Subject: Armageddon, and a few links
From: Sean Ho <seanho@cs.unc.edu>
Date: Mon, 29 Mar 2004 01:02:53 -0500
Hi !  It was good to chat with you today, and thanks for all your insightful questions!  We'd really like to help you find the answers to your questions, and our heart's desire is that you'll soon come to the point where you'll open up your heart to receive Jesus as your own Lord and Savior -- that's when you can really obtain the abundant life and extreme peace that Jesus offers us!

Not too many people ask about Armageddon or the book of Revelation much, and it can be kinda confusing, so I apologize that it turns out I mixed up a couple of the big battles described in Revelation:

The place called Armageddon (Har-Magedon, or Megiddo) is referred to in Rev 16:16 as the location where the kings of the earth gathered together for this big world war.  The kings are pushed to do this by a bunch of evil spirits (demons) sent by the "beast", which looks to be a really big evil spirit (but not the same as Satan).  The outcome of that battle is in Rev 19:11-21; this is the part I mentioned about the sword coming out of Jesus' mouth, representing God's Word, putting to death all the wicked people at that battle.

It's after Armageddon that the thousand years takes place, when Satan is temporarily bound, and all the Christians who lived through the really bad persecution in the earlier chapters of Revelation get to reign on earth with Jesus.  This is in chapter 20.

Then at the end of that thousand years, Satan is released one last time, there's one more big battle (Gog and Magog), and Satan is finally put away forever in the lake of fire, never to bother anyone again.  There's more after that in chapters 21 and 22.

If you're confused at this point, I don't blame you; there's a ton that's going on in Revelation.  But again, the bottom line is that in the final days, life here on earth just gets really really awful, people grow more and more corrupt and violent, and the only way out is to have the life of Jesus in us -- then we can be with Jesus in heaven and kept out of the fearsome judgement on earth.

2Peter 3:3-7 says this is just like with Noah's Flood -- people just got more and more wicked, until God had to put a stop to it by wiping out the whole earth with a flood.  But He provided a way out, in Noah's Ark, and anyone who trusted God could escape the flood in the Ark.  In the same way, this world is getting worse and worse, and will be judged, not by water but by _fire_.  But again God provides a way out, in Jesus Christ.  Anyone who puts their trust in Jesus will escape this judgement.  Pretty cool, huh?

OK, this is a really long answer to a really short question, "What is Armageddon?"  But I hope it helps!  I heard that your dad was interested in science; there are a lot of cool resources on science and the Bible, creation vs evolution, by an organization called Answers in Genesis. Their website has just a ton of information, Q&A, and stuff:

http://www.answersingenesis.org/home/area/qa.asp

There's also a related website that has a lot of general Q&A about the Bible, the existence of God, miracles, Buddhism and other religions, etc.:

http://www.christiananswers.net/

Hope this helps; take care, !
-- 
  Sean Ho                                 seanho @ cs.unc.edu
  Dept. of Computer Science, CB #3175     http://www.cs.unc.edu/~seanho/
  University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3175