I'm not superstitious; nor am I a Biblical fundamentalist. Nevertheless, the eschatological parallels between what the Book of Revelation calls 'Armageddon' and the Islamic fundamentalists of ISIS/ISIL and their ilk regard as 'the Last Hour' are striking.
First, ISIS/ISIL openly proclaims that the 'final battle' between the 'Romans' (i.e. the West) and its fighters will take place at the Syrian town of Dabiq, which it currently occupies. This is in line with some Islamic eschatology. The defeat of the 'Romans' will usher in the end of the world as we know it.
Second, 'Armageddon' has long been forecast by Jewish and Christian eschatology to be the final battle between good and evil prior to the Second Coming of Christ. It's long been predicted to take place at or near Tel Megiddo, which isn't all that far from Dabiq.
Third, almost all of the important 'powers' in the world are either already involved in the fight against Islamic fundamentalism, or getting that way. Consider:
- Most of the Western powers are now engaged to at least some extent in fighting ISIS/ISIL in Syria and Iraq, including Britain, France and the USA.
- Russia is also fighting them, although it's focusing more at present on shoring up the faltering regime of Syrian president Assad. It's also very wary of Islamic fundamentalist terrorism in the Middle East spreading to Central Asia, and would prefer to fight it outside its borders rather than within them.
- China is considering getting more involved after one of its citizens was recently murdered by ISIS/ISIL. It's also having troubles with a fundamentalist Muslim insurgency in Xinjiang, and would prefer to fight such fanatics further away from home rather than wait until more of them infiltrate its borders to fight alongside their Uyghur brethren.
- Israel is right in the middle of the region, and is not only seen by Muslims as 'the enemy', but is supporting other Arab states (e.g. Jordan) in their fight against ISIS/ISIL.
- Many other Arab nations are either supporting ISIS/ISIL, or supporting those fighting against it. Furthermore, while many Middle Eastern governments see fundamentalism as a threat, many of their people do not - in fact, many of them enthusiastically embrace it. In other words, the heartland of the Muslim world is divided against itself.
Putting all these factors together, in the light of both Christian and Islamic eschatology, there are abundant reasons to be nervous about the present situation in the Middle East. I can't offer any advice or predictions, and I simply don't know what may be true or false in terms of historical, theological or eschatological theory and tradition. I just find the parallels . . . ominous.