As was the case with the Gulf War, the war in Iraq is reviving end-time expectations and fervor. The Washington Post (March 15) “Anxious discussions have arisen on prophecy Websites, in Bible study groups and churches, and at such gatherings as last month’s 20th International Prophesy Conference in Tampa, Fla.” Iraq’s connection to ancient Babylon and the Euphrates River and other locations cited in biblical prophesies is fueling the end-times speculations, writes Bill Broadway.
Many pretribulationists (who hold that Christians will be raptured prior to a period of tribulation that will lead to the final return of Christ) are convinced that the antichrist will rule the world from a restored Babylon, according to Mark Hitchcock, a prophecy author. South Carolina’s Greenville News (March 8) reports that the question of Iraq’s involvement in end-time scenarios will likely become even more pronounced when “Armageddon,” the 11th installment of the popular “Left Behind” series, appears in bookstores in early April.
In the book, Satan is ruling the world from a restored Babylon in Iraq, and faces his cosmic battle with Israel and her Christian allies.