During World War 1, the purported "war to end all wars," over 9 million soldiers died, 21 million soldiers were wounded and almost 7 million civilians lost their lives. The Second World War resulted in the deaths of an estimated 54 million soldiers and citizens. Millions of veterans who lived through the horrors of those terrible conflicts learned to despise war. But since armed human conflict is so appalling, why do nations persist in waging war?
The Eternal God gives the answer, and it has everything to do with the human heart: "What is causing the quarrels and fights among you? Isn't it because there is a whole army of evil desires within you? You want what you don't have, so you kill to get it. You long for what others have, and can't afford it, so you start a fight to take it away from them" (James 4:1-2, The Living Bible). So, how does war begin? With self-centeredness and lust in one's inner thoughts. People seek to obtain their selfish desires through dishonesty, treachery, manipulation and violence.
Hope for a better world
War is undeniably mankind's most tragic legacy. Humanity has not only been troubled by disastrous warfare, but by countless other evils, including poverty, starvation and disease. These and other afflictions have resulted in horrific suffering, confusion, despair and heartache. Although people have never learned to live at peace (Romans 3:17), the Bible explains that they are not entirely to blame for this condition. Unknown to many, Satan the devil cunningly plies his evil and deceit by motivating individuals to hurt and destroy one another (Ephesians 6:12).
Even though there has been so much turmoil and tragedy throughout history, hope for a better world repeatedly springs eternal in the minds and hearts of human beings. People have firmly believed that somehow, someday, the world would finally attain the peace, joy and fulfillment for which it has deeply hungered. In the old song, "If I Ruled the World," renowned singer Tony Bennett optimistically sang of such a time, when the world would experience "happiness that no man could end."
Just a dream or a coming reality?
But is that day even possible or is it just a dream? It is absolutely not a dream. How do we know? Because God Himself has promised to bring it about. Jesus Christ will return to earth to take the reigns of world government (Revelation 11:15). He will put away the devil and his demons so they will no longer have any influence. The coming King of Kings (Revelation 19:16) will then begin teaching humankind the utter futility of war. He and His team of newly-resurrected saints will thoroughly instruct people in His benevolent way of life (Isaiah 2:3) and give everyone a new heart of love and obedience (Ezekiel 36:26). Peace will spread throughout the entire earth (Isaiah 54:10), and the scourge of war and human misery will at last come to an end.
That magnificent day is coming. You can count on it. "The earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea" (Isaiah 11:9) and people will "beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more" (Micah 4:3). Jesus Christ will forever put a stop to war and all human suffering, anguish, wretchedness and despair. The time will finally arrive when there will truly be happiness that no man can end. May God speed that wonderful day.
To learn much more about the God's wonderful plan for you and all humanity, we invite you to read, "The Feast of Tabernacles: Jesus Christ Reigns Over All the Earth" and "The Millennial Reign of Jesus Christ"