As good watchers of Bible prophecies, we have to consider all of the prophecies.There are three events that have to occur according to God's word.1. Destruction of Gaza (Zephaniah 2:4).2. Destruction of Damascus (Isaiah 17:1).3. Destruction of Gog and Magog (Ezekial 38 & 39).I can imagine that events one and two may be connected, so that may only leave two events on a timeline.Some say that all of these events occur during the tribulation, but I am doubtful.
Ezekiel 39:9 begins the description of the aftermath of the Gog & Magog war. “Then those who live in the towns of Israel will go out and use the weapons for fuel and burn them up – the small and large shields, the bows and arrows, the war clubs and spears. For seven years they will use them for fuel."
It will take seven years to burn all the weapons. The tribulation will be seven years, so this gives us some sort of timeline with which to place this event. This event would either have to come at the very beginning of the tribulation or before to allow seven full years. However, this event cannot happen at the beginning of the tribulation because the tribulation begins with the antichrist signing a peace treaty with Israel. This treaty is not going to immediately be broken with this battle. It won’t be until 3 ½ years that the treaty is broken.
By my reasoning, all three of these events have to happen before the tribulation, but not necessarily before the rapture. If they have to happen before the rapture, we are in for a longer wait than I am prepared to admit. If they happen after the rapture, there appears to be a gap before the seven year tribulation starts.
That is the best rationale I can come up with. One scenario makes me happy insofar as it allows that the rapture could be this spring... and I am certainly watching for it. The other scenario is very depressing as it would mean a longer wait.
We really need the Holy Spirit to guide us in these matters. Our own preconceived ideas keep getting shot down. Time after time we keep coming up with the wrong ideas simply because we want them to be true, or we listened to the wrong TV minister who had all the "right" answers. Don't you ever get confused when a TV minister says we are out of here and then in the next minute he tells you to send in your money to join him on a cruise later this year??? I know I sure do!
I don't know with certainty how these events will play out, but I know we need to be filled with the Spirit in order to prayerfully ask the right questions and arrive at the right answers.