Why Did Millions of People All Over the World Suddenly Vanish?
The Bible says that at some point in time millions of people all over the world will suddenly vanish.
If this has not happened yet, please consider printing out this article and putting it in a place where you or your loved ones can easily find it. If you or your loved ones do not "vanish" along with the rest of us, this article will explain what has happened, what is going to happen, and what you need to do.
This article was written as if the "Vanishing" (which Christians refer to as the "Rapture") has already occurred by the time you are reading this.
Why Did Only Certain People Vanish?
When the "Vanishing" (or the "Great Disappearance," or whatever the media is calling it) happened, the only people who disappeared were those who were true Christians. In addition, it is very likely that all young children, all babies, and even unborn infants disappeared as well. Many people believe that infants and young children are not mature enough to be held accountable for sin (see my article called
If a Baby Dies, Does It Automatically Go to Heaven?),
and this is why infants and young children probably "vanished" along with the true Christians.
Perhaps you considered yourself to be a Christian, and you're wondering why you were left behind. There's no easy way to say this, but the answer is that if you were left behind then you were not really a Christian after all. It doesn't matter if you grew up in a Christian home, it doesn't matter if you went to church every Sunday, it doesn't matter if you were baptized, and so on. Somehow you didn't put your complete faith and trust in Jesus as your Savior. If Jesus had really been your personal Savior then it should have changed the way you lived your life. Since you did not "vanish," it shows that Jesus was never really living in your heart, changing your attitudes, your beliefs, your behaviors, and so on, day by day. That's why you were left behind, and unfortunately that's why many religious leaders were left behind as well.
You have probably noticed that scientists and the media and the "New Age" gurus have been coming up with all kinds of theories about why people disappeared, but they are all wrong. Centuries ago Jesus of Nazareth said that He will one day return to "snatch" all true Christians off of the earth and take them back into heaven with Him. The reason why millions of people suddenly vanished is because Jesus returned and took us back to heaven, just as He said He would.
What Should You Do?
There will be no more "vanishings," but the next seven years or so will see wars and plagues and disasters which will kill off almost the entire human race. I hate to have to say this, but I want to be completely honest and open with you. The odds are astronomical that you don't have very much time left. I know that sounds frightening, but I wrote this article to give you hope! There
a bright future available to you! You see, everyone knows that they're going to die sooner or later, and we all hope it will be "later," right? The important question, though, is where will you be
you die? This is one area where you don't want to make the wrong choice, because after you die it's too late to change your mind! The decision of where you will be after you die is completely up to you, and you can choose a bright, exciting future or you can choose a frightening, horrifying future. But you must make your choice
you die. Read this very carefully in order to understand God's plan of salvation:
Now that you understand God's plan of salvation, tell God that you are accepting Jesus' death in your place. Pray the following prayer out loud so that there's no doubt of your salvation:
No matter how good we think we are, we have all inherited a sinful nature from Adam and Eve. Sin is not simply a matter of doing bad things, sin is a part of our very nature. All of us have sinned and have fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23, Galatians 3:22, 1 John 1:8).
Every one of us has earned eternal punishment in hell because every one of us has sinned (Romans 5:12, 6:23).
However, Jesus, the Son of God, voluntarily emptied Himself of His glory and was born on earth as a human (Philippians 2:5-8, Colossians 2:9, John 1:1-3, 14). Jesus is 100% man and 100% God.
Jesus did not sin during His lifetime on earth (2 Corinthians 5:21, 1 John 3:5) and therefore He was in the unique position to take all of our sins onto Himself and to bear our punishment for us.
Jesus did not deserve any punishment, yet He voluntarily shed His blood and died on the cross in our place to take our punishment onto Himself (Romans 5:8, 1 John 1:7, 2:2). Since He is infinitely righteous, His death atoned for an infinite number of sins, past, present, and future. This makes it possible for us to be forgiven and to stand before God spotless and cleansed of all our sins.
After three days in the grave Jesus was brought back to life, and He is alive now and forevermore (John 20:27-28, Romans 14:9, Revelation 1:18).
When we believe in and trust in Jesus alone and His death in our place on the cross then our slates are instantly wiped clean as if we had never sinned at all! (John 3:16, 3:36, Acts 16:31). All of our sins are instantly transferred to Jesus' bank account (so to speak) and His full righteousness is transferred to our account. The instant we believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God who died for our sins and rose from the dead, we automatically receive salvation and we will go to heaven when we die (Romans 10:9-10).
way to get to heaven is through Jesus because of His finished work on the cross. There is no-one else who can provide a way for us to get to heaven (John 5:39-40, 10:9, 14:6, Acts 4:12). Jesus loves us
that He willingly was punished in our place, and then God raised Him from the dead. That's why our faith in Jesus' blood and His death on the cross (as our substitute) is the
way that God will allow us into heaven. No other religious leader ever died for your sins; no other religion or spiritual belief can save you.
Salvation does not come through any good works or good deeds or good intentions or volunteering at church or any kind of penance. Salvation does not come through any righteousness of our own (we have no righteousness of our own). Salvation does not come through church membership or through growing up in a Christian family and attending church all your life. Salvation does not come through any other religions or spiritual beliefs. Salvation does not come through any religious ceremony such as baptism, confirmation, communion (also called the Lord's Supper or the Eucharist) or any other rite or ritual or ceremony. If you need further proof that we are saved through faith in Jesus alone and not through baptism or any other works, please see my article called
Is Baptism Required for Salvation?.
Salvation comes to us only through the grace of God (the word "grace" means "unmerited or undeserved favor"). There is nothing we can do, nothing we can offer God, that can make us deserving of salvation, it is the undeserved
of God (Ephesians 2:8-9). Salvation (i.e. going to heaven) is a free gift! We simply have to
to receive it!
"God, I know that I have sinned against You! In Jesus' Name I ask You to forgive all of my sins. I now turn away from my sinful past, and in faith I turn to the living Jesus as my Savior. I accept Jesus' death on the cross in my place, and I confess that His blood has paid for all of my sins. Jesus, please make me the person that
want me to be. Thank You! In Jesus' Name, amen."
If you prayed this sincerely then you are now a Christian and you will go to heaven when you die! You're saved from the penalty of your sins! It's not because of a prayer, but because of your faith in Jesus as your Savior. Jesus is now living in your heart (see Ephesians 3:17), and as you cooperate with God while He works in your life then you will grow more and more in spiritual maturity.
The rest of this article will explain what is possibly going to be happening in the next few years. History as we knew it is over. If you have not made the decision to accept Jesus as your Savior, then keep this article handy and watch how the things in this article start coming to pass. How did I know these things would happen? Because the Bible is true. You will have all of the proof you need that the Bible is true, because these things will happen right in front of your eyes. However, you will probably not live to see all of them. That's why it is so urgent that you make your decision as soon as possible, because your decision has eternal consequences. I have done my best to warn you and to prepare you, and now the choice is up to you.
A Checklist of the Things You Will Possibly See Happening
Here is a checklist of many specific things that I believe will happen during the seven years or so after the "Vanishing," and these things will unfold before your eyes if you live long enough to see them. If you're not convinced that the Bible is true and that Jesus is the living Son of God, let this checklist help to open your eyes. These are not mere predictions, this is Biblical prophecy, which is simply history that is written down before it happens (God can do that!). Those of us who study prophecy might not always get the details or the timing exactly right, but I believe that these events
happen in some way. When you see these things happening, pray the prayer of repentance (above) right away. Don't delay! Your
life is not likely to survive the next few years (or months, or even days), so don't mess up your
life by refusing to accept Jesus as your Savior!
In this article I have not tried to describe in detail all of the prophecies in the Bible concerning the "end-times" (many of which can be found in my articles called
Signs of the Times in End-Times Bible Prophecy,
The Second Coming,
Beyond the Second Coming).
Instead, I have tried to keep it nice and simple and straightforward. So here is a basic checklist of what is probably about to happen, along with one or two representative passages of Scripture for each point:
The Bible said that the "Vanishing" was going to happen, and now it has happened. The world was suddenly plunged into chaos and panic and hysteria. Planes fell out of the sky because their pilots vanished. Cars, trucks, buses, and so on crashed because they suddenly had no drivers. There were probably fires all over the place and wounded and dying people who needed emergency medical help, but the firefighters and ambulances had a difficult time getting through all the wreckage and carnage to help people. Not to mention the fact that many firefighters, police, doctors, nurses, and other emergency personnel disappeared, creating a severe shortage of emergency help. There were probably blackouts, riots, lootings, murders, and so on in the wake of so much sudden destruction and chaos. Some people probably lost their minds with fear and terror because they didn't know what had happened to their loved ones who vanished. There was probably great panic over the thought that more people might suddenly vanish, or that space aliens had done this and were about to attack. The confusion was probably intensified by the fact that when the people vanished, their clothing and jewelry fell to the ground where they were standing or sitting. The shock and the enormity of what had happened, and the fear that some new weapon was responsible for this, surely contributed to the worldwide chaos.
The "Vanishing" was a supernatural event which was prophesied in the Bible, so this should be plenty of evidence to convince you that the Bible is true. Please don't fall for any of the goofy explanations that people will come up with to explain our disappearance! Here is one of the main verses which describes the "Vanishing" (also known as the "Rapture"):
the Lord himself will come down from heaven,
with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and
the dead in Christ will rise first.
we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever.
Therefore encourage each other with these words." (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18)
For more on the Rapture, I invite you to see my article called
The Rapture of the Church.
Russia and its allies will invade Israel, and this might even happen before the "Vanishing." However, this massive invasion will fail, and it appears that Russia (the "land of Magog") will be destroyed. The Bible describes an earthquake, pestilence, fire, hailstones, and internal disputes which cause the invaders to begin attacking each other. In some way, the entire invading army will be destroyed, with no-one left alive. It will take seven months to bury the dead, and the weaponry will be burned for fuel for seven years:
"The word of the LORD came to me: "Son of man, set your face against Gog,
of the land of Magog,
the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal; prophesy against him and say: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. I will turn you around, put hooks in your jaws and bring you out with your whole army--your horses, your horsemen fully armed, and a great horde with large and small shields, all of them brandishing their swords. Persia, Cush and Put will be with them, all with shields and helmets, also Gomer with all its troops, and Beth Togarmah
from the far north
with all its troops--the many nations with you. Get ready; be prepared, you and all the hordes gathered about you, and take command of them. After many days you will be called to arms.
In future years you will invade a land that has recovered from war, whose people were gathered from many nations to the mountains of Israel, which had long been desolate. They had been brought out from the nations, and now all of them live in safety.
You and all your troops and the many nations with you will go up, advancing like a storm; you will be like a cloud covering the land. This is what the Sovereign LORD says: On that day thoughts will come into your mind and you will devise an evil scheme. You will say,
"I will invade a land of unwalled villages; I will attack a peaceful and unsuspecting people--all of them living without walls and without gates and bars. I will plunder and loot and turn my hand against the resettled ruins and the people gathered from the nations,
rich in livestock and goods, living at the center of the land." Sheba and Dedan and the merchants of Tarshish and all her villages will say to you, "Have you come to plunder? Have you gathered your hordes to loot, to carry off silver and gold, to take away livestock and goods and to seize much plunder?" Therefore, son of man, prophesy and say to Gog: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says:
In that day, when my people Israel are living in safety, will you not take notice of it? You will come from your place in the far north, you and many nations with you,
all of them riding on horses, a great horde, a mighty army.
You will advance against my people Israel like a cloud that covers the land.
In days to come, O Gog, I will bring you against my land, so that the nations may know me when I show myself holy through you before their eyes. This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Are you not the one I spoke of in former days by my servants the prophets of Israel? At that time they prophesied for years that I would bring you against them. This is what will happen in that day:
When Gog attacks the land of Israel, my hot anger will be aroused, declares the Sovereign LORD. In my zeal and fiery wrath I declare that at that time there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground, and all the people on the face of the earth will tremble at my presence. The mountains will be overturned, the cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground. I will summon a sword against Gog on all my mountains, declares the Sovereign LORD. Every man's sword will be against his brother. I will execute judgment upon him with plague and bloodshed; I will pour down torrents of rain, hailstones and burning sulfur on him and on his troops and on the many nations with him.
And so I will show my greatness and my holiness, and I will make myself known in the sight of many nations. Then they will know that I am the LORD. Son of man, prophesy against Gog and say: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against you, O Gog, chief prince of Meshech and Tubal. I will turn you around and drag you along.
I will bring you from the far north and send you against the mountains of Israel. Then I will strike your bow from your left hand and make your arrows drop from your right hand. On the mountains of Israel you will fall, you and all your troops and the nations with you. I will give you as food to all kinds of carrion birds and to the wild animals. You will fall in the open field, for I have spoken, declares the Sovereign LORD. I will send fire on Magog and on those who live in safety in the coastlands, and they will know that I am the LORD.
I will make known my holy name among my people Israel. I will no longer let my holy name be profaned, and the nations will know that I the LORD am the Holy One in Israel.
It is coming! It will surely take place,
declares the Sovereign LORD. This is the day I have spoken of.
Then those who live in the towns of Israel will go out and use the weapons for fuel and burn them up--the small and large shields, the bows and arrows, the war clubs and spears. For seven years they will use them for fuel.
They will not need to gather wood from the fields or cut it from the forests, because
they will use the weapons for fuel.
And they will plunder those who plundered them and loot those who looted them, declares the Sovereign LORD. On that day I will give Gog a burial place in Israel, in the valley of those who travel east toward the Sea. It will block the way of travelers, because Gog and all his hordes will be buried there. So it will be called the Valley of Hamon Gog.
For seven months the house of Israel will be burying them in order to cleanse the land.'"
Whoever "Gog" turns out to be, he will be the leader of the land of Magog, and the leader of a massive invasion of Israel. Many Bible scholars identify Magog as being Russia, as in the following quote:
"The identification of Magog, Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal is to be determined from the fact that these tribes of the ancient world occupied the areas of modern day Russia. Magog, Meshech and Tubal were between the Black and Caspian Seas which today is southern Russia. ... These names, then, cover the modern territories of northern and southern Russia in Europe and Siberia to the east in Asia. The modern nation of the Soviet Union encompasses all these areas of Ezekiel.
For more on this invasion of Israel, I invite you to see my article called
Signs of the Times in End-Times Bible Prophecy.
As if to avoid any further possible doubt, verse six adds that these come from
the uttermost parts of the north.
This is repeated in 38:15 and 39:2. From Israel the uttermost parts of the north is Russia with Moscow being almost a straight line due north from Jerusalem."
(The Footsteps of the Messiah
(1995), Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum, p.70)
There will be a one-world government, and this might even happen before the "Vanishing":
"He gave me this explanation: 'The fourth beast is a fourth kingdom that will appear on earth. It will be
from all the other kingdoms and
will devour the whole earth, trampling it down and crushing it.'"
The prophet Daniel was given a vision, and he was told that a new kingdom will appear on the earth which will be
from other kingdoms because it will devour the
earth. The Roman Empire and other empires conquered much of the "then-known" world, but none of them actually conquered
of the known world. No kingdom has ever covered the entire earth, so this is a future one-world kingdom.
At some point, this one-world government will be divided into ten governments of some kind, ruled by ten rulers:
"He gave me this explanation: 'The fourth beast is a fourth kingdom that will appear on earth. It will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth, trampling it down and crushing it. The ten horns are
ten kings who will come from this kingdom.'"
In Daniel's vision he saw ten kings arising out of the one-world government. This seems to indicate that the earth will be divided into ten kingdoms
the one-world government stage. Some people try to make this fit with the current European Union, but the European Union does not cover the entire world, and there has not yet been a one-world government.
At some point after the one-world kingdom is broken up into ten territories, a man will rise to prominence. Christians refer to this man as the "Antichrist." He will seem to have all the answers, and many people will refuse to believe that he could possibly be the Biblical Antichrist. Don't be fooled!
"He gave me this explanation: 'The fourth beast is a fourth kingdom that will appear on earth. It will be different from all the other kingdoms and will devour the whole earth, trampling it down and crushing it. The ten horns are ten kings who will come from this kingdom.
After them another king will arise, different from the earlier ones;
he will subdue three kings.'" (Daniel 7:23-24)
In Daniel's vision he saw another king arise out of the "ten kingdom" stage. This is the Antichrist, whom the Bible also calls "the man of lawlessness":
"Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that
is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour." (1 John 2:18)
"Don't let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and
the man of lawlessness
is revealed, the man doomed to destruction.
He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God's temple, proclaiming himself to be God."
(2 Thessalonians 2:3-4)
At this point, there is a period of time when people will feel as if they are living in peace and safety:
"for you know very well that
the day of the Lord
will come like a thief in the night.
While people are saying, "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly,
as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape." (1 Thessalonians 5:2-3)
"The day of the Lord" is one of the most common expressions in the Bible for the terrible period that follows the "Vanishing," although there are a number of other expressions in the Bible which also describe this period (the "Tribulation," the "day of vengeance," the "day of the Lord's wrath," the "hour of judgment," and so on). When people believe that they are living in peace and safety, destruction will suddenly come upon them from the Antichrist.
The first of several "blackouts" will occur. The sun will somehow be darkened, and the moon will somehow look as red as blood:
"The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood
before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD."
A man will rise up and will begin doing a work of restoration, turning the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers. This man is Elijah:
"See, I will send you the prophet Elijah
before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes.
He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse." (Malachi 4:5-6)
Whoever the Antichrist turns out to be, he will make a seven-year covenant of peace with Israel. Christians often refer to this seven-year period as the "Tribulation." The signing of this covenant is the event which begins the Tribulation period, and seven years later Jesus will return to the earth and defeat the Antichrist (at the so-called "Battle of Armageddon"):
"Seventy 'sevens' are decreed for your people and your holy city
to finish transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy. Know and understand this:
From the issuing of the decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One, the ruler, comes, there will be seven 'sevens,' and sixty-two 'sevens.'
It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble. After the sixty-two 'sevens,' the Anointed One will be cut off and will have nothing.
The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary.
The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed.
He will confirm a covenant with many for one 'seven.'"
This passage is thoroughly covered in my article called
The Rapture of the Church,
but here are the highlights. An angel told the prophet Daniel that 70 'sevens' were decreed for the Jewish people (for various reasons, which are given in this passage). A 'seven' in this context is 7 years, so 70 'sevens' is a period of 490 years. The angel gave Daniel a specific starting and ending point for 69 of these 'sevens,' and the ending point is when Jesus officially entered Jerusalem as the Messiah (the Hebrew word for "Messiah" means "Anointed One"), riding on a donkey. There were several decrees that were issued in the Old Testament in relation to the Jews, but only one of them was for rebuilding the city of Jerusalem. It is easily shown that from the issuing of that decree until the time when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, it was a period of exactly 483 years (i.e. 69 'sevens'). The last 'seven' (the 70th 'seven') will not begin until a future ruler signs a seven-year covenant with Israel. This ruler is the one whom Christians refer to as the Antichrist, and this seven-year period (the "Tribulation") will be the last of the 70 'sevens' that the angel told Daniel about. Notice that the Antichrist will come from the same people who "will destroy the city and the sanctuary." This event occurred in 70 A.D., and it was the Romans who destroyed the city of Jerusalem and the Jewish temple. Therefore, the Antichrist will likely be of Roman descent.
The Jewish temple will be rebuilt, and the ritual sacrifices will begin again:
"He will confirm a covenant with many for one 'seven.' In the middle of the 'seven'
he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation,
until the end that is decreed is poured out on him." (Daniel 9:27)
In Daniel's vision he saw the Antichrist desecrating the Jewish temple and putting an end to the ritual sacrifices. The Jewish temple was destroyed in 70 A.D. and it has never been rebuilt. Therefore, the temple must be rebuilt and the sacrifices must begin again so that the Antichrist can desecrate the temple and end the sacrifices. This desecration happens halfway through the seven-year covenant period, so the temple must be up and functioning by the three-and-a-half-year point after the Tribulation begins. Remember, the Tribulation does not begin until Israel signs a seven-year covenant with the Antichrist.
Here's another passage which describes the Antichrist desecrating the Jewish temple:
"Don't let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and
the man of lawlessness is revealed,
the man doomed to destruction. He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped,
so that he sets himself up in God's temple, proclaiming himself to be God."
(2 Thessalonians 2:3-4)
At some point, two people will begin to prophesy in Jerusalem for 1,260 days. They are called the "Two Witnesses," and they will have the power to kill with fire anyone who comes against them. They will be able to prevent rainfall, they will be able to turn water into blood, and they will be able to cause plagues. No-one will be able to kill them (yet):
"And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth. These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes from their mouths and devours their enemies. This is how anyone who wants to harm them must die. These men have power to shut up the sky so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying; and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want." (Revelation 11:3-6)
There will be a one-world religion:
"One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and said to me, "Come, I will show you the punishment of the great
who sits on many waters.
With her the kings of the earth committed adultery
and the inhabitants of the earth were intoxicated with the wine of her adulteries. Then the angel carried me away in the Spirit into a desert. There I saw
a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was covered with blasphemous names and had seven heads and ten horns.
The woman was dressed in purple and scarlet, and was glittering with gold, precious stones and pearls. She held a golden cup in her hand, filled with abominable things and the filth of her adulteries. This title was written on her forehead: MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT THE MOTHER OF PROSTITUTES AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. I saw that
the woman was drunk with the blood of the saints,
the blood of those who bore testimony to Jesus. When I saw her, I was greatly astonished." (Revelation 17:1-6)
The meaning of some of these symbols is described a few passages later:
"This calls for a mind with wisdom. The seven heads are seven hills on which the woman sits. They are also
Five have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come; but when he does come, he must remain for a little while. The beast who once was, and now is not, is an eighth king. He belongs to the seven and is going to his destruction.
The ten horns you saw are ten kings
who have not yet received a kingdom, but who for one hour will receive authority as kings along with the beast. They have one purpose and will give their power and authority to the beast. They will make war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will overcome them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings--and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers." Then the angel said to me,
"The waters you saw, where the prostitute sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages.""
A prostitute takes something that has a proper use and perverts it, turning it into adultery or fornication. That's the normal, physical sense of what a prostitute does. In a spiritual sense, the "prostitute" described in Revelation causes people to commit spiritual adultery or spiritual fornication with her. This "prostitute" is a one-world false religion which will be responsible for killing multitudes of Christians. This "prostitute" is riding on the back of the "beast," indicating that this false religion has government support (the heads and horns of the beast are explained as being kings). This is also indicated by the fact that the kings of the earth commit spiritual adultery with this "prostitute" of false religion, according to Revelation 17:1-6 (above). Since this "prostitute" sits on "the waters" (which are explained as being peoples, multitudes, nations and languages), it indicates that this false religion is a one-world religion.
A major war will occur sometime after the Antichrist signs the covenant with Israel, and this war will be accompanied by a terrible famine:
"I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, "Come!" I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out
as a conqueror bent on conquest.
When the Lamb opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, "Come!" Then another horse came out, a fiery red one.
Its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and to make men slay each other.
To him was given a large sword. When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, "Come!" I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying,
"A quart of wheat for a day's wages, and three quarts of barley for a day's wages,
and do not damage the oil and the wine!" When the Lamb opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, "Come!" I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him.
They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth."
So one-fourth of the entire human race will be killed off during the first part of the Tribulation by war, famine, plague, and by vicious attacks from wild animals. These events are the first of three series of judgments that God pours out on the earth during the Tribulation, and they are popularly known as "the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse."
Christians will be persecuted and martyred. These Christians are people who put their faith in Jesus
"When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar
the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God and the testimony they had maintained.
They called out in a loud voice, "How long, Sovereign Lord, holy and true, until you judge the inhabitants of the earth and avenge our blood?"
Then each of them was given a white robe, and they were told to wait a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and brothers who were to be killed as they had been was completed."
There will be earthquakes and another blackout of the sun and moon, followed by a meteor shower. People will recognize that the wrath of God is being poured out on the earth, but they will try to hide rather than repent and turn to Jesus in faith:
"I watched as he opened the sixth seal.
There was a great earthquake. The sun turned black like sackcloth made of goat hair, the whole moon turned blood red, and the stars in the sky fell to earth,
as late figs drop from a fig tree when shaken by a strong wind. The sky receded like a scroll, rolling up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and every free man hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and the rocks, "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 6:12-17)
There are various indications of nuclear war throughout the prophecies of the Tribulation, and this passage might contain some indications of nuclear war as well (as seen through the eyes of a first-century person). Time will tell. For more possible descriptions of nuclear war during the Tribulation, I invite you to see my article called
Signs of the Times in End-Times Bible Prophecy.
144,000 Jews will be sealed by God for protection and for service. They will be great evangelists during the seven-year Tribulation, and many people will put their faith in Jesus as a result of the ministry of the 144,000 Jews:
"Then I saw another angel coming up from the east, having the seal of the living God. He called out in a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to harm the land and the sea:
"Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we put a seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God." Then I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 from all the tribes of Israel.
... After this I looked and there before me was
a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language,
standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.
They were wearing white robes
and were holding palm branches in their hands. ... Then one of the elders asked me,
"These in white robes--who are they,
and where did they come from?" I answered, "Sir, you know." And he said,
"These are they who have come out of the great tribulation; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.""
(Revelation 7:2-4, 9, 13-14)
The next series of judgments on the earth will begin with earthquakes, lightning, and thunder. One-third of the surface of the earth will be destroyed by fire. Then one-third of the sea will be turned to blood and one-third of the sea creatures will die. In addition, one-third of the ships will be destroyed. Then one-third of the rivers will become "bitter" (possibly from radiation?), and many people will die from drinking this "bitter" water. Then one-third of the light from the sun and the moon will somehow be blocked:
"Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and
there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake.
Then the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared to sound them. The first angel sounded his trumpet, and there came hail and fire mixed with blood, and it was hurled down upon the earth.
A third of the earth was burned up, a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up.
The second angel sounded his trumpet, and something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea.
A third of the sea turned into blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.
The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water--the name of the star is Wormwood.
A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter.
The fourth angel sounded his trumpet, and a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them turned dark.
A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night."
It appears that some kind of creature will fly through the air announcing the next judgments:
"As I watched, I heard an eagle that was flying in midair call out in a loud voice: "Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!"" (Revelation 8:13)
Next there will be a terrible tormenting that is carried out either by demons or by some kind of weaponry (although Christians will probably not be affected). This "torment" will last for five months, but it will not kill anyone. People will try to commit suicide to escape this torment, but they will not be able to die:
"And out of the smoke locusts came down upon the earth and were given power like that of scorpions of the earth. They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any plant or tree, but only those people who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads.
They were not given power to kill them, but only to torture them for five months. And the agony they suffered was like that of the sting of a scorpion when it strikes a man. During those days men will seek death, but will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them."
Next there will be an invasion of an army that is 200 million strong, either a demonic army or a human army. As a result of this invasion, one-third of the remaining human population of the earth will die:
"It said to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, "Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates." And the four angels who had been kept ready for this very hour and day and month and year were released
to kill a third of mankind.
The number of the mounted troops was
two hundred million.
I heard their number." (Revelation 9:14-16)
At about the mid-point of the Tribulation, the Antichrist will declare war on the ten kings in order to gain worldwide control. However, the Antichrist will never gain control of present-day Jordan. At some point the Antichrist will be killed, but he will return to life:
"The king will do as he pleases. He will exalt and magnify himself above every god and will say unheard-of things against the God of gods. He will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place.
He will show no regard for the gods of his fathers or for the one desired by women, nor will he regard any god, but will exalt himself above them all. Instead of them, he will honor a god of fortresses; a god unknown to his fathers he will honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and costly gifts. He will attack the mightiest fortresses with the help of a foreign god and will greatly honor those who acknowledge him. He will make them rulers over many people and will distribute the land at a price. At the time of the end the king of the South will engage him in battle, and the king of the North will storm out against him with chariots and cavalry and a great fleet of ships.
He will invade many countries and sweep through them like a flood. He will also invade the Beautiful Land. Many countries will fall, but Edom, Moab and the leaders of Ammon will be delivered from his hand.
He will extend his power over many countries; Egypt will not escape. He will gain control of the treasures of gold and silver and all the riches of Egypt, with the Libyans and Nubians in submission. But reports from the east and the north will alarm him, and he will set out in a great rage to destroy and annihilate many. He will pitch his royal tents between the seas at the beautiful holy mountain.
Yet he will come to his end,
and no one will help him." (Daniel 11:36-45)
The Antichrist will wage war to take over the world. However, he will never be able to take Edom, Moab, or Ammon, all of which are in present-day Jordan. The Antichrist will "come to his end," meaning that he will be killed, but his fatal wound will be healed (he will come back to life). Because of this, people will be willing to worship the Antichrist, and he will kill many Christians and rule the world for 42 months (the last three and a half years of the Tribulation):
"One of the heads of the beast seemed to have had a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed.
The whole world was
and followed the beast. Men worshiped the dragon because he had given authority to the beast, and
they also worshiped the beast
and asked, "Who is like the beast? Who can make war against him?" The beast was given a mouth to utter proud words and blasphemies
and to exercise his authority for forty-two months.
He opened his mouth to blaspheme God, and to slander his name and his dwelling place and those who live in heaven.
He was given power to make war against the saints and to conquer them. And he was given authority over every tribe, people, language and nation."
This passage says that the Antichrist will succeed in gaining authority over "every tribe, people, language and nation," which indicates that there will be a second one-world government on the earth. This passage also says that the Antichrist
to have a fatal wound, which is sometimes taken to mean that the Antichrist does not actually get killed. However, Revelation uses similar wording to describe the resurrected Jesus:
"Then I saw a Lamb,
looking as if it had been slain,
standing in the center of the throne" (Revelation 5:6)
Jesus (the Lamb of God) was definitely killed on the cross (for proof, I invite you to see my article called
The Evidence for the Death and Resurrection of Jesus).
The expressions, "seemed to have had a fatal wound" and "looking as if [he] had been slain" are similar forms of speech, and they refer to a
person. For example, the Bible specifically says that the Antichrist had a fatal wound, and that his fatal wound had been healed:
"He exercised all the authority of the first beast on his behalf, and made the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast,
whose fatal wound had been healed."
The Antichrist will finally succeed in killing the Two Witnesses. Their bodies will remain in the street right where they died, and people all over the world will view their bodies and will celebrate and give gifts to one another. After three and a half days, the Two Witnesses will come back to life and will ascend up to heaven in full view of everyone. Great fear will fall on all those who see this happening, and there will be a sudden earthquake which will destroy one-tenth of Jerusalem and will kill 7,000 people. As a result, many people will give glory to God:
"And I will give power to my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth. These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands that stand before the Lord of the earth. If anyone tries to harm them, fire comes from their mouths and devours their enemies. This is how anyone who wants to harm them must die. These men have power to shut up the sky so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying; and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want. Now when they have finished their testimony, the beast that comes up from the Abyss will attack them, and overpower and
kill them. Their bodies will lie in the street of the great city,
which is figuratively called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.
For three and a half days men from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies and refuse them burial. The inhabitants of the earth will gloat over them and will celebrate by sending each other gifts, because these two prophets had tormented those who live on the earth. But after the three and a half days a breath of life from God entered them, and they stood on their feet, and terror struck those who saw them. Then they heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, "Come up here." And they went up to heaven in a cloud, while their enemies looked on. At that very hour there was a severe earthquake and a tenth of the city collapsed. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the survivors were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven."
After the Antichrist becomes the world ruler, he will abolish the one-world religious system (the "prostitute"):
"Then the angel said to me, "The waters you saw, where the prostitute sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages.
The beast and the ten horns you saw will hate the prostitute. They will bring her to ruin and leave her naked; they will eat her flesh and burn her with fire.""
The new one-world religion will be a worship of the Antichrist (the "beast"), which is actually a worship of the devil (the "dragon"):
was hurled down--
that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray.
He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him." (Revelation 12:9)
"One of the heads of the beast seemed to have had a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed. The whole world was astonished and followed the beast.
Men worshiped the dragon
because he had given authority to the beast,
and they also worshiped the beast"
A false prophet will arise who will call all people to worship the Antichrist as a god. The false prophet will be able to do signs and miracles for the purpose of deceiving people into worshiping the Antichrist, and he will command that an image of the Antichrist is to be made. The false prophet will then cause this image to come to life in some way:
"Then I saw another beast, coming out of the earth. He had two horns like a lamb, but he spoke like a dragon. He exercised all the authority of the first beast on his behalf, and
made the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose fatal wound had been healed. And he performed great and miraculous signs,
even causing fire to come down from heaven to earth in full view of men. Because of the signs he was given power to do on behalf of the first beast, he deceived the inhabitants of the earth.
He ordered them to set up an image in honor of the beast who was wounded by the sword and yet lived. He was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that it could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed."
"But the beast was captured, and with him
the false prophet
who had performed the miraculous signs on his behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped his image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur." (Revelation 19:20)
The false prophet will command all people to receive a mark on their foreheads or their right hands, which will have something to do with the number 666. Each letter in the Hebrew alphabet has a numerical value (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 20, 30, etc.), and the numerical value of the Antichrist's name will be 666. People will not be able to buy or sell unless they have this "mark of the beast," and they cannot receive this mark unless they worship the Antichrist as if he were God. This mark is a "point of no return," because anyone who voluntarily receives this mark is dooming himself to eternity in hell. Multitudes of Christians will be martyred for not taking this mark:
"He [the false prophet] was given power to give breath to the image of the first beast, so that it could speak and cause all who refused to worship the image to be killed.
He also forced everyone, small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name. This calls for wisdom. If anyone has insight, let him calculate the number of the beast, for it is man's number. His number is 666."
For more on the "mark of the beast," I invite you to see my article called
Signs of the Times in End-Times Bible Prophecy.
"A third angel followed them and said in a loud voice:
"If anyone worships the beast and his image and receives his mark on the forehead or on the hand, he, too, will drink of the wine of God's fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. He will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name.""
"I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge.
And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded
because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God.
They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years."
At the mid-point of the Tribulation, the Antichrist will break the covenant that he had made with Israel. He will abolish the Jewish ritual sacrifices in the temple, and he will desecrate the temple. He will probably do this by seating himself in the "Holy of Holies" and declaring himself to be the one true God, and he will probably set up an image or an idol of himself in the temple. The Antichrist will rule the world for 1,260 days (the last three and a half years of the Tribulation), but this idol will remain in the temple for 1,290 days:
"After the sixty-two 'sevens,' the Anointed One will be cut off and will have nothing. The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed. He will confirm a covenant with many for one 'seven.'
In the middle of the 'seven' he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on a wing of the temple he will set up an abomination that causes desolation,
until the end that is decreed is poured out on him." (Daniel 9:26-27)
"So when you see
standing in the holy place
'the abomination that causes desolation,' spoken of through the prophet Daniel--let the reader understand--then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains." (Matthew 24:15-16)
"From the time that the daily sacrifice is abolished and the abomination that causes desolation is set up, there will be 1,290 days." (Daniel 12:11)
When the Antichrist desecrates the Jewish temple and breaks his seven-year treaty with Israel, an intense persecution of Jews will begin. At this point, all Jews in Israel should flee to the mountains:
"So when you see standing in the holy place 'the abomination that causes desolation,' spoken of through the prophet Daniel--let the reader understand--then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak.
How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath.
For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now--and never to be equaled again."
If you are a Jew living in Israel when "the abomination that causes desolation" is set up in the temple, flee to the mountains immediately! As the passage above says, don't spare even a moment to pack your bags, get out of there! An intense persecution against Jews, such as has never been seen in the world before, has begun.
The passage above says that you should flee to the mountains. But where specifically? Here's another clue:
"The woman [Israel]
fled into the desert
to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days." (Revelation 12:6)
These passages tell us that you should flee to the desert where you will be taken care of during the last three and a half years of the Tribulation. So you are to flee to a mountain region which is in the midst of a desert. The specific place you are to go is a place called Bozrah:
"The woman [Israel] was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly
to the place prepared for her in the desert,
where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent's reach." (Revelation 12:14)
"I will surely assemble, O Jacob
all of thee; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel;
I will put them together as the sheep of
as the flock
in the midst of their fold:
they shall make great noise by reason of the multitude of men." (Micah 2:12, KJV)
Strong's Dictionary says that "Bozrah" means "sheep fold," and it also says that Bozrah is a place in Edom. We have already seen that Edom, Moab, and Ammon will be the only places in the entire world which will never fall under the Antichrist's control, and these places are all located in present-day Jordan. There is a city in southern Jordan called Petra, which is located in a mountain range in the middle of a desert. Petra is a rocky fortress in the shape of a giant sheep pen, and many Bible scholars believe that this is the location of the ancient city of Bozrah. This would mean that you should flee to Petra (or possibly to a nearby place called Buseira) until the Second Coming of Christ.
It appears that several angels will fly around making proclamations:
"Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth--to every nation, tribe, language and people. He said in a loud voice, "Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water." A second angel followed and said, "Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great, which made all the nations drink the maddening wine of her adulteries." A third angel followed them and said in a loud voice: "If anyone worships the beast and his image and receives his mark on the forehead or on the hand, he, too, will drink of the wine of God's fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. He will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb. And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name."" (Revelation 14:6-11)
In the third and final series of judgments, those who took the "mark of the beast" will suddenly break out in terrible skin sores. All of the oceans and all of the rivers of the world will turn to blood, killing all of the creatures living in the oceans and rivers. Also, the sun's heat will somehow increase, and people will be terribly scorched:
"Then I heard a loud voice from the temple saying to the seven angels, "Go, pour out the seven bowls of God's wrath on the earth." The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and
ugly and painful sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast and worshiped his image.
The second angel poured out his bowl on
the sea, and it turned into blood like that of a dead man, and every living thing in the sea died.
The third angel poured out his bowl on
the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood.
Then I heard the angel in charge of the waters say: "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." And I heard the altar respond: "Yes, Lord God Almighty, true and just are your judgments." The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and
the sun was given power to scorch people with fire. They were seared by the intense heat and they cursed the name of God, who had control over these plagues, but they refused to repent and glorify him.
The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and his kingdom was plunged into darkness. Men gnawed their tongues in agony and cursed the God of heaven because of their pains and their sores, but they refused to repent of what they had done." (Revelation 16:1-11)
The Euphrates river will somehow dry up so that the forces of the Antichrist can gather together at a place in Israel called Har-Mageddon (which in Hebrew means "the mountain of Megiddo," the mountain that overlooks the Valley of Jezreel). The so-called "Battle of Armageddon" is about to begin, although no fighting will actually take place at Har-Mageddon itself. When the decree is issued from the capital city of Babylon and the Antichrist's forces are gathered together in the Valley of Jezreel, Christians should take comfort in the knowledge that the Second Coming of Christ is imminent!
"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 evil 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 spirits of demons performing miraculous 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.
"Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him, so that he may not go naked and be shamefully exposed."
Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon."
The rebuilt city of Babylon, which had become the world's political and economic capital, will suddenly be destroyed by an army that is opposed to the Antichrist. No-one will be left alive, and no-one will ever inhabit Babylon again. Its destruction will be complete. Kings, merchants, and transporters of goods will mourn over the destruction of Babylon, because they had become wealthy but suddenly they are poor and destitute:
"After this I saw another angel coming down from heaven. He had great authority, and the earth was illuminated by his splendor. With a mighty voice he shouted:
"Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great!
She has become a home for demons and a haunt for every evil spirit, a haunt for every unclean and detestable bird. For all the nations have drunk the maddening wine of her adulteries.
The kings of the earth committed adultery with her, and the merchants of the earth grew rich from her excessive luxuries."
Then I heard another voice from heaven say: "Come out of her, my people, so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues; for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes. Give back to her as she has given; pay her back double for what she has done. Mix her a double portion from her own cup. Give her as much torture and grief as the glory and luxury she gave herself. In her heart she boasts, 'I sit as queen; I am not a widow, and I will never mourn.' Therefore in one day her plagues will overtake her: death, mourning and famine. She will be consumed by fire, for mighty is the Lord God who judges her.
When the kings of the earth who committed adultery with her and shared her luxury see the smoke of her burning, they will weep and mourn over her. Terrified at her torment, they will stand far off and cry: "'Woe! Woe, O great city, O Babylon, city of power! In one hour your doom has come!' The merchants of the earth will weep and mourn over her because no one buys their cargoes any more--cargoes
of gold, silver, precious stones and pearls; fine linen, purple, silk and scarlet cloth; every sort of citron wood, and articles of every kind made of ivory, costly wood, bronze, iron and marble; cargoes of cinnamon and spice, of incense, myrrh and frankincense, of wine and olive oil, of fine flour and wheat; cattle and sheep; horses and carriages; and bodies and souls of men. They will say, 'The fruit you longed for is gone from you.
All your riches and splendor have vanished, never to be recovered.' The merchants who sold these things and gained their wealth from her will stand far off, terrified at her torment. They will weep and mourn and cry out:
'Woe! Woe, O great city, dressed in fine linen, purple and scarlet, and glittering with gold, precious stones and pearls! In one hour such great wealth has been brought to ruin!' Every sea captain, and all who travel by ship, the sailors, and all who earn their living from the sea, will stand far off. When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim, 'Was there ever a city like this great city?' They will throw dust on their heads, and with weeping and mourning cry out: 'Woe! Woe, O great city, where all who had ships on the sea became rich through her wealth! In one hour she has been brought to ruin! Rejoice over her, O heaven! Rejoice, saints and apostles and prophets! God has judged her for the way she treated you.' Then a mighty angel picked up a boulder the size of a large millstone and threw it into the sea, and said:
"With such violence the great city of Babylon will be thrown down, never to be found again. The music of harpists and musicians, flute players and trumpeters, will never be heard in you again. No workman of any trade will ever be found in you again. The sound of a millstone will never be heard in you again. The light of a lamp will never shine in you again. The voice of bridegroom and bride will never be heard in you again.
Your merchants were the world's great men. By your magic spell all the nations were led astray. In her was found the blood of prophets and of the saints, and of all who have been killed on the earth."" (Revelation 18:1-24)
Before the destruction of Babylon, the Jews who live in Babylon will be given a warning, and they will flee to Jerusalem. All of this (the gathering of the Antichrist's forces in the Valley of Jezreel, the fleeing of the Jews from Babylon to Jerusalem, and the destruction of Babylon) will take place as the nation of Israel begins to turn to God and to enter into an everlasting covenant with God. As a nation, Israel rejected Jesus as the Messiah in the first century, and that generation fell under the condemnation of God. However, the nation of Israel at the time of "Armageddon" will repent as a nation and will turn to Jesus as the Messiah. This is the event which will "trigger" the Second Coming of Christ (see my article called
The Second Coming):
"For Israel and Judah have not been forsaken by their God, the LORD Almighty, though their land is full of guilt before the Holy One of Israel.
"Flee from Babylon! Run for your lives!
Do not be destroyed because of her sins. It is time for the Lord's vengeance; he will pay her what she deserves." ... 'The LORD has vindicated us;
come, let us tell in Zion what the LORD our God has done.'
"Come out of her, my people! Run for your lives!
Run from the fierce anger of the LORD." ... "Babylon must fall because of Israel's slain, just as the slain in all the earth have fallen because of Babylon. You who have escaped the sword,
leave and do not linger!
Remember the LORD in a distant land, and think on
(Jeremiah 51:5-6, 10, 45, 49-50)
"This is the word the LORD spoke through Jeremiah the prophet
and the land of the Babylonians: "Announce and proclaim among the nations, lift up a banner and proclaim it; keep nothing back, but say, 'Babylon will be captured; Bel will be put to shame, Marduk filled with terror. Her images will be put to shame and her idols filled with terror.'
A nation from the north will attack her and lay waste her land. No one will live in it;
both men and animals will flee away.
"In those days, at that time," declares the LORD, "the people of Israel and the people of Judah together will go in tears to seek the LORD their God. They will ask the way to Zion and turn their faces toward it. They will come and bind themselves to the LORD in an everlasting covenant that will not be forgotten.""
After Babylon (the Antichrist's headquarters) is destroyed, the Antichrist will turn his forces against Jerusalem. The Jews will be supernaturally empowered in some way in order to inflict heavy losses against the Antichrist's armies. However, Jerusalem will fall, there will be massive plundering and raping, and half of the Jewish population of Jerusalem will be taken into slavery. The other half will be allowed to remain in the city for some reason:
"This is the word of the LORD concerning Israel. The LORD, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the spirit of man within him, declares:
"I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves.
On that day I will strike every horse with panic and its rider with madness," declares the LORD. "I will keep a watchful eye over the house of Judah, but I will blind all the horses of the nations. Then the leaders of Judah will say in their hearts,
'The people of Jerusalem are strong, because the LORD Almighty is their God.'
On that day I will make the leaders of Judah like a firepot in a woodpile, like a flaming torch among sheaves. They will consume right and left all the surrounding peoples, but Jerusalem will remain intact in her place. The LORD will save the dwellings of Judah first, so that the honor of the house of David and of Jerusalem's inhabitants may not be greater than that of Judah.
On that day the LORD will shield those who live in Jerusalem, so that the feeblest among them will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the Angel of the LORD going before them.
On that day I will set out to destroy all the nations that attack Jerusalem."" (Zechariah 12:1-9)
"A day of the LORD is coming when your plunder will be divided among you.
I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city."
The Antichrist will then move his forces southward from Jerusalem to the mountains in southern Jordan, where the majority of the Jews and Jewish leaders had fled (recall that the Jews had fled to Bozrah, which is probably the modern city of Petra in southern Jordan).
At this point, the vast majority of the Jewish population of the world has been killed, and only a remnant of Jews remains. As the Antichrist advances towards Bozrah, this remnant of Jews is in the process of a national repentance for rejecting Jesus as the Messiah when He came to earth the first time (in the first century). A national regeneration of Israel occurs, and they plead for Jesus to return. Heaven opens up, and Jesus comes down from heaven back to the earth, accompanied by "the armies of heaven" (all of the Christians who had "vanished"). Christians have often referred to this event as the "Second Coming." When Jesus' work on earth was finished in the first century He ascended back to heaven from the Mount of Olives, and many Christians believe that Jesus will return to the Mount of Olives at the Second Coming. However, it appears that He will actually return to the earth at Bozrah, where He will wage war against the Antichrist's forces that are trying to exterminate the Jews there (this is covered in great detail in my article called
The Second Coming).
After Jesus defeats the armies of the Antichrist, He will ascend the Mount of Olives. The greatest earthquake ever to occur in the history of the earth will split the city of Jerusalem into three sections, and other cataclysmic events will occur in the earth. This brings the Tribulation to an end, and God's wrath on the earth is now complete:
""Behold, I come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake and keeps his clothes with him, so that he may not go naked and be shamefully exposed." Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon. The seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air, and out of the temple came a loud voice from the throne, saying,
"It is done!"
Then there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake.
No earthquake like it has ever occurred since man has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake. The great city split into three parts, and the cities of the nations collapsed.
God remembered Babylon the Great and gave her the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath. Every island fled away and the mountains could not be found. From the sky huge hailstones of about a hundred pounds each fell upon men. And they cursed God on account of the plague of hail, because the plague was so terrible." (Revelation 16:15-21)
"I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city.
Then the LORD will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights in the day of battle. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south."
It is difficult for us to pinpoint the exact timing of some of these events, but the Bible gives us a great deal of specific information about what's going to happen after the "Vanishing." When you see these things beginning to happen right before your eyes then you will have definite proof that the Bible is true. The longer you delay your decision to accept Jesus as your Savior, the more likely it is that you will wait too long and you will die in your sins. You will not get a second chance after you die! You will live forever in unending, unendurable torment for rejecting Jesus.
After the "Vanishing" happens, if you are a Jew then it might be wise to make your way to Jerusalem as quickly as possible so that you can flee to Bozrah at the appropriate time and be safe until the Second Coming. If you are not a Jew, then it is important that you begin praying for the Jews and giving them every possible assistance. Bible teachers point out that there is a Scriptural principle that whoever blesses the Jews (the physical descendants of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob) will be blessed, as in the following passages, for example:
"The LORD had said to Abram, "Leave your country, your people and your father's household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse;
and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you."" (Genesis 12:1-3)
"When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'
Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'
Then he will say to those on his left,
'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'
They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.' Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.""
I pray that you will make the right decision. I look forward to meeting you as my new Christian brother or sister after I return with the Lord at
the Second Coming!