Woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short.
The apostle John saw a vision of war in heaven, of the dragon defeated and hurled down to earth, furious “because he knows that his time is short.” This is a vivid image of reality. It is the spiritual reality behind the wars that rage around us. As the devil whispers temptations in our ears, he also sows discord among the nations and goads them to war.
Human history reveals an unending parade of war and struggle. The past century has seen perhaps the worst destruction of all. Soon after World War I came World War II, with the Allies defending democracy and liberty against the threats of dictatorship in Germany, Italy, and Japan. Then Italy was defeated, and then Germany, and then finally Japan.
But the sense of relief and joy after World War II didn’t last long. More conflicts came along, from Korea to Vietnam amid the rise of communism, the nuclear arms race, and bitter fighting in the Middle East, to radicalist terrorism and years of war to try to stop it. It’s just one confrontation after another.
Only the return of Christ will put an end to all this trouble. And the dragon, along with death itself, will be destroyed. Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly!
Lord, we pray, for peace—your peace. May the peoples of the earth come to know peace with God. And may we be instrumental in bringing peace to others. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
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