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Revelation; The roads to Armageddon

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posted on Jan, 16 2011 @ 04:06 PM
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The contents of my college room at the end of 1970 (as described in a letter at the time) included two type-written/duplicated sheets which had been pressed upon me, in the street, by an earnest prophet who signed himself "Individualist".

One of the articles, written in 1964, was predicting that the world would "end in confusion" in1970. In the later article, the date had been shifted to 1974. As far as I remember, the explanation was that various Biblical prophecies were foretelling the invasion of Israel on those dates by the armies of the Soviet Union. There were additional, handwritten notes; "The Foreign Office replied to this!" (I wonder what they said); "Beware Jehovah's Witnesses set you trap".

That's one way of predicting the approach of Armageddon, and it might have been the kind of thing that people were expecting from this title.
So I'd better make it clear, from the outset, that I won't be making any references to current events, and I won't be speculating on the prospects of nuclear war.
I'm going to be looking over the relevant Biblical passages for the sake of discovering what they can tell us on their own.

I want to offer some thoughts on the gathering of the world's armies described in Revelations ch16.
They're coming together "for battle" at the place which is called Armageddon.

So I'm going to be asking the question; what kind of battle is to be expected from the forces meeting at Armageddon?

We're told, in v14, that the kings of the earth are summoned for battle "on the great day of God the Almighty".
This echoes the proclamation of the "day of the Lord" in the last chapter of Joel;
"Let the men of war draw near, let them come up...
Let the nations bestir themselves and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat;
For there I will sit to judge all the nations round about...
For the Day of the Lord is near, in the valley of decision"- Joel ch3 vv9-14
In Revelation, the summons is coming in the first instance from God's enemies.
But the summons has the same ultimate purpose.
The nations are coming together so that God can judge them.

The expectation of judgement is confirmed in the next verse, when Christ himself appears to be speaking.
Parallels to these words can be found in other parts of the New Testament, and they show that "coming like a thief" means coming suddenly, without warning.
"The day of the Lord will come like a thief, and the heavens will pass away with a loud noise"- 1 Peter ch3 v10
"The Day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night...sudden destruction will come upon them...so then, let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober" - 1 Thessalonians ch5 vv2-6
The reference in the gospels is more oblique;
"If the householder had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have watched..."- Matthew ch24 v41
It's evident, though, that the theme goes back to the words of Jesus, and it's associated in Christian teaching with the expectation of his return.
And this Return of Christ, like the "Day of the Lord" in the Old Testament, is expected to include the act of judgement.

To be "awake", then, means keeping oneself in a state of prepararation for judgement.
"Keeping his garments" is part of the "keeping awake" theme; the man who doesn't go to bed is not going to disrobe, so he's not going to be caught naked when the alarm bell sounds.
But there's also a spiritual metaphor which goes back to the story of Adam and Eve.
They were feeling "naked and exposed" because their sin was visible in the sight of God.
They tried to cover themselves, but the more effective solution was the clothing which God provided.
As far as the New Testament is concerned, the answer to this problem is to be "clothed in Christ", as Paul puts it (Galatians ch3 v27).
In the letters to the Seven Churches, the church of Laodicea was advised to acquire "white garments" from Christ, "to keep the shame of your nakedness from being seen"- ch3 v18
That white robe, which represents redemption from sin, is the standard garment for the servants of God in Revelation.
That's the garment which covers their nakedness in the time of judgement.

Then we're told that the destination of the world's armies is the place called Armageddon.
The name points back to the infamous battle of Megiddo, in 609 B.C., which saw the death of Josiah, the king of Judah.
It implies a parallel of some kind between the two battles.

So let's consider Megiddo.
The most important point, here, is that Josiah was very much the Lord's king.
It was during his reign that the "book of the Law", commonly identified as Deuteronomy, was "discovered" by the priests of the Temple. Josiah took steps to proclaim the Law, and to renew the nation's covenant with the Lord. He made a point of removing anything that might be considered idolatrous from the territories under his control. He was the king who abolished the provincial altars of Yahweh, and centralised the worship and the celebration of the Passover at Jerusalem.
"Before him, there was no king like him, who turned to the Lord with all his heart and with all his soul and with all his might, according to the Law of Moses, nor did any like him arise after him." - 2 Kings ch23 v25

But this achievement was thrown away in one moment of madness.
The Pharaoh Necho was on his way to fight great wars further to the north.
Josiah chose to intercept him, at Megiddo, and lost his life.
The ultimate sequel, and perhaps the consequence, was the destruction of his kingdom at the hands of the king of Babylon.

In what way, "consequence"?
Not so much, I think, because the battle weakened the strength of Judah.
Judah would never have been strong enough in any case to resist the overwhelming power of Babylon.
I believe the real effect of Megiddo was on the minds of the people of Judah and their sense of judgement.
The king of Babylon would have had no reason to destroy Jerusalem, if he had not been provoked by rebellion.
Josiah's children would not have rebelled against Babylon, if they had not been expecting support from the Egyptians.
And I suspect that the defeat at Megiddo was one of the reasons for this belief in the reality of Egyptian power.
Unfortunately, this trust was misplaced. Rabshekah had once called Egypt a "broken reed", and he was right. The Egyptian army did nothing effective to relieve the siege of Jerusalem, and the city fell to the Babylonians.
So, then- if the battle of Megiddo was partly responsible for this confidence in Egypt, which encouraged the rebellion
Then it was also, indirectly, responsible for the destruction of the Temple of Solomon.

The loss of Josiah was deeply mourned; the "laments" which were written around the event were still sung centuries later- "to this day", as the Chronicler puts it. Much hope must have been invested in this king, by those who followed the Lord. The disappointment of the battle would surely compare with the sense of loss of the disciples on the road to Emmaus; "We had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel".
In effect, the death of Josiah was the Good Friday of the Old Testament period.

I believe that the resemblance between these two battles should be sought not in the location, but in the parallel between the two sets of combatants.
In the one corner, ladies and gentlemen, God's anointed king, the champion of God's people.
In the other corner, the power of oppression, as represented by the Egyptians, and by the "kings of the earth".
The first time this battle was fought, at Megiddo, the result was a catastrophe.
Therefore the same battle must be fought all over again, at Armageddon, so that the result can be reversed.
It would symbolise, at the same time, the reversal of all the other apparent setbacks, from the fall of Man to the supremacy of the Beast in its "war on the saints".
This is God having the Last Word.

What kind of battle does this imply?
Could that result be achieved by a battle between human armies?
The First World War was labelled as an "Armageddon" at the time, because it was battle on an unprecedented scale.
The House of Commons, in 1918, officially gave "humble and reverent thanks to Almighty God for our deliverance from the threat of German domination".
But it wasn't really the case that all the followers of God were on one side of the front line, and all his enemies on the other, which is what the Biblical Armageddon seems to demand.
The same would have been true about the anticipated "exchange of nuclear weapons" between the United States and the Soviet Union; as a subject of speculation, during the Cold War, it was popularly called an "Armageddon", but it would not have been a straight war between God and his enemies.
In fact that arrangement of forces is just not possible within human politics.
This consideration alone seems to make it difficult to identify the Biblical Armageddon as a battle between human armies.
It must be understood as a "battle" in a more spiritual sense.

In any case, we must observe that no battle of any kind takes place in this chapter.
The "nations" are brought up to the place of battle, but the armies are then left milling around in the "valley of decision" for the best part of three chapters, waiting for someone to come and fight them.
Meanwhile the narrative takes time out (again) to explain the significance of the event, in terms of the destruction of Babylon.
Once the action is resumed, in ch19, it takes the form of the Return of Christ- which is precisely what the wording of v15 was leading us to expect.
If the "kings of the earth" were expecting to fight amongst themselves, that kind of battle seems to have been forestalled.

What about "God's victory", the revenge for Megiddo?
Surely the return of Christ, in itself, does enough to achieve that end.
This is what the Old Testament calls "The Day of the Lord" (while Paul calls it "the day of the lord Jesus"), when the full strength of the Lord is brought to bear on judging the world and setting things right.
The consequence would be that all other powers would be disabled, and all resistance to his authority would collapse.
That, in itself, would constitute the required victory.

I would suggest, then, that this decisive assertion of the sovereignty of God would be the only "battle of Armageddon" that we're going to get.




posted on Jan, 16 2011 @ 05:22 PM
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But this achievement was thrown away in one moment of madness.
The Pharaoh Necho was on his way to fight great wars further to the north.
Josiah chose to intercept him, at Megiddo, and lost his life.

2 Chronicles says that Pharaoh Necho was going up to "fight at Carchemish", and the 2 Kings passage, in the AV, says that he was going up to "fight against" the king of Assyria. More modern translations omit the words "fight against", because that translation gets the politics the wrong way round.

We learn from other sources that Necho was actually advancing to fight alongside the Assyrians, because the Assyrian empire was being destroyed by a coalition of forces which included the Babylonians.

If Josiah was hostile to Assyrian supremacy, that does at least explain the political motivation behind his attempt to block the passage of an Assyrian ally.



posted on Jan, 16 2011 @ 06:41 PM
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But this achievement was thrown away in one moment of madness.
The Pharaoh Necho was on his way to fight great wars further to the north.
Josiah chose to intercept him, at Megiddo, and lost his life.

"Moment of madness" because the decision to fight Necho makes no sense at all in military terms.

Megiddo has been the site of several battles in ancient history and even modern history, because it stands on the most convenient route for an army to travel between Egypt and the top end of the Fertile Crescent. It is a natural place for opposing armies to meet. But it is not a Pass of Thermopylae. It is not a place where a small army can hold off a much larger one.

Previous kings of Judah felt no shame about retreating behind city walls when Judah was invaded by the armies of great monarchs. If Necho was simply passing through by the coastal route on his way north, then Josiah's sensible course of action would have been to stay in the hills, out of the way, keeping a careful watch, until the Egyptian expedition had passed through.

What on earth possessed him to take on a mighty army on his own, without any allies- and without instructions from God, or at least none that we know about? (Pharaoh himself claims that God wants Josiah to let him through- but then he would, wouldn't he?- 2 Chronicles ch34 v21).
I'm playing with a conspiracy theory about this, which I may post at another time, but it does look rather like a repetition of Numbers ch14 vv40-45, when the Israelites went out to fight against the orders of Moses and got thrashed.


edit on 16-1-2011 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 16 2011 @ 08:18 PM
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I believe the real effect of Megiddo was on the minds of the people of Judah and their sense of judgement.
The king of Babylon would have had no reason to destroy Jerusalem, if he had not been provoked by rebellion.
Josiah's children would not have rebelled against Babylon, if they had not been expecting support from the Egyptians.

Worth noting that the prophets of the Lord were showing a much better understanding of the realities of international politics than the king's secular advisers were able to display.

Jeremiah told the people that God himself was responsible for making Babylon the current superpower;
"I have given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, my servant"- jeremiah ch27 v6

Ezekiel objected that Zedekiah's rebellion was a breach of his covenent with Nebuchadnezzar (his original submission), and that a breach of a covenant was by definition an offence against God;
"He rebelled against him by sending ambassadors to Egypt...Pharaoh and huis mighty army and great company will not help him in war... Therefore says the Lord God; As I live, surely my oath which he despised, and my covenant which he broke, I shal requite upon his head"-Ezekiel ch17 vv15-19

Similarly Jeremiah tried to squash the illusion that any help was to be expected from Pharaoh;
"Behold, Pharaoh's army, which came out to help you, is about to return to Egypt, to its own land"- Jeremiah ch37 v7
Jeremiah also promised king Zedekiah that if he would only submit to the king of Babylon, even at that late stage, his life would be spared and the city would not be burned- Jeremiah ch38 v17. But Zedekiah never gave that promise a chance to be tested.



posted on Jan, 16 2011 @ 09:38 PM
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Really well put and nicely elocated post. (is that even a word? I forget right now)

So if I'm right in assuming this would mean that rather than the physical fist fight of epic proportions that most prophets of doom repeat frequently, it would be more a battle of wills and minds?

For example, if it were to happen for real then rather than war, we'd merely see the blind representing the victors from the Bible perishing while the winners this time will be those who see and accept a change of some sort? If so then I don't think it will be a "religious people will be gifted, non-believers perish" scenario but more of an awakening in intellect and spirituality that will see those who want to be enlightened seen as the "winners of Armaggeddon" while the "losers" may be those sceptical who refuse the change and will perish for wanting to stick to the old ways.

Interesting regardless, S&F



posted on Jan, 17 2011 @ 04:16 PM
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reply to post by curious7
 

Thank you for those comments.
But I think you underestimate the "presence of God" element of the picture.
It would be more than a question of intellectual/spiritual self-change.



posted on Jan, 17 2011 @ 10:15 PM
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I've been to Megiddo. It's an excellent place for large armies to fight as I believe they will in the last days. Even the kings of the earth will join in battle. At that time the Middle East and possibly europe will be under the control of the antichrist, who will probably be a Muslim caliph. Waleed Shoebat, former PLO terrorist, now Christian evangelist has an excellent study on last days prophecy from a Middle Eastern perspective. He claims those nations that hate Israel will all primarily be Muslim.

From the Muslim nations and their practices you have institutionalized evil that continuously persecutes both Jew and Christian. It is perfectly consistent with the antichrist prophecies and indeed the prophecies of the Muslims messiah, the Imam Mahdi are virtually identical to the antichrist prophecies. I believe in fact that the Messiah will come and put an end to the Muslim invasion and then the rest of the worlds armies will march to try to stop Jesus from assuming authority over all the earth. It won't do them much good.



posted on Jan, 18 2011 @ 04:12 PM
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Originally posted by SevenThunders I believe in fact that the Messiah will come and put an end to the Muslim invasion and then the rest of the worlds armies will march to try to stop Jesus from assuming authority over all the earth.

Thank you for those comments.
I have to disagree with you on that last point, though, for this reason;
Jesus tells us that the Son of Man will be arriving "with power". That is to say, with all the power of the full presence of God.
I take this to mean that all human power would be immediately disabled.
There could be no question of putting up a resistance.
When you're standing in front of God, you don't argue.
The fact of his arrival would bring all fighting to a close, and then things would move on to the judgement.



edit on 18-1-2011 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 18 2011 @ 05:36 PM
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Originally posted by SevenThunders
I've been to Megiddo. It's an excellent place for large armies to fight

Incidentally, I take it that you agree with me, that Megiddo would make a terrible place for a small army to take on a large one?



posted on Jan, 18 2011 @ 06:04 PM
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I like what you said here. Check out my post to come on revelations!



posted on Jan, 18 2011 @ 06:10 PM
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reply to post by carnor1
 

Thank you for that comment.
I look forward to your own posts.
We could find ourselves in an extended dialogue, because this is one of a long series I've been doing on Revelation.
Check my profile if you're interested (eventually I'm going to do an index thread, so that people can navigate them).



posted on Jan, 18 2011 @ 08:02 PM
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Another great post ..S&F ..I think that patience is the virtue that was lacking and not waiting on the Lord ..

I have a vid link I would like to share ....peace amazingdiscoveries.tv...



posted on Jan, 18 2011 @ 11:07 PM
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Originally posted by DISRAELI
Incidentally, I take it that you agree with me, that Megiddo would make a terrible place for a small army to take on a large one?


I think this is largely true. It is surrounded by higher ground towards the east and west. It is technically a pass after all. Artillery entrenched in the higher ground could do some damage, but otherwise everything is exposed. It's a strangely quiet and beautiful place, filled with fields, grasses and in the right season flowers.

As for whether there will be fighting against Jesus after he is revealed, the Bible seems to possibly suggest this in the language of Zechariah 12 and Revelations. Here is one description of a possible scenario:
www.tedmontgomery.com...
I believe this author is not quite right in his timing however, thinking that there are two raptures. I only believe in 1 rapture. The problem is the failure to realize that the trumpet, bowl and seal judgments in Revelations are overlapping and telescoping. Revelations is not chronological.

I believe that a number of judgments will be fulfilled after the return of the Lord. Consider this verse from Rev. 6

Then everyone—the kings of the earth, the rulers, the generals, the wealthy, the powerful, and every slave and free person—all hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains. 16And they cried to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of the one who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb. 17For the great day of their wrath has come, and who is able to survive?”


In modern terms we might view this as the elite trying to hide out in their underground bunkers and deep underground military bases once they see the return of Jesus. There will some battles to be won thereafter to secure the entire world for Christ.



posted on Jan, 19 2011 @ 10:21 AM
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Hi I wanted to give a bump and 2 vids links ..In these lectures professor Vieth shows how Satan has worked behind the scene to change and distorter the word of God .......peace amazingdiscoveries.tv...

amazingdiscoveries.tv...



posted on Jan, 19 2011 @ 10:32 AM
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Originally posted by the2ofusr1
.I think that patience is the virtue that was lacking and not waiting on the Lord ..

Thank you for those comments.
I take it you mean Josiah?
Yes, and I think he was also falling for one of the temptations which Jesus resisted in the wilderness.
If he was putting himself in danger without instructions from God, and expecting God to help him anyway, then this was "putting God to the test". It's what Jesus would have been doing if he had taken up the suggestion that he should throw himself off the roof of the Temple.
So that's another parallel between the two.

Thank you for those various links. I see the first one is 80 minutes, so I won't watch it immediately, but have it on my agenda.



posted on Jan, 19 2011 @ 04:23 PM
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Originally posted by SevenThunders
I think this is largely true. It is surrounded by higher ground towards the east and west. It is technically a pass after all. Artillery entrenched in the higher ground could do some damage, but otherwise everything is exposed. It's a strangely quiet and beautiful place, filled with fields, grasses and in the right season flowers.

Thank you for sharing this direct knowledge. I've seen it on a map, but it's not the same thing.

On the question of chronology; my view is that Revelation is largely chronological. with some exceptions.
After the seventh trumpet is sounded at the end of ch11, the next two chapters are spent explaining the background of the Beast which is being destroyed. I call them the "flashback" chapters.
And after the pouring of the seventh bowl, again, the next couple of chapters are spent explaining about Babylon.
But I see the seals, trumpets, and bowls as successive sequences.
I see a very deliberate gap (ch7) between the seals and the trumpets, which represents a pause in the destructive action.
Apart from that gap, the seven trumpets, taken together, are what happens when the seventh seal is opened.
Similarly, the seven bowls, taken together, are what happens when the seventh trumpet is sounded.
And the first six trumpets and bowls resemble each other because they are the beginning and end points of the same processes. The trumpets describe when things start falling, the bowls describe when things hit the ground.

I haven't actually come across a passage in Revelation which mentions the Rapture, so I haven't been discussing it.


edit on 19-1-2011 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 12:59 AM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


Here is a timeline I put together a few years back:
home.earthlink.net...

I lay out the seal, bowl and trumpet judgments and then equate certain judgments which have virtually the same description in each sequence. What you see is that each set of judgments expand on the previous judgments but overlap those judgments. It makes understanding Revelations quite a bit simpler IMHO. You don't need a special class of tribulation saints after everyone else is raptured.

In fact one can find the rapture of the church I believe in Rev. 11. Right after the two witnesses are raptured the 7th trump sounds and God judges the dead, but specifically he judges his people. Hence I think this is the most likely place for the rapture occurring in Rev. Unfortunately for the pre-trib. guys it comes rather late in the tribulation time table and thus doesn't fall in line with that unlikely doctrine.



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 01:27 AM
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reply to post by SevenThunders
 

i guess the pre trib could occur before the great tribulation...3 1/2 years into the trib...marked by the anti-christ showing his hand...heard that on hal's weekly video....
then do we have the blood running deep and the evil army with their tongues melted while still standing...?
edit on 20-1-2011 by GBP/JPY because: bring it on soon....Yahushua...



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 04:55 AM
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reply to post by SevenThunders
 

You might be interested, for comparison purposes, in my own version of a timeline, or rather the argument for one;

Time, times, and half a time



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 05:43 AM
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reply to post by DISRAELI
 


The road to salvation will be a difficult one for all people of every religion! Every religion is believeing in a higher energy other then humans which is a positive aspect which got people to where we are now.

The book of revelation has begun.

All people (Humans) are as one and experience the same surroundings in life. This is the aspect of Fuel, Heat and Oxygen which is fire, this has a negative aspect to all people in life. The pyramids of Egypt were formed by previous technology of advanced humans to experience the ethics of life itself. All living things from plants, animals and humans are this. This is Satans domain where we were tempted with knowledge to learn for the afterlife or supernatural. Mangod is in the sphinx of egypt where it represents man king of the domain. The lion being the king of the animals and man king of earth. Our journey in life is to experience this aspect like a child attending school. This is why knowledge was given to humans to experience this fact. It is a learning experience for all humans.

Water is considered 0pt energy as the further you go from the sun it freezes and the closer you go it evaporates. Sun worship is where humans discovered the knowledge of time through calander rotation of the earth. The earth is considered female (Mother Nature) and the sun male being the son of God or birthstar which is a natural aspect of life like a child attending school.

All systems work under a triangular or pyramid operation where the top support the bottom for direction and the bottom support the top in labour. This is stated in the Jewish star of David with a triangle and an upside downtriangle representing the the age of women which is the technology age. This also resembles a womens womb or rebirthing of energy. This age made the pyramids for humans to reset creation. This is why maths are unique to all nations and religions. Numbers are information to the stars.

The Sun being the son of God and Earth being mother nature giving life to all through water is our hardware while humans are the software. Like a massive macro computer in action!

ManGod will never reach the heights of God!

This is the revelation humans will understand shortly. This will be WW3 and be a massive spiritual war for all humans!






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