Lesson 28 - Armageddon and the Seven Last Plagues
In 1945 William Ripley of Believe It or Not fame stood amid the ruins of Hiroshima, Japan. From that city devastated by the atom bomb, Ripley announced to his radio audience, “I am standing on the spot where the end of the world began.”
Numerous wars during this century have gripped world leaders with the possibility that the end is near. Among today’s prophets of doom are legislators, educators, sociologists, scientists, and environmentalists.
Thousands are stunned with bewilderment regarding the future. They wander in a maze of confusion.God reveals through prophecy an outline of coming events for the informed Christian. According to Bible prophecy the crisis at the close is not merely a military struggle. It is the last battle in the long-standing conflict between Christ and Satan.
The seven last plagues and the Battle of Armageddon focus on the end of human history and the coming of Christ. It is with this background that we enter into this Bible lesson.
ARMAGEDDON AND THE SEVEN LAST PLAGUES
1. What great crisis will this world soon face? Revelation 13:16, 17
Answer: Forced to receive a mark.
2. If any individual worships the beast, what will he receive? Revelation 14:9, 10
Answer: His mark on his forehead or on the hand.
3. What is the "wrath of God . . . poured out full strength"? Revelation 15:1Answer: Seven angels with the seven last plagues.
Because Satan hates God, he desires all men and women to receive his mark rather than God's seal. When every human being has chosen between the mark of the beast and the seal of God, the plagues will fall. All who knowingly accept the allegiance of the beast, substituting a human decree for the divinely inspired commandments of God, will be recipients of the seven last plagues.
Revelation 16:2-15 lists the first six plagues:
1. Grievous sore
2. Sea of blood
3. Rivers and springs of waters as blood
4. Sun scorching people
5. Darkness on seat of the beast
6. Battle of great day of God Almighty
4. After these six plagues are described, what announcement comes from heaven? Revelation 16:15
Answer: Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him.
This text is Christ's encouragement to His followers, urging them to persevere in light of His soon return. These plagues are called the seven last plagues. Ten plagues fell on Egypt in Old Testament times. The first three fell on both the Egyptians and the Israelites; the last seven fell only on the Egyptians. At end-time, the seven last plagues fall only on the wicked while the righteous, still on earth, are protected. Jesus comes as a thief after, not before, the plagues.
5. Does God promise to protect His people during the plagues? Psalm 91:2-10
Answer: He is our refuge and my fortress, he will save you; he will not fear the terror or terror, no harm will befall you.
6. What assurance does God give that He will feed us during this time? Isaiah 33:16
Answer: His bread will be supplied, and water will not fail him.
7. Where do we find our refuge or security in the time of trouble? Psalm 46:1, 2
Answer: God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear.
8. How will Satan attempt to unite all nations to destroy God's people in earth's last war? Revelation 16:14
Answer: They are spirits of demons performing miraculous signs.
9. What is this battle called? Revelation 16:16
Answer: To gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty.
The word "Armageddon" comes from the Hebrew "Har Megiddo," meaning mountain of assembly. During one of Israel's greatest crises, when it appeared that doom was certain, God intervened and sent reinforcements at precisely the right moment (Judges 5:19). During the last days of earth's history, infuriated by the plagues, the whole world will be turned into a vast battlefield as the wicked attempt to destroy God's people. It will appear as if their doom is certain.
10. As the whole world is mobilized to destroy the people of God, what divine act takes place? Revelation 16:17-21
Answer: Seventh angel; earthquake like it has ever occurred since man has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake.
Once again God will intervene. When the enemy is ready to pounce on God's people, like a lion stalking her prey to destroy it, God will powerfully manifest His hand to deliver them.
11. What marvelous announcement does the seventh angel make? Revelation 16:17
Answer: It is done!
It is done! Life's trials and heartaches are over. It is time for God to deliver His people.
12. How is this mighty deliverance described? Revelation 16:18-21
Answer: Then there came flashes of lightning, rumbling, peals of thunder.
In the last moments of time Jesus returns as King of kings and Lord of lords and finally and completely destroys Satan and his work. Christ's followers triumph; right conquers.
13. What is the glorious climax of the seven last plagues? Revelation 19:11-16
Answer: There before me was a white horse, whose rider is called faithful and true.
Friend, the outcome of the battle is certain. No matter how discouraging the future appears, Jesus and His people will triumph. If you have not yet decided to place your confidence in Jesus by inviting Him into your life, why not do it right now before it is forever too late?
* Texts credited to NKJV are from the New King James Version. Copyright ©1979, 1980, 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.