The common belief
Armageddon, battlefield described in the Bible in Revelation 16:16 as the scene of the predicted final struggle between good and evil. The name is Har-Megiddo, and literally means "hills or mountain of Megiddo." This area of the Plain of Esdraelon (see Judges 5:19), which was well known because of the many battles that were fought there between the Israelites and their enemies during that biblical period. Hence, the term has been applied to any great conflict or slaughter. -- Excerpt from "Armageddon," Microsoft(R) Encarta(R) 97 Encyclopedia.
Immediately before the Second Coming, cataclysmic events will take place and that the Antichrist will appear to lead the forces of chaos. He will summon the demonic hosts of Gowg and Magowg to do battle with the followers of Christ at a place called Armageddon. At the end of the battle, God will send lightning down from heaven, annihilating Satan, the Antichrist, and their followers. But, even in defeat, the forces of chaos would have brought about the end of the world, for when the battle was over, the Last Judgment would begin.
The above is excerpted from the book "The End of the World," by Richard Morris. It is modified slightly for readability, without changing the context, and is included here because it is so typical of the most widely held and erroneous beliefs about the coming end times battle. These same beliefs are held, believed, and taught by many people who claim to be "Christian" teachers and who really should know better. Unhappily, when they teach this error, they are perpetuating another of the things that Satan wants people to believe, instead of what the Word of our Eloah says.
The verse referred to above, with Megiddo in it.
A description and the location of the battle under consideration
ZekarYahuw (Zechariah) 14:1-16 Behold, the day of Yahuwah is coming and your spoil will be divided in your midst, for I will gather all the nations to battle against Yeruwshalom. The city shall be taken, the houses rifled, and the women ravished. Half of the city shall go into captivity but the remnant of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then Yahuwah will go forth and fight against those nations as He fights in the day of battle. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives that faces Yeruwshalom on the east and the Mount of Olives shall be split in two from east to west. A very large valley! Half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south. Then you shall flee My mountain valley for the mountain valley shall reach to Atsel. Yes, you shall flee as you fled from the shaking in the days of UzziYahuw, king of Yahudah. Thus Yahuwah my Eloah will come and all the saints with You. It shall come to pass in that day there will be no precious light but darkness. It shall be one day that is known to Yahuwah. Neither day nor night, but at evening time it shall happen it will be light. And in that day living waters shall flow from Yeruwshalom, half of them toward the eastern sea and half of them toward the western sea. In both summer and harvest time it shall occur. And Yahuwah shall be king over all the earth. In that day it shall be, "Yahuwah is one," and His name one. All the land shall be turned into a plain from Geba' to Rimmown south of Yeruwshalom. Yeruwshalom shall be raised up and inhabited in her place from Binyamiyn's Gate to the place of the first Gate and the Corner Gate, and the tower of Chanan'el to the king's winepresses. The people shall dwell in it and no longer shall there be utter destruction, but Yeruwshalom shall be safely inhabited. And this shall be the plague with which Yahuwah will strike all the people who fought against Yeruwshalom. Their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet. Their eyes shall dissolve in their sockets and their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths. It shall come to pass in that day a great panic from Yahuwah will be among them. Everyone will seize the hand of his neighbor and raise his hand against his neighbor's hand. Yahudah also will fight at Yeruwshalom and the wealth of all the surrounding nations shall be gathered together: gold, silver, and apparel in great abundance. Such also shall be the plague on the horse, the mule, on the camel and the donkey, and on all the cattle that will be in those camps. So shall this plague be. And it shall come to pass everyone who is left of all the nations that came against Yeruwshalom shall go up from year to year to worship the king, Yahuwah of hosts, and to keep the Festival of Booths.
Note in ZekarYahuw 14 above, that the battle is not going to be fought at "Armageddon," but at Yeruwshalom and for Yeruwshalom. Yahushua will stand with His feet on the Mount of Olives, which is physically located at Yeruwshalom. (Yeruwshalom is the City of Yahuwah and has been since time immemorial.) From this you should be able to see that "Armageddon" is NOT a battle, nor is it a symbol FOR a battle. "Armageddon" is a PLACE where the forces who are to fight against the saints at Yeruwshalom will be staged. People long ago confused the staging area, or "Armageddon," with the actual place of the battle, Yeruwshalom, and have carried that confusion down to today as the error of "The Battle of Armageddon." Just as "Desert Storm", or "The Battle of Kuwait," was staged out of Saudi Arabia and fought in Kuwait and Iraq, this battle will be the Battle of Yeruwshalom, will be staged out of Har-Meggidown (Armageddon), and be fought at Yeruwshalom.
Where "Armageddon" appears in the scripture
Revelation 16:16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the Ibriy language Armageddon.
These two passages are the references to the battle and Armageddon that cause so much error. Note that 13 and 14 say that the kings of the earth will be gathered (staged) to the battle of the great day of Yahuwah Almighty, while verse 16 literally says that when they are gathered together (staged) it will be at the place called Armageddon. Armageddon is not the scene of the final struggle between good and evil. That "struggle" has already been won by Yahushua haMashiach. Neither is this battle that will be staged out of Armageddon the "final battle." The battle talked about here is described in Revelation 19. Read that chapter and chapter 20. You will see that after Yahushua comes with all His saints and puts down the foe here, that Satan is chained for one thousand years and placed in the bottomless pit. After the thousand years expires, he will be let loose to do his thing again for awhile, and THEN comes the final battle. Only it isn't much of a battle. Satan gathers his forces, including Gowg and Magowg, and Yahuwah just zaps them from the sky. No real battle, just instant incineration. After this "battle," where Gowg and Magowg finally get involved, contrary to the common belief, comes the Final Judgment. This judgment will not occur for at least one thousand years AFTER the battle of Yeruwshalom. All of this is described in Revelation chapter 20. Read it for yourself. So there is a big separation of at least one thousand years between the first battle when Yahushua returns and the REAL final battle. Yahushua is going to reign with His saints (these are not the saints appointed by the Roman Catholic Church either) on this earth for one thousand years in the interim. The period of time stated as "a season" that Satan will be allowed free hand after his release from the bottomless pit is indefinite. It may be one day, or it may be another thousand years. There is really no way to tell how long this period will be, but usually a "season" in scripture is one year.
Strong's Hebrew/Greek Dictionary definitions
H2022. har, har; a short. form of H2042; a mountain or range of hills (sometimes used figuratively):--hill (country), mount (-ain), X promotion.
H4023. Megiddown, (Zechariah 12:11), meg-id-done'; or Megiddow, meg-id-do'; from H1413; rendezvous; Megiddon or Megiddo, a place in Palestine:--Megiddo, Megiddon.
The definition given above for "Armageddon" and the book by Mr. Morris are typical of secular, humanistic, for profit, entities talking of things about which they know nothing. Unhappily, sometimes well meaning but ignorant people who are otherwise very intelligent believe them and because they fail to check it out for themselves they remain ignorant. The Scripture is very clear on this subject, just as it is on all the other subjects that cause so many people to stumble in the Word of Yahuwah. Too many times people will take the word of some human "authority" on subjects that affect their salvation instead of reading the Word of Yahuwah for themselves to see what the real truth of the matter is. If people would in fact read for themselves, and understand through the guidance of the Spirit, there would be no divisions in the so-called "Christian Church" of today. Everyone would understand the same thing, and would be in the unity that Sha'uwl (Paul) talks about in Ephesios (Ephesians) 4.
Take no man's word for what is or is not in the Scripture, even if that man wrote an encyclopedia. Look it up in the Scripture and read it for yourself. This book is authored by the One who really knows what is going on and what is going to happen, because He is the One who has and will make it happen. If you don't understand it, and it deals with your salvation, find a man who is a child of Yahuwah to guide you. And I don't mean a Roman Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Jehovah's Witness, Episcopalian, Mormon, Lutheran, etc., but a true child of Yahuwah. There is no such thing as a Baptist Christian, a Methodist Christian, a Roman Catholic Christian, a Presbyterian Christian, etc. You are either child of Yahuwah, or you're not. All black and white. No gray here. You either are, or you are not.
If you are not in the body of Yahushua, talk to this same man about what the entrance requirements are. If he is really a child of Yahuwah, he will tell you that Yahushua has already paid your entrance fee, all you have to do is pick up the ticket and come on in. He will tell you that to pick up that ticket you must sincerely believe that Yahushua is the Mashiach (anointed) of Yahuwah the Father. (If you don't believe this, you are wasting everybody's time.) He will also tell you to repent (Greek metanoeo - to think differently, or stop thinking on the things of the world and start thinking on the things of the kingdom of Yahuwah), and that you must be immersed (total immersion for burial in the likeness of Yahushua) in His name for the remission or washing away of your sins (Acts 2:38. 22:16). When you meet these conditions, you will rise out of the watery grave as a "born again" child of Yahuwah to walk in the likeness of the resurrection of Yahushua, just as He described it (see Yahuchanan (John) 3:3-8, Rhomaios (Romans) 6:3-6, 1 Keph (Peter) 3:21), you will receive the gift of the Set Apart Spirit, and be ready to go forward in the learning of the scripture. If he tells you anything else, such as to pray "the Sinner's Prayer" or "accept JESUS as your personal Savior," RUN. He is not an agent of Yahuwah but of satan.