Gog-Magog

During Alexander the Great's conquests and travels, he came to a region in the Caucases, the mountain range between Europe and Asia. There he found the Gog and Magog terrorizing the area. Alexander built a wall and gates in a narrow pass between two mountains to seal them out. There are different versions of what the wall was made of- brambles, iron, brass, or asiceton (a magic metal.) Also there are different versions of what else Alexander left there- statues of bronze trumpeters whose horns fool the Gog and Magog into thinking a huge army is on the other side, or a stone eagle that screams if they tried to escape. But some day the gates will open and the Gog and Magog will come out and destroy the world. According to Islamic tradition (in Saḥīḥ al-Bukhāri), Gog and Magog are human beings, and the city mentioned in sura 21 is Jerusalem.

The Qur'an, in the first half of the 7th century CE, is the last major religious text to give new information on Gog and Magog (or Ya'jūj and Ma'jūj in Arabic). Sura 21, Al-Anbiyā (The Prophets) : Allah tells his Prophet (Mohammed) that there is "prohibition upon [the people of] a city which We have destroyed that they will [ever] return, until when [the dam of] Gog and Magog has been opened and they, from every elevation, descend."


Abu Hurayrah reported that the Prophet (S) said, "Every day, Gog and Magog are trying to dig a way out through the barrier. When they begin to see sunlight through it, the one who is in charge of them says, 'Go back; you can carry on digging tomorrow,' and when they come back, the barrier is stronger than it was before. This will continue until their time comes and Allah wishes to send them forth. They will dig until they begin to see sunlight, then the one who is in charge of them will say, 'Go back; you can carry on digging tomorrow, in shaa'Allah.' In this case he will make an exception by saying in shaa'Allah, thus relating the matter to the Will of Allah. They will return on the following day, and find the hole as they left it. They will carry on digging and come out against the people. They will drink all the water, and find the hole as they left it, and the people will entrench themselves in their fortresses. Gog and Magog will fire their arrows into the sky, and they will fall back to earth with something like blood on them. Gog and Magog will say, 'We have defeated the people of earth, and overcome the people of heaven.' Then Allah will send a kind of worm in the napes of their nacks, and they will be killed by it...'By Him a in Whose hand is the soul of Muhammad, the beasts of the earth will become fat.'" [Tirmidhee, Abwaab al-Tafseer: Surat al-Kahf (Hadith 5160), 8/597-99; Ibn Maajah, Kitaab al-Fitan, (Hadith 4080), 2/1364. Ahmad, Musnad, 2/510, 511.]

While in the Bible there is much confusion about the names of Gog and Magog. Sometimes it is the name of a person, and sometimes it is the name of a nation. Sometimes Gog or Magog are described as brothers, and sometimes Gog is the king of the Magog.

Revelations tells of the end of the world, when Gog and Magog are let loose. Saint Augustine describes it in his book City of God as: "And when the thousand years are finished, Satan shall be loosed from his prison, and shall go out to seduce the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, and shall draw them to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea." This, then, is his purpose in seducing them, to draw them to this battle. For even before this he was wont to use as many and various seductions as he could continue. And the words "he shall go out" mean, he shall burst forth from lurking hatred into open persecution. For this persecution, occurring while the final judgment is imminent, shall be the last which shall be endured by the holy Church throughout the world, the whole city of Christ being assailed by the whole city of the devil, as each exists on earth. For these nations which he names Gog and Magog are not to be understood of some barbarous nations in some part of the world, whether the Getae and Massagetae, as some conclude from the initial letters, or some other foreign nations not under the Roman government.

The location of Gog and Magog has moved throughout history. Some may have confused it with early reports of the Great Wall of China. Usually though, it represents an area with heathen barbarians in it that pose a threat to the good religious people on the other side.

Sources :
http://www.iras.ucalgary.ca/~volk/sylvia/GogAndMagog.htm;
http://www.islaam.com/Article.aspx?id=79;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gog_and_Magog

Pic Source :
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/96/Iranischer_Meister_001.jpg/220px-Iranischer_Meister_001.jpg
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