Read: Revelation 16:12-21
Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake. (v. 15)
Mt. Vesuvius erupted in AD 79 burying three cities 60 feet deep. By AD 1350 the bubonic plague killed half of Europe. Every year we see the terrible results of natural disasters like floods, drought, and wildfires. God does not cause these “acts of God.” They occur because this is an enemy-occupied planet, and in today’s reading we see a disaster like this, a river dried up to make way for the armies. Disasters warn us to prepare for the Great Day of the Lord, and one would think unrepentant people would weep over all they ignored and lost. No—instead they curse God even as they writhe in pain. Terrible!
The sixth bowl of wrath dries up the Euphrates. Satan and his beasts get earth’s kings to lead armies along the riverbed to Armageddon, a symbolic mountain. Some think it means Megiddo in Israel, but linguists see no connection. This great battle symbolizes a worldwide persecution at history’s end (Rev. 11). In every country believers die. Then Jesus comes unexpectedly. A voice from heaven thunders, “It is done!” The seventh angel dumps his bowl. Cosmic upheavals and 100-pound hailstones finish off the disintegrating planet.
The end hasn’t come yet. We still have time! We won’t know when the final battle will take place, so we must stay ready, awake to God’s work in the world. I’m training Christians to find seekers and guide them to Christ. What are you doing? —Ruth Siemens
As you pray, ask for God’s guidance in staying alert to his presence.
About the Author
Ruth Siemens was a campus minister with IVCF/IFES, then started Global Opportunities to prepare professionals to work and witness in secular employment abroad.