24.—Proof of the Russian Power being the King of the North
The proof lies in the obvious identity that exists between Daniel’s “king of the north” of the time of the end, and Ezekiel’s “Gog” of the latter days. By comparing what is said about each of these in the two prophets, it will be manifest that they can only be different titles for the same power. The following particulars may be cited in proof:
1. Their geographical position is the same. Gog’s country is the north parts in relation to the Holy Land; as it is written, “Thou shalt come from thy place out of the north parts”. Gog is therefore king of the north, his place or country being there.
2. They are both the adversaries of Israel, and the invaders of their country. The eleventh chapter of Daniel abundantly proves this in relation to the king of the north; and of Gog, Yahweh saith, “Thou shalt come up against my people Israel, as a cloud to cover the land”.
3. The time they invade the land is the same. The king of the north invades it in the time of the end; and of Gog it is said, “It shall be in the latter days, and I will bring thee against my land”.
4. The same peoples are named as components of their armies. The Libyans and Ethiopians are at the steps of the king of the north; and in the enumeration of Gog’s forces, it says, “Persia, Ethiopia, and Libya with them”.
5. Hostile tidings come from the east and north which excite the king of the north to fury; while tidings also come to Gog from the same quarter to deter him from invading the Holy Land.
6. The king of the north encounters the Little Horn; and Gog is antagonized by “Sheba and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish and the young lions thereof”—the Anglo-Indian power—“the ancient ally” of the Little Horn.
7. They both meet with the same fate, at the same time, in the same place, and by the same power. The “king of fierce countenance” stands up against the Prince of princes; the king of the north encounters Michael the Great Prince; and Gog is smitten by Adonai Yahweh. They all three come to their end with none to help them; they all fall upon the mountains of Israel, and consequent upon their overthrow Israel is delivered.
These seven particulars prove that Gog and the king of the north are but different titles for the same power; and the title given to Gog in the thirty-eighth and thirty-ninth chapters of Ezekiel proves that this northern power is no other than the Russian. In these places the prophet is addressed by Yahweh as the representative of Him who is to vanquish Gog and to deliver Israel. Hence, he says to him, “Son of Man, set thy face against Gog, the land of Magog, prince of Rosh, Meshekh, and Thuval, and prophesy against him”. In this title to the prophecy the antagonists are indicated, namely, the Son of Man (ben-adam) or seed of the Woman, on the one side; and the Prince of Rosh, the Head of the Serpent Confederacy, on the other. Hence, by understanding Gog’s title, the reader may know which of “the powers that be” is chosen of God to personate the Serpent’s Head when it is bruised by the Women’s Seed.
The question as to what nations are signified by Rosh, Meshekh, and Thuval, has been long since determined by the learned. The celebrated Bochart about the year 1640, observed in his elaborate researches into Sacred Geography, that Rōs, or Rōsh, is the most ancient form under which history makes mention of the name of Russia; and he contended that Rosh and Mĕshekh, properly denote the nations of Moscovy and Russia. “It is credible”, says he, “that from Rosh and Meshekh (that is, the Rhossi and Moschi) of whom Ezekiel speaks, descended the Russians and Muscovites, nations of the greatest celebrity in European Scythia”. We have indeed ample and positive testimony that the Russian nation was called Rōs by the Greeks in the earliest period in which we find it mentioned, as, “the Rosh are a Scythian nation bordering on the northern Taurus”. And their own historian says, “It is related that the Russians (whom the Greeks called Rōs, and sometimes Rōsos) derived their name from Ros, a valiant man, who delivered his nation from the yoke of its tyrants”.
Thus then we discern the modern names of Russia and Moscow in the Bible names adduced by Ezekiel. It is not difficult also to recognize in Thuvahl, or Tubl, or as the Greeks wrote it Thobel, a name which naturally connects itself with them; and which in conjunction with them tends in a very remarkable manner to determine and fix the proper object of the prediction. The river Tobol gives name to the city of Tobolium, or Tobolski, the metropolis of the extensive region of Siberia, lying immediately eastward of the territories of Muscovy. Thobol and Meshekh, are mentioned together by Ezekiel, who characterizes them as nations trading in copper (Ezek. 27:13); a metal which, it is notorious, abounds in the soil of Siberia; a region which included all the northern part of Asia, which borders on Russia to the west, on the Ice-sea to the north, on the Eastern Ocean to the east, and on Great Tartary to the south. And thus the three denominations Rosh, Meshekh, and Thuval, united in the prophecy, point out, with equal capacity and conciseness, those widely extended regions which at the present day, we denominate collectively The Russian Empire.
Gog is styled the “Prince of Rosh, Meshekh, and Thuval”, that is Autocrat of the Russians, Muscovites, and Siberians, or of “All the Russias”. But he is also styled “Gog of the land of Magog” as well. There must be something significant in this. It affirms that he is sovereign of Magog as well as prince of all the Russias; for there in the latter days is his proper dominion. “Whoever reads Ezekiel”, says Michaelis, “can hardly entertain a doubt that Gog is the name of a sovereign, and Magog that of his people; the prophet speaks of the former, not as a people, but as an Emperor”. Let us then now inquire where is the region styled Magog; that we may be able to ascertain of what people besides the Russians, Gog will be the imperial mishmar or sentinel. And as Gomer is represented by Ezekiel as a constituent of his confederacy, we will also endeavour to establish what people among the moderns will answer to the name.
From the Hebrew Scriptures we learn that Magog and Gomer were the names of two of the sons of Japheth; and it is to ancient Hebrew authority alone that we can resort to ascertain where, according to the common repute of the Israelites, the nations which descended from these two heads of families, and which long retained the proper names of those heads, were spread and established. Josephus says, “that Japheth, the son of Noah, had seven sons; who proceeding from their primitive seats in the mountains of Taurus and Amanus, ascended Asia to the river Tanais (or Don); and then entering Europe penetrated as far westward as the Straits of Gibraltar, occupying the lands which they successively met with in their progress; all of which were uninhabited; and bequeathed their names to their different families or nations. That Gomer founded the Gomari, whom the Greeks at that time called Galatæ; and that Magog founded the Magogæ, whom the Greeks then called Scythæ”. It only therefore remains for us to ascertain, which were the nations that the Greeks in the time of Josephus called Scythæ, and which they then styled Galatæ; and to observe whether the geographical affinities of these nations are such as answer to those which are plainly required by the prophecy for Magog and Gomer.
Herodotus, the most ancient Greek writer accessible, acquaints us that “the name Scythæ was a name given by the Greeks to an ancient and widely-extended people of Europe, who had spread themselves from the river Tanais, or Don, westward along the banks of the Ister or Danube”. “The Greeks”, observes Major Rennel, “appear to have first used the term Scythia in its application to their neighbours the Scythians of the Euxine, who were also called Getæ, or Gothi; and were those who afterward subdued the Roman empire: and from which original stock the present race of people in Europe seem to be descended.” And again: “The Scythians of Herodotus appear to have extended themselves in length from Hungary, Transylvania, and Wallachia, on the westward, to the river Don on the eastward”. Thus the testimony of Herodotus and Josephus is in perfect agreement concerning the progress of Magog and Gomer. In these same regions the Scythæ continued many ages after Herodotus, and even long after the time of Josephus; for Dio Cassius, who lived 150 years after Josephus, and about 200 after Christ, relates that Pompey in his return into Europe from Asia, “determined to pass to the Ister, or Danube, through the Scythæ, and so to enter Italy”. These were the original Scythæ. But Herodotus states further, that a portion of the same people in an after age, turned back upon the European seats of their fathers, and established themselves in Asia; and from these sprung the Asiatic Scythæ, who in process of time almost engrossed the name to themselves.
Since the name of Scythæ, or Magog, is to be considered not by itself, but in geographical connection with Galatæ, or Gomer, we have only to inquire, whether any geographical affinity is really ascribed by the Greeks to the Scythæ and Galatæ and to ascertain to what regions of the earth those names so associated were applied. If we can discover these two points, we ought thereby to have discovered specifically the Magog of the prophecy, which is to be associated with the region, or people of Gomer.
Diodorus Siculus, who lived about a century before Josephus, traces them much further into Europe than the Danube; even to the shores of the Baltic, and to the very confines of the Galatæ of the Greeks. In speaking of the amber found upon the shores of that sea, he there places the region expressly denominated, “Scythia above or north of Galatia”. In which description we at length find the Scythæ, or Magogæ, in the immediate neighbourhood of the Galatæ of the Greeks, or Gomer.
Galatia is the common and familiar name used by all the earlier Greek historians for Gaul, the Gallia of the Latin; and Galatæ is the common Greek name for Gauls, or the Galli of the Latins. Thus Strabo says, “all the Galatæ were called Celtæ by the Greeks”; and it is equally true that “the Celtæ were called Galatæ by the Greeks, and Galli by the Latins”. To inquire who were “the Galatæ of the Greeks” is therefore the same as to inquire who were the Galli of the Romans. A colony of these Galatæ or Galli in the third century before Christ, emigrated from Gaul and established themselves in Asia Minor; where they were ever after called by their Greek name, Galatians. Diodorus’ “Scythia above Gaul extending towards the Baltic”, accurately describes that large tract of Europe above the Rhine, or northern boundary of Gaul, through which flow the rivers Elbe, Ems, and Weser. Here, and in the countries immediately adjoining, were the Scythæ, bordering upon the Galatæ on the north; that is to say, a considerable part of Magog geographically associated with Gomer. Diodorus elsewhere describes the northern part of Galatia, or Gaul, as confining upon Scythia. “The Greeks”, says he, “call those who inhabit Marseilles and the inland territory, and all those who dwelt towards the Alps and Pyrenean mountains, by the name of Celts; but those who occupy the country lying to the northward, between the Ocean and the Hyrcynian mountain, and all others as far as Scythia, they denominate Galatæ; but the Romans call all those nations by one collective appellation, Galatæ that is, Galli.” These geographical affinities unite in the name of Celto-Scythæ, mentioned by Strabo. “The ancient Greeks”, says he, “at first called the northern nations by the general name of Scythians; but when they became acquainted with the nations in the west, they began to call them by the different names of Celts, and Celto-Scythæ”; and again, “the ancient Greek historians called the northern nations collectively Scythians and Celto-Scythæ”; which latter name plainly denoted the most western portion of the Scythæ, adjoining Gaul; of the number of whom were the “Scythæ on the north of the Galatæ”.
In this general description may be easily discerned that extended portion of the West of Europe, comprehending ancient Gaul, Belgium, and the countries bordering upon them, which constituted in our day the Napoleonic empire. Gomer, then, points immediately to France. “Scythia above Gaul”, or Magog above Gomer, that is, to the north of it, through which flows the Ems, Elbe, and Weser, is the country from which proceeded principally that renowned people who in the early ages of Romanism formed an extensive confederacy with their kindred nations upon the Rhine, which had migrated successively thither from the regions of the Danube; and who under the common denomination of Franks overran Gaul, and subdued it; and finally establishing their power and population in the conquered country, permanently superseded the name of Gaul by that of France. “As for the seats of the Franks”, says the Universal History, “it appears from their constant incursions into Gaul, that they dwelt on the banks of the Rhine in the neighbourhood of Mentz”. All historians speak of them as placed there till their settling in Gaul. Their country, according to the best modern geographers and historians, was bounded on the north by the Ocean and the Rhine; on the south by the Maine; and on the east by the Weser.
These were therefore the Celto-Scythians, or Scythians on the northern confine of Gaul; that is, Magog in contiguity with Gomer. The Chaldean interpreter applies the name of Magog to the Germans; in short, all the ancients looked for the Magog of scripture in the West. The Scythæ of Asia, who as we have seen were only a partial emigration, or reflux, from their ancient stock in Europe, cannot, with any soundness of criticism, be taken account of in this argument.
From the evidence, then, now before the reader, the proposition may be considered as fairly proved, that Daniel’s “king of the north” is the same power as Ezekiel’s “Gog”; and that Gog being the Russian Power in full manifestation, the king of the north and the Russian Power are identical. This position being established, we can now look around us, and far before us into the future, and be prepared to point out assuredly what will be the general progress and issue of the present Eastern Question.