Stryper formed in the early 80’s and despite some hiatuses, have more or less been around in various formations since. While the band has had some big hits along the way, they are perhaps known these days largely for their openly Christian beliefs.
They have a new studio album coming called ‘The Final Battle,’ and lead vocalist and guitarist Michael Sweet made it clear in a new interview that they take that album title quite literally. When asked if he thought that the end of mankind as we know it is a serious threat, the man did not hold back.
Here’s what he had to say:
“The story behind the title and the artwork is the battle of Armageddon, which is ultimately the final battle, biblically speaking. And that’s really what we’re referring to, for the most part.” He goes on to say: “Well, I’ll tell you, man, if you say that in today’s world, boy, you are labeled an instant loon — you’re a loon, you’re crazy and you need to be committed and you’re out of your mind. But yet at the same time, when you go through the Bible, if you were to really dive deep into the Bible and have someone explain the theory of it to you and the stories that are behind the stories — so someone really smart, who isn’t me — they could explain to you stuff that would make your chin hit the floor. And all the stuff that the Bible predicted that has already taken place, and really the only thing left is God’s return and what follows after that, one of those things being the battle of Armageddon.”
People can laugh and sneer and think Christians are crazy, and that’s fine. I believe in the Bible, I believe what it says, and I think those times are coming. I think we’re living in those times — absolutely, for sure. We live in a very interesting world, and I think everyone could at least agree on that — that times have changed dramatically in the past two years.”
When asked to clarify if he really thinks the end is near, Michael said:
“Yeah, I do. Those people out there who watch this moment, when I say ‘yeah,’ who roll their eyes and think I’m crazy, that’s fine. You guys can go ahead and keep thinking people like myself are crazy. The only thing I can say to that is when that day comes and it’s reality, obviously everyone will know that those who believed weren’t crazy, and then at that point it’ll be too late for the people who thought those people were crazy. And the Bible is very clear about that too: ‘No man will know the hour.’ No man knows the hour. You can’t sit and [say], ‘Okay, according to this timeline, yeah, He’s coming on this day.’ And that’s what people try to do. You can’t.
I think we’re definitely living in the end times, but that could be short, that could be relatively soon, in the very near future, or that could be in a relatively distant future. I don’t think it’s gonna be hundreds of thousands of years from now, but I think that it’s coming and our time is marked. And look, we may get hit by a giant comet before God comes back. Who knows?
I think sometimes we think we’re invincible — nothing can hurt us — and, obviously, COVID kind of taught us a lesson on that, didn’t it? We are not invincible and anything can happen at any given time unexpectedly that leaves us in awe, saying, ‘Oh my gosh. I had no idea. I never even imagined that ever happening.’ And it can and will happen. It’s just a matter of time.”
MAN, heavy stuff. If it’s all going to end for us soon anyways, we agree: To Hell with the Devil!
You can watch the conversation here as well if you’d like: