Dr. David Jeremiah Presents
Living inthe Ageof Signs
Living in the Age of Signs
What Is the Battle of Armageddon?
The Battle of Armageddon is the final showdown between good and evil on earth. After the Tribulation, Jesus will return to earth as a mighty King with the armies of heaven to destroy all those who have rejected Him as Savior. The forces of evil will rally the nations against Him. There will be no bystanders—the entire earth will be involved. Jesus will defeat the Antichrist and his False Prophet quickly, but the Bible describes the battle in detail.
After the Tribulation is complete, Jesus will return to earth from the same place that He ascended. The "Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south" (Zechariah 14:4).
The angels prophesied His return in the New Testament when He first ascended to heaven from the Mount of Olives. "This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.' Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet" (Acts 1:11–12).
The Mount of Olives lies just to the east of Jerusalem. Its location and historical significance have led to skirmishes between Israelis and Palestinians over the years. The site was controlled by Arab–ruled Jordan for nineteen years prior to the Six–Day War. In 1967, the Mount of Olives returned to Israeli control, setting the stage of Christ's return and final battle in Israel.
The Victor: Jesus and the Armies of Heaven
John's description of Christ's return can be found in Revelation 19:11–16:
Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
Nowhere else in the Bible do we find Jesus described with such might and power. In His First Coming, He was a Suffering Servant who sympathized with our weaknesses. In His Second Coming, He will be a powerful Warrior and King who will defend His people and forever destroy evil.
Jesus will not return alone. Verse 14 says, "And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses." When Christ comes back, He will have all His saints with Him. All believers in heaven who have been raptured or converted and killed during the Tribulation will ride in with Jesus, clothed in white. We will not need to fight. We will stand with our King and witness His power. Then we will rule with Him on earth for one thousand years.
The Adversaries: The Antichrist, the False Prophet, and Their Followers
"I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army" (Revelation 19:19).
The Antichrist (the Beast) will unite the world during the Tribulation. All those who have taken his mark and worshiped him will join his armies to battle against the Lord. Evil will make its final stand against the Lord and all that is good.
Every human being will witness this final battle.
Then will appear the sign of the Son of Man in heaven. And then all the peoples of the earth will mourn when they see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven, with power and great glory. (Matthew 24:30, NIV, emphasis added)
Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. (Revelation 1:7, emphasis added)
The Antichrist will fight with all the strength of Satan and his evil ones, but they will be no competition for Jesus the King.
As the battle begins, an angel will cry out to the birds in the air: "Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, both small and great" (Revelation 19:17–18).
The Antichrist and his False Prophet will be captured and cast into the lake of fire. With the sword from His mouth, Jesus will kill everyone that remains. It will be the largest, bloodiest battle in history. The Victor and His armies will remain unscathed, but the birds will feast on the bloody flesh of the nations.
After the battle, Satan will be bound for a thousand years (Revelation 20:2) while Jesus reigns on earth.
The Purpose of the Battle
God could destroy evil in any way He chooses, so what's the purpose of having a bloody battle?
First, Armageddon concludes Jesus' judgment upon Israel. The Tribulation period represents a time of divine indignation against the people of Israel, the people who rejected their Messiah, the people who repeatedly failed to heed the corrective and punitive judgment of God. It is no accident that this future period is often referred to as "the time of Jacob's trouble" (Jeremiah 30:7).
Second, Armageddon marks the final judgment upon the countries that have persecuted Israel. With all the hostile nations of the world gathered together in the Battle of Armageddon, in the valley of Jehoshaphat, God will deal with them finally and decisively.
I will also gather all nations, and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; they have also divided up My land. (Joel 3:2)
Finally, Armageddon constitutes a formal judgment on all the nations that have rejected Him. "Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God" (Revelation 19:15).
God's activity and warnings are often missed by people pursuing ungodly goals. Because God "is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish," the nations do not believe He will judge them one day (2 Peter 3:9). But be assured, He is storing up wrath against a day to come when each person's deeds will be judged accordingly (Romans 2:5–6). The Bible is clear—one of these days God will have had enough, and His judgment will pour down like consuming fire against wickedness in earth's final battle.