Iran and Turkey are increasing threats
Very few are paying attention.
North Korea is a scary diversion, but they are not the biggest threat to world peace. The “Rocket Man” wants to survive so he will exchange bold insults with Donald Trump but he will not exchange rocket fire. He knows he will lose. He knows he will die.
The concern about ISIS is very real but they will fade just like Al Qaeda has faded. Both terrorist organizations are very dangerous and will continue to seek headlines with soft-target attacks. They are both brutal and effective but they will slowly fade because Iran and Turkey want the attention they believe they deserve.
ISIS had their day. They have lost power, land, and influence. Their defeat could be announced some time in 2018. New enemies will arise in their place. The new enemies, Iran and Turkey, are better prepared for battle. Their militaries are currently going through live-fire battle training. They are fighting in Iraq and Syria. They are growing in confidence. Iran is fighting in Yemen in direct conflict with Saudi Arabia. Hezbollah is an extension of the Iranian Military. They masquerade as a Lebanese army but they are backed by Iran, fight with Iranian weapons, and are trained and led by Iran’s generals.
What’s in the news about this?
So what’s next?
Daniel 8:2 The Lord told the prophet Daniel what is next. And I saw in a vision; and it came to pass, when I saw, that I was at Shushan in the palace, which is in the province of Elam; and I saw in a vision, and I was by the river of Ulai.
In this passage Daniel is standing in Elam which is modern-day Iran.
Daniel 8:3 Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns: and the two horns were high; but one was higher than the other, and the higher came up last.
Here Daniel sees a ram with two horns. Horns are symbols of power in the Bible. A powerful country, with great military strength appears in the vision.
Daniel 8:4 I saw the ram pushing westward, and northward, and southward; so that no beasts might stand before him, neither was there any that could deliver out of his hand; but he did according to his will, and became great.
This verse tells us the direction the nation will push with its military power. They will push west, north and south. Daniel is standing in Elam. look at this map of Elam and see what is west, north, and south of that part of modern-day Iran.
We can see that from Elam, west is today’s Iraq and north is within their current borders. Just beyond those northern borders are the Kurds. The Kurds are another battle tested group of soldiers. They don’t have a country of their own. The Kurds reside in northern Iraq. Their forces are not as strong as Iran and will lose in a direct confrontation.
What is to the south of Elam in this map? Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Iran is a bitter enemy of Saudi Arabia. They are battling each other over the territory of Yemen. They almost came to war in the country of Bahrain. The battle lines between these two countries are being set.
So what about Turkey?
Turkey was the power base of the Ottoman Empire. Their leader boasts that soon the Empire will return to power. They boast of one day regaining their position as the center of leadership and power of all Muslim countries. Turkey is a Sunni Muslim country. Iran is a Shiite Muslim country. One day these two countries will face each other on the battle field. They are playing nice with each other now but that will change. They both want to rule, and they don’t want to share that power.
Daniel 8:4 And as I was considering, behold, a he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.
Daniel sees another animal with a notable horn. Horn, as I mentioned, means power, thus this country’s power will be strong also.
Where does the country come from?
Daniel 8:5 And as I was considering, behold, a he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.
From the West
The country comes from the west. There is a problem in many Biblical geographic interpretations. When someone sees the word ‘west’ one often concludes the words refer to modern-day west. That must mean the United States or Europe. That is a wrong interpretation. The Bible is focused on the Middle East. When we read the Bible we should focus on that geographic context. Virtually all the countries mentioned are in the Middle East or bordering on Middle Eastern nations.
When the angel said west, Daniel thought of the only place that attack could come from. The area we know of today as Turkey.
When will the attack happen?
Daniel wondered that too. When will this battle of powerful armies take place?
Daniel 8:19 And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.
The battle will take place “at the time appointed…in the last end…” This isn’t some obscure battle we can find in history. It’s at the time of the end. This battle takes place before the mysterious Antichrist figure comes to power. Before!
Daniel 8:13 Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?
The Apostle Paul referred to this event as the abomination of desolation. He said it will take place in the end of days.
Who are the contestants again?
Daniel 8:20 The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia.
That is modern-day Iran.
Daniel 8:21 And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.
That is modern-day Turkey, not Greece. Where the country of Turkey is today is the area which people in Bible times knew of as Grecia.
We don’t know when this happens but we do know who. But these will only be the beginnings of the long war.