by Tad Lindley
In World War I the total number of soldiers fighting was between 60 and 70 million, with the loss of life as high as 13 million souls. That sounds horrific until you consider World War II where about 300 million soldiers fought around the globe and as many as 85 million soldiers and civilians lost their lives (6 million in the Holocaust alone). Many Yup’ik men from Western Alaska served in the Aleutians cleaning up from the Japanese invasion. The very fact that we live in a free country today is due to the heroism of those Allied soldiers that stood against the tide of tyranny that threatened to overtake the planet.
We already know the death toll for WWIII
Even though WWIII has not happened yet, we already know the death toll. I looked in the Brill’s Encyclopedia of WWI and Wikipedia to get information about the first world wars, because the Bible does not record those numbers. It does, however, report numbers for WWIII. You might think, “Yeah, right, Brother Lindley. How could a book written almost 2,000 years ago know about WWIII?”
The 6th Trumpet
There are Seven Trumpets that are blown by angels in the book of Revelation. The sixth of those trumpets announces the onset of World War III. The Sixth Trumpet is sounded in Revelation 9: Then the sixth angel sounded: And I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, saying to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, “Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates.” So the four angels, who had been prepared for the hour and day and month and year, were released to kill a third of mankind. Now the number of the army of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them. (Revelation 9:13-18 NKJV)
1 out of every 3
Even if you struggle with math involving fractions, you probably have your mind around the concept of one third. That is one out of every three people on the planet. At the current population size (almost 8 billion), that means a death toll of about 2.7 billion people (almost 9 times as many people as live in the United States). Until the advent of nuclear weapons, such a catastrophic global death toll was unrealistic, but now it is very much possible.
How about the size of that army?
Please keep in mind that the Book of the Revelation was recorded by Jesus’ disciple, John, prior to 100 AD. Demographers (people who study the mathematics of human populations) estimate the total human population in John’s day to be only 200 million people. Pause and think about that for a moment: when the prophecy was written, it seemed unfulfillable. How could there be a 200 million man army, when there were only about 100 million men (including infants, toddlers, and children too young to fight) on the entire planet. But John was looking out into the future, a future in which we now live, when not one, but two nations (China and India) can easily field 200 million soldiers.
Why are people suddenly focusing on it now?
At this writing, it appears that Russian President Vladimir Putin will likely attack and annex the nation of Ukraine. Ukraine is a nation with a population only slightly larger than California, but an economic output twenty times less. If Commander in Chief Biden chooses to start a war with Russia over the sovereignty of Ukraine, it would give the green light to China to attack and take over our ally, Taiwan. Almost instantly war could erupt on two sides. Of course all of this is speculation on the part of political analysts, but whenever and however, there will be a WWIII.
Will you be WWIII ready?
Some people are working to get enough food and enough ammunition to last out WWIII (in the event that you survive), but that’s not what I mean by being ready. In a war that takes a third of the planet, it won’t be a question of how much .223 did you have stacked up, or was your fish camp well fortified. It will probably just come down to whether or not the Chinese military thought that the Crowley tank farm was strategically important enough to target with a missile. If it is, are you ready to meet Jesus? Have you repented (Luke 13:3,5)? Have you been born again (John 3:1-7)? Are you baptized in Jesus’ name? Have you received the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:38)? Have you made amends for the wrongs in your past (Matthew 5:23-24)? Have you sought to break away from the world and to seek God (Romans 12:1-2)?
If you read this far
If you read this far, it is not an accident. Consider those questions again. When the end time comes swiftly upon us, it will not matter how many freezers full of fish and berries we have, or how many cases of 12 gauge shells. All that will matter is did we repent of our sins and become obedient to his word. Have you?
Reverend Tad Lindley is minister at the United Pentecostal Church in Bethel, Alaska.