The Kings Of The East by Jack KelleyGraceThruFaith.com
The Kings Of The East
Commentary by Jack Kelley
With all the fuss about North Korea allegedly going nuclear, let's review what the Bible says about the Far East in the last days and see if we can tell what this means.
First, some background. I've found that there's a great deal of mystery about the origin of the people who populate the Far East. Even they don't know where they came from. The River Euphrates was a formidable natural barrier that inhibited travel and prevented the flow of information and ideas from moving back and forth. The Scythians, a Central Asian people who raided the Middle East, (they killed Saul and Jonathon at the Battle of Beth Shan) can be traced to Magog and are the fore bearers of today's Russians, but they came down from the North. The Great Wall of China was once called the Ramparts of Magog and was built to keep the Scythians out of China. This further isolated the Far East and not only clouded their origins in mystery, but resulted in the development of cultures very different from all others.
The oldest Chinese pictograms (their equivalent to letters of the alphabet) contain characters that depict the Creation story and belief in one God, so we can assume that at the dawn of history they knew of man's origin, but their culture developed independently of any influence from those west of the barriers we've mentioned. Today there's very little similarity between East and West, and even less goodwill.
As believers, we know that every race of mankind sprang from the loins of Ham, Shem, or Japeth. But from which one did the oriental peoples come? Genesis 10:17 makes mention of a group called the Sinites, descended from Ham through Canaan. And Isaiah 49:12 speaks of the Sinim (same Hebrew root), a people who according to the Strong's concordance inhabited the extremity of the known world. (Strong's commentary on the Sinim suggests that it probably refers to the Chinese.) And that's about all the Bible tells us until we see a reference to the Kings of the East in the Book of Revelation.
Back To The Future
The sixth angel sounded his trumpet, and I heard a voice coming from the horns of the golden altar that is before God. It said to the sixth angel who had the trumpet, "Release the four angels who are bound at the great river Euphrates." And the four angels who had been kept ready for this very hour and day and month and year were released to kill a third of mankind. The number of the mounted troops was two hundred million. I heard their number. (Rev. 9:13-16)
At the time of the 6th Trumpet, four angels who've been stationed at the River Euphrates for this very purpose are loosed to agitate the leaders of the Far East against each other causing a huge war with massive casualties to mankind. Two hundred million soldiers from the various armies will clash resulting in the deaths of 1/3rd of mankind. 25% of the Earth will already be under judgment causing much bloodshed and death (Rev. 6:8), and now nearly 2 billion people will perish in this war.
But since the traditional barrier between East and West, the River Euphrates, is not dried up to make way for them to swarm into the Middle East (we'll see that in Rev. 16) I believe that this judgment is primarily against the 60% of the world's population that lives East of the Euphrates. There's no mention of them tangling with anyone out side the region, so this could be a forging of alliances in preparation for the coming attempt to grab the Middle East and all it's resources.
With the conflicting religions, the crowded conditions, and the abject poverty, that area of the world is always ripe for conflict, so it won't take much to stir them up against each other. And since China, India, Pakistan, Russia, and North Korea are already nuclear powers it's easy to project huge casualties. Some believe that with North Korea's announcement, the pressure to develop their own nuclear weapons will now be too great for Japan, South Korea, and perhaps others to resist.
The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East. (Rev 16:12)
By the time of the 6th Bowl judgment, the anti-Christ's plans to control the world will be falling apart and the Kings of the East will be thinking that it's every man for himself. Like I said, there's no good will between East and West.
Remember, Daniel 11:40 tells us that after the King of the North (Syria, Iraq, Iran) and the King of the South (Egypt) mount an unsuccessful attack against the anti-Christ, there'll be reports of troop movement from the East (China, etc.) and North (Russia) This is the run-up to Armageddon and the anti-Christ will locate his headquarters in Israel to direct his response to this new threat.
Of course we know that while all the world's attention is focused on these opposing forces, another army rushes forth to join the fray. But this one is unlike the others. In the first place it comes out of the sky. In the second place everyone's dressed in white linen, and in the third place only its leader will fight. His weapon is His Word and it will slay all these earthly armies in their tracks.
Will The Circle Be Unbroken?
The focal point of Life on Earth originated in the Middle East and was centered there for thousands of years. Then came Gentile Dominion and the focus began moving westward. From Babylon and Persia, world dominance moved to Greece, then Rome, then Spain, England, and now across the Atlantic to America. Some observers say its next move will be to the Far East and finally back to the Middle East for the conclusion of history, having come full circle.
There are several indicators that support this observation. China boasts the world's fastest growing economy, and on the whole Asian economies are growing at three times the world's average rate. Since growth attracts capital, money has been moving into Asia in record amounts. The new Secretary General of the UN is from Korea. India is fast becoming a world center for "Knowledge Process Outsourcing". There are more Christians being born again in the Far East than in any other part of the world. Three of the four most populous nations in the world are in the far East (China, India, and Indonesia), as are almost half of the top 25. As I said, estimates place 60% of the world's population in Asia. This could very well be the beginning of their time.
All told, that makes North Korea a small piece of the puzzle. The latest reports say their nuclear test probably wasn't an unqualified success, and that they aren't as ready to shoot a missile at New York or Washington, like they sort of threatened this week, as they claim. But Russia and China will prevent any real sanctions against them, both having helped North Korea get to this point as well as having encouraged North Korea and Iran to cooperate with each other. It looks like Russia and China helped North Korea, who in turn helped Iran, who in turn funded North Korea. (According to what I'm reading in the conservative press, the Clinton Administration gave North Korea a little help too, providing both reactors and dollars in return for a promise of peaceful intent.)
More than being a sign that the Kings of the East are on the move, North Korea's actions were likely prompted by America's enemies to demonstrate that we're stretched so thin in Afghanistan, Iraq and soon Iran, that we really can't do much more than issue empty threats any where else. There was a time when the US had 12,000 nukes stockpiled in 24 different countries around the world to keep our enemies from trying anything foolish, but thanks to "détente" those days are over and gone forever. And now the word is that we've been steadily pulling troops out of South Korea to meet our needs in Iraq. The world's catching on to this, and especially those friends farthest away have to be wondering who's going to take care of them.
As for our enemies, just today (Oct 14, 2006) I read of Iran's agreement to spend $90 million upgrading Hamas' 6500 man militia into a Hezbollah like attack force. This is in addition to quickly re-arming Hezbollah and restoring them to their previous status as Iran's proxy army 0n Israel's north. The goal now is to facilitate a simultaneous attack on Israel from both North and South to pre-empt an Israeli attack on Iran. Israel's abandonment of Gaza and admitted failure to stop Hezbollah has emboldened Iran to take this action.
And because of the world's likely non-reaction to North Korea's test, many believe that Iran will also grasp this opportunity to conduct a test of their own. I wrote early this spring that the underground facilities already exist in Iran for such a demonstration, and if North Korea gets away with it why can't they?
As Israel's failure to stop Hezbollah has placed her in greater peril, so will America's failure to stop North Korea result in greater peril for us. We may soon find ourselves just as surrounded as Israel. It's almost enough to make us long for the relatively stable days of the cold war. At least we knew that the Soviet Union wasn't bent on self-destruction. Can anybody say the same about Iran? Maybe it's time for us to start wondering who's going to take care of us? Oh, that's right. "When all these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads because your redemption is drawing near." (Luke 21:28) You can almost hear the footsteps of the Messiah. 10-14-06