This article is taken from The FUTURE WAR Prophecies book, in the chapter entitled, “Israel Defeats the Surrounding Arab Armies.”
In the passage below, Ezekiel identifies the Arab states that surround Israel as a “pricking brier or a painful thorn” for Israel. Jeremiah 12:14 calls them “evil neighbors.”
““And there shall no longer be a pricking brier or a painful thorn for the house of Israel from among all (those evil neighbors) who are around them, who despise them. Then they shall know that I am the Lord God.” ‘Thus says the Lord God: “When I have gathered the house of Israel from the peoples among whom they are scattered, and am hallowed in them in the sight of the Gentiles, then they will dwell in their own land which I gave to My servant Jacob. And they will dwell safely there, build houses, and plant vineyards; yes, they will dwell securely, when I execute judgments on all those around them who despise them. Then they shall know that I am the Lord their God.” ’ ” (Ezekiel 28:24-26)
Ezekiel points out that the Jews will be regathered “from the peoples among whom they are scattered.” They will come out of their diaspora and “dwell in their own land.” Then these regathered Jews will “build houses, and plant vineyards.” These things have been primarily happening since May 14, 1948, when Israel was reestablished as the Jewish state.
Ezekiel further states that the time will come when Israel will, “dwell safely” and “securely,” which is not the case today. The reason Israel doesn’t “dwell safely” and “securely” presently is because the evil neighbors, “who are around them” “despise them” and serve as “a pricking brier or a painful thorn” in Israel’s side. That’s all about to change because the Lord is going to, “execute judgments on all those around them who despise them.”
The tool the Lord will use to “execute judgments on all those around them who despise them,” is primarily the Israeli Defense Forces. In my book entitled, The FUTURE WAR Prophecies, I reveal about 148 verses that seem to inform of how these judgments are executed upon the evil neighbors. Below is a quote from the book about this.
“This book identifies nearly 148 verses that appear to apply to the Psalm 83 prophecy. These include prophecies from the Major Prophets including Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Isaiah, as well as the Minor Prophets consisting of Obadiah, Zephaniah, and Zechariah. This extensive list doesn’t include the prophecies in Amos 1:1-15, which might also find application with Psalm 83.* Psalm 83:1-18……………………………………..(18 verses),
* Jeremiah 49:1-29, 12:14-17……………………..(33 verses),
* Ezekiel 25:12-17, 28:24-26, 35:1-36:7, 37:10…(32 verses),
* Isaiah 17:1-14, 19:1-18, 11:14…………………..(33 verses),
* Obadiah 1:1-21……………………………………(21 verses),
* Zephaniah 2:4-11………………………………….(8 verses),
* Zechariah 12:2, 5-6……………………………….(3 verses).”
The Zechariah 12:1-6 Prophecy
One of the main sections of prophecy dealing with the judgments that happen to the surrounding Arab nations is found in Zechariah 12. As we study these ancient foretellings, we discover that the LORD will level the playing field in a future war between the Arabs and Jews by divinely intervening on Israels benefit. This next section explains Zechariah 12:1-6.
“The burden of the word of the Lord against Israel. Thus says the Lord, who stretches out the heavens, lays the foundation of the earth, and forms the spirit of man within him:” (Zechariah 12:1)
In this opening verse Zechariah quotes from the prophet Isaiah below.
“Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, And He who formed you from the womb: “I am the Lord, who makes all things, Who stretches out the heavens all alone, Who spreads abroad the earth by Myself.”” (Isaiah 44:24)
In The FUTURE WAR Prophecies I explain why Zechariah draws attention to Isaiah 44:24-28 to establish the prophetically proven point that Jerusalem belongs to the Jews. This is important to note because Zechariah 12:2-6 deals with the fate of the surrounding Arab nations who will forcibly in the future contest Israel’s rightful claims to this holy city.
“Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.” (Zec. 12:2-3)
In these two above verses, Zechariah foretells that someday the evil neighbors will attempt to “lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem.” As a result, these “surrounding peoples” will stagger as if having become intoxicated by “a cup of drunkenness.”
Since 1948, these surrounding peoples have been contesting Israel’s rightful claims to Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state. Ultimately, they, alluding to all the surrounding peoples, will confederate in a final attempt to lay siege on Jerusalem. According to Zechariah 12:4-6, this is when the evil neighbor nations will be utterly plucked up and destroyed, which will fulfill the Jeremiah prophecy below.
“And it shall be, if they (the evil Arab neighbors) will learn carefully the ways of My people, (The Jews), to swear by My name, ‘As the Lord lives,’ as they taught My people to swear by Baal, then they shall be established in the midst of My people. But if they do not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation,” says the Lord.” (Jer. 12:16-17, NKJV; emphasis added)
Jeremiah 12:14-17 issues God’s two part Mideast peace plan, which is explained in my book and also online in the article named “God’s Two Part Mideast Peace Plan,” which is posted in the article section of www.prophecydepot.com.
Zechariah 12:3 states that Jerusalem will be “a very heavy stone for all peoples,” not just the surrounding peoples. He sends a warning to “all nations of the earth (who) are gathered against it.” Some commentators teach that this verse deals with the events related to the Armageddon scenario, but the verse clearly states that “And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples…” In that day that God makes Jerusalem “a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples.”
Thus Zechariah 12:3 pertains to the modern-day meddlings below of the international community over the status of Jerusalem.1.) UN Resolution 181 of 1947 declared, “Jerusalem as a corpus separatum (Latin: “separate entity”) to be governed by a special international regime.”[i]
2.) 1949 Armistice border of 1949 established a demarcation line that divided Jerusalem into an East Jerusalem and a West Jerusalem. This was the first time in history that Jerusalem had ever been divided.
Dividing the holy city of Jerusalem is not biblically endorsed and this division didn’t last for long, because eighteen years later the IDF won the Six-Day War in June of 1967 and at that time Israel captured all of Jerusalem. Although presently, all of the “surrounding peoples” and most “all nations of the earth” don’t recognize Jerusalem as the undivided capital of the Jewish state, all of these peoples are sorely mistaken.3.) The unratified Arab Peace Initiative of 2002, as well as the failed American land for peace plans formed by Presidents Bill Clinton of 2000, George W. Bush of 2002 and Barrack Obama of 2014 have all attempted to keep Jerusalem as a divided city.
It’s safe to say that Jerusalem has been “a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away.” But why is the holy city of Jerusalem such a burdensome stone?
The IDF “shall devour all the surrounding peoples”
The surrounding Arab leaders and their armies have no idea what’s going to happen to them in their final bid to lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. The IDF, with the LORD’s divine intervention, is going to win a war that will end the Arab-Israeli conflict once and for all. The apparent sequence of events that take place in this final battle are described in the passages that follow.
““In that day,” says the Lord, (when the surrounding peoples lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem), “I will strike every horse with confusion, and its rider with madness; I will open My eyes on the house of Judah, and will strike every horse of the peoples with blindness.”” (Zechariah 12:4, NKJV; emphasis added)
Divine Military Intervention
STRIKE ONE: First, it appears that the Lord causes the Arab artilleries, tanks and armored vehicles to malfunction. “I will strike every horse with confusion,” (Zec. 12:4a).
Remember that when Zechariah wrote, the soldiers rode into battle upon horses, rather than flew in on fighter Jets or drove military tanks. Thus, in fulfillment of Zechariah 12:2 that stated, “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness,” the LORD will level the field by somehow tweaking the attacking Arab’s war machines.
The LORD has employed this proven tactic successfully before when Pharaoh and his Egyptian army attempted to kill Moses and the Jews at the Red Sea about three thousand years ago during the Hebrew exodus out of Egypt.
“Now it came to pass, in the morning watch, that the Lord looked down upon the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud, and He troubled the army of the Egyptians. And He took off their chariot wheels, so that they drove them with difficulty; and the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from the face of Israel, the Lord fights for them against the Egyptians.”” (Exodus 14:24-25)
Somehow, the LORD supernaturally took off the lug nuts of the Egyptian chariots and that created panic among the Egyptian troops. These Egyptian chariots were state of the art at the time. Below is a quote from Wikipedia that acknowledges this.
“The Egyptians invented the yoke saddle for their chariot horses around 1500 BC. Chariots were effective for their high speed, mobility and strength which could not be matched by infantry at the time. They quickly became a powerful new weapon across the ancient Near East.”[i]
STRIKE TWO: Second, these armament malfunctions apparently create hysteria among the enemy soldiers like it did to the Egyptians. “I will strike every horse with confusion and its rider with madness;” (Zec. 12:4a,b)
The Arab armies’ response to the malfunctions of their war machines in the yet future will be similar to that of the Egyptian army in the distant past. There will be panic spreading widely among the Arab troops. They will likely echo the same sentiment as the Egyptians, “let us flee from the face of Israel, the Lord fights for them.”
STRIKE THREE: Third, the Lord will turn His favor toward the IDF and somehow the guidance (radar) capabilities of the enemies’ tanks, jets, rockets, etc. will become disabled. “and will strike every (enemy) horse of the peoples with blindness.” (Zec. 12:4d)
The Arab armies essentially STRIKE OUT before they’re able to effectively go to bat—(battle) against Judah and Jerusalem. STRIKE ONE will be the war machine malfunctions. STRIKE TWO will be the madness and hysteria spread among the troops. STRIKE THREE will be the disabling of the guidance systems of their armaments.
The IDF Gains Confidence
We just read and reviewed the strike out of Zechariah 12:a,b and d, but now it’s time to double back and look at Zechariah 12:c, which states; In that day,… I will open My eyes on the house of Judah.” This section tells us “in that day,” when the Arabs make their final bid to lay siege on Judah and Jerusalem, that the LORD’s eyes will be wide and his eyebrows raised to the Arab’s plotting. The next Zechariah passage explains why this is important.
“For thus says the Lord of hosts: “He sent Me after glory, to the nations which plunder you; (Israel) for he who touches you touches the apple of His eye. For surely I will shake My hand against them, and they shall become spoil for their servants. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me.” (Zechariah 2:8-9, NKJV; emphasis added)
Israel is the apple of the LORD’S eye and the Arab armies attempting to take over Judah and Jerusalem, is likened to trying to poke God’s eye out. By the time all of the above in Zechariah 12:4 happens, the stage will be set for the IDF to confidently devour the surrounding peoples. The next two verses foretell how the IDF soundly defeats their evil Arab neighbors.
“And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, ‘The inhabitants of Jerusalem are my strength in the Lord of hosts, their God.’In that day I will make the governors of Judah like a firepan in the woodpile, and like a fiery torch in the sheaves; they shall devour all the surrounding peoples on the right hand and on the left, but Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place—Jerusalem.” (Zec. 12:5-6)
The “governors of Judah” represent the IDF. The Hebrew word used for governors can be translated as captains or chieftains. The IDF will find “strength in the LORD” as they witness the LORD in action striking out the evil neighbors. A confident IDF will be like “a firepan in the woodpile.” They will be “like a fiery torch in the sheaves” they will wipe out the surrounding Arab armies “on the right hand and on the left.”
The Arabs will no longer be able to contest Jewish sovereignty over Jerusalem and it “shall be inhabited again in her own place” by Jews. In the aftermath of this IDF victory, it would not be surprising to witness the Jews demolish the Dome of the Rock, which sits atop the foundation stone of the former Jewish Temples.
Removing this Islamic religious structure would pave the way for the Jews to rebuild their Third Temple, which according to prophecies in Revelation 11:1-2, Matthew 24:15 and elsewhere will happen. The Jews are already making preparations to construct this Temple.
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[i] Wikipedia quote taken on 10/22/22 from this website link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chariotry_in_ancient_Egypt#:~:text=Chariots%20were%20effective%20for%20their,from%20the%20tomb%20of%20Tutankhamun.
[i] Quote taken on 8/4/22 from this website: https://www.britannica.com/topic/United-Nations-Resolution-181