I just read this article, “To this question, the answer would be a Revelation” in the L.A. Times:
In Revelation, John…describes…a punishing vision of the plagues, famine, earthquakes and Satanic armies that will set the stage for Judgment Day.
Essentially, the plot goes like this: Billions of people perish in seven years of natural disasters and plagues, an antichrist arises to rule the world, the battle of Armageddon erupts north of Israel, Jesus returns to defeat Satan’s armies and preside over Judgment Day.
I was raised in a church that had frequent End Time seminars and sermons. Used to scare us children to death. Too many preachers get frothy at the mouth over this topic.
Still, I think there is something to end time prophecy, and the Apocalypse study (eschatology) is downright intriguing.
Armageddon is located in a real place called the Jezreel valley in northern Israel. In ancient history this great plain (20 miles wide) was a place of many many epic battles, a crossroads of war. Lord of the Rings type battles took place there and it was famous to ancient people. Perhaps a final conflict of sorts will take place on that piece of land. But the thought occurs, maybe the entire Middle East — or at least all the area from Lebanon to Sinai — could become the “new Armageddon” geographical location. So those “satanic armies” and the final battle could take place in the Middle East not necessarily on the relatively small Jezreel plain in northern Israel.
Then there is Iran. According to Nostradamus, the anti-christ is supposed to appear at the end of the world, some time after the year 2000, and wearing a blue turban. Haven’t seen any blue turbans on Iranian leaders. I wonder if the blue turban is symbolic — or ugh! — means the blue UN helmets! Those Left Behind author dudes and countless other end time fear-mongers always say the anti-christ will be a UN leader or somehow connected to the UN. Not sure I agree, but don’t like how the pieces too easily fit together and come out like an epic movie, comic book and interactive video game all rolled into one.