(ahr muh gehd' dahn) A Middle East site of the final battle between the forces of good and evil (Revelation 16:16). The word “Armageddon” appears once in Scripture and is not found in Hebrew literature. Translators transliterate the term from Greek into English in several ways: Armageddon (KJV); Har Magedon (NAS); and Harmageddon (Moffatt). The Greek is a transliteration of the Hebrew har megiddo, literally, “mountain of Megiddo.” Revelation promises that in the face of defeat of God's saints by military forces from the east, south, and the north, the Lord Jesus Christ will return to defeat His enemies and deliver His people.
The location of Armageddon indicates that the Middle East has historical importance in the last days. Armageddon, or the Mount of Megiddo, is located in the plain of Esdraelon or Jezreel, a valley fourteen by twenty miles in size. The location is near the ancient city of Megiddo. Here ran the ancient highway between Egypt and Damascus.
Many decisive battles had been fought here. It would be natural to think of it as the site of the last and greatest battle of all. One of the most stunning and decisive defeats for God's people took place here when King Josiah perished in battle with Pharaoh-nechoh (2 Kings 23:29-30). This defeat burned deeply in the Jewish mind. The final battle of history, discussed in
Revelation 19:17-21, will be one of victory.
Even the secular world has popularized Armageddon, especially since the coming of the Atomic Age, as that catastrophic event in history that would destroy the human race. The reality that God will bring defeat on the forces of evil at Armageddon should lead all people to examine themselves, their plans, and their actions to see if they might be part of the evil forces rather than part of the work of God's kingdom.