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What Does the Bible Say About Armageddon?

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The Bible mentions Armageddon only once, in Revelation 16:16 Revelation 16:16And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.
American King James Version×
: “And they gathered them together to the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon.” The Greek word Armageddon comes from two Hebrew words: Har Megiddo, meaning “the hill of Megiddo.”

The common (but misleading) notion is that Armageddon will be the last, climactic battle to be fought on earth between the powers of good and evil. However, this is not quite right in several crucial respects.

Armageddon—or more likely the large broad Valley of Jezreel, or Esdraelon, which Megiddo overlooks—will in fact be the staging area for the final great battle of this age, but not the site of the battle itself. That is set not at Meggido but in the Valley of Jehoshaphat—commonly reckoned to be the Kidron Valley, immediately adjacent to Jerusalem (see Joel 3:2 Joel 3:2I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.
American King James Version×
, 9-16).

Notwithstanding the popular concept of the Battle of Armageddon, the Bible makes no specific prediction for a war fought at Armageddon between two human armies precisely at Christ’s return. However, the Bible does say that the armies of the East and West will be drawn to the infamous valley by lying demons (Revelation 16:14 Revelation 16:14For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
American King James Version×
). From there they will march to Jerusalem. There they will fight the returning Jesus Christ (Revelation 14:14-20 Revelation 14:14-20 14 And I looked, and behold a white cloud, and on the cloud one sat like to the Son of man, having on his head a golden crown, and in his hand a sharp sickle. 15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud, Thrust in your sickle, and reap: for the time is come for you to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe. 16 And he that sat on the cloud thrust in his sickle on the earth; and the earth was reaped. 17 And another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle. 18 And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, Thrust in your sharp sickle, and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth; for her grapes are fully ripe. 19 And the angel thrust in his sickle into the earth, and gathered the vine of the earth, and cast it into the great wine press of the wrath of God. 20 And the wine press was trodden without the city, and blood came out of the wine press, even to the horse bridles, by the space of a thousand and six hundred furlongs.
American King James Version×
; 16:14; 19:11-21; Joel 3:12-14 Joel 3:12-14 12 Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about. 13 Put you in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great. 14 Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision.
American King James Version×
). GN

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