As foretold by Daniel, the Persian Empire lasted until it was conquered by the Greeks under Alexander the Great some 300 years before the birth of Christ. From that time forward, the land we know as Iran passed from one hand to the next. Among the empires that ruled Iran were the Parthians and the Sassanids. Not long after the foundation of Islam, Iran was invaded and conquered, and it became part of the Islamic Caliphate.
The Mongols under Genghis Khan conquered Iran as part of the westward expansion of his empire. The region was a major battle ground for centuries until the establishment of the Safavid Dynasty some 1,500 years after the birth of Christ. They settled the borders of what is modern-day Iran, and ruled into the 1700s when the Ottomans from the West and the Russians from the north took much of their land and held it until after World War I.
In 1925, a military coup placed Reza Shah in power, and he and his son Mohammed Shah Pahlavi ruled the country for most of the next 50 years until the Iranian Revolution under Ayatollah Khomeini in 1979. This revolt, which was covertly and sometimes openly supported by many Western nations, including the United States under President Jimmy Carter, installed the radical Islamist regime that still holds power today as a bitter enemy of the nation of Israel. This represented a radical change for Iran, which under the Shah had been very friendly toward the Jewish state.
This enmity is no surprise to students of prophecy. In describing the participants who will take part in the great end-time battle against the restored nation of Israel, Ezekiel lists Persia as one of the nations who will be drawn into the conflict in defiance of God and His Chosen People. It is not hard to see the prophetic pieces being positioned when we read the news day after day.
No one knows the exact timing of the war to annihilate Israel foretold by the prophet Ezekiel, but we do know that it will certainly take place. Those who oppose the Jewish state and wish to see the Jewish people destroyed have taken sides in the ancient enmity between Satan and God over the fate of His Chosen People. And their judgment for doing so is certain.
The Bible not only foretells this great battle, but it gives us the end result as well.“And I will bring him to judgment with pestilence and bloodshed; I will rain down on him, on his troops, and on the many peoples who are with him, flooding rain, great hailstones, fire, and brimstone. Thus I will magnify Myself and sanctify Myself, and I will be known in the eyes of many nations. Then they shall know that I am the LORD” (Ezekiel 38:22-23, NKJV).
Many people believe that the Bible foretells a nuclear strike against those who attempt to destroy Israel and the Holy City of Jerusalem. For example, the prophet Zechariah described the results of the battle in terms that certainly match the effects of a nuclear blast. “And this shall be the plague with which the LORD will strike all the people who fought against Jerusalem: Their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet, Their eyes shall dissolve in their sockets, And their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths” (Zechariah 14:12, NKJV).
Whatever means is used to bring about their defeat, there is no doubt that the enemies of Israel, including Iran, will be destroyed for their attempt to touch the “apple of God’s eye”—the Jewish people. This Bible prophecy is just as certain as the many that have already been fulfilled. Though Iran certainly poses a grave threat to Israel, and their desire to see the Jewish state destroyed cannot be denied, ultimately, they will fail in their evil purpose because God has declared that He will do battle to defend Israel and bring glory to His name.