Posted January 13, 2011
A prophecy of an army 200-million strong could not have been fulfilled until recently. How else are population pressures playing a part in end-time prophecy?
A recent issue of National Geographic focused on the perils and the challenges of the population explosion. Before the end of this year world population will pass 7 billion people on an already crowded planet. In spite of all the modern advances in birth control techniques and sustained national efforts like China's one-child-per-couple policy, world population has continued its rapid climb.
By 2045, it is projected that 9 billion inhabitants will populate this earth. Current growth stands at about 80 million persons a year. Unfortunately, most of this increase will occur in poverty-stricken nations.
But can the planet's natural resources provide the necessary sustenance for such incredible numbers? Excessive consumption of the earth's resources worries our professional demographers. The National Geographic article clearly stated: "Right now on Earth, water tables are falling, soil is eroding, glaciers are melting, and fish stocks are vanishing. Close to a billion people go hungry each day. Decades from now, there will likely be two billion more mouths to feed, mostly in poor countries" (Robert Kunzig, "One Day in Delft," January 2011, p. 43).
Population and the apocalypse
Do all of these factors have any connection with the Bible's predictions about the close of an age? The National Geographic piece continues: "From the beginning, says French demographer Hervé Le Bras, 'demography has been steeped in talk of the apocalypse'" (emphasis added throughout). Even in ancient times, the Bible tends to bears this statement out. "Now a population explosion took place upon the earth" (Genesis 6:1, The Living Bible).
Sir William Petty, a founder of the Royal Society in Britain, wrote: "And then, according to the prediction of the Scriptures, there must be wars and great slaughter" (ibid., p. 43). As world population grows, it strains the fragile relationships among cities and nations. More crime, violence, poverty and disease become almost inevitable as the crowded populace is increasingly forced to inhabit cramped and unhealthy quarters.
Prophesied army of 200 million
But how does this relate to biblical prophecy? Consider one passage in the final book of the Bible. The apostle John heard a voice "saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, 'Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.' So the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind. Now the number of the army of the horsemen was two hundred million" (Revelation 9:14-16).
Billions must exist on this planet to make the fulfillment of this prophecy possible. Only in the last few decades could the numbers occupying this particular region of the earth muster such a massive military force.
To understand much more about intensive end-time conditions predicted for our vulnerable planet, request in print or download our free booklets The Book of Revelation Unveiled , You Can Understand Bible Prophecy and Are We Living in the Time of the End?