Isaiah 17: Will Israel Nuke Damascus? Why Not Yet From Psalm 83

Isaiah prophesied the destruction and abandonment of Damascus, Syria over 2,700 years ago. Yet the city continues today, despite so many Middle East wars and predictions that "this year" it will finally come to pass. So what's missing that has been holding this prophecy back? Israel’s strike on Iran? Or perhaps the overlooked prophecy in the Psalms about a future Arab war alliance targeted at wiping out Israel. Find out why the Arabs are sure to one day acquire weapons of mass destruction that leads them to finally attack Israel together again...and how their defeat opens up for the "beginning of sorrows" and Great Tribulation to finally happen.

Update May 11: Iranian Missile Strikes On Israel = War?

Israel is in the news again with the Iranian missile strikes on the Golan Heights from Syria. Israel immediately responded by attacking several Syrian targets. Naturally, people ask if this is prophetic and specifically, "could it lead to the fulfillment of Isaiah 17?" (when Damascus becomes a ruinous heap).

Short Answer: No. There have been literally hundreds of missile strikes and other attacks on Israel by her Arab enemies since the last Arab-Israeli War in 1973 (Yom Kippur War). Yet no war has erupted. This is just more military action so common to the ME region and general world history that Jesus specifically warned about not taking as an end time sign or being troubled by.

Long Answer: As the article below explains, it has been 45 years since the last Arab-Israeli war despite the Arabs still hating Israel and wanting to destroy her. What's held it back despite hundreds of clashes since then? Keep reading below and you will understand all the real conditions in Scripture to Damascus's destruction—probably the next event in prophecy. This event sets up everything else, including the Third Temple the Antichrist makes his base, the gathering of the faithful to Israel.


Iran's Worrisome Nuclear Program

If you are into Bible prophecy, you probably have heard about the controversial nuclear program of Iran—and Israel's plan to strike Iran over it.

In 2002, it was revealed that Iran had secretly been enriching uranium with thousands of centrifuges. Enriched uranium is the key component of a nuclear bomb. Nobody wants an apocalyptic religious state like Iran to have nukes. Even worse, Iran resumed enrichment once President Ahmadinejad took office in 2005 and he refused to stop it, despite severe sanctions against Iran. Even after the extreme Ahmadinejad left office in 2013, the concerns over Iran's nuclear program have only increased.

It's no mystery who is most endangered by the prospect of Iran possessing nuclear weapons. Israel has threatened to make a preemptive strike on Iran's nuclear sites if sanctions continue to fail. This is no empty threat as Israel has bombed the nuclear sites of hostile nations in the past. Back in 1981, Israel bombed Iraq's nuclear reactor, receiving worldwide condemnation for it at the time. Then in 2007, Israel sent planes to bomb an alleged North Korean made nuclear reactor in Syria.

Unfulfilled Destruction For Damascus

Given the past precedents, prophecy students wonder if an Israeli strike on Iran is not coming and will not inevitably lead to a wider Middle East war. Especially in light of a very familiar unfulfilled prophecy concerning Iran's close ally, Syria, who is also a known sponsor of terror against Israel. The prophecy in question is the burden of Damascus in Isaiah 17:

Isaiah 17:1 (ESV) — An oracle concerning Damascus. Behold, Damascus will cease to be a city and will become a heap of ruins.

Of course, the Damascus of the Bible is still recognizable today as the well-known capital city of Syria. Appropriately enough, it even has the famous distinction of being considered the world's oldest continuously inhabited city, inhabited from prehistoric times.

Given that, you would think there is little debate that this prophecy is plainly unfulfilled. Yet, you will find Bible commentaries that mention how Isaiah 17 was fulfilled in other events of the Bible, such as in 732 BC when Assyria defeated the Arameans and their capital Damascus (2 Kings 16:9). The problem is that although the prophecy has been partially fulfilled in the past, this does not mean it does not have dual fulfillments, as is often the case with Bible prophecies. Usually all parts of the prophecy are not fulfilled until a later, final fulfillment. In this case, the part about Damascus ceasing to be a city and becoming a heap of ruins is plainly not accomplished. That's a bleak picture that stands in contrast to Damascus' status as the oldest city. (In fact, Bible skeptics use Isaiah 17 as proof that the Bible is not true!)

If this is correct, then Isaiah 17 is a dire warning for this capital city of 2.5 million people. One day the city will suffer tragedy of some kind leaving a heap of ruins in its place.

How Does a City Become A Ruinous Heap?

If you investigate history, you will find that this type of extreme end of a city is unusual. To be sure, there have been several modern cities that have been merely abandoned but their buildings left intact.

A famous example of this is Pripyat, Ukraine. Probably that name does not ring a bell, but this is the city where the famous Chernobyl nuclear reactor leak happened. Due to the radioactive fallout, it was deserted as a ghost town. Decades later it is safe to visit for short periods—as witnessed by the visitor's pictures you can find posted on the Internet, including such sites as the city amusement park.

Or consider Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the targets of the first atomic bombs. They continue as cities to this day, despite having been partially leveled from first two nuclear bomb attacks in history. The reasons for this are twofold. The first two atomic bombs (Fat Man and Little Boy) used on Japan were on the small side by today's standards. Secondly, the bombs were detonated high above the cities, in what is called an “air burst.” Air bursts produce greatly reduced fallout levels compared to ground strikes. This makes it feasible to rebuild and re-inhabit the area, just as Japan did.

Damascus' predicted fate is distinct from either of these cities or perhaps any other. Its buildings and streets will not just be deserted, but they will be left as a “heap of ruins.” I am not aware of a case in modern times of that happening to a city. There are cities that have been wiped out by tsunamis or even volcanic explosions, but they have been rebuilt and not left as heaps of ruins. The real estate still has value to former inhabitants and with a concerted effort they can achieve reconstruction of the city soon enough.

Nevertheless, Hiroshima and Nagasaki may provide the best case for how Damascus' complete destruction and abandonment is likely to happen. A nuclear bomb with a larger yield or a series of bombs with smaller yields could turn an entire city to a heap of ruins. This is quite feasible in Damascus' case since it is small, only approximately 40 square miles in area. If a ground burst attack is used instead of air bursts, the lingering radioactive fallout would keep people from coming back to rebuild and re-inhabit it.

Why Israel Would Nuke Damascus

Israel has long had an arsenal of nuclear bombs and is also a frequent target of attacks from Syria (and the terrorist organization Hezbollah in Lebanon). In fact, Israel has already been in several major wars with Syria between 1948 to 1973.

Importantly, Israel also has the will to use these weapons. Because Israel's enemies are so numerous and able to overrun the tiny nation so easily, Israel has adopted a nuclear policy called “The Samson Option.” The name comes from the famously strong judge of Israel who took his own life by knocking out the support pillars of the temple he was in to avenge himself on his enemies around him. According to this policy, Israel would nuke the cities of her enemies if she was overrun or about to be defeated. Hitting the leadership of Syria at Damascus would be part of this retaliatory attack.

The idea of Damascus' doom coming from a war with Israel is not surprisingly indicated by several plain verses. Isaiah 17 continues by describing what happens along with Damascus' destruction:

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Isaiah 17:3 (HCSB) The fortress disappears from Ephraim, and a kingdom from Damascus. The remnant of Aram will be like the splendor of the Israelites... 4 On that day the splendor of Jacob will fade, and his healthy body will become emaciated.... 6 Only gleanings will be left in Israel, as if an olive tree had been beaten—two or three berries at the very top of the tree, four or five on its fruitful branches.

In this prophesied event, northern Israel ("Ephraim" as opposed to southern Kingdom of Judah) is named as taking damage and casualties, although comparatively less than Damascus (Damascus loses the kingdom, but Israel only the fortress). War is never completely one-sided. If Israel is prompted to attack Damascus, they will certainly suffer casualties in the process. Going further in the prophecy we can see that, as has usually been the case, Syria will not be acting alone against Israel:

Isaiah 17:12-14 (HCSB) 12 Ah! The roar of many peoples—they roar like the roaring of the seas. The raging of the nations—they rage like the raging of mighty waters. 14 In the evening—sudden terror! Before morning—it is gone! This is the fate of those who plunder us [Judah] and the lot of those who ravage us.

A multitude of nations attack “us” or the nation that Isaiah addressed in his prophecies: the southern kingdom of Judah (as opposed to the northern nation of Israel). The Jewish people make up the modern nation of Israel (which is why they almost called it the State of Judah). Therefore the description fits yet another Middle East war where Israel is attacked by her mainly Arab and Islamic neighbors such as Syria, Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and probably also Iran (who is not Arab). Yet, like before, Israel will be victorious—and probably even quicker than in the Six Day War of 1967. Notice in verse 14 that it takes only from one evening until the next morning to achieve decisive victory.

It sounds just like the Samson Option is exercised after Israel is left with no choice but to use her nuclear weapons against multiple enemy nations and cities. Their armies will literally be gone, not to mention a large segment of their civilian populations. The nuclear war casualties could easily surpass ten's of million people. No wonder Isaiah says that the situation shifts overnight from terror for Israel to tragedy for her enemies.

1973: The Last Time the Arabs Tried to Destroy Israel Together (?)

With regular eruptions of conflict in the Middle East, prophecy teachers have naturally been expecting and predicting Isaiah 17's fulfillment practically every year. Yet, even after all the wars and the constant tensions, the war that seals Damascus's fate has still not come.

What are they missing?

Some think that Iran's nuclear enrichment program is the missing key because of Israel's threat to strike Iran over it and Iran's promises to retaliate strongly in response. It is possible that a wider Middle East war including Syria could be triggered by this conflict. Yet, as covered earlier, preemptive strikes by Israel are nothing new. They have yet to lead to wider war, let alone a military response.

Here's the thing: Between 1948 and 1973, Israel fought four wars with her allied Arab neighbors. That's an average of one war every eight years. However, it has now been four decades since that last major war, the Yom Kippur War in 1973. There must be a reason for this record span of time without more major conflicts. It is obvious from the news that the Arabs did not change; they are still hostile and object to the existence of Israel in their midst. Yet they have stopped trying to launch massive attacks on Israel together as three times before.

Why?

I think the answer is obvious if you think about it. Israel's growing nuclear arsenal and increasing capability to deliver it is why.

As reported in Der Spiegel, intelligence sources confirm that in that last war (The Yom Kippur War), Israel had nuclear weapons loaded on the fighters planes ready to go if things continued to worsen for her. The Arabs know Israel has these weapons and is willing to use them if necessary just as they are willing to do unpopular preemptive strikes when necessary. This nuclear deterrent would explain the relative quiet since 1973. It has changed the balance of power. Israel's enemies risk inviting asymmetrical force if they try to overrun and take over Israel as they did when the State of Israel formed in 1948. For this reason, I believe the Arabs have not joined in war against Israel again.

The Missing War Alliance/Confederacy of Psalm 83

Of course, the more radical states, like Iran and Syria still talk and act belligerently. However, most of the Arab states are moderate and have had peace treaties with Israel for years now. Although they may not like Israel, they must realize how much they have to lose compared to what little they have to gain by trying to invade Israel now. The prophesied war of Isaiah 17 will simply not happen as long as Israel has a strong nuclear deterrent no matter how much tension with Iran or Syria we see or how many times prophecy teachers predict it.

What has to happen first is revealed in another prophecy. In Psalm 83 by Asaph the prophet (2Ch 29:30) we are given another view of this same war that brings Damascus down:

Psalm 83:1-5,12 (HCSB) — 1 God, do not keep silent. Do not be deaf, God; do not be idle. 2 See how Your enemies make an uproar; those who hate You have acted arrogantly. 3 They devise clever schemes against Your people; they conspire against Your treasured ones. 4 They say, “COME, let us wipe them out as a nation so that Israel’s name will no longer be remembered.” 5 For they have conspired with one mind; they form an alliance against You 6 the tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites, Moab and the Hagrites, 7 Gebal, Ammon, and Amalek, Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre. 8 Even Assyria has joined them; they lend support to the sons of Lot. Selah ...12 who said, “Let us seize God’s pastures for ourselves.”

This describes a massive Arab attack on Israel by a confederacy of nations that has never happened in history (Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq and probably Syria). Like Isaiah 17 it predicts a devastating defeat for Israel's attackers:

Psalm 83:13-17 (HCSB) — 13 Make them like tumbleweed, my God, like straw before the wind. 14 As fire burns a forest, as a flame blazes through mountains, 15 so pursue them with Your tempest and terrify them with Your storm. ...17 Let them be put to shame and terrified forever; let them perish in disgrace.

The analogies used by Asaph bring to mind the fiery, storm-like blast of a nuclear bomb, just as Isaiah 17 seems to demand for Damascus. Like Isaiah 17, Psalm 83 also points to multiple nations' being involved and being obliterated in response.

Most interestingly, it mentions a war covenant, alliance or confederacy among these nations with the “one consent” purpose of wiping out the nation of Israel, even erasing her name from history and taking the land for themselves. With the peace treaties and moderate states among the Arabs, this pact does not seem to exist today. There is no way to win against vastly superior weaponry; such a pact would amount to a suicide pact today. In other words, what is holding back this confederacy from forming is the Arabs having an answer to Israel's nuclear weapons.

Therefore, if Israel's enemies develop nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction (WMD), this confederacy would finally make sense. This could still take several years especially if Israel goes ahead and strikes Iran. In fact, rather than expecting the wider war to happen from a strike, we should look for the lack of a strike that keeps the inevitable acquisition of WMDs by the Arabs on schedule, rather than delay it.

After Arab's Defeated, Next In Prophecy...

Many prophecy pundits who expect this prophesied Middle East war often think that it will lead next to the Ezekiel 38-39 Gog Magog war. The reason for this is Ezekiel also talks about an attack on Israel. The attacker named as Gog of Magog is popularly thought of to be Russia, or lately, even Arab or Islamic hoards. But if you put the Magog identity question aside and focus on the timing of this war through linking it up with two parallel prophecies, you'll see that it has nothing to do with any pretrib war. I've written another article explaining this called: The Two Gog Magog Wars.

Instead of the Gog Magog war, the effects of this war sets up for something much worse. The Great Tribulation cannot commence until the Arabs are taken out of the picture. This is because right before the Great Tribulation, the 144,000 Israelites must assemble on the Temple Mount so they can be sealed by angels that appear then (Rev 14) before going out to preach their witness to the world during the Great Tribulation. Also, several passages talk about Israel rebuilding the Third Temple (Mt 24:15; Mk 13:14; Rev 11:1-4; Dan 11:45; 2Th 2:4). Neither of these events are going to happen as long as the Arabs have political control over the site. Once their power is diminished from Israel's devastating Samson Option, it is easy to imagine the Temple Mount will at that time go back to Israeli control.

The other reason this war must come next is that this Middle War prophecy spoken of in so many OT passages cannot fit any other time. In the Millennium and post-mil periods, there will be no wars at all due to God's Kingdom. During the Great Tribulation, the Beast will have power over all nations and bring his own form of peace through dominion—once he defeats Israel himself at the start (Lk 21:20). The only place to fit a war between Israel and the Arabs is in our current pretrib period.

To be sure, Isaiah 17 is a frightening prophecy since it means we will witness the shocking end of a famous capital city along with the millions of people living there (and in other targeted cities). But after full consideration, perhaps the scariest part about it is what it means for the rest of the world. When it's over one of the last major prerequisites in Bible prophecy for the start of the Great Tribulation will be met and the “beginning of sorrows” Jesus spoke of can commence next.

To continue learning on that topic see my article Earthquakes in Prophecy or the Sign of the End Jesus gave.

The Obama/US-led Nuclear Deal with Iran of 2015

Obama's now-defunct deal with Iran to limit their nuclear program was an interesting development for those watching the Damascus prophecy. The deal tried to block an Iranian nuclear bomb by monitoring Iran with inspectors and reducing their uranium stockpile and centrifuges needed to enrich more uranium. At face value it would seem to delay Iran being the answer to Israel's enemies acquiring a nuclear arsenal, but did it?

As many expected and I reported here, Iran could and would cheat. Benjamin Netanyahu shared proof that Iran cheated and lied about it in April, 2018 a week before Trump canceled the Iran nuclear agreement.

Even with the cheating and Iranian progress, one thing should not be doubted: the path to a nuclear arsenal like Israel has or which can be used by the Muslim nations to face Israel in war is not easily or quickly acquired. They won't develop it overnight or this year or next year. People have been predicting nukes in the hands of Israel's enemies "real soon now" or "next year" since at least 2002. They have been wrong every time. It's not as easy as they think, especially for sponsors of terror like Iran and Syria.

That's why I still maintain even with Obama's misbegotten deal we won't see the nuclear capability in Israel's enemies hands until early 2020s. I've been watching prophecy since the '80s and one thing I have learned from that is things go slower than most imagine they will. This goes doubly for catching up to a nuclear power like Israel enough to think you can win a war with them.

Does ISIS Having Nuclear Material Change Anything?

Because of the Gaza rockets fired against Tel Aviv and the insurgent group known as ISIS seizing nuclear material at a university in Iraq, many have asked me to comment. They want to know whether Middle East Bible prophecy is ready to fulfill. To answer that, let's review the points of the preceding sections of this article:

  1. Prophecy points to the end of Damascus through a nuclear weapon, such as Israel, the archenemy of Syria, has been building and testing for several decades.
  2. Other Arab/Muslim capital cities are also destroyed following a joint attack by Syria and other Arab nations around Israel, per Psalm 83.
  3. Before Damascus is destroyed, Psalm 83 describes an alliance of Israel's neighbors bent on wiping out Israel and all memory of her.
  4. Taking on a nuclear power like Israel is suicidal until nuclear parity is achieved. One bomb or "suitcase" nuke is not enough when you're provoking a country with missile defense and a capable nuclear arsenal.

When you understand the above, the latest rockets from Gaza and ISIS having nuclear material will not lead directly to Damascus' destruction. The rocket attacks have been going on for years. Israel simply does retaliatory strikes in response. The nuclear material seized is low grade Uranium, not weapons-grade, the kind you need for making a bomb. Even a dirty bomb made with it would not be effective.

The Psalm 83 war alliance still must appear first and none of the above is able to set the stage for that. When more and more Arab nations sound like Syria and Iran, then Damascus' end is nigh. But they will not do that until they have a way to answer Israel's nuclear Samson option. No nukes vs. nukes = suicide. That's why they are actively pursuing enriching uranium.

Nevertheless, at the rate things have been going, it could take a while. I have seen projections of "2-3 years" for Iran to have a bomb since the early 2000's. Yet apparently Israel's sabotage and international sanctions have delayed that. I can easily see it taking until the 2020s before the Muslims have a adequate nuclear arsenal (not just a single bomb) and are ready to agree to take on the formidable enemy that is Israel. Until then, I think it's safe to say that the latest incarnation of trouble in the Middle East should be filed under what Jesus warned us to not be troubled by:

Matthew 24:6 (HCSB) — You are going to hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, because these things must take place, but the end is not yet.

Update: Dreams-Based Insight on Timing - 2022?

After many years of me dismissing rumors that "Damascus' end is nigh," something changed in 2017. In December of that year, Trump announced his official decision to both recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and to move the US Embassy there. I was convicted this finally was a significant event making progress towards the ME War and immediately started writing an article on the US Embassy Jerusalem move.  That night my conviction seemed confirmed by a special dream.

Months later, I got further confirming insights about the ME war indeed coming soon. I had previously only understood the war must come by or before the 2024-2030 Sabbath year cycle candidate for the 70th week. But as my 50th birthday approached, I got insights about the ME war coming specifically in the year 2022 as you can read about in my supporter's section.

"Time will tell..." (Lately I have stopped saying that because as time goes on, I get more confirming insights and dreams—despite not asking for them. I'd be happy to be wrong and have more time.)

Here are some common objections to the premise of this article along with my responses:

Objection #1 - "How Do We Know the Ps 83 Alliance Is Not Already In Place?"

It's a fair question. To be clear, I'm not expecting a publicly announced alliance. It won't have to be public or announced. We will know by Arab troop movements, arms shipments and change in rhetoric. Again, knowing history helps, especially the wars of 1948, 1967 or 1973.

For example, in 1946-47 Israel saw the writing on the wall. Ben Gurion ordered that they began collecting arms. Because he could see what the Arabs were planning, he was ready for their attack in 1948.

How much more so today. We live in a ultra-connected world. It's hard for anyone to do anything without someone recording it on their phone and posting it to their blog or social media. Big changes in the mentality and plans of the Muslims and Arabs won't escape notice for long anymore.

Also, when the Muslims have nukes, we'll all know soon enough. Israel's intelligence will find out and cry about the coming nuclear holocaust to get the US to take action. Also the rhetoric of the Muslims is sure to change. Today the extremism comes mainly from Syria and Iran. When they unite behind nuclear weapons per Psalm 83, you can trust that things will be different than today and the signs will be there.

Objection #2 - "Couldn't They Already Have Bought a (Suitcase) Nuke? (It Only Takes One To Destroy Israel)"

If it was as easy as getting a nuke from another country, one must wonder why Iran or others have not already bought one instead of bothering to pursue their own nuclear programs with all the sanctions this brings upon them. I'm no expert, but I imagine several reasons for this:

  1. No country wants to be a pariah for proliferating nuclear weapons to a terrorist-friendly nation, even Russia.
  2. Nuclear devices are not as simple as other arms to buy, transport, store, maintain and use. They require special tech for all phases of life. For example, the lead casings must be replaced with time or radiation begins to leak. You basically need the kind of tech that you would develop anyway by having a nuclear program. So if you buy a bomb, you need to buy the people to go with it. It's not like buying, say, a fighter jet.

I think the above reasons can explain why you're seeing nations like Iran going to such drastic, unpopular, boycott-inducing lengths as to have nuclear programs instead of just shopping around for a secret "suitcase nuke," etc.

Speaking of which, it's a myth "you only need one bomb to take out Israel." Israel is no easy target. Bombs can be detected, stopped, or simply even fail. Israel has a world renown intelligence service, the Iron Dome missile defense system and spies adept at assassination and sabotage. Thus, to ensure a successful nuclear strike on Israel, you need an arsenal of nukes, just as Israel has developed (hmm...). No nation is likely to invite a devastating nuclear reprisal from a nuclear power like Israel by attacking them with one stinking bomb.

The Muslims may hate Israel, but they love existence, too. =)

Objection #3 - "They Won't Wait For Nukes to Bring in the Mahdi/12th Imam"

A common objection is basically that the Arabs are not rational people. This means that they are not afraid of a nuclear response like normal people, nor will they wait to acquire nuclear weapons before attacking Israel. Often cited to explain this is a radical Islamic slant. Supposedly, Iran has stated that it would sacrifice most of its country to usher in the 12th Imam.

The problem with this thinking is the history. If the Muslims are so irrational, so bold, or want the Mahdi so badly, then why did they stop launching joint attacks on Israel after 1973's failed Yom Kippur War? Forty-five years is a long time to keep one's wild, reckless zeal from leading you to launch a massive invasion of Israel.

We may not understand the Arab mentality or their Islamic religion, but I think it's a mistake to write them off as irrational or reckless. I think their reluctance to make war on the regional nuclear power that emerged in the early '70s shows they are more reasonable and calculating than some want to give them credit for. They are waiting for a reason...and pursuing nuclear weapons for a reason.

Objection #4 - "What About the Hundreds of Scud Missiles Pointed at Israel?"

Syria claims to have hundreds of scud missiles in pointed at Israel. Iran has warned that thousands of missiles will rain down on Israel if the US moves on Syria. Given these claims of conventional power, are nuclear weapons really necessary?

Again, history is our friend to meet the objection. Scud missiles have rained down on Israel before. The result? Almost no casualties each time. I'm always amazed at how ineffective these missiles are. They seem to be more of a nuisance than a game-changer like nuclear bombs are. They're certainly not going to defeat Israel through them. There is no substitute for nuclear weapons to match nuclear weapons.

Objection #5 - "I heard a teacher say Psalm 83 is not a prophecy."

It's extremely difficult to prove something is not a prophecy, much like trying to prove a negative. The NT quotes things in the OT that did not look like a prophecy to first readers, like "out of Egypt I called my son" (Hos 11:1)referring to Israel originally but applying to Messiah's later visit to Egypt when he was young (Mt 2:15). And my position on Damascus and a group of nations does not require Ps 83 as Isaiah 17 already establishes this. Also the pact to go against Israel is likewise implied in Isaiah. Like I say in my latest article, this war on Israel and Damascus is not going to happen until an answer is developed for the Samson Option.

For more on this objection, see this blog post Refutting Chris White's Arguments On Why Psalm 83 not a Prophecy.

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35comments
April Lopez - December 15, 2016

Thank you for your valid points. Great article, God bless you!

Reply
Abe Davis - April 7, 2017

I agree with most of your biblical research. One exception. The “taking away of the sacrifice” mentioned in rev. is not from a “rebuilt ” temple. It means that the sacrifice of Jesus will no longer be in force ( My spirit will not ALWAYS strive with man). God pulls the sacrificial blood and releases His wrath on the earth. Do you find fault with this? I hugely enjoy ALL of your writings. I loaned out your book and it was never returned. Never the less, I can keep up somewhat with these great articles!
May God richly bless…

abe / irvin

Reply
Deenamanasu Yannapu - April 8, 2017

Many thanks for careful observation of fulfilment of Prophecies.

Reply
Tina Black - April 8, 2017

I was told that there will be a nuclear peace treaty, and that’s when Israel will be attacked, Israel will break the treaty and bomb its enemies, destroying Damascus, in response most nations will turn on Israel. Any thoughts on this idea?

Also I do agree with you on the idea that it will be bombs that wipe Damascus out but are there any other ways, I am thinking like the events that brought Sodom and Gomorrah down or the walls of Jericho?

Thanks, Tim

Reply
    Tim McHyde - April 8, 2017

    Tina, I can’t see Israel ever making a treaty promising to that use their nuclear weapons because it’s the nuclear superiority is the only thing keeping the Arabs from joining together again to wipe Israel out like they tried three times already.

    For your other question, read Isaiah 17 yourself and you will see that it’s describing a war about people trying to destroy Israel and this is what happens to them that they get burned up. Also notebthat there are casualties In north Israel too which fits a war that both sides have casualties even if Syria got the worse end.

    Reply
Johann Cronje - April 9, 2017

Hi Tim,

Pardon me for having a different opinion. I very seldom differ with your views. I do find it difficult to evaluate Psalm 83 as a “prophecy” or perceived future event still to take place PARTICULARLY for the Jewish State of Israel. By saying this, it does not mean that there would not be a future ME war in the region. I have no doubts about Isaiah 17 and the end of Damascus. The scenery however has changed with regards to the “people” of ancient times versus today. The Psalm was probably written and born out of fear for ancient Israel’s enemies who are coincidently still the same nations living as neighbors to the land of Israel today. The whole idea must be viewed and understood as in the time that the Psalm was written whilst “THY PEOPLE” was then still present in the land of Israel. Today, “THY PEOPLE” are not totally made up by the few Jews living there. Perhaps, partially only. They,“THY PEOPLE” are today represented by the scattered Israel nations and are also those called “THY HIDDEN ONES”!! So they are “hidden” elsewhere on earth and yes, the heathen world still has the same agenda to wipe the descendants of Israel (or anyone representing the name of Israel) off the face of the earth wherever they are to be found! It is therefore also very difficult to direct any unfulfilled prophecies with regards to the true nation of Israel and allocate them to the current Israeli (Jewish) nation. God’s true covenant people “THY HIDDEN ONES” are millions more and they are to be identified and found elsewhere. The fact that the so-called “Gentiles” are the “HIDDEN ONES” and were all along the “Lost/scattered” nations of the House of Israel remains a “HIDDEN” mystery to many Christians. The reason for this misconception is because of the “deceitful” lie that the “Jews” as a single nation represent true Israel of old, who have supposedly returned to their land. Yes, there certainly may be a number of true Judeans amongst the ‘Jews”. The reality is that they are predominantly the descendants of Esau’s (Edom) mixed races. Their main enemies are the descendants of Ishmael and together they all claim the land that belongs to Jacob (true Israel) currently scattered across the globe. Who and where are they (God’s True Covenant People): Yesterday, today and forever? The reference to the above can only be attributed to the total 12 tribes of Jacob (Israel) and none else. (No single nation) could claim this identity of “THY PEOPLE” for themselves and certainly not the 6 million Jews (Israelis) or a potion of them living in the State of Israel! Therefore it is also rather selfish and deceitful for the Jewish State to claim the words of God Yahweh entirely for themselves – “I will bless those who bless Israel. (Genesis 12:3) Which Israel?
True Israelites (Yisraelites), are the people formed from the many millions of physical descendants of Jacob/Israel now living in, and scattered throughout, all the Nations of the globe. Enemies of the scattered Israel nations may very well still utter the words of – “Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance”.

Let us rather consider Psalm 83:5 as Jacobs troubled time and being part of Revelation 17:12 “And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast.”
Psalms 83:3: They have taken crafty counsel against “THY PEOPLE”, and consulted against “THY HIDDEN ONES”.
Psalms 83:4: They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance.
Psalms 83:5: For they have consulted together with one consent : they are confederate against thee:
Numbers 6:27
“So they shall invoke My name (Yahweh) on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them.”
2 Chronicles 7:14 – and “My people” (Israel) who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal “their land”. 15″Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to the prayer offered in “this place”.
Scattered Israel currently lives in many countries as in “their land” and their “time of trouble” is to be found in many “places”.
2 Esdras 6:58
“But we “thy people”, whom thou hast called thy firstborn, thy “only begotten”, and “thy fervent lover”, are given into their hands.”

Where are (Thy people) today? Scripture gives us many answers to the whereabouts of His Scattered/Hidden People = Jeremiah 30:11 – ‘For I am with you,’ declares the LORD, ‘to save you (MY people – Israel); For I will destroy completely all the nations where I have scattered you, Only I will not destroy you completely But I will chasten you justly And will by no means leave you unpunished.’
Deuteronomy 4:27 – “The LORD will scatter you (Israel) among the peoples, and you will be left few in number among the nations where the LORD drives you.
Psalm 106:27 – And that He would cast their (Israel) seed among the nations And scatter them in the lands.
Romans 11:26Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
26 And so all Israel will be saved. As it is written, The Deliverer will come from Zion, He will banish ungodliness from Jacob.
Jeremiah 31:10Amplified Bible, Classic Edition (AMPC)
10 Hear the word of the Lord, O you nations, and declare it in the ISLES and COASTLANDS far away, and say, He Who scattered Israel will gather him and will keep him as a shepherd keeps his flock.

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Andreas - April 10, 2017

Thank you for this article.

On April 7th Sweden had it’s second terrorist attack and people have died this time. Sadly to say, we are all walking among terrorists here, myself including. Our Government unwisely accepted. They are just waiting for the right time to attack, for more Muslim refugees to come so that Jihad is effective and Islam victorious.
But it will not happen.

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Brian Upton - April 11, 2017

Tim
I read the whole piece, on Isaiah 17 – very good. Now I would like to offer THIS: I was on the Kitty Hawk in the Pacific Ocean in 1962 during the cold war between US and Russia. We (the US) were to detonate a nuclear device over the Pacific, and we were told when, and where to look. Now-declassified documents indicate that the nuke we set off, more that 800 Mi from Hawaiian Islands, fried, toasted, and otherwise destroyed electrical and electronic systems, due to EMP energy. Then, in 1971/72 I worked on a Top Secret project on the south side of Kirtland AFB Albuquerque, doing data collection from an Aries Missile guidance system, to determine the vulnerability to EMP. I can tell you, the EMP threat is real, an Newt Gingrich has said. THEN – while Pres. Bush was still in office, Achmadenijad (sp?) became irritated over some political move the U.S. was considering, and announced publicly, that “if you (the U.S.) persist in this, we (Iran) will ‘blind’ you”. You say that Israel enjoys superiority, due to their nuclear arsenal. I agree. I also believe, that Iran, knowing how the U.S. has, and will back Israel, Iran will not risk “going after” Israel, unless and until, the U.S. has been neutralized. Which, may be their initial, and formost plan in developing nuclear weapons – the first use, not against Israel, but in taking down the U.S. power grid, which, in A DAY, will render us helpless to respond. THEN Iran will go after Israel. That’s my vision. 817-528-1694 C

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Mark - April 13, 2017

Tim, Another good article. Lots of things going on right now. Damascus days are numbered. After the elections in France and Germany, I think all the players will be in place.

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AusKiwi - April 15, 2017

It occurs to me, after the demonstration of the MOAB bomb in Afghanistan this week, that it wouldn’t take too many of those bombs to turn Damascus into a ruinous heap. If Israel or the US didn’t want to go nuclear against Damascus and risk nuclear fallout polluting Israel which is only a few miles away across the border at the Golan Heights, using very large conventional bombs could be the way they will do it. Perhaps the demonstration in Afghanistan was aimed at scaring Assad of Syria just as much as Kim Jong-un of North Korea.

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Andreas - June 29, 2017

Hi Tim,

I have a question about Psalm 83:8. Why does it say “even Assyria has joined them” and not simply “Assyria has joined them”?

Could this be a hint/point to an unexpected nation that will be joining the Psalm 83 alliance? A nation Israel didn’t consider, because they up to that time believed that Nato would restrain and prevent it.

Could this be Turkey under Recep Erdogan?

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Alexander Zephyr - August 28, 2017

No, Andreas, Assur is not Turkey. Your intuition about the importance of Assur is correct. It is the mightiest country of the plotters, very respectable, and be in command, that is, will call the shots. It is definitely not Iran, Iraq, Syria, or Turkey. And I salute you for a real understanding of the history of Israel and, particularly, the issue of the “Lost” Ten Tribes of Israel.
Tim is very good in analyzing geopolitical events of the World, especially the Middle East’s affairs. What is missing here is the wars of the kings of the north and south, described by Daniel 11:40-45.
These wars will begin prior the wars of Psalm 83 and properly explain why Syria, Iran, Iraq, and Egypt are not participants of Psalm 83 Coalition, and also tell us who Assur and Edom are,
Thank you

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Alexander Zephyr - September 1, 2017

Even though nations are no longer located within their ancient borders, it does not mean that they have disappeared from history. It seems that God has seen fit to hide this truth for the present. The Prophet Asaph listed the nations that were well known to the ancient world in his time—without tying people’s dwellings to certain geographical boundaries. His main goal was to rightly identify these people in the End Time, when the Psalm 83 prophecy kicks in, regardless of their ancient geographical locations. As a seer, he foresaw that the people whom he prophesied about would not remain for thousands of years in the places that they occupied at the time, and would move all over the Earth. The best illustrations of it are Assur and Edom, which you identified incorrectly. Such vision is a gift of prophecy. If one disregards this situation and tries to identify those nations by their previous geographical areas, it will misinterpret and twist the prophecy, and even nullify the essence of it. Yet that is what exactly many theologians have done with the Asaph prophecy.

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    Tim McHyde - September 1, 2017

    Alexander, all the named nations of Psalm 83 attacking Israel are surrounding Israel. It’s very interesting that the same nations are Israel’s enemies today and who have recently banded together three times already to attack (in 1948, 1967, & 1973). Psalm 83 predicts a fourth such war, so to claim that the nations named now refer to enemies elsewhere away from Israel I think overly complicates things that work fine just the way they are read most simply. This is not “Mystery Edom” as in a Mystery Babylon=America. It’s just Edom.

    Notice also that in the end times Edom, Moab and Ammon are said to escape from the hand of the Antichrist (Dan 11:41). Those three peoples make up modern Jordan, which is actually Israel’s land and also is close enough to flee to from Judea. So what makes most the most sense again is that Edom is still Edom = Jordan, not, say, Timbuktu.

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Zachary Miller - February 9, 2018

The more I read Pslam 83 the more I think that it may not be describing a “traditional” war as what has occurred in Israel’s recent past by these Arab states. This strategy has clearly not worked (not saying they won’t try it again in some form) . Who’s to say the “initial” salvo doesn’t involve some kind of sneak attack with some powerful weapon (nuclear, biological, etc..) that’s smuggled (and released) in the Northern area of Israel. With Israel on it’s knees (literally) the aligned enemy states decide to go for it (not having a “traditional” build up of forces as per the norm of modern/traditional warfare). The enemy states ‘may’ have nukes (thinking they’ll be safe with them) but I think the deciding factor in attacking Israel will be in having this type of tactical advantage—otherwise, both sides having nukes usually leads to a stalemate (as the other side knows if you get close to defeating the other side they’ll use their nukes in retaliation)…The only sound strategy is to break Israel’s knees quickly enough to give them the chance to get that decisive final blow—which it sounds like they’ll fail to achieve. The reason I say this is because I see no way (at least currently) for a large military buildup to occur in this area given the current geopolitical environment. I don’t believe the required tactical advantage are traditional nuclear weapons but having the ability to surprise Israel in a manner that is not only confusing (as to whom has attacked you) but is also devastating enough to allow for a quick and decisive victory (with lower numbers of follow-up forces). Another potential issue to the Psalm 83 war beginning (to me) is the US’s role in the middle east currently–There’s a reason she’s there (establishing natural gas pipelines from what I’ve read) so for her not to be involved in some manner is perplexing to say the least!

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John - March 20, 2018

First, thank you for your excellent work and for sharing your insight.
It is a year and a half since this post was published, and several events have come to occur.
1. The Iran Obama/Kerry nuclear deal has proved to be worthless. Iran has since stated that it has in it’s possession nuclear bombs (delivered via aircraft) not officially verified.
2. North Korea is willing and likely already has sold Iran missile technology and material.
3. Russia (this week) has falsly accused the US of preparing to attack Syria and is moving missiles and troops to the region.
4. Israel has announced newly discovered, significant oil and gas riches which Russia wants to control. Israel has highly advanced technology that the region greatly desires.
5. The IDF is preparing for an “all out, sudden war” via ‘Headstone 2018’ defensive operations to defend itself “while under missile attack from multiple Nations and directions”.
I am of the opinion that we will see Israel attacked, and Damascus fall via an Israeli nuclear strike within weeks pf Passover, a month or two from now.

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    Tim McHyde - March 20, 2018

    John, this updated article came out over ten years ago. I’ve been watching and updating ever since and from what I’ve learned watching the M.E. since 2000, I don’t see this war being ready to happen this decade (next year), let alone this year. The Arabs are not stupid enough to attack a nuclear power without their own nuclear arsenal or the equivalent. They have too much to lose and little to gain. Talk to me again in a couple months if you can’t understand how I can be so sure.

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Tony - March 20, 2018

Hi Tim. If this war occurred before the next sabboth year cycle then would you say that it would make 2024-2030 a complete guarantee?

Or do you think that it would just mean that from that point onward ALL future cycles have the full potential to be the one? And not necessarily 2024-2030. Or would 2024-2030 have to be the one? Thank you.

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    Tim McHyde - March 21, 2018

    Tony, the Damascus prophecy is only a prerequisite to the 70th week fulfillments. It happening does not in Scripture demand the immediate precipitation of the 70th week. That said, God has a style of doing tings just in time. Also the effects of Israel allowing non-Jews to immigrate there are may only be temporary. If correct, that would demand the war happens near to the start of the 70th week. Finally, I have a new insight from two dreams God gave me that pinpoints what year the Damascus war will be that I’ll be sharing with supporters soon. Of course, 2024-2030 already looks confirmed to be the 70th week from other dreams.

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Tony - March 21, 2018

Hi Tim. Thank you for answering my previous question. I do have one other question if that’s ok.

I was just wondering, should any action be taken when this war occurs? Or is it a case where action is only truly required when Elijah appears in the 2 year frame ( The next one being 2024 and 2025) that he’s supposed to?

If that war occurs should people just continue as normal just with the knowledge that 2026 is the one? Is this right? Thanks.

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Bob - April 8, 2018

Don’t forget Zechariah 12!

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Pam Panter - April 11, 2018

Hi Tim,
With Trump threatening Syria I had to go back to Isaiah 17 again. It’s great to find people who are considering these prophesies. There is so much to put together and pray about. Certainly Psalm 83, Zephaniah, Jeremiah 49, Joel, Amos, Micah 7. They all paint a picture there to study. One thing is sure, Yeshua will save his people. We are so close now. God Bless.

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Steve Farmer Sr - April 12, 2018

I AM Gods prophet for the last days 7 years ago God has shown me that Isaiah 17 is coming to pass… AND IT IS a sign that Jesus will soon come get an His Children…

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bob - April 14, 2018

Erdogan is calling on arab nations to band together to go against Israel. He is calling for an ‘Army of islam” to fight Israel: Here’s a link: https://worldisraelnews.com/erdogan-linked-turkish-daily-calls-army-islam-fight-israel/

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Bill B - April 14, 2018

In all of your discussion the pre-post trib wars with regard to Israel, Syria etc. I don’t see mention of the ‘Destruction or Existence of Mystery Babylon – who, when, what, how is this accounted for. It takes up quite a few pages of Revelation, discussion of this nation, how it’s destroyed, what happens after its destroyed, who does the destruction, what countries participate etc. Where and who is this nation, city place. My opinion it is the United States of America – we fit every description, we have the many waters, oceans on both sides… the people of many tongues being the melting pot of all nations – the sins are the sins of the nation – the great harlot – yet to be- I have a nomination – it’s easy to see in our current news is it not? The making of this harlot character also quite well described. Pre-trib yes! in fact once we are gone all the other elements that you discuss are allowed to come to fruit without hindrance. Heed the warning ; if your ears hear.

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Rebecca - May 10, 2018

Tim,

I just read that Iran has just fired 20 rockets at Golan Heights, Israel. This has happened just a day after Trump pulled out of the Iranian nuclear deal. What do you make of all of this? Is this the start of the ME war? I know you stated above that you don’t see that happening this decade. Have these things changed any previous beliefs for you?

Rebecca

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    Tim McHyde - May 10, 2018

    Rebecca, once again following a “M.E. news event,” no, this changes nothing about the 70th week coming at the earliest next decade nor the Psalm 83/Isaiah 17 war coming before next decade. Why? Like the article above explains, the prophecies say that the Arabs “join together” to attack the only homegrown nuclear power in the area. Despite hundreds of missile attacks on Israel since 1973, the last time they did it, they have not done so. Again, why? They need time to get their own nukes like Iran is progressing on and join together to do poke a sleeping bear. Give them time to have nukes and then we’ll see!

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Barbara - May 14, 2018

Hi Tim,

In your report this week, you again mentioned that the current Temple Mount is necessary to be back in Israel’s hands. However, recent archeological finds show that the current Temple Mount is NOT within the old city of David. Mount Zion is also “missing”, because over the centuries it has been “shaven down” to fill in the Kidron Valley (that was used as a city dumping area).

So, there are those making plans now to start the building prospect. Also, all most all of the implements have already been made for the temple and can be seen at a current “museum” in Jerusalem.

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Nanette - May 30, 2018

Tim, why are you sure that the Psalm 83 war has not already been fulfilled? Could it be Israel’s 6-day War?

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    Tim McHyde - May 30, 2018

    Nanette, first because there is no war that exactly matches it in history. For example, in 1967 Egypt was involved but in Psalm 83 is not mentioned. Second, even if it was fulfilled before, with prophecy’s tendency to have double fulfillments, a first fulfillment does not rule it out. Like we’re going to have Pentecost fulfilled again because Acts 2 did not fulfill all Joel 2 says like the blood moon.

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Tim Brown - July 5, 2018

Tim, I am trying to let all this sink in. I am in a whirlwind right now where it seems God is giving me numerous messages that are converging to bolster what you present on your website. I ordered your book today.

A question, have you seen Damascus recently? It doesn’t look very inhabited. Do you think this piece has already been fulfilled?

Tim

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    Tim McHyde - July 5, 2018

    Mr. Brown, thank you for your support. Yes, I see Damascus is still the capital city of Syria and still inhabited. It’s not ruins and uninhabited and is recognized by many as the oldest inhabited city to this day. When that changes, you won’t miss it!

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