Although it would seem that the two terms in the title of this article would bring to mind the same things, it really depends on your outlook and whose end time prophesy you are listening to. Some preachers and "end time" prophecy experts have quite divergent views on what is going to happen in the near future, and most of them also differ considerably from what is found in scripture.
For instance, renowned Scripture Prophecy Experts, such as Jack Van Impe, Hal Lindsay, and Grant R. Jeffrey have made statements to the effect that Russia represents the scriptural Gowg and Magowg and she is going to attack "Israel" to bring about the "Battle of Armageddon," and immediately after that battle Yahushua (they erroneously call Him Jesus) will return and we will stand before the throne for our "Final Judgment."
I have also heard many Baptist and other Protestant preachers make similar statements concerning that battle and what they call "Judgment Day." They may not say specifically that Gowg and Magowg are represented by Russia (they used to say the USSR until it disintegrated) but the implication was still that some country from the north of "Israel" would make the first attack and that would result in the dreaded "Battle of Armageddon." Russia is almost always the nation pointed at for this invasion. Some of the "experts" then changed their minds for a while in favor of the European Economic Union when that organization first got started, but then that group gained more than ten members so it no longer fit the ten kings criterion and they had to fall back on Russia.
I am NOT a scholar of scripture but just someone who can read and understand for myself what is said in scripture, just as can anyone else who is truly interested. I can rightly divide the word of truth because I have a sincere desire to do so.
So can you.
I want to know the truth and not just accept what some "Bible scholar" tells me is the truth.
So can you.
It has been my experience that if you put several "Bible Scholars" on the same stage and ask each one of them the same question, more likely than not you will get the same number of different answers as you have "Bible Scholars" and these answers will not even agree with each other, much less with scripture
Scripture always agrees with itself and that is where truth resides.
My questions about what these preachers and prophecy experts say about end times "battles" are: Where in scripture can anything be found that says or even implies the "Russia as Gowg and Magowg" scenario? What am I missing that they can see?
I will answer my own questions too. Very definitely and unequivocally the answers to both of them are nowhere and nothing, respectively.
Nowhere - because that scenario is not described in scripture.
They all quote scripture, and if you will go look up the scripture they quote you will see battles being fought, and kings of the north and south, and Har-Meggidown (Armageddon) etc., but nowhere will you see any or all of these elements come together into one big bang of a battle called Armageddon.
Russia is also too far north to satisfy the scriptural requirements for the named nations. Gowg is not a country at all but the name of a person from Magowg. The countries of Tubal, Magowg, and Meshech are all in modern day Turkey (See the Table of Nations - B'ereshiyth [Genesis] 10) which is on the south side of the Black Sea, so it would seem to me that if the "experts" were going to guess what country was going to invade Yisra'el from the north that they would guess Turkey and not Russia.
There are actually two "end times" battles described in scripture and they are both described very plainly and in some detail. It is also very plain that the battles are separated in time by at least one thousand years. More on that directly.
Nothing - Somebody is missing something all right but it is not me! It is those who do not rightly divide the word (2 Timotheos [Timothy] 2:15)!
The TWO "end time battles" described in scripture have specific qualities and characteristics associated with each of them that show clearly that they are separate events that occur far apart in time.
The first battle is at the end of this age which is NOT the end of time. At the end of this age the looked for One World Government is being run by the son of perdition who requires all people to have the "mark of the beast" or die (see Antichrist article). This first battle is often and erroneously referred to as "The Battle of Armageddon."
The other one described in scripture is not a real battle at all. It is a gathering to an intended battle AFTER the millennial reign of Yahushua, but Yahuwah blasts the intended warriors, Gowg and Magowg, out of existence without any real fighting ever happening. This one occurs at the REAL end of time, some unspecified time after the millennial reign of Yahushua, and is just before the FINAL Judgment. So the Final Battle, which is not really a battle at all, does NOT happen at the time of Yahushua's return, but over one thousand years later.
The First Battle
The Battle of Yeruwshalom (Jerusalem) - this battle has the characteristics of having ALL the kings of the earth involved (not just Tubal, Meshech, and Magowg), is against a nation that is reeling from the continued punishment from Yahuwah for their disbelief and disobedience, and it occurs after a long period of world suffering. The leader of this group is the man of sin (second beast). His troops will actually capture the city and do all kinds of things to its inhabitants such as murder, pillage, and rape. Yahushua returns in the MIDST of this battle in all His splendor and to the same spot from where He left that city, the Mount of Olives. This battle is a real fight until He returns and it happens BEFORE Satan is placed in his thousand-year imprisonment. There is no FINAL judgment yet. That still lies over a thousand years in the future. For the scriptural description and accounts leading to this battle read Revelation 16:12-14 and 16.
NOTE: Armageddon, which according to the statement in that verse should have been rendered as Har-Meggidown, means the "hills of Meggidown," is located about 56 miles north-northwest of Yeruwshalom. This place is the staging (gathering) area for the Battle of Yeruwshalom and NOT the place of the battle itself. So as I stated above there is no such thing as a "Battle of Armageddon" in scripture, but a Battle of Yeruwshalom instead.
ZekarYahuw (Zechariah) has a very detailed account and description of this battle in ZekarYahuw 14:2-9. This account squares very neatly with the account given in Revelation 19:11-21 and it also gives a little more detail. Note that you do not find mention of Gowg or Magowg as being involved in the battle in the accounts of ZekarYahuw or Revelation.
The Second Battle
Right AFTER the first battle, the one properly named The Battle of Yeruwshalom, Satan is imprisoned for his thousand-year stint in the pit and the millennial reign of Yahushua on the earth begins. After the thousand years he is released to stir things up again and so he does. Now comes Gowg and Magowg, over one thousand years after the return of Yahushua. Yechezq'el (Ezekiel) has a very good account, also in much more detail than the Revelation account (20:12-15), of this "battle," its participants, and its results. Read the entire thirty-eighth chapter of Yechezq'el and see what you learn.
The Final Judgment
Now take a look at Revelation 20:12-15. Here you will see that AFTER this second (or final) battle, the "final" judgment takes place. From this time on the present earth, with its sky, its oceans, etc. will cease to exist. Hell (she'owl) will be emptied and destroyed too. Here each person whose name is in the book of life is judged on his faults and merits and will receive his (or her) appropriate reward. If they are not in the book of life they are consigned to the lake of fire (not hell) where the dragon, the false prophet, the first beast, and the second beast already are. This judgment takes place over one thousand years AFTER the return of Yahushua.
Read all of the mentioned scripture plus as much around it as you desire to ensure that you in fact are seeing the full and correct context of what you are reading. Then consider the stories you have heard about these events and you will see that those stories have been much less than the scriptural truth.
Believe Yahuwah, not man!
Sequence of Events of the Times of the End