Battle of Armageddon
Revelation 16:12-16
And the sixth angel poured out his vial on the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up…

Dream not of marching battalions and of mustering squadrons when you hear of Armageddon, dream not of a local battlefield. No; this is no common earthly battle; it is a spiritual battle; a war of principles; of righteousness against unrighteousness; of faith against unbelief; of Christ against Antichrist. This war has been waging ever since St. John received the revelation. In the latter days it will culminate in this one grand final conflict — the crisis of the world; the battle of the great day of God Almighty; the great decision between good and evil, sin and God, the world and Christ. The future of the Church used to be described as a shining river flowing full to the promised end, silently widening itself out into a bright tranquil summer sea. How different the predictions of Scripture, of Christ and His apostles. Rather is the future of the Church in their view that of a mighty river sweeping to a great Niagara. The bright tranquil summer sea is beyond, seen afar off, but first there is the terrible precipice; the tranquil sea is only reached through the war of falling, tossed, and troubled waters. I am sure that this is the prediction repeated again and again of Christ and His apostles: "In the last days perilous times shall come; "Evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived." Do not these words most strikingly answer to those of the text? Are not these powers, and signs, and manifestations, and embodiments of "the spirits of devils working miracles, which go forth" to gather together the hosts of the world to the battle of the great day of God Almighty; to gather them together to the battlefield of Armageddon? And by what evil influences will these malignant spirits work their will and delude the world? It would seem from several passages, as well as the text, that it may be allowed to them to perform the appearance of lying miracles, with what will look like supernatural powers. But in the main these evil spirits will appeal, nay, are appealing, to that which is worst in the hearts of men — to an impatience of moral restraint, to a dislike of pure Christian morality, to the longing after independence, to the rising in the human heart against the childlike teachableness and submission of soul which the Christian faith requires of us, to the desire to have no superior, to be a law unto ourselves, a god to ourselves. And all this is carrying on at this very day, and every day more and more actively; so actively, so successfully, that we might almost despair of the good cause if we did not remember that two hosts are being gathered to the battle — the host of Christ as well as the host of Antichrist — and that the influence and energies which enlist soldiers for Christ are quite as powerful and more powerful than those which enlist soldiers against Christ. And if the adversaries of Christ were never more numerous, so never were the devoted soldiers of Christ more numerous. And just as in the English army the immediate prospect of war leads men to enlist, so in this spiritual war are Christians keen for the battle, and the growing opposition and the pressing danger only awaken in their hearts an enthusiasm for the cause of Christ which they would not feel in more quiet times. In prospect of the coming battle I will not despair. I address you as soldiers of Christ. I ask of you an enthusiasm for the person of Christ your Lord, a devoted faith and love for Christ. This is what the captain of an earthly host desires of his soldiers: if they have an enthusiasm for him, they will follow him anywhere, they will follow him to the death; and this enthusiasm Christ asks and is able to inspire. And in your dealings with others, who perhaps seem to be in the opposing army. I do not ask you to contend with them, to argue with them, still less to think evil of them (some of them may yet be standing shoulder to shoulder by your side before the battle is over); but I ask you by your life, much more than by your words, to let all see and know that you have a true devotion to Christ, that you love Him with your whole heart. This will draw them to your side — yes, all the truest souls among them; they all long in their hearts, half unknown to themselves, for such a noble love, for such an inspiring devotion. Let them see in you that such a love, such a devotion, is possible, is real, is all-powerful. And in your dealings with others, remember that the love of Christ is the magic influence which alone controls the human heart.

(E. J. Rose, M. A.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.

WEB: The sixth poured out his bowl on the great river, the Euphrates. Its water was dried up, that the way might be prepared for the kings that come from the sunrise.

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