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Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era

  • Author:
  • J. E. Esslemont

  • Source:
  • US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1980 edition
  • Pages:
  • 286
Go to printed page GO
Pages 243-244

The Great War

Both Bahá’u’lláh and ‘Abdu’l-Bahá on many occasions foretold with surprising accuracy the coming of the Great War of 1914–1918. At Sacramento, California, on October 26, 1912, ‘Abdu’l-Bahá said:—“Today the European continent is like an arsenal. It is a storehouse of explosives, ready for just a spark, and one spark could set aflame the whole of Europe, particularly at this time, when the Balkan question is before the world.”
In many of His addresses in America and Europe He gave similar warning. In another address in California in October 1912 He said:—
We are on the eve of the Battle of Armageddon referred to in the sixteenth chapter of Revelation. The time 244 is two years hence, when only a spark will set aflame the whole of Europe.
The social unrest in all countries, the growing religious scepticism antecedent to the millennium, and already here, will set aflame the whole of Europe as is prophesied in the Book of Daniel and in the Book (Revelation) of John.
By 1917 kingdoms will fall and cataclysms will rock the earth. (Reported by Mrs. Corinne True in The North Shore Review, September 26, 1914, Chicago, U.S.A.)
On the eve of the great conflict He said:—
A great melee of the civilized nations is in sight. A tremendous conflict is at hand. The world is at the threshold of a most tragic struggle. … Vast armies—millions of men—are being mobilized and stationed at their frontiers. They are being prepared for the fearful contest. The slightest friction will bring them into a terrific crash, and there will be a conflagration, the like of which is not recorded in the past history of mankind. (At Haifa, August 3, 1914).