At the core of the Islamic State doctrine is the belief that their adherents are waging warfare against unbelievers—infidels—in order to usher in an apocalyptic end-time battle in which Islam will finally and ultimately triumph.
Many Muslims believe that the Syrian town of Dabiq—near Aleppo—is the location predicted by the prophet Muhammad for this confrontation. In the ISIS journal Dabiq, the dark, evil mind of the terrorists is clearly stated: “As the world progresses toward al-Malhammah al-Kubra (the Great Battle), the option to stand on the sideline as a mere observer is being lost.”
Of course, the Bible speaks of a great conflict at the end of the age that will be waged at a place called Armageddon. The location is often interpreted as the mountain of Megiddo, located on the north side of the plain of Jezreel and frequently identified in the Old Testament as a military stronghold.
Described by the Apostle John as the “battle on the great day of God the Almighty” (Revelation 16:14), it will be the Lord Jesus Christ who returns in glory to vanquish every foe: Satan, his demonic legions, and all who are allied with the prince of darkness and have refused to bow their knee to the Savior.
Here’s the true, biblical apocalyptic vision:
“I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice, he judges and wages war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name written on him that no one knows but he himself, He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God. … He treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has this name written: King of kings and Lord of lords” (Revelation 19:11-16).
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The deluded, false theology of Islam motivates and compels radical Islamic terrorists to murder, rape, pillage, plunder, and wreak havoc and destruction in the name of their god.
Led on by the destroyer—the devil himself—they blindly march on in their fateful journey to ultimate doom and destruction in the lake of fire where, along with the devil and all who reject Christ, they will be eternally punished for their unbelief and rebellion.
This is why I want the followers of Islam to know there is a God who loves them, cares for them and sent His Son to die for them on the cross for the forgiveness of their sins.
They don’t have to die in a holy war or jihad to please God. They don’t have to strap bombs to their chests to enter into Heaven. All they need to do is repent of their sins and place their faith in the Risen Christ, and they can receive the gift of everlasting life.
The Apostle Paul was a man bent on the destruction of the church, eager to persecute believers wherever they lived. He even participated in the death of the first martyr of the early church, Stephen. But God arrested him on the road to Damascus, saved him, and he became the foremost apostle for the sake of the Gospel.
Writing to his young protégé years later, Paul vividly described that experience: “Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief” (1 Timothy 1:13). He even called himself the worst or chief of sinners (1 Timothy 1:16).
The only cure for corrupt ideologies and false religions is a personal encounter with the living God, who “wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4). Only God can transform a murderous terrorist into a servant who is willing to die for the sake of His Name.
In the end, the one universal grievance that must be addressed by every person of every age is our own sin and rebellion against God. The only solution is a transformed heart.
Scripture quotations are taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version.
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