What Is Armageddon?

The Battle of Armageddon

Mountain of Slaughter

The word “Armageddon” appears only once in the Bible. Armies will be gathered together “into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon” (Revelation 16:16). Looking at the origin of the term, “Armageddon,” we see that “Har” means “mountain.” Next is “Gadad,” meaning “cut off,” as in a slaughter. This “Mountain of Slaughter” will be the site of large-scale death and destruction.

The valley of Megiddo, part of the Plain of Esdraelon, will be the main location of  “the battle of that great day of God Almighty” (Revelation 16:14). Historically, it is the site of many military clashes. Barak and Sisera, Gideon and the Midianites, the Philistines and Israel, the Crusaders and the Saracens, Napoleon and his foes, and General Allenby and the Turkish army all fought major battles here.
Jesus will overthrow a gathering of nations at Armageddon in “the latter days” (Daniel 2:28). The Antichrist will be destroyed “with the brightness of his coming” (2 Thessalonians 2:8). After the Great Tribulation, Jesus will return to “judge and make war” (Revelation 19:11), to judge the nations (Matthew 25:31-46) and fight the battle of Armageddon.

All Nations Invade Israel

The “kings of the east” will invade Israel at Armageddon (Revelation 16:12-16). Zechariah 14:2 says that “all nations” will be gathered against Jerusalem at Armageddon. It doesn’t seem feasible that troops from over 190 nations could gather in Israel for the Battle of Armageddon. But a global force representing all the nations of the world, probably under a UN resolution, will gather to invade Israel.

Great armies from the West and East, filled with hostility toward each other, but united in their opposition to the God of Israel, will try to combat the overwhelming, divine power of Almighty God. (Psalm 2:2; Isaiah 34:2; Revelation 17:14). Russia, Iran, Turkey, Libya and Ethiopia are some of the nations named in Ezekiel 38. See Revelation 19:11-21 and Ezekiel 38 and 39 for additional descriptions of Armageddon.


By Irvin Baxter