A document written to President Bush by three Rabbis in Israel won’t get any notice in the world press, and isn’t being given much attention by church leaders either, but in my view it’s an extraordinary thing, given the status of its authors. Rabbi Steinzaltz is the leader of the Sanhedrin, who Time magazine has called a once in a millennium scholar. Dr. Eshel heads up the New Jewish Congress, and Rabbi Richman represents the Temple Institute and Temple Mount movements. These are not kooks from the lunatic fringe, but respected scholars and leaders among religious Jews.
It’s being called The Bush Scroll and was written in the Name of the Lord, Eternal God, as if the authors believe they were His scribes in the effort, and calls to mind the phrase, “Thus saith the Lord.” It was addressed to “esteemed Mr. George W. Bush, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, (Ezekiel 38:1) leader of the west.” By including a reference to Ezekiel in the salutation the authors were identifying Pres. Bush as the one called Gog in that verse. It seems like they intend it to be viewed as a letter from God to His adversary (I am against you O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal).
If so, it offers Mr. Bush a clear choice. Although by addressing him as the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, they’re saying that Mr. Bush is currently fulfilling this role, he can still decide to either;
Reject the role of Gog, and be counted among the truly righteous, on a par with Cyrus of Persia, who authorized the first re-gathering of Israel, and Lord Balfour of England, whose Balfour Declaration paved the way for the second, by defending Israel’s right to the land God gave them,
Or continue to accept it and willfully aid in Israel’s destruction, under the guise of peace, and be inscribed for eternal disgrace!
Students of prophecy have speculated for generations as to the identity of Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. But I don’t believe there’s ever been a time when Hebrew scholars of such distinction have so publicly and obviously done so. I don’t know if they believe that Mr. Bush is just one of several leaders who will fulfill the prophecy of Gog, or if he’s the one and only. If it’s the latter then they appear to be saying that unless he rejects the role, his vision of peace will materialize and the stage will be set for the Battle of Ezekiel 38.
I believe many Christians mistakenly deny the possibility that God can speak through anyone outside the Church. They forget that the very existence of the Nation of Israel is the fulfillment of prophecy and that absent the clear and direct intervention by God into the affairs of the modern state, it would have ceased to exist long ago.
When I was helping to sponsor visits to the US by Israeli leaders and teachers like Gershon Solomon of the Temple Mount Faithful and Chaim Richman, who signed this document, I was constantly opposed by well meaning but misdirected Christians whose only interest in these men was to confront them with the gospel and show them the error of their ways.
Surely any Bible believing Christian wants to see God and His people reconciled, both on a national and personal level. But the nation of Israel is following a path clearly laid out by the prophets of old, a latter day a re-gathering in unbelief, followed by a return to the Old Covenant, a time of refining in the fire, and finally the recognition of their Messiah and restoration of the Davidic Kingdom.
In all things, there’s a time for speaking and a time for listening. (Eccl. 3:7) We in the Church would do well to listen to what these Rabbis are saying about where we are on that path, and if I were President Bush, I’d give very careful consideration to their view of my role, and whose authority they claim in defining it. As Jesus said these things are bound to come, but woe to that person through whom they come. (Luke 17:1)