The following blog post was originally posted here: The Importance Of Turkey in Scripture…Turkey pt 2
And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, Son of man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal, and prophesy against him, And say, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords: Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet: Gomer, and all his bands; the house of Togarmah of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee. Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them. After many days thou shalt be visited: in the latter years thou shalt come into the land that is brought back from the sword, and is gathered out of many people, against the mountains of Israel, which have been always waste: but it is brought forth out of the nations, and they shall dwell safely all of them.(Ezekiel 38:1-8)
The Nation of Turkey has been roiling and churning lately, as the ancient nation transforms itself back to what it was before the humiliation of being on the losing side in the first World War and the loss of the Ottoman Empire, and of the Sunni Islamic Caliphate in the years that followed.
The world has witnessed the election of former mayor of Istanbul, Recep Tyupp Erdogan, to the nation’s highest office, in spite of having previously been jailed for “racial hatred” after reading in public a Turkish Islamist poem, which proclaimed that” Mosques are our barracks, Prayer towers our bayonets and their roofs are our helmets”.
Last year Erdogan survived a coup attempt which allowed him to purge the military and civil service of more than a hundred thousand people, forty one thousand of whom remain in prison. Finally as the West celebrated Easter, the d=feast of the resurrection of Christ, Erdogan won a referendum which granted him sweeping powers, to melt parliament and to virtually become a modern day sultan and Caliph over Turkey.
In his concession speech in Izmir,(Biblical Smyrna, Revelation 2:8-11), Erdogan announced that Turkey, which was once described as the “Sick old man of Europe”, was now fit and that it was now Europe which was sick;
In a widening diplomatic rift between Turkey and the EU, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has made a new provocative statement saying that the “collapsing” Europe “will pay” for “humiliating” and “oppressing” Turks living on the continent.
“They said a century ago that we were the ‘sick man.’ Now they are the ‘sick man.’ Europe is collapsing,” the Turkish leader said, using an insult popular among European politicians in the 19th century when they talked about the collapsing Ottoman Empire.
What happened to Turkey, and what is the significance of it in the light of Bible Prophecy?
Turkey is of vast importance in the world, having the largest army in Europe and is a NATO member. Until recently it was a fairly secular state, with a Muslim population but the extreme elements of Islam were kept at bay by the strict constitution enacted by Ataturk, the founder of the modern Turkish state.
Though it is a Muslim nation at present, in the earliest centuries of the New Testament church, it was in the Turkish region that the gospel first flourished beyond the borders of Judea and Samaria.
The apostles took the gospel to what then was refered to as the Roman province of Asia, within decades of the resurrection of Jesus. Paul taught there for two years as recorded in Acts 19.The original letters of the Apocalypse were addressed to churches in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and to Laodicea, all in modern-day Turkey.
The epistles to Thessalonica, Galatians, I John, I and II Timothy and Revelation all originally addressed greek speaking converts in what is now called Turkey. Eventually the Roman Emperor Constantine, in the 4th century, built a city on the Dardanelles strait, Constantinople, as the eastern capital of the Roman Empire.
For the next thousand years, the Christianity that Constantine officially legalized, became the religion of the Byzantine empire, which extended over the middle east, a swath of eastern Europe and all of Turkey.
But with the rise and expansion of Islam, bit, by bit, Byzantium fell to the Muslims over the next eight centuries, slowly and steadily until in 1452 Constantinople fell to the Muslim invaders. The Turkish empire which replaced it, became known as the Ottoman empire, a Sunni Muslim empire which held sway for five centuries, but which collapsed as an outcome of World War 1, the Turks having been on the losing side.
We have to go back a bit and remember that until World War 1 Turkey was the seat of the five hundred year Ottoman Empire, and also of something Sunni Muslims refer to as the Caliphate, which is a centralizing Sunni authority.
Turkey chose the wrong side in the war, they allied with Germany. After the allied victory, the Ottoman Empire was dismantled and the Middle East was divided into new countries, protectorates and mandates governed by France and England under the Sykes Picot treaty. significantly to us, Israel was taken from the Turks and put under the British mandate.
Turkey remained an indépendant nation although its vast empire was stripped and divided among the victors under the Sykes Pichot treaty.
Gamal Mustafa aka Ataturk began a series of radical reforms, pushing Sunni Islam out of a dominant position and crafting a secular yet Muslim state.
Ataturk also dismantled the centuries old Caliphate in 1922 , to the utter dismay and humiliation of the Sunni world. Most of the modern Sunni Jihad is an attempt to restore this “Caliphate”, i.e. the central ruling Sunni authority, under the “Prince of the faithful” which all Sunnis are required to swear “Bayat” to, i.e. pledge allegiance and engage in Jihad under his command.Isis was an attempt to restore the Caliphate but most of Sunni Islam regards Turkey as the proper abode of the Caliphate.
The Turkish Army was given the custody of the secularity of the Turkish state, closed guarding against Islamic extremism, and intervening several times , overthrowing other coups and always restoring the nation to the democratically elected leaders. Thus Turkey became a modern, progressive State with close relationships with the West in the Cold War and with Israel until recently.
But when Turkey was rejected for membership in the European Union, moods eventually shifted and Erdogan’s Islamist party steadily gained power. The coup, to the extent that it was real, was an attempt by the military to take back the nation from the corruption and increasing Islamization of Turkey.There are some who believe that the coup was doomed from the start, and used for the aggrandizement of Erdogan,like Hitler’s Reichstag fire.
Of course Obama and the US State department were on the side of the Islamists,(they always are), and now Turkey is even more entrenched on the disastrous path of any nation possessed by Islamists and the demons who drive them.
We must also remember that none less than Jesus himself located Satan’s throne in Pergamum, which is in Turkey, in his letter to the church at Pergamum,
And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges; I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth.(Revelation 2:12-13)
Turkey is the region where Magog, Togarmah, Meshec,Tubal and Gomer hail from. They are slated to participate in the disastrous Gog invasion of Israel.
Zechariah 9 also prophesies that the Sons of Javan(lit) , translated Greece, but Turkey was once the main Greek landmass, would fight the sons of Israel,
When I have bent Judah for me, filled the bow with Ephraim, and raised up thy sons, O Zion, against thy sons, O Greece, and made thee as the sword of a mighty man. And the Lord shall be seen over them, and his arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord God shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with whirlwinds of the south.(Zechariah 9:13-14)
President Erdogan is a very strange man. He gives speeches to crowds under a spell of wild adulation, but often he is speaking through a hologram! He opened an international airport called Saladin, because Saladin was the last conqueror of Jerusalem. He is Sunni but has Sufistic tendencies, the mystical Islam,. Male secular reporters who have interviewed him have come away erotically in love with him.He is also a cruel and cunning man who would make a great candidate for Anti-Christ. We will see…
We are seeing the fulfillment of prophecy before our very eyes. We are also seeing blind complacency, even many Christian people have no idea what is happening around them, but major, prophetic and earth shaking event are occurring, to be proclaimed and interpreted by all who “Have ears to hear”.