Pastor Mark Ledbetter from Sylacauga, Alabama, shared this in August, 2006; it seems even more pertinent today since we have a clearer picture of what is transpiring….
Several years ago, while still serving as pastor in Winfield, AL, I preached a message regarding the prophetic possibilities found in Psalm 83. What I said then seems even more so today. Following is a review and update in light of recent events that are currently taking place:
The Conspiracy, vvs. 1-4
Since the Psalm is ancient, then the intent of Israel's "neighbors" is ancient, as ancient as Ishmael and Esau. The call for Israel to be "wiped" off the landscape of a predominantly Islamic Middle East is something many have witnessed in modern and now post-modern era.
In 1947, Israel's Arab "neighbors" rejected the U.N. declaration establishing a small sliver of land as a home for Israel. Immediately, surrounding Arab nations engaged in a campaign to "push the Jews into the Sea." It was a war of "extermination" that was launched against a heavily out-manned, out-powered, and ill-equipped people that somehow miraculously prevailed. Ben Gurion's declaration of independence in May 1948 held.
Twice repeated has been the call for Israel's destruction, each with the same results. Israel's enemies were remarkably defeated in 1967 and 1973. Now, with the current crisis in Israel, the call for Israel to be removed from the land is a chief focus of Islamic nations.
The Conspirators, vvs. 5-8
It is easy to identify the identity of Israel's enemies in terms of current events: Syria, Lebanon/Hezbollah, Egypt, Jordan, and the Palestinians. This band is enlarged as both Ishmael and Japheth's descendants are united through a common bond – Islam. So, the conspiracy grows in Ezekiel 38 and 39 as Iran makes a stand.
Recently, Iran's Ahamadinejab, has once again called for the Israeli state to be replaced with an Islamic republic – the goal Hamas and Hezbollah have for Israel and Lebanon, respectively. But this time Jordan, Egypt and Turkey failed to object to the inflammatory rhetoric of Ahamadinejab.
Gog and Magog, Tubal, Cush, etc., are all Islamic nations, many are remnants of the former Soviet Empire. Nations under Islamic influence include the southern border of the Mediterranean, or northern Africa, as well as Sudan (Cush) and other African nations. It would be hard for anyone to miss, unless they simply choose to close a blind eye, or be so caught up in the cares of this life that they don't care.
The Prayer, vvs. 9-18
The Psalmist mixes no words regarding how he wants God to respond! He calls for God to respond with force, and by doing so, revealing that the war that Islam proposes is a war against God Himself, and will end in God's ultimate glory. This will be the result in the battle between Jehovah and Allah in Ezekiel 38 & 39.
"Fill their faces with dishonor, that they may seek Thy name, O LORD. Let them be ashamed and dismayed forever; and let them be humiliated and perish, That they may know that Thou alone, whose name is the LORD, art the Most High over all the earth." (Ps 83:16-18, NAS)
© Mark Ledbetter 2006