The Angelic Conflict - Part Five
The Future of The Angelic Conflict
Eschatology is the biblical study of future or final events.
Prophesies yet unfulfilled anticipate history's concluding two
dispensations, which are designated the tribulation and the millennium.
The eschatological dispensations are defined as those after the
resurrection, or rapture, of the church. In other words, they
will occur after the royal family of god is completely formed
and transferred to heaven (Rev 3:10). The eschatological dispensations
are separate from the church because they are presented in the
Old Testament, whereas the church remained an undisclosed mystery
throughout Old Testament times.
For the Jews, the tribulation immediately precedes the founding
of God's promised kingdom on earth. Thus, this approximately 7
year period of history (Dan 9:27, Rev 11:3, Rev 12:6) is the end
of divine discipline against Israel. The tribulations is prophesied
in the old testament (Isa 34: 1-6, Isa 63: 1-6, Jer 30: 4-8, Ezek
38-39, Dan 11:40-45, Zech 12: 1-3, Zech 14:1-2), in our Lord's
Olivet discourse, and in Revelation 6-19. This short, dramatic
era will commence immediately after the rapture of the church
and will terminate with the second advent of Christ. It is the
"time of Jacob's trouble" (Jer 30:7) and Daniel's seventieth
week (or seventieth seven) based on the famous time table prophesy
of Daniel 9: 24-27. The tribulation might also be called the time
of Satan's desperation because of the violent power struggle that
will occur (Rev 12:12).
In this final seven years preceding the establishment of Gods
Millennial kingdom, Satan will make this one last attempt to establish
a "millennium" of his own to prove that he is equal
with God (Isa 13:14). He will use a powerful world leader referred
to in scripture as The Beast or The anti-Christ. The Beast will
initially be hailed as a benevolent ruler who has come to solve
the worlds problems (Rev 6) (2 Thess 2:1-12). But the Devil has
only his own interest at heart; he cares nothing for mankind but
merely wants to use man to prove himself justified in revolting
against God. The first half of the tribulation will be a time
of relative prosperity and overt world peace. There will be a
world wide psuedo Christian church made up of unbelievers and
apostates who have great influence and power but do not preach
The Gospel (Rev 17). There will be a political union of power
called the revived Roman empire that controls the middle east
and Europe. The leader of this union will be the anti-Christ and
he will make a treaty with Israel to protect them (Dan 7, Rev
13, Dan 9). This will be a time of Jewish revival. Many Jews will
have their eyes opened to the truth that Jesus is the Messiah
including the 144,000 Jewish evangelist who will operate throughout
the seven year period. (Rom 11:25). The vast majority of Jews
however will resume their ancient pre-Christ religious practices.
Sacrifices will be preformed in a newly rebuild temple in Jerusalem.
World peace will be the promise of the dictator anti-Christ under
the vehicle of a one world government and a one world religion.
A powerful religious leader called The False Prophet will join
forces with Satan and the anti-Christ (Beast) to form a powerful
unholy trinity of power (John 5:43). Behind the scenes Satan will
be clamping the human race in tyranny through power politics and
Evil will be unrestrained in the tribulation because the royal
family, which is indwelt by the Holy Spirit, will have been removed
at the rapture (2 Thes 2:7). The outbreak of evil will reveal,
through contrast, the historical importance of mature believers
as channels for divine blessing. At the beginning of the tribulation,
there will be no believers on earth. The churches invisible, restraining
influence will be gone from the devil's world. In this sudden
absence of a spiritual presence, Satan will have his freest hand.
But when Satan is left virtually to his own devices, the world
situation will turn grim - characterized by an initial false prosperity
that soon deteriorates into horrible disaster. Satan's arrogance
will be ultimately revealed in his incompetence. Given every chance,
he cannot rule the kingdom he usurped from Adam.
The horrible blasphemies of the beast demonstrate the anti-religious,
anti-God element in the character of the beast. His blasphemies
against God and God's people, however, are ultimately aimed at
promoting the worship of the beast himself. He will speak against
God and His name. This includes mocking God's holy character and
essence. Perhaps he will even claim he has defeated God or that
God is dead. He will speak against God's dwelling place and those
who dwell in heaven; this could include making fun of the goodness
and righteousness of believers and of those who have sacrificed
their lives for Jesus Christ while the beast and his followers
live in the riotous pleasures of sin. Filled with disappointed
rage, Satan will use the beast whom he controls to promote such
words of blasphemy that it will make the worst blasphemies of
history seem trifling by comparison! According to Revelation 13,
Antichrist, who will be energized by the Devil, will be considered
so wonderful that many of the people of the earth will voluntarily
offer to worship him. They will see him as a benevolent dictator.
Not content with this, at the height of his power, he will make
it mandatory for everyone to give him homage. In order to enforce
this, he will have his religious leader, The False Prophet will
set up an image of the Beast in the newly rebuilt temple. The
image (an idol) must also be worshiped. The two Leaders will also
institute a system of economic dictatorship that allows only those
who agree to worship him to receive a mark (666). Without the
mark, no one will be able to buy or sell anything. (Revelation
Satan has always hated believers and done everything in his power
to persecute the people of God whether Israel or the church, but
he has been restrained by the hand of God. Without that restraint,
God's people would have perished from the earth. During the Tribulation,
however, his persecution of the people of God will know no limits.
As Revelation shows us, this rule of the beast will end in slavery
to Satan and to the flesh. Men will think they have freedom to
do as they please, but find themselves with no mind of their own,
dominated by the beast and by their flesh.
According to Revelation 13:5-7, and 16-18, the first beast will
lead the development of the emerging one-world government, or
New World Order which has been planned for centuries by the super
rich behind the scenes. These power brokers are used to controlling
who will be chosen for political positions, based on their ability
to manipulate their pawns in high places. They will present Antichrist
as a benevolent dictator. They will undoubtedly think that they
can control him for their own advantage. But he will be very powerful,
drawing his energy from the Devil. He will do as he pleases, though
it is likely that much of what he does will also please the powerful
elite group who have given him support.
As can be seen even in our own American politics, support from
religious groups can be very helpful to a politician. Revelation
13:11-15 tells about a False Prophet who is most likely the head
of a one-world religion. This religious unity will finally be
possible because after The Rapture, born-again Christians will
be absent from public life. Even in the churches, those who are
left are those who have never had a personal relationship with
Christ. These people, for the most part, will not take the Bible
literally. They will be willing to give up their doctrines for
the sake of unity. The New Age Religion may be the uniting force
behind this since it already draws heavily from various religions.
The head of this union could be the leader of the World Council
of Churches or of an apostate denomination.
"And the dragon gave him his power and his throne and
great authority." In Revelation we are told that the
world will marvel at this beast and wonder, "Who is like
the beast, and who is able to wage war with him?" To the
world of unbelieving and rebellious people, this beast will seem
invincible and from the human standpoint, the answer to their
question is simply, no one! His power will come from Satan; it
is demonic and supernatural, far beyond the abilities of ordinary
men, and far beyond anything the world knows today. He will be
so powerful, self-sufficient, and impressed with his power, he
will actually honor no one except "the god of fortresses"
(Dan. 11:38) or military power and conquests.
Repeatedly, the Scriptures tell us that this end times dictator
and his government will be the epitome of a Satan-inspired government.
In fact the beast himself will be literally possessed by Satan
from all accounts. No human being can be as cunning, as ruthless,
lawless, vile and blasphemous as this man without being either
demon possessed or at least under the total control of Satan.
The fake New Messiah will be the Antichrist of Revelation 13.
He will be worshipped on earth and will have awesome authority.
The final form of world government in this tribulation period
will have two aspects: Military, political and economic power
will revolve around the first Beast. Subservient to him will be
the harlot church. In Israel a powerful religious coalition will
be led by the Second Beast(the False Prophet). Both of these Leaders
are Satan's masterpieces for deceiving the world. Both are energized
by Satan ,who until now has never found a complete way of expressing
himself in human form ruling the earth.
During the tribulation, nations from around the world will begin
to rebel and turn on the once great world leader known as the
anti-Christ. Major armies will be involved in brutal and devastating
warfare during these end times. Human failures will multiply under
Satan's administration until, through a contagion of bad decisions;
a shockingly large portion of the earth's population will destroy
itself (Rev 6:1-11). Except for Eden and the millennial reign
of Jesus Christ, utopias are masks for coercion, slavery, and
violence. Neither man nor Satan (who is far more capable than
man) can create a politically and socially perfect world.
Contempt of Court
In the middle of the tribulation, God will hear Satan's final
argument. God will reject arrogant, scheming, belligerent Satan
from the courtroom of heaven where he has enjoyed free access
as defense council throughout the appeal trial of the angelic
conflict (Rev 12:7-9, Job 1:6, Job 2:1, Zech 3:1). With Satan
cast down to earth, the second half of the tribulation will witness
unprecedented violence as Satan's plans unravel and he desperately
struggles to retain his rule over the world.
During the tribulation, Gods wrath will come upon the inhabitants
of the earth. Believing Jew and Gentiles will be spared the judgments
but many will be martyred for their faith and refusal to worship
the beast. Revelation describes the horrible events of the tribulation
as the opening of Seven Seals, the judgments of Seven Trumpets
and the disasters of the Seven Bowl judgments. The seven seals
(Revelation 6:1-17; 8:1-5), seven trumpets (Revelation 8:6 - 9:21;
11:15-19), and seven bowls (Revelation 16:1-21) are three different
and succeeding series of judgments from God. The judgments get
progressively worse and more devastating as the end times progress.
The seven seals, trumpets, and bowls are connected to one another
- as the seventh seal introduces the seven trumpets (Revelation
8:1-5), and the seventh trumpet introduces the seven bowls (Revelation
The first four of the seven seals are known as the four horsemen
of the Apocalypse. The first seal introduces the Antichrist (Revelation
6:1-2). The second seal causes great warfare (Revelation 6:3-4).
The third of the seven seals causes famine (Revelation 6:5-6).
The fourth seal brings about plague, further famine, and further
warfare (Revelation 6:7-8).
The fifth seal tells us of those who will be martyred for their
faith in Christ during the end times (Revelation 6:9-11). God
hears their cries for justice and will deliver it in His timing-in
the form of the sixth seal, along with the trumpet and bowl judgments.
When the sixth of the seven seals is broken, a devastating earthquake
occurs, causing massive upheaval and terrible devastation-along
with unusual astronomical phenomena (Revelation 6:12-14). Those
who survive are right to cry out, "Fall on us and hide us
from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath
of the Lamb! For the great day of their wrath has come, and who
can stand?" (Revelation 6:16-17).
The seven trumpets are described in Revelation 8:6 - 9:21. The
seven trumpets are the "contents" of the seventh seal
(Revelation 8:1-5). The first trumpet causes hail and fire that
destroys much of the plant life in the world (Revelation 8:7).
The second of the seven trumpets brings about what seems to be
a meteor hitting the oceans and causing the death of much of the
world's sea life (Revelation 8:8-9). The third trumpet is similar
to the second trumpet except it affects the world's lakes and
rivers instead of the oceans (Revelation 8:10-11).
The fourth of the seven trumpets causes the sun and moon to be
darkened (Revelation 8:12). The fifth trumpet results in a plague
of "demonic locusts" that attack and torture humanity
(Revelation 9:1-11). The sixth trumpet releases a demonic army
that kills a third of humanity (Revelation 9:12-21). The seventh
trumpet calls forth the seven angels with the seven bowls of God's
wrath (Revelation 11:15-19; 15:1-8).
The seven bowl judgments are described in Revelation 16:1-21.
The seven bowl judgments are the result of the seventh trumpet
being sounded. The first bowl causes painful sores to break out
on humanity (Revelation 16:2). The second bowl results in the
death of every living thing in the sea (Revelation 16:3). The
third bowl causes the rivers to turn into blood (Revelation 16:4-7).
The fourth of the seven bowls results in the sun's heat being
intensified and causing great pain (Revelation 16:8-9). The fifth
bowl causes great darkness and an intensification of the sores
from the first bowl (Revelation 16:10-11). The sixth bowl results
in the Euphrates River being dried up and the armies of the Antichrist
being gathered together to wage the battle of Armageddon (Revelation
16:12-14). The seventh bowl results in a devastating earthquake
followed by giant hailstones (Revelation 16:15-21).
Revelation 16:5-7 declares, "You are just in these judgments,
you who are and who were, the Holy One, because you have so judged;
for they have shed the blood of your saints and prophets, and
you have given them blood to drink as they deserve. . . .Yes,
Lord God Almighty, true and just are your judgments."
The Gospel Goes On
In spite of a deceptive peace, followed by horrible violence,
the gospel of salvation will be presented more intensively during
the tribulation than in any other dispensation. With the church
removed and with Israel remaining under divine discipline until
Christ's Second Advent, no Christian nation will be operating
on earth. Instead of a Christian nation, God's principal missionary
agency will be 144,000 Jewish evangelists (Rev 7:4-8). They will
risk martyrdom to present the gospel throughout the world. Supporting
and supplementing the function of these evangelists, angels will
also join in the presentation of the gospel (Rev 14:6-7). Furthermore,
two Old Testament prophets - Moses and Elijah - will be resuscitated
for a brief but powerful ministry in Jerusalem (Rev 11:3-13).
By all these diverse means, the entire earth will be evangelized
thoroughly in the brief span of the tribulation. Principal: grace
The Great Tribulation
This latter part of the dispensation is the period actually called
The Great Tribulation (Matt 24:21, Rev 7:14). Satan will commit
all his forces to exterminating the Jews (Rev 12:17). His purpose
will be to eliminate all potential beneficiaries of God's unconditional
covenants to Israel. The devil will pursue this heinous policy
in an attempt to prove God unfaithful to his promises. Satan will
know from scripture that the fulfillment of God's covenants to
Israel is imminent. The millennium will only be months away. But,
reasons Satan, if no regenerate Jew remains alive, God would be
unable to keep his promises and fulfill his prophesies. There
would be no one to receive the promised blessings. And if God
could not fulfill his unconditional covenants (a blasphemous and
unthinkable presumption), his character would be flawed, and Satan
would have grounds for demanding dismissal of all charges against
himself and the fallen angels. But Satan's ploy will not succeed.
An unprecedented world war will break out in the last half of
the tribulation. Watching his utopian kingdom fragment and collapse
into chaos, a desperate Satan will set vast human and demonic
forces into motion. The ensuing war will culminate in the Armageddon
Campaign, in which the forces of four great political powers will
converge on Palestine. The probable scenario is that Antichrist,
realizing that his power is waning, manages to unite all the forces
of earth together against their common enemy--The King of Kings
and Lord of Lords.
In Jerusalem, a remnant of Jewish believers will refuse to surrender.
Brilliantly commanded by aggressive, spiritually mature generals
(Zech 12:5-6), these besieged few will fight for their lives against
overwhelming odds. The situation will appear utterly hopeless.
The last chance of survival will collapse. Then suddenly, the
Lord Jesus Christ will return to earth and join the battle.
Return of the King
And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen,
white and clean, were following Him on white horses. From His
mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down
the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; Rev
When Jesus Christ returns, he will be accompanied by His royal
family, the church, who will reign with Him (Rom 5:17, Rev 1:16,
After Jesus ascended into Heaven, the angels declared to the
apostles, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into
the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven,
will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into
heaven" (Acts 1:11). Zechariah 14:4 identifies the location
of the Second Coming as the Mount of Olives.
Matthew 24:30 declares, "At that time the sign of the
Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the
earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds
of the sky, with power and great glory." Titus 2:13 describes
the Second Coming as a "glorious appearing."
The Lord Jesus Christ will return to deliver the Jews (Isa 5:26-30,
Isa 10:20-23, Isa 11:11-6, Isa 14:1-3, Isa 63:1-6, Joel 2:16-3:21,
Zech 10:6-12). He will come to establish his kingdom in fulfillment
of the unconditional covenants to Israel (Dan 9:24, Zech 14:9).
As king of kings and Lord of Lords, Jesus Christ, the son of David
will destroy the forces of Satan and depose the devil as the ruler
of the earth. The Lamb of God will regather dispersed Israel and
rule the earth for 1,000 years under the magnificent policies
he declared on his sermon on the mount. Then will the wonderful
prophesy be fulfilled, which describes "many peoples and
mighty nations" of gentiles coming to Jerusalem "to
entreat the favor of the Lord" (Zech 8:22-23).
The Second Coming is spoken of in greatest detail in Revelation
19:11-16: "And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white
horse, and He who sat on it is called Faithful and True, and in
righteousness He judges and wages war. His eyes are a flame of
fire, and on His head are many diadems; and He has a name written
on Him which no one knows except Himself. He is clothed with a
robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.
And the armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white
and clean, were following Him on white horses. From His mouth
comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations,
and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine
press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty. And on His robe
and on His thigh He has a name written, 'KING OF KINGS, AND LORD
Compiled and Condensed from the writings of
several authors and pastors including J Hampton Keathley , Robert
Mclaughlin, Robert Dean, Robert D. Luginbill, Lambert Dolphin,
Gene Cunningham, Ric Web, R.B. Theime, Charles Ryrie and Lewis
here for a more in depth study
@ The Biblical Studies Foundation