Putting It All Together: What Happens on the Day of the Second Coming? [Part -3]

Chapter 16 of Reclaiming The Rapture : Putting It All Together: What Happens on the Day of the Second Coming? [Part -3]

In summary, following are some of the events of the Second Coming: 

1)  An ash cloud will blanket the earth, blocking sun and moon. 

2) The rivers, lakes and oceans will be turned to blood. 

3) The veil between the heavens will pass away. 

4) Everyone will see Jesus coming in flames of fire. 

5) The earth, every mountain and island, is shaken, moved and gone; and the elements, mountains, begin to melt. 

This now brings us to the Battle of Armageddon. Traditionally the Battle of Armageddon has been believed to come before the Day of the Lord. I put the Battle of Armageddon in the day of the Lord. That is the time when it will happen – when Jesus comes back – because He is the one who’s going to be fighting. The Battle of Armageddon is not a nation-against-nation war. Very often people have gone to a location in the northern part of Galilee called the Jezreel Valley and thought it could be an incredible place for a battle. Napoleon said, “I could see a battle being fought here.” 

Unfortunately, this is not the location of the Battle of Armageddon. Secondly, this battle will not see the tanks of the world coming together; or the world’s infantry divisions fighting one another. This battle won’t even feature the high tech weaponry that we have today against other countries. The Battle of Armageddon will be the world united against Jesus and those that He loves. It says in Revelation 16:16, And they gathered them together to the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon. Then in Revelation 19 John writes; And I saw the beast, the kings of  the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. Rev. 19:19 Again, it’s not nation against nation. It’s all the nations of the world united together to fight against Jesus. 

In addition to understanding who is fighting whom, we will also consider the linguistic understanding of this battle; the sheaves in a harvest motif that we find very frequently, and the idea of stomping on grapes. We will discover that these aspects can be understood very literally. It’s just a matter of putting the puzzle pieces in their right places. I have to admit that I broke my head! 

In Spanish, a jig saw puzzle is called a “rompecabezas” because it breaks your head. I feel that I have been breaking my head trying to put the pieces together. Now, though, I am very excited to share them with you because I believe that the Lord has guided me in discovering how these puzzle pieces fit together. I will let you be the judge, of course, but I think you will see that the pieces fit incredibly well; and that we can take them very literally, which always excites me because God’s Word is very literal. 

Jesus will stomp on grapes. Blood will go up to the horse’s bridle. There’s even some imagery that is a repeat of the Exodus crossing of the Red Sea. I think God likes to recycle themes. 

This theme will be recycled in a very grand way. God’s Word also tells us that a trap will be set by the Antichrist for the Jews. The trap that the Antichrist will set will actually be the trap that he will fall into. There’s a proverb that says “he who sets a snare will himself fall into it.” 

This is exactly what’s going to happen to the Antichrist. He will set the snare but he himself will fall into it. These things will happen outside the city. The traditional location of the Battle of Armageddon is in the Jezreel Valley. If one were to tour Israel today, 

he or she would be sure to visit Armageddon because most people want to see where the final battle is going to take place. The tour would visit the traditional Battle of Armageddon site in the plain of Jezreel at the Tel Megiddo. One can see Tel Megiddo, but it’s not a mountain. 

A “tel” is not a mountain. Tel is a very ancient word. It actually comes from Acadian, which tells us that the word has been around for long time. A tel is a mound where a city was and then was destroyed, and then they built on top of it, then that city was destroyed, and so on. Eventually, after many centuries, the various destruction layers build up into an artificial mountain that is called a tel. One would not find a mountain in Tel Megiddo today, only a tel. This begs the question, “Where is the mountain?” Where is the city? There is wonderful agriculture in this place, but no city or mountain. One could visit the Jezreel Valley and Tel Megiddo and think to himself, “Wow! This is where the battle is going to happen. But there’s nobody here. Why would anybody fight here? Why suddenly here, when all the other places in scripture keep talking about Jerusalem?” Well of course this is the whole point. It is not going to happen here even though we have been taught that this is the location of the battle. 

Let’s consider the linguistic implications of the Battle of Armageddon. If we read the King James82, or the New King James83, which are based on the Textus Receptus84, we will find that the word “Armageddon” is spelled with two letter “d’s.” If we look at Armageddon in the Byzantine Majority85 text, the word actually has one delta (d). If we look at the Alexandrian Vaticanas86, it’s spelled with one delta, but in the Textus Receptus, it is spelled with two. Some people prefer the Textus Receptus, and may even have strong feelings against the Alexandrian Vaticanis, which is fine. However, I would like to point out that the Textus Receptus comes out of the Byzantine family. It is a collection of manuscripts. It is really a handful of manuscripts, somewhere between six to twelve manuscripts were used. It came from a larger tradition called the Byzantine Majority text family, which were about five thousand manuscripts. I mention this because there’s only one delta in the Byzantine Majority text. This is an important clue. 

One might think it doesn’t really matter if there are one or two deltas but actually it does. The reason is that based on the Hebrew word, the word that we have is Meg-i-don, the vowels don’t fit for different readings. In the Greek, as it comes to us, we are told that this is a Hebrew word. But we have to look at it through the Greek language which spells it as Ar-ma-ge-don, not me- gi-don. Clearly the vowels do not match up between the Greek and the Hebrew words, and neither does the double “d”. Certainly the double “d” in the Textus Receptus would match, but it doesn’t match with the other textual evidence that we have. 

My assertion is that really, none of these words match the word Megiddo. Megiddo is not the word that should be used. The reason it is important that there is not a mountain in Megiddo is because it is understood that Ar means mountain and Megiddo is, of course, Megiddo; thus Ar Megiddo (the mountain of Megiddo). Not only is there no mountain in Megiddo; linguistically and phonetically, it does not match properly. Therefore, of all the possible interpretations, Ar Megiddo does not fit. 

Some people have suggested that this is “the place of the crowds” and that is what the word means. Perhaps there is an underlying secondary use of that, though I rather doubt it. Dr. Michael Hazer has eloquently posited that this could be Ar- moed, meaning “mountain of the appointed meeting time.” Moed means the appointed meeting time. I think he argued it well. I tend to disagree, though, because I believe the preferable translation is Ar- ma-ge’don, which would be “the valley of the judging of the harvested heap (or sheaves).” Here’s why. This word Arema fits really well. The only vowel that would not fit, that we have to imagine, is the “e” in Ar-e-ma. Jeremiah 50 uses this word when he says, “come to her from a far, open up her barns, pile her up like heaps of grain and completely destroy her; don’t leave any survivors.” When Ruth went to Boaz, he was sleeping on an Arema. He was sleeping on a pile of harvested grain. This is from the word Aram which means “to be heaped up.” It occurs once in the verbal form and we find it other places as a noun, “heap.” We also find it in Micah 4:12. For He will gather them like sheaves to the threshing floor. God says that He will gather them like sheaves to the threshing floor. He is telling us about the trap He will lay for the Antichrist. 

One might think it doesn’t really matter if there are one or two deltas but actually it does. The reason is that based on the Hebrew word, the word that we have is Meg-i-don, the vowels don’t fit for different readings. In the Greek, as it comes to us, we are told that this is a Hebrew word. But we have to look at it through the Greek language which spells it as Ar-ma-ge-don, not me- gi-don. Clearly the vowels do not match up between the Greek and the Hebrew words, and neither does the double “d”. Certainly the double “d” in the Textus Receptus would match, but it doesn’t match with the other textual evidence that we have. 

My assertion is that really, none of these words match the word Megiddo. Megiddo is not the word that should be used. The reason it is important that there is not a mountain in Megiddo is because it is understood that Ar means mountain and Megiddo is, of course, Megiddo; thus Ar Megiddo (the mountain of Megiddo). Not only is there no mountain in Megiddo; linguistically and phonetically, it does not match properly. Therefore, of all the possible interpretations, Ar Megiddo does not fit. 

Some people have suggested that this is “the place of the crowds” and that is what the word means. Perhaps there is an underlying secondary use of that, though I rather doubt it. Dr. Michael Hazer has eloquently posited that this could be Ar- moed, meaning “mountain of the appointed meeting time.” Moed means the appointed meeting time. I think he argued it well. I tend to disagree, though, because I believe the preferable translation is Ar- ma-ge’don, which would be “the valley of the judging of the harvested heap (or sheaves).” Here’s why. This word Arema fits really well. The only vowel that would not fit, that we have to imagine, is the “e” in Ar-e-ma. Jeremiah 50 uses this word when he says, “come to her from a far, open up her barns, pile her up like heaps of grain and completely destroy her; don’t leave any survivors.” When Ruth went to Boaz, he was sleeping on an Arema. He was sleeping on a pile of harvested grain. This is from the word Aram which means “to be heaped up.” It occurs once in the verbal form and we find it other places as a noun, “heap.” We also find it in Micah 4:12. For He will gather them like sheaves to the threshing floor. God says that He will gather them like sheaves to the threshing floor. He is telling us about the trap He will lay for the Antichrist. 

This is a bi-consonantal word; and in the infinitive absolute, it always has a long “o” sound. Yacomo, for example, becomes com. In English the word “moot” becomes “moat”. This is an example of how a bi consonantal verb actually becomes “a,” with that “o” sound in there. Therefore, dean could follow this grammatical rule to become don. This explains the don part of the word Armageddon – the Valley of the judging of the harvested heap or sheaves; and this is going to take place, again, not up north in the Jezreel Valley, but down next to Jerusalem. It’s in the Valley of Jehoshaphat between the Temple Mount and the Mount of Olives. This is where Jesus is going to come back, near to the Temple and to the Mount of Olives, which faces the city. 

Jesus will fight on behalf of Jerusalem. He will fight those nations that are coming against Jerusalem. Now also many nations have gathered against you, who say, “Let her be defiled, and let our eye look upon Zion.” Micah 4:11 Zechariah 12:2, 3 tells us that the battle location is Jerusalem, not the Jezreel Valley; “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.” Jerusalem and the Valley of Jehoshaphat is where the action is going to be. Now that we understand linguistically that Armageddon does not mean Ar Megiddo, that it actually means “the valley of the judging of the sheaves”, we can see how the Battle of Armageddon will take place in even greater detail. 

“Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, go down; for the winepress is full, the vats overflow—for their wickedness is great.” Joel 3:13 

And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs. Rev. 14:20 The wine press was trampled outside the city, not up in the Valley of Megiddo or the plain of Megiddo; but outside the city of Jerusalem. 

Proclaim this among the nations: “Prepare for war! Wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near, Let them come up. Joel 3:9 

God is basically saying, “You guys have touched the apple of my eye one too many times and now this means war. Get ready because I’m coming personally. This is no longer business as usual. This is personal. Now I am coming and I am going to decimate you because you have really made me mad this time. So watch out! Get ready for war.” Let all the men of war draw near, let them come up. Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruning hooks into spears. Joel 3:9, 10 “You don’t have a weapon? Well go get one because you’re going to need it because I, God, am coming.” All the nations will go to the Valley of Jehoshaphat and Jesus will go down and harvest multitudes and multitudes with His sickle in the valley of decision “for their wickedness is great.” 

Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle. And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, “Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.” So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped. Rev. 14:14-16 

The Mount of Olives has all these tools on it because the Jews believe that’s where the Messiah will come, so they wanted them to be there when He arrived. The Mount of Olives overlooks the Valley of Jehoshaphat. Revelation 14:20 tells us that, the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs. 

Imagine blood coming up about five feet, that’s as high as a horse’s bridle, in the Valley of Megiddo, or Jezreel Valley. Liquid will always find its own level; so there would have to be blood going on for a very, very, very, very, very long way to have enough to fill that valley. But understanding that the battle location is the Valley of Jehoshaphat, which is a narrow valley, causes this statement to make complete sense. We are still talking about a lot of blood, but it would be more like it was in a pool if it was in a narrow valley. This makes it easier for us to comprehend how blood could run at that height.