Summary: This article was published in the Ft. Carson, CO Mountaineer newspaper.
BY CHAPLAIN (CAPTAIN) STEVEN W. SATTERFIELD
4TH SPECIAL TROOPS BATTALION, 4IBCT, 4ID, FORT CARSON, CO
In May we celebrate the 234th birthday of the United States Army. Because of this I wanted to look at Biblical references to armies. The Old Testament references are too numerous to list here, so I will only mention the New Testament references.
The Gospel of Matthew 22: 7 says "but the king was enraged and sent his armies and destroyed those murderers and set their city on fire.¨ This has happened many times throughout history, as armies have fought armies. It continues today in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.
The Gospel of Luke 21: 20 states "But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then recognize that her desolation is at hand.¨ This reminds me of when Israel became a nation in 1948. Some say that was a pivotal time in istory and biblical prophecy. Do not be surprised if we continue to see Israel in the news. It is mentioned three times in Revelation (2: 14, 7: 4 and 21:12). Jerusalem is also mentioned three times in Revelation (3: 12, 21: 2 and 21: 10).
The author of Hebrews 11: 34 wrote "put foreign armies to flight¨ We did this in Iraq, and we are currently doing this in Afghanistan with the Al Qaeda and Taliban "armies.¨ Matthew 24: 6 states "You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end." The 2008 Army Posture Statement includes an Information Paper on Persistent Conflict, which says "The future security environment will be an era of persistent conflict.¨ (www.army.mil). We will be at war for a long time.
John wrote the apocalyptic book of Revelation. There are many different interpretations of what it means. I close with its references to armies:
Revelation 9: 16 "The number of the armies of the horsemen was two hundred million.¨ Talk about a huge Cavalry! This refers to the end-times armies.
Revelation 19: 14 "The armies which are in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, were following Him on white horses.¨ It appears the Cavalry is in heaven as well, and they wear dress mess uniforms. Will they need dry cleaning? :)
Revelation 19: 19 "And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies, assembled to make war against Him who sat upon the horse, and against His army.¨ To quote Mr. T "I pity the fool¨ who challenges Christ! :) Evil has fought good since the beginning of time. But we see who wins:
Revelation 20: 10 "And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.¨ Because of the army of the Lord, good triumphs over evil. As we celebrate the birthday of the United States Army, be assured that we, too, will eventually triumph over evil. Happy Birthday, US Army!