Part one of this article pointed out that Iran is the subject of dual unfulfilled foretelling’s. About 2600 years ago, the prophets Jeremiah and Ezekiel issued parallel end time prophecies concerning the rogue Islamic nation. Jeremiah wrote about Elam, and Ezekiel penned predictions for Persia. Ezekiel knew about Elam, but seemingly opted to omit Elam from his prophecy regarding Persia. These prophecies clearly find fulfillment in different geographies, but there are other distinguishing differences that separate these two forthcoming events.
The Meshech and Tubal Clue
This next section continues to answer the question presented in part one, as to whether Ezekiel intentionally omitted Elam from Ezekiel 38 and 39. It has already been shown that Ezekiel was familiar with Elam, but there is more to consider concerning his omission of Elam. The conclusive clue for me is contained in Ezekiel’s multiple references of Meshech and Tubal. Ezekiel writes about this dynamic duo in Ezekiel 32:26-28, 38:2-3, 39:1.
Ezekiel 32: Meshech, Tubal and Elam (no Persia)
Ezekiel 32:1-32 identifies seven significant populations among the slain. These peoples are listed in the order of Egypt, Assyria, Elam, Meshech, Tubal, Edom, and Sidon. It is important to notice that Persia is not listed anywhere in Ezekiel 32. Iran was primarily identified by the western world as Persia until 1935. Modern day Iran is included in Ezekiel 32, but only under the banner of Elam!
Ezekiel 38: Meshech, Tubal and Persia (no Elam)
With the exceptions of Meshech and Tubal, Ezekiel 38 and 39 provides a lengthy list of entirely different populations than Ezekiel 32. These two peoples from Meshech and Tubal are alluded to in both Ezekiel 32 and Ezekiel 38. Ezekiel 38 and 39 includes Magog, Rosh, Meshech, Tubal, Persia, Ethiopia, Libya, Gomer and Togarmah. These nine comprise the Ezekiel invaders. Notice that Elam is not listed anywhere in Ezekiel 38!
Ezekiel 32:26-28 May be Part of Ezekiel 38 and 39
Meshech and Tubal were the sons of Japeth, who was Noah’s youngest son, according to Genesis 9:18. Both Meshech and Tubal settled in what is today modern day Turkey. In tandem, they show up together seven times in the Holy Scriptures, but only in Ezekiel 32 and 38 and 39 are they depicted in Bible prophecies.
“Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying, “Son of man, set your face against Gog, of the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him, and say, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal.” (Ezekiel 38:1-3; emphasis added)
“And you, son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, I am against you, O Gog, the prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal; and I will turn you around and lead you on, bringing you up from the far north, and bring you against the mountains of Israel. (Ezek. 39:1-2; emphasis added)
These above verses from Ezekiel 38 and 39 include three out of the four prophetic biblical references to Meshech and Tubal. They are clearly identified as members of the Gog of Magog invaders that come to take a spoil from Israel in the latter years according to Ezekiel 38:1-13.
Ezekiel 32 taken in correlation appears to add some concluding details surrounding the destruction of Meshech and Tubal.
“There are Meshech and Tubal and all their multitudes, With all their graves around it, All of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword, Though they caused their terror in the land of the living. They do not lie with the mighty Who are fallen of the uncircumcised, Who have gone down to hell with their weapons of war; They have laid their swords under their heads, But their iniquities will be on their bones, Because of the terror of the mighty in the land of the living. Yes, you shall be broken in the midst of the uncircumcised, And lie with those slain by the sword.” (Ezekiel 32:26-28)
In my book titled, Nuclear Showdown in Iran, Revealing the Ancient Prophecy of Elam, I explain in greater detail the potential connections between Meshech’s and Tubal’s involvement in Ezekiel 32:26-28 and Ezekiel 38 and 39.
Iran’s Double Jeopardy: Persia is in Ezekiel 38, but Elam is in Ezekiel 32
At this point, it’s important to discuss Iran’s double jeopardy in the latter days. Iran is the subject of dual judgment prophecies, one in Jeremiah 49:34-39, and the other in Ezekiel 38 and 39. This means that the rogue nation will experience double trouble in the end times.
One of the strongest arguments for believing that Jeremiah’s prophecy concerning Elam is not part of Ezekiel 38 is found in the observable omission of Elam in Ezekiel 38. Elam’s exclusion from Ezekiel 38 appears to be intentional.
The prior section pointed out that Ezekiel was extremely familiar with Elam, Meshech and Tubal, because he predicted their final fates in Ezekiel 32. The prophet includes Elam in Ezekiel 32:24-25 and Meshech and Tubal in Ezekiel 32:26-28. These verses neatly blend into one another on the pages of the Bible. This congruency possibly suggests that Elam’s judgment closely precedes that of Meshech and Tubal.
The astute Bible prophecy buff would be remiss not ask the following questions;
1.) Why would Ezekiel lump Elam and Meshech and Tubal together in Ezekiel 32, but extract Elam from Ezekiel 38, which also incorporates Meshech and Tubal?
2.) Why would Ezekiel substitute Persia in place of Elam in Ezekiel 38 alongside Meshech and Tubal?
3.) Does this imply that Elam is the subject of its own prophecy, written by Ezekiel’s contemporary Jeremiah, and is not involved in Ezekiel 38?
As Ezekiel is not physically with us today, I will go out on a limb and take advantage of author liberties by answering these questions as I believe he might. These answers will be presented in the language of our modern day vernacular. Treat the segment below as fiction that may not be too far-fetched.
1.) The answer to question #1 is as follows:
“Elam is the subject of its own independent prophecy. Elam was not included in Ezekiel 38 because it is not part of this prophecy. Elam experiences the disaster revealed by Jeremiah 49:34-39 before Ezekiel 38 even occurs. Elam is listed in correlation with Meshech and Tubal in Ezekiel 32 because Jeremiah 49:34-39 is quickly followed by Ezekiel 38.”
2.) The answer to question #2 is as follows:
“Persia was identified in Ezekiel 38, because the Iranian Muslims that survive the disaster of Jeremiah 49:34-39, will coalesce with Russia for revenge against Israel. Iranian leaders will be dwelling in a weakened condition and extremely vulnerable after the fulfillment of Jeremiah’s prophecy. Russian promises of restoration to religious, economic and military prominence will allure the Iranian leadership, hook, line, and sinker into the Magog Coalition. Iran will be allured by Russia’s evil plan to capture Israel’s inherent wealth of gas and other natural resources, along with the spoils of war captured by the IDF in the aftermath of Psalm 83. Iran will be among the first to enlist as an Ezekiel invader along with Turkey, (Meshech and Tubal).”
3.) The answer to question #3 is as follows:
“The majority of surviving Elamites (Iranians) will be exiled globally and seek no part in the Gog of Magog invasion. Very few will return to fight alongside Russia, but many will come to a saving faith in the Messiah. They will have learned an invaluable lesson about the fatal flaws of the rogue Islamic regime and will flee to Christ for their peace and restitution. Many of the Iranians in their Diaspora will preach the gospel throughout the world.”
Other Reasons Jeremiah 49:34-39 and Ezekiel 38 and 39 Differ
There are several other reasons why Jeremiah 49 and Ezekiel 38 may not be referring to the same prophecy. They are summarized below.
· Good is in Elam’s future, but not Persia’s.
Good is in store for Elam according to Jeremiah 49:38-39, but nothing good is in store for Persia.
“I will set My throne in Elam, And will destroy from there the king and the princes,’ says the LORD. ‘But it shall come to pass in the latter days: I will bring back the captives of Elam,’ says the LORD.” (Jer. 49:38-39, NKJV).
There is no mention anywhere within the Bible of the Lord establishing His throne in Persia, or restoring the Persians back to Iran in the latter days. This is why it is important for Iranians today to receive Christ now, and fortunately many are.
Iran is presently the fastest growing evangelical population in the world. Iran’s Christian population is burgeoning at a 19.6% annual growth rate. Conversely, the evangelical population of the USA is slumping along at about a sluggish 0.8% pace.[i] American Christians can learn a valuable lesson from the evangelical harvest taking place in Iran.
· Elam and Persia are Different Geographical Locations.
Not only do the battlefields differ in the prophecies involving Elam and Persia, but they both occupied different geographical locations. When Ezekiel and Jeremiah authored their prophecies, Elam was located in the West Central region of modern day Iran, extending somewhat into Southwest Iran, while Persia covered most of the rest of modern day Iran. They were separated by the Zagros mountains. It wasn’t until several decades after these prophets wrote, during the time of Cyrus the Great of Persia, that the territorial lines became somewhat blurred.
It is clumsy and potentially careless to lump Jeremiah 49:34-39 concerning Elam, with Ezekiel 38 and 39 that deals with Persia. Even though Iran today encompasses both ancient regions, this does not insulate the country from territorial judgments predicted millenniums ago in the Bible.
· Elam Has Enemies, But Persia Has an Enemy.
Jeremiah 49:37 points out that Elam has a plurality of enemies. On the contrary, Persia appears to have only one, and that is Israel. Although Ezekiel 38:13 identifies some sideline spectators, they do not appear to become involved in the defeat of the Ezekiel invaders. Ezekiel 38:18-39:6 informs us that the God of Israel defeats Russia and its coalition.
· Elam is Defeated by the Sword, but Persia by Fire, Hail, and Brimstone
Jeremiah 49:37 predicts Elam’s destruction occurs via the sword, which probably alludes to a military victory. Whereas, Ezekiel 38:18-39:6 declares that an earthquake, flooding rain, great hailstones, fire, and brimstone are the weapons of warfare that the Lord uses to defeat the Ezekiel invaders.
This two part article was taken from my book entitled, Nuclear Showdown in Iran, Revealing the Ancient Prophecy of Elam. The book is a non-fiction thriller taking the reader on a journey of discovery through the eyes of the prophets and the minds of today’s key national players. The ancient prophecy of Elam will reveal what God has ordained, what the prophets saw and what you need to know and do now.
The book is available with a companion DVD of the same name at www.prophecydepot.com.
[i] Jason Mandryk, Operation World: The Definitive Prayer Guide to Every
Nation (Colorado Springs, CO: Biblica Publishing, 2010), 916.