“And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared. And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon, and out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty. Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame. And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon” (Revelation 16:12-16).
Armageddon represents the last battle of the great controversy between Christ and Satan fought out on the battlefield of this earth. The Euphrates represents the people over whom mystical Babylon holds sway and the drying up of its waters represents the eventual withdrawal of their support from Babylon. This removal of human support from mystical Babylon will be the last barrier to her ultimate defeat and punishment. They do so right before God destroys the armies of the Antichrist as predicted in Bible prophecy (Revelation 16:16; 20:1-3, 7-10).
Note the following summary points about the battle of Armageddon from Revelation chapter 16:
- It is the last great battle of earth’s history and it is still future (v. 16).
- It is the battle of that great day of God (v. 14).
- “The great river Euphrates” is symbolic of human beings (v. 12).
- The three “unclean spirits” (v. 13) represent the papacy, apostate Protestantism, and spiritualism (or paganism).
- These three spirits constitute the agencies that will summon the nations to battle (v. 13).
- The gathering agencies—three unclean spirits—are religious in nature and the forces gathered are political and military.
- The preparations for the battle take place under the sixth plague, but the battle itself is fought under the seventh plague (v. 12).
- In one phase it will be a real battle between real people employing real weapons (v. 14).
- There will be bloodshed on an unprecedented scale (v. 14).
- All the nations of earth will be involved (v. 12).
- Eventually Christ and the armies of heaven intervene and bring the battle to a close (v. 15).
- The living saints witness the battle, but not as direct participants.
In His service,