The following websites contain the works of Avraham Gileadi Ph.D. on the Book of Isaiah: — An interactive website on the prophecy of Isaiah explaining how literary features conceal and reveal its apocalyptic message. — A website on the prophecy of Isaiah featuring webinars and audio and audio-visual aids that teach Isaiah’s apocalyptic message.

Does Isaiah Predict an Endtime World War III?

Avraham Gileadi Ph.D.

The prospect of a Third World War that sees the use of today’s technologically honed nuclear weapons may be unthinkable to people who resemble Lot’s wife at the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. The prospect of such an event, however, appears as plainly in prophecy as anything God has revealed. Using the Assyrian wars as a type of the end of the world, Isaiah cites the apostasy of God’s people as the cause: “The sinners in Zion are struck with fear; the godless are in the grip of trembling: Who among us can live through the devouring fire?” (Isaiah 33:14);

“Suddenly, in an instant, your crowds of evildoers shall become as fine dust, your violent mobs like flying chaff. She shall be chastened by Jehovah of Hosts with thunderous quakings, resounding booms, tempestuous blasts and conflagrations of devouring flame” (Isaiah 29:5–6); “Wickedness shall be set ablaze like a fire, and briars and thorns shall it consume; it shall ignite the jungle forests, and they shall billow upward in mushrooming clouds of smoke. At the wrath of Jehovah of Hosts the earth is scorched, and people are but fuel for the fire” (Isaiah 9:18–19);

“You who conceived chaff and brought forth stubble, the fire of your own breath devours you! Whole nations have been burned like lime, mown down like thorns and set ablaze” (Isaiah 33:11–12). This cleansing of wickedness from the earth is Jehovah’s doing and heralds his coming to the earth: “See, Jehovah comes with fire, his chariots like a whirlwind, to retaliate in furious anger, to rebuke with conflagrations of fire. For with fire and with his sword shall Jehovah execute judgment on all flesh, and those slain by Jehovah shall be many (Isaiah 66:15–16).

Jehovah’s instrument of worldwide destruction is the king of Assyria/Babylon, whom Jehovah sends against his own people: “Hail the Assyrian, the rod of my anger! He is a staff—my wrath in their hand. I will commission him against a godless nation, appoint him over the people [deserving] of my vengeance, to pillage for plunder, to spoliate for spoil, to tread underfoot like mud in the streets. Nevertheless, it shall not seem so to him; this shall not be what he has in mind. His purpose shall be to annihilate and to exterminate nations not a few” (Isaiah 10:5–7).

Jehovah conceived the king of Assyria/Babylon’s cleansing of wickedness from the earth from the beginning, from ancient times, in a classic instance of the wicked destroying the wicked: “Have you not heard how I ordained this thing long ago, how in days of old I planned it? Now I have brought it to pass. You were destined to demolish fortified cities, [turning them] into heaps of rubble, while their timorous inhabitants shrank away in confusion, becoming as wild grass, transiently green, or like weeds on a roof that scorch before they grow up” (Isaiah 37:26–27).

This world’s doomsday—starting with God’s own people—nevertheless has a silver lining. Once the earth is cleansed of wickedness, and the oppression righteous people lived under is removed, the earth’s millennial age can commence. To that end, Jehovah gathers his elect and brings them to Zion: “Thus says my Lord Jehovah: I will lift up my hand to the Gentiles, raise my ensign to the peoples; and they will bring your sons in their bosoms and carry your daughters on their shoulders. Kings shall be your foster fathers, queens your nursing mothers” Isaiah 49:22–23);

“Do not fear, for I am with you. I will bring your offspring from the east and gather you from the west; I will say to the north, Give up! to the south, Withhold not! Bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the end of the earth—all who are called by my name, whom I have formed, molded and wrought for my own glory” (Isaiah 43:5–7); “When you cross the waters, I will be with you; [when you traverse] the rivers, you shall not be overwhelmed. Though you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned; its flame shall not consume you” (Isaiah 43:2; cf. 49:12).

The Assyrian military alliance of nations that conquers the world in God’s Day of Judgment is itself finally conquered when Jehovah intervenes to deliver his elect: “Jehovah will cause his voice to resound, and make visible his arm descending in furious rage, with flashes of devouring fire, explosive discharges and pounding hail. At the voice of Jehovah the Assyrians will be terror-stricken, they who used to strike with the rod. At every sweep of the staff of authority, when Jehovah lowers it upon them, they will be fought in mortal combat” (Isaiah 30:30–32).

“And Assyria shall fall by a sword not of man; a sword not of mortals shall devour them: before that sword they shall waste away and their young men melt; their captain shall expire in terror and their officers shrink from the ensign, says Jehovah, whose fire is in Zion, and whose furnace is in Jerusalem” (Isaiah 31:8–9); “For you have smashed the yoke that burdened them, the staff of submission, the rod of those who subjected them, as in the Day of Midian. And all boots used in battle and tunics rolled in blood have become fuel for bonfires” (Isaiah 9:4–5).

Finally, the king of Assyria/Babylon’s rule ends: “How the tyrant has met his end and tyranny ceased! Jehovah has broken the staff of the wicked, the rod of those who ruled—him who with unerring blows struck down the nations in anger, who subdued peoples in his wrath by relentless oppression. Now the whole earth is at rest and at peace; there is jubilant celebration!” (Isaiah 14:4–7); “They will beat their swords into plowshares, their spears into pruning hooks: nation will not lift the sword against nation, nor will they learn warfare any more” (Isaiah 2:4).


  1. My belief is that most prophecy is if-then. If we don't live up to our covenants, then certain results will follow. However, I believe our people are good, and that is postponing the catastrophes that have been forecast. Remember, if there had been 20 or 30 righteous in Sodom the city wouldn't have been destroyed. Perhaps the minority of believers in America are postponing this war.

  2. Lynn,
    What good is prophecy if the prophecy doesn't take place. God sees past, present and future. Nothing can change from what He sees. It's not an if, and of but thing.