish is Britain
and the “villages” or “young lions” are the English speaking
nations like the U.S. and Australia that were founded by
say the least, this is a highly imaginative interpretation.
Its validity is seriously questioned by the fact that no
one knows for certain the true identity of “Tarshish.” Furthermore,
recent archaeological developments indicate that Tarshish
was most likely Spain, not Britain.
A “great eagle”?
favorite passage for applied imagination is Revelation
12:13-17. These verses state that in the middle of the Tribulation
God will provide a means of escape for the Jewish remnant
in Israel. They will be carried into the wilderness to
a hiding place on the “wings of a great eagle.”
people have seized on this imagery to teach that the U.S.,
whose national symbol is the eagle, will supply the end
time air lift that will save the Jewish remnant.
the Bible is its own best interpreter. And when you look
up the phrase, “wings of an eagle,” you will find that it
is the same one that God used in Exodus 19:4 to describe
how He brought the Israelites out of Egypt. God is the eagle,
not the United States (see Deuteronomy 32:11).
“Babylon the great?”
brings us to the final and most widely used passage for
identifying the U.S. in Bible prophecy. It is Revelation
18 where the destruction of “Babylon the great” is described.
is no doubt that the United States shares many similarities
with the corrupt commercial empire described in this chapter.
But the U.S. is not a fulfillment of Revelation 18. That
chapter is describing the last Gentile world empire that
will dominate the earth at the time of the Lord’s Second
Coming. It is the empire of the Antichrist.
where is the United States in Bible prophecy? The answer
is that we are not mentioned directly and specifically.
We are covered by general prophecies that relate to all
nations, but beyond that, our end time destiny must be a
matter of speculation.
prophecies that apply to the U.S. include those that say
all nations will be judged (Isaiah 34:2-3) and all nations
will cease to exist except the nation of Israel (Jeremiah
30:11 and 46:28).
personally believe that the reason the U.S. is not mentioned
in end time prophecy is because we will suddenly cease to
be a world power and will therefore play no significant
role in end time events.
destruction of American power is most likely to occur in
two stages. The first could be an economic catastrophe that
will result from our out of control debt situation. Our
god is the dollar, and the Lord is going to destroy that
god when the weight of our debt collapses our economy.
second stage could occur when Russia launches its invasion
of Israel (prophesied in Ezekiel 38 and 39). I believe
it is very likely that they will launch a preemptive nuclear
attack against our nation, since we are the only country
in the world that might possibly come to Israel’s defense.
This attack may be hinted at in Ezekiel 39:6 where it says
that fire will fall on “those who inhabit the coastlands
Russian attack will probably come from submarines deployed
off our East and West coasts. Each Russian sub carries
more fire power than all the bombs dropped in World War
II. Such an attack would give us only seven minutes warning,
not even enough time to launch a counter attack.
the U.S. immobilized, the Russians will then attack Israel
and, according to Ezekiel, their army will be wiped out
supernaturally by God on the hills of Israel (Ezekiel 39:14).
The greatest power vacuum in the history of mankind will
be created almost overnight. The world will be gripped by
that vacuum will step a dynamic, charismatic European political
personality who will be energized by Satan. He will begin
to rally the world to his support through his brilliant
proposals for world peace. The world will be mesmerized
by him (Revelation 13:8).
argue that since the collapse of the Soviet government,
Russia is now too weak to launch any attack against Israel
or the Untied States. It is true that the economy of Russia
is in shambles, but the military power is intact, including
thousands of nuclear warheads!
fact, Russia is far more dangerous to the world today than
before the Soviet collapse. The increased danger is rooted
in the instability of the government.
is no hope for democracy in Russia because the societal
values that are essential for the working of a democratic
system do not exist. Nor is there any historical experience
with democracy. Before the Commissars were the Czars.
current experiment with democracy will not last long. It
will be overthrown, most likely by a coup that will produce
a military dictatorship. That new tyranny will then most
likely resort to one of the oldest techniques of government
— namely, stirring up trouble abroad to divert people’s
attention away from their domestic problems. That foreign
trouble will be the invasion of Israel.
Parallel of Habakkuk
admit that I do not like this speculative scenario. But
it seems the most likely chain of events to me. When it
first occurred to me, I was particularly repelled by the
idea of God using Russia to judge our nation. I asked, “How
can a holy God punish those who are evil with those who
are more evil?”
quest for an answer to that question led me to the book
of Habakkuk. I discovered that Habakkuk asked God the same
question when God revealed to him that Judah would be judged
by an invasion of the Chaldeans.
never answered Habakkuk’s question. He just called on Habakkuk
to proceed in faith, believing that God knew best (Habakkuk
2:4). After a difficult spiritual struggle, Habakkuk stepped
out in faith and said, “Lord, even if the Chaldeans completely
destroy us, I will continue to exalt Your name” (Habakkuk
Chaldeans came. They destroyed the nation of Judah and the
Temple of God. But where are the Chaldeans today? In the
dust bin of history. Where are the Jews? Regathered to
point is that God has the wisdom and power to orchestrate
the evil of Man to the triumph of His holy will in history.
It is not for us to question His ways. Rather, it is for
us to trust Him.
there is another point to consider. Are we really more righteous
than the Russians? I think not.
fact, I believe we are far more dangerous to the world
spiritually than the Russians have ever been, for we are
the world’s moral polluter through the export of our sleazy
television programs, our filthy movies, our satanic music,
and our degrading pornography.
are a people who have turned our back on God. The day of
judgment for us will be far more severe than for the Russians,
for “to those to whom much is given, much is expected” (Luke
is another possible fate for the United States. If the Rapture
were to occur today, we would be devastated because our
nation contains more born again Christians than any other
nation in the world — more than all of Western Europe combined.
Further, we have many born again Christians in high positions
of commerce and government. The Rapture would reduce our
nation to chaos, removing us from the international scene
as the world’s dominant power.
can hope and pray that this will be the destiny of our nation,
because if it is not, we are headed toward outright destruction
due to our rebellion against a gracious God who has blessed
us more than any other nation that has ever existed.