The End of the Tribulation

From  the  book  by Ron Rhodes


The Campaign of Armageddon Begins:  

Phase 1: The Antichrists Allies Assemble for War.. 

Phase 2: Commercial Babylon Is Destroyed  

Phase 3: Jerusalem Falls and Is Ravaged  

Phase 4: The Antichrist Moves South Against

the Remnant  

Phase 5: Israel Endangered and Regenerated  

Phase 6: Jesus Christ Returns in Glory  

Phase 7: The Final Battle Erupts  

Phase 8: Christ Victoriously Ascends to the Mount of Olives  

The Campaign of Armageddon Begins

Scripture reveals that human suffering will steadily escalate during the seven-year tribulation period. 


First are the seal judgments, involving bloodshed, famine, death, economic upheaval, a great earthquake, and cosmic disturbances (Revelation 6). 


Then come the trumpet judgments, involving hail and fire mixed with blood, the sea turning to blood, water turning bitter, further cosmic disturbances, affliction by dernonic scorpions, and the death of a third of humankind (Revelation 8:6-9:21). Then come the bowl judgments, involving horribly /gainful sores on human beings, more bodies of water turning to blood, the death of all sea creatures, people being scorched by the sun, total darkness engulfing the land, a devastating earthquake, and much more (Revelation 16).


Worse comes to worst, however, when these already traumatized human beings are engaged in a catastrophic war campaign called Armageddon (see Daniel 11:40-45; Joel 3:9-17; Zechariah 14:1-3; Revelation 16:14-16). This takes place at the very end of the tribulation period. Millions of people will perish in the worst escalation of conflict ever to hit the earth.

(ARMAGEDDON  HAS  NOTHING  TO  DO  WITH  DANIEL  11: 40-45  -  Keith Hunt)

The word Armageddon literally means "Mount of Megiddo" and refers to a location about 60 miles north of Jerusalem. This is the location of Baraks battle with the Canaanites (Judges 4) and Gideons battle with the Midianites (Judges 7). This will be the site for the final horrific battles of humankind just prior to the second corning.

Napoleon is reported to have once commented that this site is perhaps the greatest battlefield he had ever witnessed. Of course, the battles Napoleon fought will dim in comparison to Armageddon. So horrible will Armageddon be that no one would survive if it were not for Christ corning again (Matthew 24:22).


Armageddon will involve an extended, escalating conflict, and it will be catastrophic. In view of all that occurs at Armageddon, it would be wrong to refer to it as a battle, as if it were a single event. We will see that the campaign of Armageddon actually involves eight phases.

(MAYBE....WE  SHALL  SEE  WHAT  HE  SAY  -  Keith Hunt)

Phase 1: The Antichrist's Allies Assemble for War

The allied armies of the antichrist will gather for the final destruction of the Jews. Demonic spirits "go abroad to the kings of the whole world, to assemble them for battle on the great day of God the Almighty.. .And they assembled them at the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon" (Revelation 16:14,16).



The assembling of these armies actually takes place at the unleashing of the sixth bowl judgment. The Euphrates River will be dried up, thereby making it easier for the armies of the east to assemble. The Euphrates River-—-the longest river of Western Asia (almost 1800 miles)—begins in modern-day Turkey, heads toward the Mediterranean Sea, then turns south, flows more than 1000 miles, converges with the Tigris River, and then flows into the Persian Gulf. Many ancient cities, including Ur and Babylon, are located at various points along the river.


Who are the kings of the east? Bible scholars have varying opinions. In fact, a survey of 100 prophecy books reveals more than 50 different interpretations as to who they are. Some suggest that it may refer to the seven kings of Daniel 7 who have submitted to the authority of the antichrist. However, prophecy scholar John E Walvoord suggests another interpretation.

The simplest and best explanation, however, is that this refers to kings or rulers from the Orient or East who will participate in the final world war. In the light of the context of this passage indicating the near approach of the second coming of Christ and the contemporary world situation in which the Orient today contains a large portion of the worlds population with tremendous military potential, any interpretation other than a literal one does not make sense.1

This is what makes the Euphrates River significant. This river is the primary water boundary between the Holy Land and Asia to the east. Theologian Charles Ryrie comments, "The armies of the nations of the Orient will be aided in their march toward Armageddon by the supernatural drying up of the Euphrates River." The drying up of this river is predicted in Isaiah 11:15.

The goal of the coalition will be to once and for all destroy the Jewish people. Each member of the satanic trinity will be involved—Satan, the antichrist, and the false prophet. Demons will also be involved in summoning the kings of the earth.


The summons will be reinforced by demonic activity to make sure that the nations will indeed cooperate in assembling their armies together. These demonic messengers will be empowered to perform signs in order to assure compliance and defeat any reluctance to fall into line on the part of the other kings.2


Phase 2: Commercial Babylon Is Destroyed

Revelation 17-18 reveals that the antichrist will rebuild and revive Babylon in the end times. It will be a worldwide economic and religious center. When the late Saddam Hussein was in power, he spent more than a billion dollars in oil money to rebuild the city, essentially as a monument to himself.


Earlier in the book, I noted that the antichrist will set up headquarters in Jerusalem halfway through the tribulation period, when he will claim to be God and set up an image of himself in the Jewish temple.


At some point in the latter half of the tribulation period-—-we are not told precisely when-—-the antichrist will shift his headquarters to Babylon, which will become a global commercial center. Babylon at this time will likely be in control of the oil fields (and the money these fields generate) in the Middle East. This Babylonian commercial center will be destroyed during phase 2 of Armageddon.



What an irony we have here. While phase 1 of Armageddon is underway, with the antichrist preparing his armies to attack Israel, God will cause a military force to attack the antichrists headquarters of Babylon.


Several key passages describe the utter destruction of Babylon in association with Armageddon.

Because of the wrath of the Lord she shall not be inhabited but shall be an utter desolation; everyone who passes by Babylon shall be appalled, and hiss because of all her wounds. Set yourselves in array against Babylon all around, all you who bend the bow; shoot at her, spare no arrows, for she has sinned against the Lord ...

How Babylon has become a horror among the nations! I set a snare for you and you were taken, O Babylon, and you did not know it; you were found and caught, because you opposed the Lord. The Lord has opened his armory and brought out the weapons of his wrath...

As when God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighboring cities, declares the Lord, so no man shall dwell there, and no son of man shall sojourn in her (Jeremiah 50:13-14,23-25,40).

Isaiah 13:19 informs us that Babylon "will be like Sodom and Gomorrah when God overthrew them." 


The book of Revelation is graphic in its description of commercial Babylon's destruction.

Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, "So will Babylon the great city be thrown down with violence, and will be found no more; and the sound of harpists and musicians, of flute players and trumpeters, will be heard in you no more, and a craftsman of any craft will be found in you no more, and the sound of the mill will be heard in you no more, and the light of a lamp will shine in you no more, and the voice of bridegroom and bride will be heard in you no more, for your merchants were the great ones of the earth, and all nations were deceived by your sorcery. And in her was found the blood of prophets and of saints, and of all who have been slain on earth" (Revelation 18:21).


Who will attack Babylon and the antichrist? A military coalition from the north.

For behold, I am stirring up and bringing against Babylon a gathering of great nations, from the north country. And they shall array themselves against her...

Behold, a people comes from the north; a mighty nation and many kings are stirring from the farthest parts of the earth. They lay hold of bow and spear; they are cruel and have no mercy. The sound of them is like the roaring of the sea; they ride on horses, arrayed as a man for barrle against you, O daughter of Babylon! (Jeremiah 50:9,41-42).


Just as God used the Babylonians in Old Testament times as His rod of judgment against Israel, so now God uses a northern coalition as His whipping rod against Babylon. Just as Babylon showed no mercy in its oppression of Israel, so God now shows no mercy to Babylon.

(TRUE,  I  DO  AGREE  -  Keith Hunt)

When Babylon is destroyed at the end of the tribulation period, the antichrist will not be present in the city. He will be told of its destruction by messengers (see Jeremiah 50:43; 51:31-32). He becomes all the more enraged.


Phase 3: Jerusalem Falls and Is Ravaged

Phase 2 of Armageddon involved the destruction of the antichrists capital of Babylon. However, even the destruction of his capital is not enough to distract him away from his goal of destroying the Jewish people. So instead of launching a counterattack against the northern military coalition that wiped out Babylon, the antichrist and his forces instead move south to attack Jerusalem. This constitutes phase 3 of Armageddon. 


We read about it in Zechariah 12:1-3.

Thus declares the Lord, who stretched out the heavens and founded the earth and formed the spirit of man within him: "Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah. On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it."


Zechariah 14:2 adds this: "I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city shall be taken and the houses plundered and the women raped. Half of the city shall go out into exile, but the rest of the people shall not be cut off from the city."

Notice that all the nations of the world gather against Jerusalem. Sadly, many prophecy scholars believe this includes the United States.


Elsewhere in this book I noted the strong possibility that following the rapture of the church, the United States will likely become an ally of the revived Roman Empire—the United States of Europe.


In any event, with heavy losses on both sides, Jerusalem will fall and be ravaged in the face of this overwhelming attack force. The antichrists armies gain initial victory. However, as we will see, Israel will soon attain ultimate victory through the direct intervention of its Messiah.


To be continued