The Battle of Armageddon

The Salvation of Israel

Many people believe that the last War will be at a place called Armageddon, otherwise known as Medigo. This comes from the literal reading of Revelation 16:16, “and they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Armageddon.”

But this is actually a reference to Zechariah 12:11, “in that Day, there shall be a mourning in Jerusalem, like the mourning at Hadad Rimmon in the plain of Megiddo,” which is Armageddon. The final event that precedes Christ’s return will be Israel’s repentance. They shall mourn as they did at Megiddo. Then the nations shall be gathered together. This is the meaning of Revelation 16:16.

Described by Zechariah

 Zechariah said, “I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication, then they will look on Me who they pierced.” After Israel repents, they shall look on him returning in the clouds, as described in Revelation 1:7, “behold, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced Him…”

Mentioned by Paul

The Apostle Paul told us, “a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in, and so all Israel will be saved” (Romans 11:25).

Described by Jesus

God described Israel as the fig tree in the end time prophecy of Joel 1:7, “he has laid waste of My vine, and ruined My fig tree.” This describes the plague of “locusts” that will also destroy the unsaved Israel. But Jesus said, “now learn from the parable of the fig tree; when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near, so you too when you see all these things recognize that He is near, right at the door. Truly, I say to you, this generation shall not pass away until all these things take place” (Matthew 24:32-34).

The expression, “summer is near,” brings us to the conclusion of Christ and His Church in the Song of Songs, “let us see if the vine has budded,” (Song of Songs 7:12) for “after the rain is over and gone … the fig tree puts forth her figs” (Song of Songs 2:11-12).  When the fig tree, Israel, puts forth her branches, then Jesus will be at the door.

Described by Isaiah

Isaiah described the gathering together of the remnant in Isaiah 11:11-16. God will gather them from the four corners of the earth (Isaiah 11:12). 

Described by Ezekiel

The end time salvation of Israel is described in the last 14 Chapters of the Book of Ezekiel. In Chapter 34, we are told that God “will seek out his sheep and deliver them from all the places they were scattered on a dark and cloudy day. And I will bring them out of the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land; I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys and in all the uninhabited places of Israel.”

Before 1947, Israel was deserted and uninhabited land. And most Bible scholars, saw the end time prophecies of the restoration of Israel and the Battle of Armageddon, only as spiritual events of New Jerusalem. None of them believed that the restoration of Israel would be a real event.

But the holocaust in World War II changed everything. The people of Israel were gathered out of the nations, as it were, “on a dark and cloudy day” as Ezekiel prophesied.

In Chapter 37, we learn that God will pour out His Holy Spirit on Israel in the end days, in Ezekiel’s famous prophecy of the dry bones.

“Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves; and bring you into the land of Israel . . . I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land.” 

The final Chapters of Ezekiel describe the nation of Israel and the spiritual Israel, called the 144,000 in the Book of Revelation. In the last Chapter, Ezekiel described the division of the twelve tribes in the land of Israel, and he called the City of New Jerusalem, “the LORD is there,” in the last verse. In other words, the Spirit of God is there.

Alluded to in Revelation

Revelation 7 counts 144,000 of the twelve tribes of Israel who are sealed by the Spirit of God before Christ returns. Four Angels hold back the four winds, until all of the elect are sealed.

The Great Day of their wrath

After Israel repents, the spirits of demons will gather the Kings together for battle at the place of Israel’s repentance, which is called “Armageddon” or Medigo, by Zechariah.

This battle is described in the sixth seal, and the sixth trumpet, and the sixth bowl of wrath. It represents the last day of history, before the saints enter their eternal Sabbath.

This great battle was described in Isaiah 34; Ezekiel 38; Daniel 11; Joel 3; and Zechariah 14, and by other minor prophets. The significance of this day is throughout the Bible. Just as the earth had a beginning, it also has an end. But the hour, and day, and month and year is known only to God.

This battle will end when flaming fire is poured down from heaven.

The Release of the Four Angels

In Chapter 9, the angel with the sixth trumpet is told to “release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates, and the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and the day and the hour and month and year, were released that they should kill a third of mankind.”

These “four angels” from the four directions of the earth represent all the angels.

Isaiah said,

“the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens rolled up like a scroll, and their hosts shall fall down, as the leaf falls from the vine” (Isaiah 34:4).

Isaiah gives us a picture of the stars that are rolled up above the earth, and fall down to the earth.  These stars are angels. Throughout the Bible, the host of heaven, the stars, represents the Angels. The word “host” is literally “armies” in Hebrew, and is understood to be the Armies of angels. The angels as stars that fall to the earth are also found in Daniel 8, Revelation 8 and 12.

In the next verse, Isaiah describes the great battle that takes place after all the armies of heaven fall down to the earth, “My sword shall be bathed in heaven, indeed it shall come down on Edom; and on the people of My curse, for judgment, the sword of the LORD is filled with blood..”

But who is God’s opponent?

The King of the North

Isaiah told us that God’s judgment would come “on Edom, and on the people of My curse” (Isaiah 34:5) Edom, and “the people of My curse” represents all the enemies of God.

Joel said, “Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom a desolate wilderness, because of the violence done against Judah” (Joel 3:19).

Daniel said the King of the North “shall enter the glorious land, and many shall be overthrown, but these shall escape from his hand: Edom Moab, and the prominent people of Ammon” (Daniel 11:41). For these countries, and the King of the North, are all God’s enemies, who God Himself will destroy.

So who is the “King of the North” in this passage of Daniel?

Ezekiel described God’s opponent as Gog in the land of Magog, the prince of Rosh, Meschech, and Tubal.

Ezekiel writes, 

Are you he of whom I spoke in old time by my servants the prophets of Israel, who prophesied in those days for [many] years that I would bring you against them?

Ezekiel 38:17

Magog, Meshesch and Tubal are three sons of Japeth. According to the Jewish historian Josephus, these are the Caucasians in Italy, Spain, Turkey, and Russia. They can represent the Europeans who follow the Antichrist.

The Kings of the East

We can also surmise that the Kings of the East are on the side of God.

We are told that the Angel dried up the Euphrates to make way for the kings from the East.

The end time salvation of God is from the East, as we are told in Ezekiel, and so it only makes sense that the Kings of the East will be on the side of God. Before, the four Angels are released to this great battle, “an Angel ascending from the east . . . cried out with a loud voice to the four Angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, saying, “Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees until we have sealed the Bond servants of God,” which are identified as 12,000 of each tribe of Israel, the final people to be saved.  

The Kings of the East are likely on the side of God’s people. But, the King of the North will also have enemies in the North.

Daniel said that rumors from the North and the East would trouble the King of the North. This shall cause him to attack with great fury, “yet he shall come to his end, and no one will help him” (Daniel 11:45).

An Army of 200 million Men

“You shall ascend, you shall come like a storm, you shall be like a cloud to cover the land, you, and all your hordes, and many peoples with you.” (Ezekiel 38:9)

Revelation 20:8 numbers the armies “as the sands of the seashore.”

And Revelation 9:16 counts 200 million men. Until recently, this was thought to be impossible. In John’s time, there were less than 150 million people on the earth. But today, just a coalition of Asian forces could have an army of 200 million men.

All of the social and political ingredients, are now in place for the Battle of Armageddon.

Against a People without Walls

Ezekiel described the attack on Israel as an attack on “a peaceful people, who dwell safely , all of them dwelling without walls, and neither bars nor gates” (Ezekiel 38:11).  

Paul said, “while they are saying ‘Peace and safety” then destruction will come upon them.”

Isaiah said that when the “mountain of the Lord’s house is established above all the mountains, the nations will “beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks” (Isaiah 2:2-3). But Joel prophesied that suddenly the command would come to “beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears” (Joel 3:10).

The Nations surround the Camp of the Holy

In Revelation 20:9, we read that “they surrounded the camp of the holy and the beloved City and fire came down from heaven and devoured them.”

This is the camp described in the Day of the LORD, in Joel 2:11, “YHVH gives voice before His army, for His camp is very great.”

The “holy” ones are the Angels, described in Zechariah 14:5, “YHVH, my ELOHIM shall come and all His holy ones (Angels).”

The Camp of the Angel of YHVH was first seen in Genesis 32:2. This was the Camp of Angels that protected Jacob (Israel) from his brother Esau.

And the Beloved City

Before Israel was reestablished as a nation there was much debate, whether “the beloved City,” referred to the spiritual New Jerusalem, or the actual City of Jerusalem.

From the prophecy of Zechariah 12, we know that the actual City of Jerusalem is the target of Satan’s attack. The attack on Jerusalem comes after the repentance of “the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” Zechariah describes three groups who are delivered: the House of David (which is the Church), Judah (Israel), and “the inhabitants of Jerusalem.” The House of David is only one house in the “inhabitants of Jerusalem” in verse 12.

You shall flee through My Mountain Valley

In Chapter 14, Zechariah described the attack of the Nations on Jerusalem, but he begins by describing the “New Jerusalem,” and the attack of the Gentiles, that takes “half of the City – into captivity.” This is the “time, times and half a times” that the Gentiles trampled the Holy City underfoot, as explained in Luke 21: 24, and Revelation 11:2.

Verse 3 tells us the Lord will go and fight against those nations, as “the Rider on the White Horse,” that strikes down the nations, that we find in Revelation 19.

Verse 4 to 9, bring the spiritual and physical Jerusalem together. God promised the saints at Jerusalem, a way of escape, “through My mountain valley” – “the Mount of Olives shall be split in two – then you shall flee through my Mountain valley” (Zechariah 14:5).

This escape through the mountain is of course, the resurrection of the saints, in the Day of Armageddon, as Jesus explained in Revelation 16:15, “behold, I am coming like a thief.”

Isaiah prophesied that the resurrection of the saints would occur in the day of this battle. Isaiah said “there shall the hawks (eagles) be gathered”(Isaiah 34:15). Jesus also quoted this verse, saying, “where the corpse is, there the eagles shall gather”(Matthew 24:28). The “eagles” are the fourth living creature, the end time saints.

Flooding Rain, Great Hailstones, Fire and Brimstone

The final battle of God against Gog as described in Ezekiel 38.

Here, we find the symbolism of battle that appears throughout the Book of Revelation.

“surely in that day there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel, so that the fish of the sea, the birds of heaven, the beasts of the field, all creeping things that creep on the earth will shake at My presence. The mountains shall be thrown down, the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground. And I will call for a sword against Gog throughout all My mountains, says the LORD God, “Every man’s sword will be against his brother. And I will bring him to judgment with pestilence and bloodshed; I will rain down on him, on his troops, on the many people 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 will know that I am YHVH (He WILL BE) …” (Ezekiel 38:19-23).

It seems that God is going to use the whole arsenal of nature.

But as we go through the Book of Revelation, we find more and more evidence that the weapons of nature are actually metaphors of the weapons of mass destruction used by men, to punish Gog, on behalf of God, who defends Israel in the final battle of history.

A Great Earthquake

The first thing that Ezekiel described was “a great earthquake.”

Throughout the Book of Revelation, the meaning of “an earthquake” is simply “war.” The “earth” represents the people of the world, as in Revelation 12:16, “the earth helped the woman.” And a quake represents war, the shaking of the people, as Ezekiel explains, “the birds of heaven, the beasts of the field, all creepings things shall shake in My presence.” The birds, beasts, and creeping things represent the Gentiles in passages like Hosea 2:18, and Acts 10:12.

The Mountains shall be thrown down

Ezekiel told us that “the mountains shall be thrown down, the steep places shall fall, and every wall shall fall to the ground.”

Revelation 6:14, describes this saying, “the sky was split apart like a scroll when it is rolled up, and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.”  And Revelation 16:20 says, “every island fled away and the mountains were not found”

The sky being split apart like a scroll is a very accurate description of the effect of a nuclear blast. These weapons can cause the islands to flee away and move mountains out of their places.

In John’s day, the power of such weapons was unimaginable, but he provides an amazingly accurate description of them. Even a small nuclear blast can create these effects.

Every Man shall be against his brother

Ezekiel goes on to say, “every man’s sword will be against his brother.”

Joel told us that this battle would be as the battle of Jehoshaphet, when the nations turn their swords against each other, as they did in the battle of Jehoshaphat in 2 Chronicles 20:23.

Joel wrote, “I will also gather all the nations and bring them down the valley of Jehoshaphat; and I will enter into judgment with them there” (Joel 3:2, 12). Jehoshaphat means “Jehovah Judges.”

Zechariah described this battle, saying, “a great panic from the LORD will be among them. Everyone will seize the hand of his neighbour, and raise his hand against his neighbour’s hand” (Zechariah 14:13).

Great Hailstones

Ezekiel went on to say, “I will rain down on him . . . great hailstones.”

In Job 38:22-23, we are told that God has reserved the storehouse of hail for war. 

The largest hailstones ever recorded, weigh less than two pounds. But these hailstones are described as “about a talent in weight,”  which would make them 75 to 100 pounds, 20 inches in diameter, and travelling at 300 miles per hour when they hit the ground. 

Are these really hailstones? Or are they actually missiles that appear as the size of large hailstones to John.

Fire and Brimstone

Finally, Ezekiel described “fire and brimstone.”

This “fire and brimstone” was explained in John’s vision of the horses in Revelation 9.

He said,

  • The riders had breastplates of fire and of hyacinth and of brimstone
  • And the heads of the horses are like the heads of lions
  • And out of their mouths proceeds fire and brimstone
  • The power of the horses is in their mouths and in their tails
  • For their tails are like the tails of serpents and with them they do harm

A third of mankind was killed by these three plagues, “by the fire and by the smoke and by the brimstone” (Revelation 9:18).

As early as the seventeenth Century, Joseph Mede (1586-1638), in his famous Book, “The Key of Revelation,” had already concluded that “modern weaponry,” was the only possible explanation. He wrote,

No where in any of the Prophets, or other where in sacred writ doth such like representation of fire, Iacinthian smoak; and brim∣stone offer itselfe. Wherefore I take it according to the letter, of that new kinde of instruments of war, and before this Trumpet never heard of, which these Euphrat•an enemies should use after their loosing: I meane gunnes sending forth fire, smoak and brimstone

The Great City was split in Three Parts

In Revelation 16, we read that “the Great City will be divided into three parts” (Rev 16:19).

Mystery Babylon is compared to the idolatrous Israel. God prescribed her punishment, in Ezekiel 5:2, saying, “you shall burn with fire 1/3 in the midst of the city, when the days of seige are finished; then you shall take 1/3 and strike it around with the sword, and 1/3 you shall scatter to the wind…”

Fire came down from heaven and devoured them

The attack against Jerusalem will end with flaming fire. 

Zechariah said, “And this shall be the plague with which YHVH shall 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).

The Apostle Paul said, “the Lord Jesus will be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels in flaming fire, dealing out retribution to those who do not know God and to those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thessalonians 1:5).

Peter said “the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat” (2 Peter 3:12).

Revelation 20:9 describes the ending simply, to say, “they surrounded the camp of the holy and the beloved City and fire came down from heaven and devoured them.”