Army of Darkness

One question we try to keep in mind when we dig into this type of research is, “So what?” It’s a simple question, but it’s very important. So what if spirits of the Nephilim were venerated by the pagan nations around ancient Israel? What does that have to do with us today? You’re probably already ahead of us here, but in the interest of clarity, let us spell it out: It appears that Ezekiel’s vision of the ultimate destruction of Gog and his horde involves an army of the dead.

First, let’s look at the significance of Gog. Remember, his home base is yarkete tsaphon, Mount Zaphon. This is the place Isaiah identified as the mount of assembly of the divine rebel in Eden who schemed to overthrow his sovereign Lord. And it was known to the world as the place where the storm-god, Baal, lived in his palace of gold and silver.

Not coincidentally, it was also where the Greeks believed their storm-god, Zeus, defeated the chaos-serpent Typhon, who dove under the mountain to escape the thunderbolts of Zeus and in so doing carved out the channel of the Orontes River. This is the Greek version of the chaoskampf, the name scholars give to the common ancient Near Eastern myth of a warrior god who defeated chaos to create or preserve order. The Bible has the original story, of course, in which Yahweh crushed the heads of Leviathan (Psalm 74:14), but the story was repeated by Amorites from Babylon (Marduk vs. Tiamat) to Ugarit (Baal vs. Yamm). The story traveled north to the Hurrians and Hittites (Teshub or Tarhunz, the storm-god, vs. the chaos-dragon Illuyankas), and finally west to Greece, where it was transformed into the epic battle between Zeus and the hundred-headed serpentine monster, Typhon.

To make this point clear, in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus specifically connected the storm-god, Baal, to Satan:

Then a demon-oppressed man who was blind and mute was brought to him, and he healed him, so that the man spoke and saw. And all the people were amazed, and said, “Can this be the Son of David?” But when the Pharisees heard it, they said, “It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this man casts out demons.” Knowing their thoughts, he said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is laid waste, and no city or house divided against itself will stand. And if Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand?

Matthew 12:22–26, ESV (emphasis added)

Beelzebul means “Baal the Prince.” Jesus specifically identified the storm-god as Satan. And then, in the Revelation of John, He linked Satan to the storm-god, Zeus:

And to the angel of the church in Pergamum write: “The words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword. I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is. Yet you hold fast my name, and you did not deny my faith even in the days of Antipas my faithful witness, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells.”

Revelation 2:12–13, ESV

Pergamum was in western Asia Minor, near the Aegean Sea. It was home to a famous and elaborate altar to Zeus, where he was hailed as a savior. Most scholars lean toward the view that Jesus had that altar in mind when He called out Satan’s throne. So, in short: Zeus = Baal = Satan. Because Isaiah identified Mount Zaphon as the mount of assembly of the rebel from Eden, it would be logical to identify the rebel in Isaiah 14, often called Lucifer, as Zeus/Satan. We made that connection until recently. During the research for Derek’s book The Second Coming of Saturn, we changed our opinion. The evidence suggests that the rebel in Isaiah 14, and the parallel chapter in Ezekiel 28, was the leader of the “sons of God” mentioned in Genesis 6:1–4. This is the character known by various names throughout history, including Enlil, Assur, El, Molech, Kronos, and Saturn. It appears that after this entity was sent to the bottomless pit for his rebellion,[1] Satan/Baal claimed Mount Zaphon as his own mount of assembly.

As a servant of Satan, Mount Zaphon is where Gog, the Antichrist, will assemble his army. The uttermost parts of the north, yarkete tsaphon, refers to Mount Zaphon, today called Jebel al-Aqra in Turkey.

Many of us, fascinated by the prophecy of Ezekiel, have tried for years to discern the identity of Gog by interpreting the headlines. That’s pulled us in the wrong direction as we looked for a human ruler to fit the role. While a human will undoubtedly be connected to this figure, we’ve lost sight of the fact that we should be looking for a supernatural character.

But here’s where we get even more supernatural.

Remember that we previously cited several texts from the Amorite kingdom of Ugarit calling the spirits of the Rephaim “warriors of Baal.” Also remember that, in a previous article, we showed you that the Rephaim spirits—demons—were called Travelers, because they traveled from one plane of existence to another.

Consider this question: When the servant of Satan/Baal called Gog—the Antichrist—leads his army to the mountains of Israel, how many “warriors of Baal” will be marching with the troops?

By the time of that battle, we believe the church of believers in Jesus Christ will be off the earth. That conflict ends with Armageddon. To ask the question another way, with the church gone and the “restrainer” Paul mentioned in 2 Thessalonians 2:6 removed to give the Antichrist free rein, how many soldiers in the army of the Antichrist will be demonically possessed? Some of them? All of them?

If, as we believe, demons are the spirits of the Rephaim, the demigod sons of the Titans who died in Noah’s Flood, then the horde of Gog will essentially be an army of the living dead.

This is consistent with Second Temple Jewish beliefs about the prophesied fate of the Nephilim. The Book of Enoch tells us that God’s judgment on the Nephilim will take place on “the day of the consummation of the great judgment, when the great age will be consummated.”[2] That’s the Day of the Lord, which is when Armageddon will be fought—and we repeat, the Gog-Magog war ends at Armageddon.

Ezekiel specifically identified the battlefield where Gog’s warriors are slain as the Valley of the Travelers—the valley of the spirits of the Rephaim. Now, catch this:

On that day I will give to Gog a place for burial in Israel, the Valley of the Travelers, east of the sea. It will block the travelers, for their Gog and all his multitude will be buried.

Ezekiel 39:11, ESV (emphasis added)

Block the travelers? What does that mean?

It could mean that so many bodies will fall in the valley that people literally won’t be able to travel along the King’s Highway in Jordan. Okay, in a war of this size, especially because God intervenes and rains fire from Heaven on Magog (notice how Yahweh uses what’s supposed to be Baal’s weapon, the thunderbolt), that seems plausible. But this is an army of demonically possessed soldiers—we know, it sounds weird when you say it out loud—so maybe there’s something more to this than a physical obstacle created by a multitude of dead bodies.

The Hebrew word translated “block,” wəḥōsemeṯ, is based on the root chasam,[3] which is only used twice in the Old Testament. The other verse is Deuteronomy 25:4: “You shall not muzzle an ox when it is treading out the grain.” So, “block” means “muzzle.” To muzzle an animal is to restrain it so it can’t eat or bite, which is much more specific than creating an impassable obstacle. How demons are muzzled, we don’t know, but we trust that God has a plan for that.

Some scholars, following the KJV, take this to mean it will “stop the noses” of travelers along the King’s Highway, apparently because of the stench of the decaying dead. But let’s view this in the context of the necromancy rituals from Ugarit.

Their rites summoned the spirits of the Travelers, the Rephaim, to ritual meals at the house or sanctuary of El. Since Ezekiel wrote under God’s direction, we can assume that he was aware of this. Then the prophecy of the destruction of the army of Gog is a reversal of those rituals. On the day of the Lord, instead of arriving at a ritual meal to be revivified by “the blessings of the name of El,” they will be muzzled—prevented from doing whatever they did when they traveled, came over, or crossed over from the land of the dead to the realm of the living. Why? Because they’ll be muzzled with extreme prejudice.

At this point, you may be thinking, “Interesting, but linking the Valley of the Travelers to a few lines in an Amorite necromancy ritual is pretty flimsy evidence to claim that spirits of the Nephilim will be the soldiers of Gog.”

Fair enough. Hang tight. There’s more to come.

We’re building the case that Ezekiel’s prophecy is of the final battle, Armageddon, and that the venerated dead of the Amorites, the Rephaim, play a key role. But that crossing by the Travelers, to serve as warriors of Baal in the attack on Zion, will be their last one. Ever.

[1] 2 Peter 2:4, Jude 6–7.

[2] Nickelsburg, George W.E. 1 Enoch: The Hermeneia Translation (Fortress Press. Kindle Edition), p. 37.

[3] Strong’s H2629.

1 Comment

  1. Nathan Reynolds’s is the man’s name. He had a very interesting YouTube interview called The house of the Dragon. I think you two should listen to it. He is explaining the lion men of Moab. He would make a great guest on VFTB

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