Is the Battle of Armageddon the only end time war? Find out with Dr. David Reagan on television’s “Christ in Prophecy.”
Air Date: September 4, 2016
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Dr. Reagan: Did you know that the Bible contains prophecies about 9 wars in the end times? That’s right a total of 9. That fact comes as a shock to most people who are familiar with only one namely, the War of Armageddon. For an overview of all 9 wars, stay tuned.
Dr. Reagan: Greetings in the name of Jesus, our Blessed Hope, and welcome to Christ in Prophecy.
Last week I began presenting an overview of 9 wars the Bible says will occur in the end times. In discussing this subject with people, I have discovered over the years that most are very surprised to learn that the War of Armageddon is not the only end time war.
I spent most of my time last week discussing the timing of the first two wars, the war described in Psalm 83 and the one that is prophesied in Ezekiel 38 & 39. Now if you missed that presentation, you can find it on our website at lamblion.com. Again, that address is lamblion.com, with no “and” in the middle. You can also find many other of our videos and TV programs on that site which you can view online.
Now concerning those first two wars, it was my conclusion last week that both of them are most likely to occur before the Tribulation begins. The Psalm 83 War, which is an Arab war to annihilate Israel, could occur any moment. There is not one prophecy that has to be fulfilled. The Ezekiel 38 & 39 war, called the War of Gog and Magog, cannot occur until Israel is living in peace, which is likely to be the result of Israel winning the Psalm 83 War.
What I’d like to do now is return to the presentation I made at a conference held at Calvary Chapel in Chino Hills, California, a conference sponsored by David Hocking’s ministry, Hope for Today. We will begin with a review of the four wars I mentioned last week, and then we will take a look at the five others that are prophesied in the Bible.
Dr. Reagan: The first the War of Israeli Extermination described in Psalm 83. Psalm 83 states that the immediate neighbors of Israel will launch a war for the purpose of wiping out Israel as a nation. The nations described as being a part of this nefarious effort are those with a common border with Israel, including Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt and Gaza, all of these with a common border.
The second half of Psalm 83 is a prayer for Israel’s victory. The outcome of the war is not specifically stated in Psalm 83 but we know from other Scriptures that Israel will be victorious. For example Zechariah 12:6 says, “That in the end times Israel will be like a firepot among pieces of wood, and a flaming torch among sheaths so that that they will consume on the right hand and on the left all the surrounding peoples.” They are going to be like David against Goliath. Bill Salus believes this war of annihilation will boomerang on the Arab nations and will result in their overwhelming defeat producing great territorial expansion, enhanced national resources for Israel and yes, peace for Israel.
Incidentally it is during this war that Israel will most likely destroy Damascus in fulfillment of the prophecies in Isaiah 17 and Jeremiah 19 which says that in the end times Damascus will be destroyed and it will never be built again.
But the security provided by Psalm 83 War will not last long because what will happen is that the Arab nations will turn to their natural ally Russia and cry out for help resulting in the first war of Gog and Magog; the war described in Ezekiel 38 & 39. This is where Russia comes down against Israel with certain specified Muslim allies. The Russians will be delighted to respond to the Arab cry for help because they have always dreamed of taking over the oil fields of the Middle East. They will therefore launch an invasion for the stated purpose of helping the Muslims destroy Israel. Their specific allies will involve the outer ring of Muslim states that surround Israel all but Saudi Arabia. Now I believe that the unstated agenda of the Russians and their real motivation will be to use the Arab invitation as an excuse to expand their sovereignty over all the Middle East. This alterative motive is described in Ezekiel 38:12 where it says the Russians will come to capture spoil and to seize plunder. The invading armies will be supernaturally destroyed by God on the mountains of Israel. The Lord will accomplish this destruction through earthquakes and pestilence, hail, fire and brimstone and battle field confusion. Even the Jewish people will recognize that the victory belongs to God and it will open many of their hearts to the Lord.
The greatest mystery concerning this war is its timing. Most have placed it at the beginning of the Tribulation. Others have delayed it to the middle of the Tribulation. But increasingly in recent years the tendency has been to place it before the beginning of the Tribulation. The reason there is so much question is because the Bible does not say for sure when it will occur, and there is room for honest disagreement on this. Probably every person on this program has a different view as to when this war will occur. So there is room for honest disagreement.
In recent years as said the most common view that is coming out these days is that this war will start before the Tribulation. The best discussion of timing that has yet been written I think can be found in this book, “Northern Storm Rising” by Ron Rhodes who lives in Frisco, Texas. He’s a great writer. He concludes that this war of Gog and Magog will most likely occur 3 ½ years begin 3 ½ years before the Tribulation starts. Now here’s his reasoning: the Tribulation lasts 7 years, Ezekiel 39:9 says that the Jews will spend 7 years burning the weapons that they capture in that war, likely nuclear fuel. But they are going to be burning weapons that they captured in that war for 7 years. But Revelation 12 tells us that 3 ½ years into the Tribulation the Jews will be evicted from the land by the Antichrist, and most will flee to Jordan. Therefore the only way the Jews could spend 7 years burning the weapons Ron argues is for the war to begin 3 ½ years before the start of the Tribulation.
This brings up another question: Does this mean that the wars of Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38 & 39 must occur before the Rapture? Not at all. The Rapture can occur any moment; before, during or after these wars. Keep in mind that the Rapture is not what starts the Tribulation. The Tribulation will begin when the Antichrist signs a security treaty with Israel. There could be a period of several years between the time of the Rapture and the beginning of the Tribulation.
This brings us to the third end time war, the conventional war of the Tribulation mentioned in Revelation 6, although the Antichrist is going to rise to power in Europe through cunning and deception, intrigue, and his charismatic personality. I believe he will have to resort to military power to concur the world. Listen folks Asia, Africa, and Latin America have spent the last 200 years casting off European colonialism. They are not suddenly going to turn around to some European leader no matter how dynamic and how charismatic he may be and say, “Please come and rule us.” They are not going to do that. They are going to resist any leader who rises to power in Europe regardless of how brilliant and charismatic he maybe. We are told in Revelation 13:7 that the Antichrist will ultimately achieve authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation and I believe this authority will be achieved through war. Revelation 6 records the outbreak of this world war it results in the death of one-fourth of humanity. You ever stop and make those calculations? One-fourth of humanity, in today’s terms that means that in this war at the beginning of the Tribulation 1 and ½ billion people will die, this carnage is called the seal judgments.
To review the wars of Psalm 83 results in the destruction of the inner ring of the Muslim states around Israel. That is Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Egypt and Gaza. Then comes the war of Ezekiel 38 & 39 which results in the destruction of the outer ring: Turkey, Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia. Both the inner ring and the outer ring are destroyed in these two wars. In other words what I think is going to happen here is that God is going to use the Antichrist as His hammer of wrath to destroy Islam in the Middle East. But there are many other nations of the world that also will have to be taken care of because all the green area there is the Muslim world. And the largest Muslim nations in the world are not in the Middle East. The largest Muslim nations are Indonesia with 200 million, India with 145 million, Pakistan with 140 million, and Bangladesh with 115 million. Those are the big Muslim nations of the world, none of which are in the Middle East.
So I think the Antichrist will have to continue his war to conquer all the nations of the world. And it appears in Revelation 8 & 9 that we come to the fourth war and that is the nuclear war of the Tribulation. What appears to happen here in the book of Revelation is that the conventional war started by the Antichrist begins to morph into a nuclear war resulting in the deaths of another one-third of those left alive. Well if you calculate that one-third of those left alive is another 1 1/2 billion that means folks that by the middle of the Tribulation 3 billion people will die in 3 ½ years. That’s one-half of all humanity is going to die in the first 3 ½ years of the Tribulation. I have preachers all the time call me and say, “Do you think we are in the Tribulation?” And I say to them, “Let me tell you something, if you go into the Tribulation you will not have to ask anybody if you are there, you’ll know. You’ll know without a shadow of a doubt.”
There are some hints that this conventional war is going to become a nuclear one. For example one of the hints is found in Revelation 8:7 where it says, “The escalation of the war will result in one-third of the earth being burned up.” One-third of the earth being burned that sounds like nuclear war to me. Another hint is found in Revelation 16 right at the end of Revelation at the end of the Tribulation where we’re told that loathsome and malignant sores will afflict people all over the earth at the end of the Tribulation; something that would be a natural consequence of radiation from the use of atomic weapons. It could very well be that the nuclear holocaust was what Jesus had in mind when He said that in the end times men will faint from fear over the expectation of the things coming upon the world for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. This war is portrayed in the book of Revelation in chapter 8 & 9 as a series of trumpet judgments.
This brings us to the fifth war, the War in the Heavens. This next war is different from all the others because it is a supernatural war, a war that occurs in the heavens in the middle of the Tribulation. It is most likely prompted by an attempt of Satan to take the throne of God one last time. We are told that Satan and his angels will be opposed in this war by Michael and his angels. Michael is an Archangel who is pictured in the Hebrew Scriptures as the commander and chief of God’s armies and as the special protector of Israel. Michael and his angels will prevail in this war and Satan will be cast down to earth and his access to Heaven will be cut off and in his rage Satan decides to destroy the Jewish people. And this decision leads to the next war.
The next war is the War against the Jews and the Saints launched by Antichrist at the motivation of Satan. The Antichrist launches this war in the second half of the Tribulation for the purpose of killing every Jew on planet earth and their Christian defenders. Folks, Satan hates the Jewish people. He hates them with a passion. He hates them because they are the chosen people of God. He hates them because through them God gave the world the Scriptures. He hates them because through them God gave the world the Messiah. And he hates them because God has promised over and over and over in His Word that one day He is going to bring a great remnant of the Jews to salvation in Yeshua the Messiah.
As a result of this war there is going to be another holocaust during the latter half of the Tribulation. When Satan is cast down to earth he will possess the Antichrist and inspire him to annihilate the Jews and this is the reason that Jesus refers to the last half of the Tribulation as the Great Tribulation, not because it is going to be worse than the first half, but because it is going to focus on the Jewish people and their complete annihilation from planet earth. Some of the Jews of Israel will flee to a place in the wilderness where they will be supernaturally protected by God. Many believe that hiding place will be the ancient city of Petra one of the buildings you see here, located inside a box canyon inside of modern Jordan. There is good reason for this assumption because Daniel 11:41 says the Antichrist will be prevented from concurring Jordan when that part of the world rebels against him at the end of his reign. But despite this supernatural protection in Jordan Zechariah 13:8 says that two-thirds, two-thirds of the Jewish people worldwide will be killed by the Antichrist at this time; that will be a holocaust greater than the Nazi holocaust.
In Revelation 12:17 says the Antichrist will also war against the offspring of Israel namely those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. I believe this is a reference to all those who accept Jesus as Lord and Savior during the Tribulation both Jew and Gentile. It is no wonder that Revelation 7 pictures a great multitude of martyrs in Heaven coming out of the Tribulation, so great that the number cannot be counted. They are identified as those coming out of the Great Tribulation who have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. So the Antichrist will be very successful in his war against the Jews and the Saints, but he will fail in his ultimate goal of annihilating the Jews. For we are told repeatedly throughout the Scriptures that a great remnant of the Jews will live to the end of the Tribulation at which time they will look upon Him whom they have pierced and weep and wail and mourn and cry out for the depths of their heart, “Baruch Haba Bashem Adonai,” blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.
That leads us to the seventh war of the end times, the Middle East campaign of the Antichrist described in Daniel chapter 11. Daniel 11:40-45 describe a military campaign of the Antichrist in the Middle East that occurs at the end of the Tribulation. These verses and related verses in Revelation could very well indicate that when the Antichrist becomes absolutely insanely obsessed with destroying the Jews and the Saints that the nations of the world see an opportunity to rebel against him. The nations in the Middle East will be led by the King of the North probably Syria. Those will also be led by the King of the South probably Egypt. And Daniel says that when this rebellion occurs that the Antichrist will come into what he calls the beautiful land to put down this terrible rebellion. And it says that he will concur all of that area except Jordan. And it says just as he seems to be completely victorious that he will hear rumors, rumors from the east and rumors from the north that deeply disturb him. It says he will retreat with his armies to an area between the seas where he will come to his end. It appears that armies out of the east will come, maybe that 200 million army mentioned in Revelation. An army out of the north will come possibly the armies of Gog and Magog of Russia reconstituted. And that he will retreat to the area between the seas which of course would be the Valley of Armageddon.
This brings us then to that famous battle which is no battle at all as you will see. It brings us to the Battle of Armageddon mentioned in Joel 3, Zechariah 14, Revelation 19. It appears that just as the armies from the east and the north start arriving in the Valley of Armageddon to challenge the Antichrist that the Lord breaks from the heavens. He arrives on the Mount of Olives. He speaks a supernatural word and all the armies are instantly destroyed. Folks, there is no Battle of Armageddon. Jesus doesn’t lead an army out to fight the Antichrist. There is no Battle of Armageddon. He simply speaks a supernatural word, after all this is the one who spoke and the whole universe came into existence. He will speak and the Antichrist and his forces will drop dead in their tracks. We are told in the Bible that Joel 3:16 says, “That the Lord will roar from Zion and utter His voice from Jerusalem.” Isaiah 10:16 says, “The result will be a wasting disease.” Zechariah 14:12 says, “That it will be a plague that the Lord will speak and it will cause the flesh of the soldiers to rot while they stand on their feet.” It says their eyes will melt in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths. And the blood will be as deep as a horses bridle for a distance of 200 miles.
Mercifully and joyfully the Battle of Armageddon will be followed by 1,000 years of peace as the reign of Jesus from Jerusalem results in the world being filled with peace, righteousness, and justice. Swords will be beat into plowshares. The wolf will dwell with the lamb. Little children will play with snakes because they will no longer be poisonous. Jerusalem will be lifted up as the highest place on planet earth. Jesus will reign as King of King and Lord of Lords. David in his glorified body as the King of Israel. Multitudes will come from the earth to see the King of Kings. His glory will go out through the whole world. The blessings of God will flow through the Jewish nation to all the nations of the world to the point that when one Jew walks by 10 Gentiles will grab his robe and say, “Can we walk with you because we know that God is with you.” What a glorious time that’s going to be.
Satan will be bound. Sin and crime will be greatly reduced. But there will still be seething rebellion in the hearts of many if not most of those who are born during that time. There is going to be a great population explosion during the Millennium. Those who go into the Millennium in the flesh will all be saved people but they will begin to repopulate the earth and their children will have to come to the point where they are going to believe in Jesus or not. And the point that the Bible makes is that most will not. There will be seething rebellion in the hearts of most people. And why would there be resentment in the hearts of people; in the midst of a perfect reign of Jesus Christ? The answer is really very simple, the answer is simple it’s because He is going to rule with a rod of iron. Jesus will rule with a rod of iron. He will give the law. The law will be strictly enforced by those of us who will be reigning with Jesus in our glorified bodies. Those living in the flesh will deeply resent the fact that they cannot freely pursue their worldly lusts because they will have that sin nature in them. They know that if they step out of line there will be instant arrest, instant trial, instant punishment. No appeal because every person ruling will have the mind of Christ. Justice will be swift, justice will be certain, justice will be sure. And so they simply grind their teeth and say, “We love you Jesus,” but they will be grinding their teeth.
And thus when Satan is released at the end of the Millennium the majority of those in the flesh will unite in one last great rebellion against God. The ninth war of the end times, the second Battle of Gog and Magog, the second battle of Gog and Magog. The rebellious peoples of the world led again by Gog and Magog will revolt against Jesus and try to overthrow Him. And because this war is entitled a war of Gog and Magog it’s often confused with the war in Ezekiel 38 & 39. As I will point out tomorrow afternoon there are some now saying they are the same war, but they are not, they are two different wars. And this can be proved very simply in Ezekiel 38 & 39 the War of Gog and Magog is a war of Russia with Muslim allies coming against Israel. In Revelation 19 we have Russia with all the world coming against Jesus Christ. Big difference between these two wars.
History is going to end as it began, it goes in a circle. It began with two people in a perfect environment who rebelled against God. It is going to end up with all of humanity living in a perfect society and the majority will make the same decision to rebel against God. One of the many purposes of the Millennium and perhaps one of the most important is for God to prove to mankind that man has an inherent sin nature and that it can only be redeemed by the Holy Spirit through faith in Jesus Christ.
The religion of Satan has always been humanism; the belief in man. The philosophy teaches that man is inherently good and man is capable of perfection through education and social justice. Humanist therefore believe that if society can be perfected man can be transformed and man can be perfected. But the Bible teaches that mankind is fatally flawed with a sin nature that makes people naturally evil.
And the Bible teaches that the only solution to the problem is the transformation of the Holy Spirit that begins when the person accepts Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. God will prove this beyond a shadow of a doubt when He puts all of mankind into a perfect society for a 1,000 years and mankind will respond with rebellion.
Again the second War of Gog and Magog will be the last war of history. Following it God will take the redeemed off this earth and He will place us in a New Jerusalem, He is now preparing. He will then consume the earth with fire to burn away the pollution of Satan’s last revolt and out of the fiery inferno will come a New Heavens and a New Earth. This earth redeemed. This earth refreshed. This earth perfected. He will then lower the redeemed down to this new earth inside the New Jerusalem and He will come to earth to live in their presence eternally. My friends eternal peace is coming. War is going to be gone forever. This hope of mankind will not be achieved by diplomats. It will be a gift of God through Jesus Christ the Prince of Peace who died to redeem mankind and all of the cosmos. And all I can do when I think about that is shout from the depths of my heart, “Maranatha, Maranatha, come quickly Lord Jesus.” Thank you and God bless you.
Welcome back to Christ in Prophecy and our study of the Wars of the End Times. Now as we take a look at these wars there is always a question that seems to just simply leap out. It is the question, “Why?” Why in the world is all this going to happen? Why, for example, is there going to be a period of unparalleled horror on the earth called the Tribulation? Why would a God of love allow the slaughter of these wars to occur? This is very disturbing to most people, and you know what it should be.
The answer though is really very, very simple: God must deal with sin. He has to do so because He is a holy God of justice and righteousness.
Personally, I’m glad the Bible teaches that God is going to deal with sin that there will be judgment. You know why? God’s promise of judgment means that life has meaning. If we’re never going to be accountable for anything, life has no meaning.
The irony of the Tribulation is this: Even when God pours out His wrath, His fundamental purpose is never to punish. Think about that for a moment. This is the glory of our God. Even when He pours out His wrath, His fundamental purpose is not to punish. Instead, we’re told over and over, His fundamental purpose is to bring people to repentance, so they can be saved.
In 2 Peter 3:9 we are told the only reason Jesus Christ has not returned. It’s because God wishes for more people to be saved. God does not wish that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But many, if not most, will perish. It is God’s perfect will that all should be saved. But in His permissive will, He allows people to be lost as they reject Him and His Son.
Judgments can motivate people to repentance. The prophet Isaiah put it this way, he wrote, “When the earth experiences God’s judgments, the inhabitants of the world learn righteousness.” And the fact of the matter is that a great number of people will turn their hearts to God during the Tribulation, so large a number that no one can count them a great host coming from every tribe and nation.
Where do you stand in your relationship with God? Have you been saved by grace thru faith in Jesus? Or, have you rejected Jesus and are therefore living under the wrath of God? Think about it. Grace or Wrath? Think about eternity.
Well, folks, that’s our program for this week. I hope it’s been a blessing to you. Until next week, the Lord willing, this is Dave Reagan speaking for Lamb & Lion Ministries, saying, “Look up, be watchful, for our Redemption is drawing near.”
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