What is Armageddon?

Vivian Bricker

Contributing Writer
Updated Jul 26, 2022
What is Armageddon?

Thus, Armageddon is a future event that will impact the lives of all people who have ever lived—it will mark the final battle between light and darkness, with the Light claiming eternal victory.

Armageddon is a popular subject trending across the web today. Sadly, many people have an unbiblical view of Armageddon due to films and television series presenting an incorrect view of Christ's final victory over sin. In the most concise form, Armageddon is the final battle between God and evil in the Book of Revelation. Armageddon is a fascinating subject for believers and unbelievers alike; therefore, this article will focus on detailing Armageddon and what it truly entails.

The Final Battle

Details surrounding Armageddon are recorded in Revelation 16:12-16. The word "Armageddon" comes from the Hebrew word Har-Magedone, which means “Mount Megiddo" in English. The battle of Armageddon will take place at Mount Megiddo. Scholars debate as to where this exact location is concerning our present geography. Yet, scholars conclude it is in the Middle East, most likely near Megiddo, north of Jerusalem.

Many individuals use the term "Armageddon" to refer to any battle or war, yet this is not biblical. Armageddon is the series of battles that come in the future toward the end of the Tribulation. The Tribulation is the seven-year period known as the “Seventieth Week of Daniel” (Daniel 9). From a premillennial dispensational perspective, the Tribulation begins after the Rapture of the Church. The Tribulation is a terrible event that will bring horror, terror, and fear into the hearts of unbelievers across the world. Only unbelievers will be left to partake in the Tribulation because all believers will be taken to be with the Lord in Heaven, to which believers will partake in the Bema seat of Christ.

The Tribulation is an intense event filled with plagues and pain, but the Tribulation is actually the final chance God is giving unbelievers to come to know Him and accept Him as their Savior and Lord. Many unbelievers will become believers during the Tribulation, and many of these new believers will be martyred for their faith in Christ. The Tribulation is focused on bringing back Israel to the Lord, yet there will also be Gentiles saved during this period of dark future history.

Toward the end of the Tribulation, the Battle of Armageddon takes place. Revelation 16:12-16 tells us, “The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East. Then I saw three impure spirits that looked like frogs; they came out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast and out of the mouth of the false prophet. They are demonic spirits that perform signs, and they go out to the kings of the whole world, to gather them for the battle on the great day of God Almighty. ‘Look, I come like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake and remains clothed, so as not to go naked and be shamefully exposed.’ Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon.”

From this passage of the Book of Revelation, we know this will be a difficult and bloody battle, but God will remain victorious. Good will defeat evil. Jesus will smash evil under His feet, and no longer will darkness try to overturn the light. In the battle of Armageddon, God will defeat all evil, and later in the Book of Revelation, we are told that God will throw the antichrist, the devil, the false prophet, and all unbelievers into the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10-14). The lake of fire is known as the "Second Death." As believers, we will be spared from the second death because we have accepted Jesus as our Savior and Lord.

As a dispensationalist, my view on the matter from a literal hermeneutic of the Bible is that the Battle of Armageddon will be a literal event in the future. From the biblical texts, it seems as though demonic influences will influence the kings of the earth to turn against Jerusalem and declare war on her. At the head of this war on Jerusalem will be the antichrist. The antichrist stands for everything against God. The antichrist will be pure evil and will be in direct connection with Satan. Many biblical scholars have argued that during the Tribulation, Satan will be establishing his own false “Trinity” through himself, the antichrist, and the false prophet. Many individuals during the Tribulation will fall for the antichrist's lies, and he will lead many astray.

Most scholars have agreed that the antichrist will be a charismatic leader, and most people will be swayed by what he says. There will be believers who come out of the Tribulation who will not fall for his lies. The Bible also tells us there will be "two witnesses" during the Tribulation (Revelation 11). The Bible does not tell us directly who the two witnesses are, yet many scholars have surmised that Enoch and Elijah will be the two witnesses. The two witnesses will help point the lost to Christ; however, they will sadly be killed by the antichrist.

All of these horrible events will take place in the time leading up to the battle of Armageddon. Armageddon will be the final battle in which God will defeat evil forever. Despite what many individuals promote to the world, Armageddon is not happening in the present day. As established by the biblical texts, the Battle of Armageddon will not occur until the end of the Tribulation before the establishment of the Thousand-Year Reign of Christ and then later the creation of the New Heaven and New Earth. As in other aspects of eschatology, one should not be dogmatic when declaring certain events of Revelation are happening in the present day. Yes, times are hard, but they are not fulfilling biblical prophecies. During His earthly life, Jesus warned us that there will always be wars and rumors of wars, but the end is still yet to come (Matthew 24:6-13).

Educating Others

It is important to educate others on Armageddon, what it is, and what it entails. Despite popular societal beliefs, Armageddon is not the end of the world. Rather, Armageddon is a battle that takes place at the end of the Tribulation. It is the last battle to which demonic forces will influence the kings of the world to wage war against Jerusalem. God will defeat these demonic forces and completely destroy evil once and for all. Jesus returns for His Second Coming at the Battle of Armageddon, and He will reign victorious over His enemies. 

Since there are so many misnomers today concerning Armageddon, we need to spread the truth about Armageddon. As believers, we will partake in Armageddon because we will return with Christ at His Second Coming and fight beside Him against the powers of darkness. This can sound daunting in our present state, but we will be in our resurrected, glorified bodies when we are with Christ at the Battle of Armageddon. 

Paul tells us about our glorified bodies in this passage of Scripture: “So will it be with the resurrection of the dead. The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body” (1 Corinthians 15:42-44). These are the types of bodies we will have when we are fighting alongside Christ at the battle of Armageddon. We will no longer have weak bodies, but rather, strong bodies in the Lord.

Armageddon is a crucial future event that will change the entire world. This battle marks the beginning of the defeat of Satan and his demons. Satan’s ultimate defeat will come at the lake of fire (Revelation 20:10-14). God doesn’t destroy Satan right away because He uses Satan to test the nations during His Thousand-Year Reign (Revelation 20:7-10). Thus, Armageddon is a future event that will impact the lives of all people who have ever lived—it will mark the final battle between light and darkness, with the Light claiming eternal victory.

For more information, check out The Believer's Role in Armageddon.

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/kevron2001

Vivian BrickerVivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.