May 18, 2024
Gog and Magog
In this article, we shall delve into the Jewish concept of Messiah and the beliefs associated with this concept, particularly the War of Gog and Magog.

In this article, we shall delve into the Jewish concept of Messiah and the beliefs associated with this concept, particularly the War of Gog and Magog. The Jews are waiting for a Messiah (Mashiach/Moshiach) that was promised to them in the Torah. The Promised Messiah came in the form of Messiah ibn Maryam (Jesus Christ) but Jews refused to accept him as Messiah and tried to crucify him. They failed to crucify the Messiah and Allah Almighty elevated him to the heavens alive. But still, the Jews are waiting for the Promised Messiah.

The Messianic Era

In Jewish tradition, the concept of the Messiah (Mashiach) is central to eschatological beliefs. According to various sources in the Talmud and other Jewish texts, the Messiah is a future savior figure who will bring about the fulfillment of prophecies and the establishment of a messianic era characterized by peace, justice, and the universal recognition of God’s sovereignty, per Jewish faith.

The Talmudic and rabbinic literature discuss the role of the Messiah in different ways, often focusing on the restoration of the Davidic dynasty, the ingathering of the Jewish exiles, and the rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem. Additionally, some teachings describe the Messiah as a righteous king who will lead the Jewish people and, in some interpretations, all of humanity, to a state of spiritual and physical redemption.

One key aspect of the messianic era, as envisioned in Jewish tradition, is the establishment of a global kingdom or reign of peace under the leadership of the Messiah. This kingdom is described as a time of unprecedented harmony among nations, where war and conflict will cease, and all people will recognize and worship the one true God.

The specific details of how the messianic era will unfold and what the global kingdom will look like vary among different Jewish sources and interpretations. Some texts describe a utopian vision of the world, while others emphasize the spiritual transformation of humanity and the renewal of the covenant between God and Israel.

Talmud says:
During the era of the Messianic king, once his kingdom has been established and all of Israel has gathered around him, the entire nation’s line of descent will be established on the basis of his words and the prophetic spirit which will rest upon him, as Malachi 3:3 states: ‘He shall sit as a refiner and purifier.’

[Talmud, Mishneh Torah: Chapter 12:3]

In that era, there will be neither famine nor war, envy or competition for good will flow in abundance and all the delights will be freely available as dust. The occupation of the entire world will be solely to know God.

[Talmud, Mishneh Torah: Chapter 12:5]

Look, how good a picture of the Messianic Era Jewish Rabbis present and how brutally they are killing the children of Palestine, to realize the Messianic Era. Let’s explore the war of Gog and Magog associated with the Messianic Era.

jewish calendar

When Will the Messianic Era Begin?

The Talmud says:
With regard to the seven-year period, i.e., the Sabbatical cycle, during which the Messiah, son of David, comes……….During the year after the conclusion of the Sabbatical Year, the son of David will come.

[Talmud, Sanhedrin.97a.2]

Chabad.org tells about the next Sabbatical year:

The year 5789 on the Jewish calendar (Sept. 20, 2028–Sept. 9, 2029) will be the next Sabbatical year.

The year following the destruction of the second Holy Temple (3829 from creation, equivalent to 68–69 CE) was the first year of the seven-year Sabbatical cycle. We continue counting sevens from then.

According to the Jewish traditions, the Messianic Era can not commence before Sep 9, 2029. In Islamic traditions, the False Messiah or Dajjal will claim initially to be the Messiah Awaited. So, the emergence of Dajjal is unlikely before 2029. Allah knows the best.

War of Gog and Magog

In Jewish tradition, Gog and Magog are often portrayed as mysterious figures or nations that will play a role in apocalyptic events. The identities of Gog and Magog have been subject to interpretation and speculation over the centuries. In some interpretations, they are seen as symbolic representations of chaos and evil forces, rather than specific individuals or groups.

Expected Time

Talmud says:

The simple interpretation of the prophets’ words appears to imply that the war of Gog and Magog will take place at the beginning of the Messianic age. [Talmud, Mishneh Torah: Chapter 12:2]

In Jewish eschatology, the war of Gog and Magog is often associated with the onset of the Messianic Era. The concept is derived primarily from prophetic texts in the Hebrew Bible, particularly the book of Ezekiel, chapters 38-39. These chapters describe a cataclysmic conflict involving a coalition of nations led by a figure named Gog from the land of Magog, who will attack Israel. However, God intervenes on behalf of Israel, defeating the invading forces and bringing about a divine victory.

The Talmud, specifically Mishneh Torah, Chapter 12:2, reflects the understanding that the war of Gog and Magog will precede the establishment of the Messianic Era. This interpretation suggests that the conflict serves as a precursor to the arrival of the Messiah and the subsequent redemption of the Jewish people and the world.

After the war of Gog and Magog, the Messianic Era is believed to be inaugurated, characterized by the reign of the Messiah, the restoration of Israel, and the establishment of peace and harmony on earth. Thus, the war of Gog and Magog is seen as a pivotal event in the eschatological timeline, signaling the imminent arrival of the long-awaited era of redemption.

It’s important to recognize the distinction between the Torah, which is considered the Word of God in Jewish tradition, and the Talmud, which comprises interpretations, discussions, and commentaries by Jewish rabbis on the Torah and other Jewish texts.

As it is stated in the introduction of the Talmud:

The Talmud is the textual record of generations of rabbinic debate about law, philosophy, and biblical interpretation, compiled between the 3rd and 8th centuries and structured as commentary on the Mishnah with stories interwoven.

The Talmud says:
For we have a tradition that the resurrection will occur on Pesach and the war of Gog and Magog, on Succoth.

[Talmud, Mishnah_Megillah.3.6]

Succoth is celebrated in Tishrei, the 7th month of the Jewish calendar that synchronizes with September and October. They also celebrate Rosh Hashanah—the biggest festival of Jewish traditions, in the same month. They believe the War of Gog and Magog may begin in Tishrei.

Unprecedented War

The Talmud says:
This refers to the future war of Gog and Magog, which will cause all earlier events to be forgotten.

[Talmud, Berakhot.13a.2]

Who is Gog and Magog?

The Jews believe that the Messiah will come during the war of Gog and Magog and will defeat these evil people. It is interesting to note that the Western media, particularly, social media, has been portraying Iran and Pakistan as Gog and Magog for many years. So, it is unlikely that they will launch a war against Iran or Pakistan before 2029. Allah knows the best.

Ya’juj & Ma’juj or Gog & Magog?

The Islamic concept of Ya’juj and Ma’juj differs in several significant ways from the War of Gog and Magog in Jewish tradition. Here are some key points of contrast:

  1. Sources: The primary source for the Islamic concept of Ya’juj and Ma’juj is the Quran, particularly in Surah Al-Kahf (The Cave), where their story is mentioned. In Jewish tradition, the primary sources for the War of Gog and Magog are the prophetic books of Ezekiel and Zechariah, with additional interpretations found in later Jewish literature such as the Talmud and Midrash.
  2. Description: In Islamic tradition, Ya’juj and Ma’juj are portrayed as tribes or nations who will wreak havoc and chaos upon the earth. They are described as being imprisoned behind a barrier or wall constructed by Dhul-Qarnayn. When the appointed time comes, they will break through the barrier and spread corruption until they are ultimately defeated by divine intervention. In contrast, the War of Gog and Magog in Jewish tradition involves a coalition of nations led by Gog, who will attack Israel before being defeated by God.
  3. Role in eschatology: While both traditions envision a cataclysmic conflict involving Gog and Magog-like figures, the eschatological significance differs. In Islamic eschatology, the release and subsequent defeat of Ya’juj and Ma’juj are seen as signs of the approaching Day of Judgment and the end of the world. In Jewish eschatology, the War of Gog and Magog is often associated with the onset of the Messianic age and the establishment of God’s kingdom on earth.
  4. Geographical associations: The Quran does not specify the geographical location of the barrier behind which Ya’juj and Ma’juj are imprisoned, leading to various interpretations within Islamic scholarship. In Jewish tradition, Gog and Magog are often associated with regions to the north of Israel, though their exact locations are subject to interpretation.
  5. Cultural and theological context: The narratives of Ya’juj and Ma’juj in Islam and Gog and Magog in Judaism reflect the cultural and theological contexts of their respective traditions. While there may be some parallels and shared themes, they are distinct concepts with their own symbolic meanings and interpretations within their religious frameworks.

Overall, while both traditions include apocalyptic narratives involving figures like Gog and Magog, the specific details, contexts, and interpretations vary significantly between Jewish and Islamic traditions.

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