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The Future of the Philistines in Gaza

Isaiah 14 warns of the future destruction of Gaza. Hezbollah, Iran or Syria may strike with sarin, VX or a nerve gas. Whoever it is they will destroy the population of Gaza. The terrible loss in Gaza could be the first battle of a great war or it could one of many when war breaks out in the tribulation. Whatever the case it is one place to avoid.

Philistines Are Alive Today

All the scholars that I have heard speaking of the Philistines, say they do not exist today. Well, at same time, all the scholars used to say the earth was flat. What does the Bible say. Isaiah 11 prophecies about the restoration of Israel. In 1948 the United Nations recognized Israel as a nation partially restoring the country. Previously the Jews lived in the land under the British rule. Verse 11 mentions the rebirth of Israel. Verse 14 mentions Philistines living in the west. They did not disappear or die off in the past.

Isaiah 11
10 And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.
11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.
12 And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.
13 The envy also of Ephraim shall depart, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off: Ephraim shall not envy Judah, and Judah shall not vex Ephraim.
14 But they shall fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; they shall spoil them of the east together: they shall lay their hand upon Edom and Moab; and the children of Ammon shall obey them.
15 And the LORD shall utterly destroy the tongue of the Egyptian sea; and with his mighty wind shall he shake his hand over the river, and shall smite it in the seven streams, and make men go over dryshod.
16 And there shall be an highway for the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria; like as it was to Israel in the day that he came up out of the land of Egypt.

Isaiah Warns The Remnant Will Be Slain

The Jews were recovered a second time in the last century. When Israel was recovered, the remnant of the Philistines existed in Gaza. So what happens to them? In the future, it looks like all the Palestinians will disappear. In Isaiah 14, people focus on what the think is the fall of Lucifer, but don't talk much about the end of the chapter that has another section. Just because verses are placed together in a Bible chapter does not make them related.

Isaiah 14
28 In the year that king Ahaz died was this burden.
29 Rejoice not thou, whole Palestina, because the rod of him that smote thee is broken: for out of the serpent's root shall come forth a cockatrice, and his fruit shall be a fiery flying serpent.
30 And the firstborn of the poor shall feed, and the needy shall lie down in safety: and I will kill thy root with famine, and he shall slay thy remnant.
31 Howl, O gate; cry, O city; thou, whole Palestina, art dissolved: for there shall come from the north a smoke, and none shall be alone in his appointed times.
32 What shall one then answer the messengers of the nation? That the LORD hath founded Zion, and the poor of his people shall trust in it.

Verse 28 appears to be an introduction for verses 29-32, rather than an end for the previous verses, but either way it will not change the meaning. Palestina (Strong's word 6429) is the land or place where Philistines (Strong's word 6430) in chapter 11 live. In verse 30, the root is killed with famine and the remnant slain. If this passage applied to destruction already fulfilled then the Philistines would not be around as described in Isaiah chapter 11. Since Philistines are present after the restoration of Israel, the passage in Isaiah 14 has to apply to the destruction of the Philistines, and hence, Gaza, in the future.

Who or what is the rod in verse 29? In the Bible rod refers to an actual physical rod as with Jacob and Aaron. It also refers to a rod as a means of discipline as well as other forceful means of discipline and those who implement it. A rod can mean a ruler or oppressor. If the rod, which is broken, were merely a physical rod the passage would be confusing. There would not be a reason for the Gazans to rejoice if it were broken. The definition of rod could be Israel. Gaza would rejoice over any harm that would come upon Israel. It could be America, who is viewed as a power backer and friend of Israel, who gets broken. America will be broken but the exact timing is not clear. For more information see Isaiah 18 and the Future of America. The rod may also refer to Bashar al-Assad. Palestinian opposition to his rule is growing. The word serpent often refers to Satan. The word cockatrice is from the Hebrew word tsepha (see Strong's word 6848) that is a poisonous snake; some people think it is the Palestinian Viper or Daboia Palestinae. Isn't there a proverb, "In the face a brother. In the back a serpent."?

It does not seem likely that fiery flying serpents will actually come and wipe out Gaza. It looks more like this is a prophetic description of missiles that exist today. They take off with fire and smoke, continue with fire coming out of the back while they fly, then come and quickly strike with death. With chemical weapons, they actually have venom.

Verse 30 says the root will be killed with famine and the remnant slain. I could be wrong but it sounds like when the remnant is slain there will be no more Philistines. How do they die? Verse 31 says a smoke will come from the north. In a confined building the smoke from a fire will kill first but in the open countryside a smoke by itself would have to be very strong to wipe out a whole population. The word smoke here is 'ashan (Strong's 6227) (aw-shawn') from Strong's H6225; smoke, literally or figuratively (vapor, dust, anger):-smoke (-ing).

A massive rage of anger would hurt the Gazans as well as an extremely dense smoke. Also, though, a vapor would do it. A fiery flying serpent that kills with a vapor would describe missiles with nerve gas. Syria, for example, is said to have stockpiles of sarin, VX and tabun nerve gases. Mustard gas has also been used in the Middle East as a weapon. Iraq used chemical weapons in the war with Iran during the 1980's. If something like this hits Gaza the vapor would destroy it. Today, the Hezbollah are ready to fight Israel again. The word now is that they have medium range missiles from Iran. Syria may respond to a pre-emptive attack by Israel or the United States of America. Syria, or Iranian forces, may direct violence towards Israel. It is very foreseeable that one of the groups, Hezbollah, Iran or Syria, will launch a deadly missile attack on Tel Aviv and overshoot the mark. A civil war may also be the cause. Fatah and Hamas have been at odds with each other. It is possible that Fatah will fire from the West Bank. Is would be difficult, but not impossible. When this will happen and who will be responsible is not clear. There are many possibilities. Sadly, the Gaza strip is a short time away from a catastrophe. We know the damage that will be done. Stop Hezbollah, Syria, Iran, Fatah and Hamas.

Ezekiel Says The Remnant Will Destroyed

When the book of Ezekiel says the remnant is destroyed it is more than a punishment, testing or trial. It is final. It is the end. Again, since the Philistines still exist today in Gaza this is a future event.

Ezekiel 25
15 Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because the Philistines have dealt by revenge, and have taken vengeance with a despiteful heart, to destroy it for the old hatred;
16 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will stretch out mine hand upon the Philistines, and I will cut off the Cherethims, and destroy the remnant of the sea coast.
17 And I will execute great vengeance upon them with furious rebukes; and they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall lay my vengeance upon them.

Amos Says They Will Perish

Cut off and perish are words that mean complete and final. This is not good for the people of Gaza but it will happen.

Amos 1
6 Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Gaza, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they carried away captive the whole captivity, to deliver them up to Edom:
7 But I will send a fire on the wall of Gaza, which shall devour the palaces thereof:
8 And I will cut off the inhabitant from Ashdod, and him that holdeth the sceptre from Ashkelon, and I will turn mine hand against Ekron: and the remnant of the Philistines shall perish, saith the Lord GOD.

Zephaniah Prophesies About Gaza

I cannot say for sure whether the following passage applies to the past or future. The reference in verse 2 to the day of the LORD'S anger is similar to the day of the Lord which is a future event.

Zephaniah 2
1 Gather yourselves together, yea, gather together, O nation not desired;
2 Before the decree bring forth, before the day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger of the LORD come upon you, before the day of the LORD'S anger come upon you.
3 Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD'S anger.
4 For Gaza shall be forsaken, and Ashkelon a desolation: they shall drive out Ashdod at the noon day, and Ekron shall be rooted up.
5 Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea coast, the nation of the Cherethites! the word of the LORD is against you; O Canaan, the land of the Philistines, I will even destroy thee, that there shall be no inhabitant.
6 And the sea coast shall be dwellings and cottages for shepherds, and folds for flocks.
7 And the coast shall be for the remnant of the house of Judah; they shall feed thereupon: in the houses of Ashkelon shall they lie down in the evening: for the LORD their God shall visit them, and turn away their captivity.

There Is Hope

While I cannot stop the destroyer, I can tell you about another way out. It profits you nothing to gain the whole world but lose your own soul. While you may be safe or you may get killed, without Jesus nothing else matters. What matters is that you spend eternity with God. God has a son. His name is Jesus. God sent his son to die on a cross and become the ultimate sacrifice. He paid the entire price for our sins on the cross. There is nothing we can do ourselves. We are unworthy. Jesus rose the third day to become the first of the resurrection and prove he is Lord. What really matters in life is whether you accept Jesus as Lord. Life is a test and the only answer is Jesus. Without Jesus it does not matter whether you die in Gaza, escape tragedy in Gaza or live a total life of luxury somewhere else. What matters is that you spend eternal life in heaven. Without Jesus, you will live in hell after you die. Instead, you can call upon the Lord to save you. Salvation is so simple to attain that most people don't want to accept it. It is based on faith. Jesus does all the work. If you want to be saved and have eternal life read about salvation.

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The Future

Go to Google Earth   See Gaza from above (Use 31 31' 27.30" N 34 26'44.95"E for the coordinates if you are not familiar with the location.)

Damascus  What is store for Damascus?

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