"Armageddon" and "Universal Peace"

No, this is not Armageddon, nor will universal peace follow upon the conclusion of this most terrible war in the world's history. Some who direct the thought of the nations have stated that this latter will be the blessing that will issue from the conflict, that humanity, staggered by the appalling carnage, will insist upon general disarmament, and that all the nations of the earth will become pacific henceforward and forever. This is mere conjecture. A forecast made regardless of mighty forces which will still play their part in the terrible drama of man's continued rebellion against God. These forces are: the incorrigible evil of the hearts of unregenerate men; the determined opposition of Satan to God's plans and purposes; and, last and most terrible of all, because of the inflexible justice of it — the fierceness of the wrath of God, the Almighty.

Armageddon — "the war of that great day of God the Almighty" (Rev. 16:14-16, N.Tr.) cannot take place while the true church of God is on the earth; the Lord's coming for His saints (1 Thess. 4:15-17) must take place first. It will not be a European war merely, but north, south, east and west will gather their armies for it. It will not be fought in France, Belgium, or Germany, but in the Holy Land, which land Satan will do his utmost to hold against the Lord, so that the promises made by God to Israel of old may not be fulfilled. The Euphrates will be dried up to make a way for the almost innumerable hosts of the kings of the East (Rev. 16.) — the yellow races, probably, who are already beginning to turn their attention to European affairs. The kings of the revived Roman Empire will gather under the leadership of the Beast — Satan's marvel, the superman. And not these only but the kings of the whole habitable world will be marshalled for this supreme war.

The energy of the whole world will be thrown into the conflict, for they will beat their ploughshares into swords and their pruning-hooks into spears (Joel 3:11). There will no longer be the restraining power of the Holy Ghost, for He, who now does restrain for the sake of the assembly which is still upon earth, will have been taken out of the way at the rapture of the assembly to the glory of God (2 Thess. 2:7).

The lust of war will be upon all men — so that those who are weak will say they are strong for the battle (Joel 3:10) — Poor doomed dupes of the devil! They will be gathered by the spirits of demons — Satan's angels (Rev. 16:13), his purpose being undoubtedly to annihilate the Jews, that shall then be gathered in their land, so that God's purpose to make them the centre of the renewed earth may be frustrated. But God will be there also, and the pride of men and the subtlety of the devil shall be made to serve His purpose, For then shall His judgment fall upon the whole force of man's rebellion against Him. The winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God shall be trodden by Him who is the faithful and the true, who in righteousness will judge and make war; the fowls of the air shall be filled with the flesh of fighting men; and the nations shall be broken in pieces like a potter's vessel by the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

From that wrath to come we have a deliverer, even Jesus, the one who shall execute that wrath. Him we await from heaven. Blessed hope of our souls!

Universal peace shall follow that great war, for the outcome of it shall not be whether a nation shall be the supreme world's power or not, but that all thrones and kingdoms shall be Christ's, for all opposition to Him will be crushed, and as the Sun of Righteousness, He shall arise with healing in His wings. That the crowns might at last be placed upon the rightful brow; and for the sake of this groaning creation, we pray, "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth, as in heaven."