By Nathan Jones
How does God's victories in the past answer an imprecatory prayer about the promised rebirth of a nation?
In this "The Truth Will Set You Free" TWave Radio episode, Pastor Vic Batista of Miami's Calvary Chapel Aventura and I will discuss the end times war found in Psalm 83.
Vic Batista: Nathan, take us through Psalm 83:5-8. Then we'll pick it back up in verse 9. Continue bringing us through this incredible prophecy given here in Psalm 83.
Nathan Jones: Psalm 83:5-8 names all the nations that surround Israel. Then it goes into verse 9, which is a comparison of former battles that Israel had won. Verse 9 reads:
"Deal with them as with Midian, as with Sisera, as with Jabin at the Brook Kishon, who perished at En Dor, who became as refuse on the earth. Make their nobles like Oreb and like Zeeb, yes, all their princes like Zebah and Zalmunna, who said, 'Let us take for ourselves the pastures of God for a possession.'"
Here in verses 9-12 Asaph is making a comparison between what Israel needed to do and how Israel once had to defeat different enemies in the past, and how God used miraculous victories against overwhelming odds in order for Israel to win. Asaph is bring up a lot of different stories from Israel's history, especially those that happened in the book of Judges.
Vic Batista: That's a picture of how God's promises will be fulfilled today due to His protection of Israel in the past. We are going to see God's hand protecting the nation of Israel in the future when it comes to dealing with their surrounding enemies.
The Imprecatory Prayer
Vic Batista: In Psalm 83:13-18, we are taken along more through this incredible journey.
Nathan Jones: We'll continue on then with verses 13-18:
"O, my God, make them like the whirling dust, like the chaff before the wind! As the fire burns the woods, and as the flame sets the mountains on fire, so pursue them with Your tempest, and frighten them with Your storm. Fill their faces with shame, that they may seek Your name, O Lord. Let them be confounded and dismayed forever; yes, let them be put to shame and perish, that they may know that You, whose name alone is the Lord, are the Most High over all the earth."
Vic Batista: That passage reminds me about the prophecy in Daniel given to the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar when he was the world ruler in his time. We find that Nebuchadnezzar was disobedient and so his kingdom was taken and ripped from him until he repented and gave God the glory due Him. We see how God has worked this way in the past, and likewise He is going to continue to work into the future.
Nathan Jones: Exactly! God will humble the proud. He reminds people that He is in charge. Psalm 2 is a fantastic Psalm about that. Psalm 2 reveals how God sits in the heavens and laughs as the nations plot in vain.
When it comes to Psalm 83, people sometimes wonder if this is really a prophecy, because it's labeled as an imprecatory prayer. An imprecatory prayer is a prayer that calls down justice and judgment upon an enemy. That is indeed what we are ready here. But, because Asaph is a prophet and Psalm 83 fits into Ezekiel 38 & 39 so well, we know that this Psalm also has to be a prophecy.
Vic Batista: That's why it's so important to read everything in its context.
A Nation Reborn
Vic Batista: Let's look at Ezekiel 37 where it foretells about a nation that would be rebirthed instantly back from the dead.
Nathan Jones: Ezekiel 37 is about the Valley of Dry Bones. This is a prophecy that was given to Ezekiel some 2,600 years ago. The prophecy goes that Israel would be a dead nation, but one day it would be brought back to life. He's shown a valley of dead bodies. The bones, the flesh, the sinews, the muscles — they all come together and reform back into bodies which stand up and becomes life-like. These revived bodies become a mighty army. They wait for their spirits to be given them, which is the Holy Spirit that will give them life. To truly have life we know they will need to become believers in God and accept His Son, Jesus Christ, as Savior.
The valley of dry bones coming back to life is the prerequisite before the Psalm 83 War and the Gog & Magog War. Israel has to be reborn as a nation once again and become a mighty army in order to fight these prophetic wars. And, we've seen that rebirth happen within our lifetime. Man, that is exciting! That rebirth means means that Jesus Christ is coming back soon.
Vic Batista: I love your Bible Prophecy Insights video depicting those dry bones coming back to life. Here it is:
Nathan Jones: We truly live in exciting times, because what nation has ever come back to life after being dead for 1,900 years?
Vic Batista: None. That's why Ezekiel 37 is such an incredible prophecy!
Nathan Jones: To top it off, the reborn nation is not just any nation. It is the nation of the Bible — Israel — and it is in fulfillment of so many prophecies. God said one day He would regather the Jews out of the nations of the world and bring them back into Israel again. We are seeing that today.
God through Asaph prophesied that the nations surrounding Israel would want Israel destroyed. We just read that in Psalm 83. Ezekiel prophesied that Russia would lead a coalition of Islamic nations against Israel, and those alliance are forming today. And, at the end of the seven-year Tribulation, all of the nations of the world led by a one-world ruler called the Antichrist will again try to destroy Israel. Again and again, God steps in and he defeats the enemies of Israel.
Vic Batista: Excellent to see God's faithfulness!
In the ninth and last segment of our survey of the Psalm 83 War, Vic and I will marvel in God's endgame — to God be the glory!