5. The Rise of an Aggressive, Fundamentalist Islamic Power

In the time of the end, the Bible predicts that there will arise, in North Africa or the Middle East, a charismatic personality who will be able to unify, harness and lead a powerful block of nations in which Egypt will have a key role.

“At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him [a power located north from the king of the South]; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through.… He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape. He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; also the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels [will be at his feet or footsteps]” (Daniel 11:40, 42–43).

This is a good example of why you need to watch the daily newspapers. Your newspaper reading will be very interesting if you understand Bible prophecy. You will begin to realize, from now on, what is the significance of the massive arms purchases by Middle Ishtarn countries from weapon-producing countries like North Korea, China, Russia and the U.S.

Presently, the whole Islamic world in the Middle East and North Africa is being enveloped by a wave of resurgent Islamic fundamentalism. Islamic fundamentalist insurgencies, funded by rogue states and terrorist organizations, are trying to destabilize the moderate, Western-leaning, secular regimes currently in power, and are seeking to replace them with a unified, resuscitated Islamic caliphate (empire)—the prophesied “king of the South.” The final leader over these reinvigorated Muslim nations will be a tremendously powerful religio-political false Messiah or “Mahdi” who will draw his power from a confederation of those nations. He will provoke the key events written in Daniel 11, which must occur before the return of Jesus Christ to this earth.

Mideast analyst Michael Slackman observed: “From Cairo, to Rabat, Morocco, to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the order that emerged after World War II—long accustomed to encouraging domestic anger against Israel—has seen its influence and grip on power challenged in the wave of instability washing across the Middle East. That has roughly coincided with the rise of the insurgency in Iraq. This region has long been defined by conflict, and leaders are unafraid to use force to crush opposition. But the current level of instability has unnerved them. They are not about to be toppled, not as long as they retain firm control over their security operations. But they find themselves fighting to maintain stability and credibility, political analysts said. ‘The ruling regimes cannot disregard or dismiss the influence of Islamist movements in their countries,’ said Gamal Abdel-Gawwad, who runs the International Relations unit at the Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies in Cairo. The empowerment of the Islamists has been propelled by events large and small—the occupation of Iraq, Israel’s war with Hezbollah, the United States’ support for Israel in that war, Danish cartoons lampooning the Prophet Muhammad, and most recently comments about Islam made by Pope Benedict XVI” (“Islamists’ Rise Imperils Mideast’s Order,” New York Times, September 18, 2006).

Do you think that fanatical Muslims will not use nuclear or biological weapons if they have the opportunity? You had better believe they will. And Bible prophecy shows how it will all turn out. This great charismatic “Mahdi” (Messiah) will gather together the forces of Islam in a final jihad (holy war) against the morally corrupt nations of the West, whose religion, lifestyle and values represent a deadly challenge to the Islamic dream.

He will feel emboldened to provoke or attack the European Union (Daniel 11:40). This will anger the fierce “king of the North” and the forces of the king of the South will be completely crushed by this European power. The king of the North will then come down “like a whirlwind” (v. 40) and take over the Middle East, including the Holy Land (vv. 41–42). The king of the North’s armies will seize control of the region’s vast oil reserves (v. 43).

These soon-to-happen events will be awesome to witness. The “king of the North,” a future European Napoleon or Hitler type of powerful, dynamic leader, will react mightily with a blitzkrieg retaliation. This dramatic military response against the king of the South will set off a chain of other events.

“And they shall defile the sanctuary fortress; then they shall take away the daily sacrifices, and place there the abomination of desolation” (Daniel 11:31). As this dual prophecy shows, there will, at the end of this age, either be a temple or a special altar in Jerusalem. The priests of the family of Aaron will again offer the daily animal sacrifices prescribed in the Old Testament until a great military power comes in and places there what is called the abomination of desolation.

The description continues: “At that time Michael shall stand up, the great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation, even to that time” (Daniel 12:1). This is talking about the American, British Commonwealth and Jewish peoples. The great Muslim “king of the South” will cause a war, and the European “king of the North” will conquer much of the Middle East. This king of the North also comes west against God’s people at the beginning of the Great Tribulation. This is the same time Jesus described in Matthew 24:21: “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be.”

We need to realize where all these things are leading, and how they will affect our lives—your life, your family, your children, your job and your future.