Home » Monday: Armageddon Ends    


Monday: Armageddon Ends — 12 Comments

  1. I have told the story of when I was a kid I used to come home from school hungry like most kids do. My parents would be out of the house milking the cows and feeding the chooks (chickens for non-Australians). I would sneak into the pantry and grab a couple of cookies to eat without my parent's permission. Before I did this I would check the sky for the sign of a small menacing dark cloud about half the size of a man's hand, just in case Jesus was coming and I did not have time to get my hand out of the cookie tin!

    Obviously, the passage from Ellen White had been read to me at a very early age and while it had impressed me enough to be scared of it, it did not stop me from pinching cookies when I was hungry.

    Some sixty odd years later I often think about those cookies. (They were good by-the-way. Mum was a good cook.) And I think about sin and readiness for Jesus Second Coming and all that goes with it and I ask myself what have I learned. Well, one thing I have learned is that I could not hide anything from Mum. She knew I was pinching cookies and in fact expected it. I now have grandchildren of my own who come to our house straight after school to do their homework. They are so hungry they will even eat health-food! More to the point, I have learned a great deal about what sin is and what it means to be ready for Jesus Second Coming.

    One of the problems we have with our focus on the physical second coming and its climactic place in history is that we can easily overlook the spiritual lesson. We are somewhat disparaging of the Preterist approach to prophecy, but without forsaking our historicist approach, there is some merit in expanding our view to find a present spiritual application. We do have the battle of Armageddon in our own lives and the battle is won when Jesus comes into our lives. If we understand the conflict of good and evil within ourselves and the meaning of the coming of Jesus with ourselves to end that conflict, then we are prepared for the physical Second Coming when that happens. Unfortunately, we often ignore the battle raging within, or worse try to fight it ourselves without letting Jesus come into our lives.

    Paul had this to say:

    But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness. Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. 1 Tim 6:12,13 DRV

    For I am even now ready to be sacrificed: and the time of my dissolution is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. As to the rest, there is laid up for me a crown of justice, which the Lord the just judge will render to me in that day: and not only to me, but to them also that love his coming. Make haste to come to me quickly. 2 Tim 4:6-8 DRV

    Spiritual application is preparation for the future!

    • At our individual level, the battle of Armageddon is indeed about decisions we make either for Christ or otherwise, for so it was during the time of literal Elijah on Mount Carmel.

      I however have a big problem with either Preterist (as propagated by Alcazar - a Spanish Jesuit priest in the 1500's), and the Futurist - (as propagated by another Jesuit priest - Ribera). Both of these aimed to use these ways of interpreting prophecy to take our view off Papacy as the beast of Revelation - either by literalizing prophecy, and sending it to the past (preterism) or by pushing it into distant future, beyond our days, and localizing it to literal Israel (Futurism).

      • I made an editing mistake in referring to "futurist" when I meant "historicist". Put that down to trying to get the comment finished before I kept another appointment. I have now corrected that mistake. Preterism currently has a number of strands and is difficult to define exactly (in much the same way that it is difficult to define a typical Adventist). My point remains that we should not ignore the spiritual application and by linking the spiritual present with the temporal future, we can learn a valuable lesson.

  2. The bible has used food to describe salvation, one instance is a banquet were everyone is having a good time, like most marriages, song, food and drink and fellowship depict a wonderful image. The other image is one that shows a people that are in pain, suffering and great hardship that they die and the animals are given food to eat. After all we were supposed to look after God's animals here on earth, but instead we have killed them off to the point were they are now extinct. Some how if seems fitting to me that God gives them revenge as well. Just my opinion thou. One thing is for sure Jesus return can not come soon enough.

  3. I offer the following as something to consider, to do your own bible study, and to decide for yourself what conclusion/s you come to (2 Tim 2:15; Acts 17:11).

    The parallels between the metaphor of Armageddon and the 'contest/controversy' between Elijah and the prophets of Baal on Mt Carmel (in the hill country - Greek meaning of har - of Megiddo) have previously been raised on ssnet.

    What was the issue on Mt Carmel? "How long will you hesitate between (sit on the fence) two opinions? If the Lord is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him" (1 Ki 18:21). Here we have reflected the central issues of the Great Controversy - who is the true God and, by extension, whose way is the true way: God's self-renouncing way that is claimed to lead to abundant life or Satan's self-seeking way that is counter-claimed to allegedly lead to even more 'abundant life'.

    I have previously outlined why God couldn't simply shut-down this issue and 'nip it in the bud' back at the beginning. Consequently, the only way this issue could be resolved was for the truth of what each 'Kingdom' was actually about to be on display for all to see for themselves.

    The majority of translations of Rev 19:11-16 portray the resolution of this issue in military terms. But if I look into Greek words of the symbols and metaphors, what I see taking place is the unrestrained revelation of the absolute truth in regard to the core issues/allegations of the Great Controversy. While Satan has used deception to keep truth hidden for so long, his ability to do that has now come to an end. Like the sunshine that breaks through at dawn or after a storm, the truth is now so strong, so pure, that nothing can obscure it. This truth, with laser-sharpness, cuts straight through all Satan's lies and deceptions - laying open (at last) the true reality for all to see (Rev 19:11, 15 and see also Heb 4:12 and 1 Cor 4:5).

    In Rev 19:11, the Greek word translated 'makes war' is polemei from which we get the word polemic. A polemic is a passionate presentation of truth in defense against an accusation for the purposes of demonstrating that the accusation is baseless. Interestingly, the outcome of this process is being vindicated or 'avenged' by the Truth. This 'war' of Revelation and is an intensely active (rather than passive) process on God's part - as indicated by the deliberate, controlled passion-based action to reveal truth conveyed in the badly translated and hence easily misunderstood phrase 'fury (thymou) of the wrath (orges) of God' (Rev 19:15).

    I personally believe the 'rod of iron' is referring to the nature and result of irrefutable truth - it won't change and or budge no matter how hard you try to bend it by pushing against it.

    It is noteworthy that in Rev 19:13 the rider of the White horse (Jesus, the Word of God/Logos of Jn 1:1,14) is attired in a robe dipped in blood. On the basis of Lev 17:11 and Jn 15:13, I believe this is referring to the self-renouncing nature and character of Jesus. Self-renouncing is the absolute strongest possible character to be based upon for, as Jesus demonstrated, nothing can ultimately prevail against it. It ultimately neutralises all opposition arrayed against it simply by its nature. This is why death could not hold Jesus down.

    Why is this noteworthy? Because if we link what has been said about the power of Truth and the power of self-renouncing love, we can see that these are in fact synonymous active processes that bring results simply by their conquering nature. Nothing can stand against them - not because they are used as weapons to crush and kill like is often portrayed, but because by nature they are immutable and immovable.

    One final bit of interesting association. The day on Mt Carmel concluded with Elijah's servant being sent out to look on the horizon 7 times and on the 7th time seeing a "cloud about the size of a man's hand coming up from the sea" (1 Kings 18:44). This cloud brought rain that ended a severe drought in the land. Ellen White in the quote in today's lesson also sees a small cloud about half the size of a man's hand. This cloud brings truth that ends the oppression of evil and error.

    The ending of Armageddon is brought about by the Revelation/unveiling by Truth as to which nature and character actually underpins abundant life. All those who share this nature and character because it is their heart's desire, go on to experience the inherent abundant life of this nature and character in its fullest possible expression (mortality is exchanged for immortality: 1 Cor 15:53-57). All those who share the nature and character that precludes abundant life go on to experience the True outcome of that preclusion. The Great Controversy is finally forever settled by the power of Truth that speaks for itself.

    • Hi Phil:

      I appreciate your seeking to encourage us to study for ourselves as per this consideration you have shared. I need to make a slight observation and correction of part of what you shared so as to clarify any confusion that may come about from others seeking to study out the verses you share.

      Rev. 19:15 does not use the word polemei, but rather poimainó it is translated "rule," and it means "to shepherd." In this sense, to shepherd in a way to protect the flock, being at the receiving end of fierce defense.

      The phrase "make war" (KJV, ESV) is in verse 19 and the word there is polemos. From polemos does come the word polemic, the word meaning an aggressive attack on the principles or opinions of another. Or it can mean the art or practice of controversy. What you are trying to describe, I think, is apologetic which is a formal defense of in either speech or writing.

      • Oops. Thanks for pointing that out Kevin.

        I should have referenced Rev 19:11 rather than Rev 19:15. I will get that corrected.

        What you have mentioned about Rev 19:19 draws my attention to the war that the beast and his cohorts makes (polemon), which appears to be of a different nature to that which the white horse rider of Rev 19:11 makes (polemei). It appears that polemon refers to antagonistically stirring up trouble.

        • The difference between the word in Rev 19:11 and Rev 19:19 is slight. In verse eleven the word is derived from the word in verse nineteen. Indeed the nature and purpose of the warring parties are different. Christ is coming to wage war for the purpose of administering justice, and to defend His people in righteousness. The armies are at war with the King of kings through the attempt in ending the lives of His people.

          • Thanks Kevin. I am appreciating the interchanges with you.

            Yes, the difference in the words themselves is slight. And yet I find that in many aspects of life, it is the seemingly subtle differences that produce the most pronounced downstream differences. Satan exploits this phenomenon to the max.

  4. I believe that Revelation is about balance, focus on the message in sanctuary not self, don't be deceived by apostate Catholic, apostate Protestant, or spiritualism, don't be caught up with materialism or force, focus on the character of Jesus.

  5. Revelation portrays the Second Coming as a battle that culminates in the extrication of God's people from this world, and putting to an end the world systems, political and spiritual, that have worked against God and have harmed God's people. In chapter nineteen it is the chivalric Jesus that comes to the rescue of His destressed Bride as the enemy seeks to destroy her. In power and great glory God stops the last efforts of Satan to make the world fully his and then the Devil is given the earth fully. A desolate landscape with no subjects to deceive and command. As with any rescue, this will be one for the ultimate record and expression of joy.

  6. I agree in principle with Phil, however I would share it slightly differently, as follows:
    The ending of Armageddon is brought about by the Revelation/unveiling of the true character of the Triune God whose life giving power underpins all life. All those who have allowed the Triune God to change their nature and character (because it is their heart's desire to dwell with Him and be like Him), go on to experience eternal life with the Triune God, firstly in heaven and then on the earth made new. (mortality is exchanged for immortality: 1 Cor 15:53-57) All those who refuse to accept the sacrifice and the nature and character of the Triune God will be separated from Him and His life giving power and thus will cease to exist. The Great Controversy is finally forever settled by the revelation of the true character of the Triune God.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags allowed in your comment: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>