Did you know that the world has a huge war right now, involving millions of people? The best estimate is that twenty-two million people are directly affected by the war, and two million children are at risk from severe malnutrition. There is a real danger that the war could expand in the region, and there are reports of long-range missiles landing in wealthy countries in the Persian Gulf.
- RELATED: Yemeni Civil War
I live far away from this civil war in Yemen, and the both sides are Arab Muslims, so I can’t criticize one faction or take sides. I know that the suffering is terrible and the UN sees no end in sight. Apparently no one is winning this “Vietnam War” of the Middle East.
Did you know this war was happening? Many people in the world know nothing about it.
The fighting started in March of 2015 and soon after that foreign powers intervened, or invaded. Saudi Arabia and Iran are powerful nations in the region and they are on opposite sides, with the Iranian Navy patrolling offshore and the Saudi Air Force patrolling the skies.
So why did foreign powers get involved in a civil war in a poor and small country? They thought they could win.
This is a prime example of the first horseman of the apocalypse.
Years ago I was responsible for a small Bible study group and I wasn’t sure what to talk about. I randomly decided to take the group through the book of Revelation, at the very end of the Bible, and that experience changed me as a Christian. When you can, I recommend reading through the whole book slowly.
One lesson that I learned is that we are like children with scissors. We look at Revelation superficially, and cut out all the interesting pictures, and we throw the words away. We love the pictures, like the Seven Seals, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, the Antichrist, 666, Armageddon, and the Rapture. What we need is a good sense of the whole story; the beginning, the middle, and the end, and there is a story in the book, with those interesting pictures.
It’s the story of how human history will come unzipped and bring the end on themselves. It ends when Jesus intervenes directly, to prevent total destruction.
The Four Horsemen are in a sequence; they are the first four steps in another sequence, the seven seals. A scroll is slowly opened, by breaking seven seals, and some terrible thing happens when each seal is broken, until the scroll is completely opened. The horsemen are on horses; white, red, black, and pale. The first horseman starts “conquering and to conquer” (Revelation 6:2) and this is followed by violence, famine, and death.
The world will come unzipped and collapse quickly when we fight because we think we can win, and the rest of the story will follow. The seventh seal is seven angels blowing trumpets one at a time, announcing severe events, and the seventh trumpet is seven bowls of God’s wrath, with terrible events, leading to the end.
It all starts with that first horseman, riding out conquering and to conquer and the harvest will be violence, famine, and death.
I don’t know if the war with no end in Yemen is the big one, but I think we are very close to the end. Humans will create a cancer in the world that cannot be cured, and we will all be drawn into the whirlpool. The news from Yemen shows how this will happen. Maybe this war will be cleaned up, but we have the power to create a war bigger than ourselves, one that we cannot unwind.
I watched as the Lamb opened the first of the seven seals. Then I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, “Come!” I looked, and there before me was a white horse! Its rider held a bow, and he was given a crown, and he rode out as a conqueror bent on conquest. When the Lamb opened the second seal … (Revelation 6: 1 to 3)
It’s not a pretty picture, and Jesus promised that we would not like the end when it came. He will make the world right, but first we will make it all wrong. The war in Yemen shows our ability.
I sincerely hope that the people of Yemen will find peace, and that the terrible destruction of their homeland will end. God is good to us all.
And I believe strongly that our hope is not on this Earth. We will continue our usual pattern until God changes us.
On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near. (Luke 21: 25 to 28)
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” (Revelation 21: 5)