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Ezekiel 38The Message (MSG)

God Against Gog

38 1-6 God’s Message came to me: “Son of man, confront Gog from the country of Magog, head of Meshech and Tubal. Prophesy against him. Say, ‘God, the Master, says: Be warned, Gog. I am against you, head of Meshech and Tubal. I’m going to turn you around, put hooks in your jaws, and drag you off with your whole army, your horses and riders in full armor—all those shields and bucklers and swords—fighting men armed to the teeth! Persia and Cush and Put will be in the ranks, also well-armed, as will Gomer and its army and Beth-togarmah out of the north with its army. Many nations will be with you!

7-9 “‘Get ready to fight, you and the whole company that’s been called out. Take charge and wait for orders. After a long time, you’ll be given your orders. In the distant future you’ll arrive at a country that has recovered from a devastating war. People from many nations will be gathered there on the mountains of Israel, for a long time now a wasteland. These people have been brought back from many countries and now live safe and secure. You’ll rise like a thunderstorm and roll in like clouds and cover the land, you and the massed troops with you.

10-12 “‘Message of God, the Master: At that time you’ll start thinking things over and cook up an evil plot. You’ll say, “I’m going to invade a country without defenses, attack an unsuspecting, carefree people going about their business—no gates to their cities, no locks on their doors. And I’m going to plunder the place, march right in and clean them out, this rebuilt country risen from the ashes, these returned exiles and their booming economy centered down at the navel of the earth.”

13 “‘Sheba and Dedan and Tarshish, traders all out to make a fast buck, will say, “So! You’ve opened a new market for plunder! You’ve brought in your troops to get rich quick!”’

14-16 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy! Tell Gog, ‘A Message from God, the Master: When my people Israel are established securely, will you make your move? Will you come down out of the far north, you and that mob of armies, charging out on your horses like a tidal wave across the land, and invade my people Israel, covering the country like a cloud? When the time’s ripe, I’ll unleash you against my land in such a way that the nations will recognize me, realize that through you, Gog, in full view of the nations, I am putting my holiness on display.

17-22 “‘A Message of God, the Master: Years ago when I spoke through my servants, the prophets of Israel, wasn’t it you I was talking about? Year after year they prophesied that I would bring you against them. And when the day comes, Gog, you will attack that land of Israel. Decree of God, the Master. My raging anger will erupt. Fueled by blazing jealousy, I tell you that then there will be an earthquake that rocks the land of Israel. Fish and birds and wild animals—even ants and beetles!—and every human being will tremble and shake before me. Mountains will disintegrate, terraces will crumble. I’ll order all-out war against you, Gog—Decree of God, the Master—Gog killing Gog on all the mountains of Israel. I’ll deluge Gog with judgment: disease and massacre, torrential rain and hail, volcanic lava pouring down on you and your mobs of troops and people.

23 “‘I’ll show you how great I am, how holy I am. I’ll make myself known all over the world. Then you’ll realize that I am God.’”

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

Ezekiel 39The Message (MSG)

Call the Wild Animals!

39 1-5 “Son of man, prophesy against Gog. Say, ‘A Message of God, the Master: I’m against you, Gog, head of Meshech and Tubal. I’m going to turn you around and drag you out, drag you out of the far north and down on the mountains of Israel. Then I’ll knock your bow out of your left hand and your arrows from your right hand. On the mountains of Israel you’ll be slaughtered, you and all your troops and the people with you. I’ll serve you up as a meal to carrion birds and scavenging animals. You’ll be killed in the open field. I’ve given my word. Decree of God, the Master.’

“I’ll set fire to Magog and the far-off islands, where people are so seemingly secure. And they’ll realize that I am God.

“I’ll reveal my holy name among my people Israel. Never again will I let my holy name be dragged in the mud. Then the nations will realize that I, God, am The Holy in Israel.

“It’s coming! Yes, it will happen! This is the day I’ve been telling you about.

9-10 “People will come out of the cities of Israel and make a huge bonfire of the weapons of war, piling on shields large and small, bows and arrows, clubs and spears, a fire they’ll keep going for seven years. They won’t need to go into the woods to get fuel for the fire. There’ll be plenty of weapons to keep it going. They’ll strip those who stripped them. They’ll rob those who robbed them. Decree of God, the Master.

11 “At that time I’ll set aside a burial ground for Gog in Israel at Traveler’s Rest, just east of the sea. It will obstruct the route of travelers, blocking their way, the mass grave of Gog and his mob of an army. They’ll call the place Gog’s Mob.

12-16 “Israel will bury the corpses in order to clean up the land. It will take them seven months. All the people will turn out to help with the burials. It will be a big day for the people when it’s all done and I’m given my due. Men will be hired full-time for the cleanup burial operation and will go through the country looking for defiling, decomposing corpses. At the end of seven months, there’ll be an all-out final search. Anyone who sees a bone will mark the place with a stick so the buriers can get it and bury it in the mass burial site, Gog’s Mob. (A town nearby is called Mobville, or Hamonah.) That’s how they’ll clean up the land.

17-20 “Son of man, God, the Master, says: Call the birds! Call the wild animals! Call out, ‘Gather and come, gather around my sacrificial meal that I’m preparing for you on the mountains of Israel. You’ll eat meat and drink blood. You’ll eat off the bodies of great heroes and drink the blood of famous princes as if they were so many rams and lambs, goats and bulls, the choicest grain-fed animals of Bashan. At the sacrificial meal I’m fixing for you, you’ll eat fat till you’re stuffed and drink blood till you’re drunk. At the table I set for you, you’ll stuff yourselves with horses and riders, heroes and fighters of every kind.’ Decree of God, the Master.

21-24 “I’ll put my glory on display among the nations and they’ll all see the judgment I execute, see me at work handing out judgment. From that day on, Israel will realize that I am their God. And the nations will get the message that it was because of their sins that Israel went into exile. They were disloyal to me and I turned away from them. I turned them over to their enemies and they were all killed. I treated them as their polluted and sin-sated lives deserved. I turned away from them, refused to look at them.

25-29 “But now I will return Jacob back from exile, I’ll be compassionate with all the people of Israel, and I’ll be zealous for my holy name. Eventually the memory will fade, the memory of their shame over their betrayals of me when they lived securely in their own land, safe and unafraid. Once I’ve brought them back from foreign parts, gathered them in from enemy territories, I’ll use them to demonstrate my holiness with all the nations watching. Then they’ll realize for sure that I am their God, for even though I sent them off into exile, I will gather them back to their own land, leaving not one soul behind. After I’ve poured my Spirit on Israel, filled them with my life, I’ll no longer turn away. I’ll look them full in the face. Decree of God, the Master.”

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

Psalm 145The Message (MSG)

David’s Praise

145 I lift you high in praise, my God, O my King!
    and I’ll bless your name into eternity.

I’ll bless you every day,
    and keep it up from now to eternity.

God is magnificent; he can never be praised enough.
    There are no boundaries to his greatness.

Generation after generation stands in awe of your work;
    each one tells stories of your mighty acts.

Your beauty and splendor have everyone talking;
    I compose songs on your wonders.

Your marvelous doings are headline news;
    I could write a book full of the details of your greatness.

The fame of your goodness spreads across the country;
    your righteousness is on everyone’s lips.

God is all mercy and grace—
    not quick to anger, is rich in love.

God is good to one and all;
    everything he does is suffused with grace.

10-11 Creation and creatures applaud you, God;
    your holy people bless you.

They talk about the glories of your rule,
    they exclaim over your splendor,

12 Letting the world know of your power for good,
    the lavish splendor of your kingdom.

13 Your kingdom is a kingdom eternal;
    you never get voted out of office.

God always does what he says,
    and is gracious in everything he does.

14 God gives a hand to those down on their luck,
    gives a fresh start to those ready to quit.

15 All eyes are on you, expectant;
    you give them their meals on time.

16 Generous to a fault,
    you lavish your favor on all creatures.

17 Everything God does is right—
    the trademark on all his works is love.

18 God’s there, listening for all who pray,
    for all who pray and mean it.

19 He does what’s best for those who fear him—
    hears them call out, and saves them.

20 God sticks by all who love him,
    but it’s all over for those who don’t.

21 My mouth is filled with God’s praise.
    Let everything living bless him,
    bless his holy name from now to eternity!

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

Revelation 20The Message (MSG)

A Thousand Years

20 1-3 I saw an Angel descending out of Heaven. He carried the key to the Abyss and a chain—a huge chain. He grabbed the Dragon, that old Snake—the very Devil, Satan himself!—chained him up for a thousand years, dumped him into the Abyss, slammed it shut and sealed it tight. No more trouble out of him, deceiving the nations—until the thousand years are up. After that he has to be let loose briefly.

4-6 I saw thrones. Those put in charge of judgment sat on the thrones. I also saw the souls of those beheaded because of their witness to Jesus and the Word of God, who refused to worship either the Beast or his image, refused to take his mark on forehead or hand—they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years! The rest of the dead did not live until the thousand years were up. This is the first resurrection—and those involved most blessed, most holy. No second death for them! They’re priests of God and Christ; they’ll reign with him a thousand years.

7-10 When the thousand years are up, Satan will be let loose from his cell, and will launch again his old work of deceiving the nations, searching out victims in every nook and cranny of earth, even Gog and Magog! He’ll talk them into going to war and will gather a huge army, millions strong. They’ll stream across the earth, surround and lay siege to the camp of God’s holy people, the Beloved City. They’ll no sooner get there than fire will pour out of Heaven and burn them up. The Devil who deceived them will be hurled into Lake Fire and Brimstone, joining the Beast and False Prophet, the three in torment around the clock for ages without end.

Judgment

11-15 I saw a Great White Throne and the One Enthroned. Nothing could stand before or against the Presence, nothing in Heaven, nothing on earth. And then I saw all the dead, great and small, standing there—before the Throne! And books were opened. Then another book was opened: the Book of Life. The dead were judged by what was written in the books, by the way they had lived. Sea released its dead, Death and Hell turned in their dead. Each man and woman was judged by the way he or she had lived. Then Death and Hell were hurled into Lake Fire. This is the second death—Lake Fire. Anyone whose name was not found inscribed in the Book of Life was hurled into Lake Fire.

The Message (MSG)

Copyright © 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson

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