The Story of Gog and Magog

Gog and Magog, mentioned as Yajuj and Majuj in the Holy Quran, were a people who caused mayhem and destruction thousands of years ago. They are evil and vicious humans and have been significantly cited in the Quran. They have also been stated in the Hadith by the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

Who was Dhul Qarnayn?

Dhul Qarnayn was a righteous king and leader who was a very powerful and successful person. He was a courageous man, with a solid belief in Allah. He led an enormous army and treated each person with respect and gratitude.

Dhul Qarnayn was not his actual name, instead, it was a title given to him. Dhul Qarnayn, from Arabic translates to: The one with two horns.

His official name and the years he governed have not been spoken of. However, historians and researchers have made efforts to recognize him using their knowledge.

Some scholars believe that Dhul Qarnayn may have been Alexander the Great. However, this theory has been rejected as not only was Alexander not a monotheistic believer in God, but the other qualities he assumed also seemed to evidently differ from those of Dhul Qarnayn.

Similarly, others have said that Dhul Qarnayn could be Cyrus the 2nd of Persia. Commonly referred to as Cyrus the Great, he was the founder of the Achaemenid Empire, which was the first Persian Empire. Although many of his qualities aligned with Dhul Qarnayn’s, it is difficult to confirm who he was as none of these theories have been confirmed. They can not be stated as fact, rather as opinions. 

Dhul Qarnayn’s journey

Dhul Qarnayn travelled towards the far West, implementing the laws of Allah until he reached the setting of the sun (Western most land). He then travelled towards the far East until he reached the rising of the sun (Eastern most land), wherein he saw a people who had no shelter from the sun. Next, he continued his travel until he reached a place between two mountains.

As he arrived, people from the local tribe came to him seeking help. Though they spoke an uncommon language, they expressed their apprehension towards Gog and Magog. They told the righteous king how Gog and Magog would plunder them, harm them and cause bloodshed. As they perceived the strength that Dhul Qarnayn possessed, they asked him to restrict Gog and Magog in return for compensation. However, Dhul Qarnayn kindly rejected their compensation and articulated that Allah had given him more than he will ever need. Instead, he asked them to call on all the men from their tribe who were not physically challenged to do manual labor and help him with forte. Then, he built between them a wall of molten copper. This barrier then restrained this evil tribe behind the two mountains.

Where are they?

The Location of this wall has not been mentioned. However, researchers have pinpointed two different locations where barriers made of iron between two mountains currently exist. Included in these locations is the Great Wall of China, which is primarily located in the North of China. Although it is a strongly built wall, it was built by a few combatant states and according to many, later conceived by Emperor Qin Shi Huang.

Others claim that this wall could indeed be the wall in central Asia in a place called Derbent. Derbent is a city in Dagestan located on the Caspian Sea. While it is obviously uncertain if Dhul Qarnayn built this wall, it will likely not be confirmed until the end of times.

Their strength in numbers

Gog and Magog are countless in number and each of them has many offspring. Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri reported that The Prophet of Allah (peace be upon him) said: “On the day of resurrection, Allah will say: ‘O Adam!’ Adam will respond and then there will be a loud call saying: ‘Allah orders you to take from among your offspring for the hellfire.’ Adam will say: ‘Who are the mission for the hell fire?’ Allah will say: ‘Out of every 1000, take out 999.’ At that time, every female will have a miscarriage, and a child will have grey hair. Mankind will be in a drunken state, yet not drunk, but severe will be the torment of Allah.” When the Prophet (peace be upon him) said this, people became extremely fearful. Whereupon the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “999 will be taken from Gog and Magog and one from you. You, good Muslims, will be like a black hair on the side of a white ox, or a white hair on the side of black ox.” (Bukhari)

The Quran says in Surah Al Anbiyaa: “Until when the dam of Gog and Magog has been opened and they, from every elevation, descend.” (21:96, Al-Anbiyaa, Quran)

Gog and Magog rising

Although Allah has mentioned the complete story of Dhul Qarnayn and Gog and Magog in the 18th Surah of the Quran (Al-Kahf), a verse from the Surah explains that following the completion of the wall, Dhul Qarnayn said: “This is a mercy from my lord. But, when the promise of my Lord comes, He will make it level, and ever true is the promise of my Lord.” (18:98, Al-Kahf, Quran)

There is not a day since that the people of Gog and Magog did not struggle to break through, from the day they were seized to the last hour. However, they fail each day. They will only be able to break through when Allah permits them to do so, destroying the wall as if it were razed to the ground.

Zainab Bint Jahsh said, “The Prophet (peace be upon him) came to me in a state of fear and said: ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah. Woe unto the Arabs for a danger has come near. An opening has been made in the wall of Gog and Magog.’” (Bukhari)  

Upon the arrival of the Prophet Esa (Jesus) (may Allah be pleased with him), he will first look to eliminate Dajjal. Soon after it is done, Gog and Magog will be set free. They will cause destruction and chaos using their power and strength, thus making survival difficult for other nations. They will cause mass bloodshed. A Hadith mentioned in Muslim states that after they succeed in defeating the people of the Earth, they will then point their arrows towards the sky and say: “We have defeated all those in the Earth, now let us defeat those in the Heavens.”

This will force Prophet Esa (Jesus) to take refuge with his people on a mountain. Assessing the situation, Esa (may Allah be pleased with him) will pray for the destruction of this evil tribe. Allah will acknowledge and accept the prayer, causing the people of Gog and Magog to die of wormlike insects eating at their bodies. Then, Allah will send large birds to carry their bodies and take them away.

Conclusion

Gog and Magog are one of the ten major signs of the last hour. They are undoubtedly one of the biggest trial for the people. The hadith clearly expresses that they are dangerous and ferocious human beings. As with most trials, Allah’s help is the only resolution to this one as well.