Bill Sutter’s Desk May/Jun 2004
It’s a term that arouses concern, even fear, in the hearts of people, especially if they are Jewish. It is also one of the most mischaracterized subjects of the Bible’s prophetic teachings.
Liberal theologians scoff at the truth of a future Battle of Armageddon. And opponents of the growing evangelical Christian and Jewish alliance paint an Armageddon scenario that shocks Jewish people and leaves them thinking that Christians believe themselves to be the end-times “winners” and Jewish people the end-times “losers.”
As the ultimate of distortions, Armageddon is characterized as “death to the Jews,” paving the way for the triumph of Christianity. Christians of biblical faith, who support Israel as the land God promised to the Jewish people (Gen. 15:18) and follow His example in loving them with an everlasting love (Jer. 31:3), are portrayed as having ulterior motives, the most vicious of these being the ultimate destruction of God’s Chosen People.
At The Friends of Israel we work hard to set the record straight by the clear teaching of God’s prophetic Word. And the Lord presented special opportunities to do exactly that recently during our trip to Israel with members of the Jewish community.
One morning we gathered at the highest point of Megiddo and looked over the huge expanse known as the Valley of Jezreel, the site of many wars in Israel’s history.
Standing over this most famous battlefield in the world, the future site of the Battle of Armageddon, we turned to Revelation 16:13–16. From the text, we saw the reality of this future battle that will not occur by happenstance, but rather by the design of God Almighty:
And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon (Rev. 16:16).
We looked at verses in Revelation 16 and 19 to identify the opponents in this latter-times conflict. On one side will be the kings and armies of the nations of the world. On the other side will be He who is the Word of God. At Armageddon, Messiah and His forces will defeat the armies of the rebellious Gentile world powers and establish His rule over them:
And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations, and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS (Rev. 19:15–16).
Turning to the Old Testament, we noted the Hebrew prophet Joel’s further explanation of the Lord’s intervention on behalf of His people:
I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the Valley of Jehoshaphat, and will judge them there for my people and for my heritage, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land (Joel 3:2).
Fighting on the side of His people, the Lord will judge the godless Gentile nations who lay siege against Israel. And in keeping with His promises, He will deliver His people.
What is the ultimate destiny of the Jewish people? Bible-believing Christians know the true end-times scenario, orchestrated by the Lord Himself, that is, the redemption and reconciliation of the nation to Messiah in preparation for His reign, as recorded by the prophet Zechariah:
Thus saith the LORD of hosts: In those days it shall come to pass that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you; for we have heard that God is with you (Zech. 8:23).
Throughout this issue of Israel My Glory magazine are many illustrations of The Friends of Israel’s commitment to the clear teaching of God’s prophetic Word. As you consider His marvelous works—past, present, and future—our prayer is that you will be strengthened in His truth and encouraged in your walk with Jesus Christ.