The word “Armageddon” in its popular usage has become the synonym for “doomsday” or “end of the world”. The word is found only one time in the Bible; “And they gathered them together to the place which in Hebrew is called Har-Magedon” (Revelation 16:16). It means the Mountain of Megiddo or the “Mount of Slaughter” (Har means mount and Megiddo means slaughter). Megiddo is a city in the northern part of the land of Israel. The city was built on a hill. The city of Megiddo overlooks the large valley of Jehoshaphat (also known as valley of Jezreel, the valley of Esdraelon, and the plains of Megiddo).
Though Armageddon is a place, in its biblical usage it mainly refers to the climatic event of the Great Tribulation, when all the armies of the earth gather to come to fight against Israel under the leadership of the Antichrist. It culminates in the glorious return of Jesus Christ, who will destroy the invading armies and deliver the faithful Jewish remnant (Revelation 16:12-16; 19:11-16; Joel 3:1-2; Zechariah 12:1-14; 14:1-4). The armies of the earth and the Antichrist will meet their doom in the battle of Armageddon in the plains of Megiddo. It will not be an individual battle, but a series of battles (the word translated war in Revelation 16:14 is the Greek word polemos which signifies a war or campaign).
Armageddon is not the same as the battle of Gog and Magog in Ezekiel 38-39 and it is not the final war on earth. The final war is the revolt of Satan mentioned in Revelation 20:7-10. Some people refer to Armageddon as World War III (?).
Is The Antichrist A Jew or A Gentile?
I believe the Antichrist will be a Gentile, because he is the final ruler of the Gentile kingdoms of the world. He will appear in the end times as the head of the Gentile world powers. All the rulers of the Gentile world powers in Daniel 2 & 7 were Gentiles. Since the Antichrist will be a great persecutor of the Jews, it is highly unlikely that he will be a Jew. In Revelation 13: 1, his origin is symbolically described as coming up out of the sea. Sea when used symbolically in Scripture stands for the Gentile nations of the world (see Revelation 17:15). The fact that he comes up out of the sea would be describing his gentile origin.
The Bible does not tell us specifically of his origin or who the Antichrist will be. Paul reminds us that the Antichrist will not be revealed until after the Rapture of the Church (2 Thessalonians 2:3-5).
What is the Mark of the Beast - 666?
There has been a lot of speculation about this mysterious number. “The number of the beast” is given in Revelation 13:16-18: “And he causes all, the small and the great, and the rich and the poor, and the free men and the slaves, to be given a mark on their right hand, or on their forehead, and he provides that no one should be able to buy or to sell, except the one who has the mark, either the name of the beast or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for the number is that of a man, and his number is six hundred and sixty six.”
Using numerological formula (gematria), many have tried to identify the Antichrist. In this process, a numerical value is attributed to each letter of the alphabet. If you want to find the numerical total of a word or name, you add together the values of each of its letters. Based on this calculation, many have come up with fanciful suggestions which are to be totally rejected. It is true that letters in the alphabet have numerical value. Each of the 22 letters in the Hebrew alphabet are assigned specific numerical value. So there is definitely a possibility that his personal name may equal 666.
What we know is that the number 666 will play an important role in the identification of the Antichrist. This number may have something to do with identification, economic exchange, banking and business. In the use of this number there will not be the possibility of identity theft or credit card fraud (the Antichrist is coming to fix these problems!). The Antichrist will bring in more centralization of government and will exert more control and supervision over business, commerce, banking and even individual lives. The global revolution in computer technology will make this easily possible.
Since the Antichrist’s number is 666, who he is will be known as he appears on the world scene. We are not given a hint as to the meaning or name of the Antichrist. The only clue in the bible is that 666 is the number of a man (Revelation 13:18). In Scripture, seven is the number of God, the number of perfection, and six is the number of man which falls short of number seven. John counsels man to apply spiritual discernment and biblical wisdom. So the spiritual meaning of the number of the beast is the number of a man. The beast (Antichrist) is only a man; he is not God.
I agree with John Walvoord’s conclusion: “Probably the simplest explanation here is the best, that the triple six is the number of a man, each digit falling short of the perfect number seven. Six in the Scripture is man’s number. He was to work six days and rest on the seventh. The image of Nebuchadnezzar was sixty cubits high and ix cubits broad. Whatever may be the deeper meaning of the number, it implies that this title referring to the first beast, Satan’s masterpiece, limits him to man’s level which is far short of the deity of Christ” (The Revelation of Jesus Christ, 210).