Does the Bible say anything about the future of Syria?


Violence is erupting in Syria, and the question is what the future will hold for that country. Does the Bible tell us anything about Syria’s past, and does it give us any indications as to what is in store for it? The Holy Scriptures certainly do.

Syria is sometimes referred to in the Bible as “Aram,” and the Syrians are called “Arameans.” Historically, there have been times of war and of peace between Syria and the houses of Israel and Judah. After Jacob had deceived his father Isaac and his brother Esau, he fled to and lived in Syria, where he was terribly deceived by his uncle Laban. Hosea 12:12 tells us: “Jacob fled to the country of Syria; Israel served for a spouse And for a wife he tended sheep.”

David fought against the Syrians (2 Samuel 8:5), and so did Solomon (1 Kings 11:25). Later, Assyria intervened on behalf of King Ahaz of the house of Judah and overthrew Damascus, the capital of Syria. At that time, Rezin, King of Syria, was allied with the house of Israel under King Pekah, and they both attacked King Ahaz of Judah. The king of Assyria, Tiglath-Pileser, heeded King Ahaz’s request for help, and he killed Rezin, King of Syria, and carried the Syrians into captivity, to a region called Kir (2 Kings 16:5-9; compare a possible reference to these events in Isaiah 8:3-4).

In New Testament times, we read that Saul was persecuting true Christians, but on his way to Damascus to carry out further atrocities, he received a vision and was temporarily blinded by God (Acts 9:1-9). He became converted and was baptized, spending some days with the disciples in Damascus, and his name was changed to Paul (Acts 9:10-19). Later, he gave repeatedly vivid testimony of that extraordinary occurrence, for instance when defending himself before King Agrippa against false charges (Acts 26:19-20). Paul’s activities in Damascus also led to his persecution in Damascus itself (compare 2 Corinthians 11:32-33).

Turning to the end time, we read that Syria will at first have economic ties to the Babylonian system of the final revival of the ancient Roman Empire (compare Ezekiel 27:16, 18, referring to the Babylonian system as mystical “Tyre.” For more information on mystical Tyre, please read our free booklet, “The Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord.”).

But we also read of the coming utter destruction of Syria and Damascus, just prior to Christ’s return.

Isaiah 17:1-4 says, according to the Living Bible:

“THIS IS God’s message to Damascus, capital of Syria: Look, Damascus is gone! It is no longer a city—it has become a heap of ruins! The cities of Aroer are deserted. Sheep pasture there, lying quiet and unafraid, with no one to chase them away. The strength of Israel and the power of Damascus will end, and the remnant of Syria shall be destroyed. For as Israel’s glory departed, so theirs, too, will disappear, declares the Lord of hosts.”

The King James Bible clarifies in verse 4 that the reference is to the end time, as it says, “IN THAT DAY it shall come to pass that the glory of Jacob will wane [or made thin, or fade away].” See also verses 7, 9 and 11. The term “in that day” always refers to a time, which will approximately begin one year prior to Christ’s return, but it can also include the time after Christ’s return. In general, it designates the time when God will actively intervene in world affairs. It is also described quite often as the “day of the LORD.”

Contrary to common belief, today’s world is NOT God’s world, but it is ruled by Satan the devil, the real god of this world. Following the sin of Adam and Eve, God allowed Satan to remain on his throne, until Jesus Christ will come to replace him. But just prior to His coming, God will begin to actively intervene in human affairs and his angels will blow the seven trumpets and pour out on mankind the seven last plagues of God’s wrath. This will be done to show mankind the gravity of their abominable and wicked sins. At that time, a few will repent, but most will continue in their outright rebellion against the true God. Sadly, the people of Syria will be no exception.

Jeremiah 49:23-27 gives us another stirring account of Syria’s impending destruction. It specifically mentions that the young men of Damascus will fall in her streets, and all men of war shall be cut off IN THAT DAY. It also says that GOD will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus which will consume the palaces of the city and of the leadership and prominent people of Syria. Please note that verse 25 reads more accurately in the Revised Standard Version: “How the famous city [i.e. Damascus] is forsaken, the joyful city.”

We also find a prophecy about Syria and Damascus in the book of Amos.

Amos 1:3-5 states the following:

“Thus says the LORD: ‘For three transgressions of Damascus, and for four, I will not turn away its punishment, Because they have threshed Gilead with implements of iron, But I will send a fire into the house of Hazael [the Syrian leadership at that time], Which shall devour the palaces of Ben-Hadad. I will also break the gate bar of Damascus, And cut off the inhabitant from the Valley of Aven, And the one who holds the scepter from Beth Eden. The people of Syria shall go captive to Kir,’ Says the LORD.”

In Amos 9:7, we read that God had freed the Syrians from Kir, but in Amos 1, God says that they will go back to the slavery of Kir. We also read, in Isaiah 22:6, that Kir will be one of the nations or people assembled to fight against Jerusalem in the end time, during the “day of the LORD” (compare Zechariah 14:1-2).

Who or what is Kir?

Commentaries and Lexica are divided in their interpretations and explanations.

Clark’s Commentary on the Bible says that Kir is in the country of Albania, on the river Cyrus, which empties itself into the Caspian Sea. Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible maintains that Kir is in Media.

However, in Isaiah 15:1, we find another reference to Kir as being situated in Moab (modern Jordan and Western Iraq), speaking of “Kir of Moab.”

The Geneva Study Bible says that Kir is in Egypt (In Latin, Kir is called Cyrene, and Acts 2:10 says that people were in Jerusalem, who had come from “Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene.”). The Jamieson, Fausset and Brown commentary claims that Kir is a region subject to Assyria.

Several Lexica state that Kir is a place of exile in Southern Babylon, as well as a place in Assyria and in Moab.

Regardless of what people or region might be specifically referred to in the Bible, the Living Bible has the following interesting annotation to Amos 1:5:

“Decreeing that the Syrians should go back to Kir as slaves was like saying to the Israelites that they must go back to Egypt as slaves, for the Syrians had made their exodus from Kir and now were free (See 9:7).”

We can safely say that in the end time, Syria and Damascus will be destroyed. Even though the Bible does not expressly state who will be the nation or “king” who will destroy Damascus and enslave the Syrians, if we look at prior historical events, it is possible that it will be done through the modern Babylonian system under the leadership of the modern “king” of Assyria–a mighty future leader in Germany, also referred to in the Bible as the beast, King Jareb, and the king of the North.

Remember that in ancient times, the king of Assyria, Tiglath-Pileser, destroyed Damascus and enslaved the Syrians. The concept of a DUAL prophecy (which might be fulfilled AGAIN in our times) could be even more compelling, because Kir is mentioned in the Bible in relationship with an ancient and a MODERN slavery of Syria, and it was the ancient king of Assyria who enslaved the Syrians and transported them to the region called Kir.

Remember as well that the ancient king of Assyria fought the house of Israel [under King Pekah] and Syria [under King Rezin] at about the same time. If history is our guide, then it would be interesting to contemplate the possibility that the destruction of Damascus and the overthrow of Syria could occur at approximately the same time when the modern “king” of Assyria will attack the modern house of Israel—which can be found today mainly in Great Britain and the USA.

This scenario could make sense in light of the possible development that the Jews might ask Germany and the modern Babylonian system for help and intervention in the Middle East (as the ancient Jewish king Ahaz asked the ancient king of Assyria for help). Ironically, “Ephraim”–the USA and Great Britain–will make a covenant with modern Assur (Hosea 12:1) and ask them for help as well (Compare Hosea 5:13, which states in the New American Bible and the Menge translation: “Ephraim went to Assyria, and Judah sent to the great king.”). At that time, the modern “king” of Assyria (the king of the North or the beast) might just comply with both requests. We know that he will intervene in the Middle East (Daniel 11:41-43)–not because he really wants to help the Jews or anyone else, but because it will be in his heart to destroy and cut off not a few nations (compare Isaiah 10:5-7).

The modern “king” of Assyria will not really rescue the Jews nor modern Ephraim (Hosea 7:11-12; 5:14-15). Even anciently, we read in 2 Chronicles 28:16-21 that Tiglath-Pileser, King of Assyria, did NOT really help Ahaz, King of Judah, but rather “distressed” or “oppressed” him (verse 20). In fact, we read that the modern “king” of Assyria, leader of the revived Roman Empire, will ultimately engage in a decisive war against the modern houses of Israel AND Judah (For more information, please read our free booklet, “The Fall and Rise of Britain and America).

In conclusion, it is certain that Syria will fall in the next world war. Damascus will be destroyed, and the Syrian people will go into captivity—and so will be the modern descendants of the houses of Israel and Judah (Hosea 5:9; Jeremiah 30:3; 33:7). It is incumbent upon us to watch world events so as not to be caught unawares when the biblical prophecies come to pass.

Lead Writer: Norbert Link

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