The Bible predicts a unique state of overpopulation at the end of human history. In the book of Revelation, John writes, “The number of the armies of the horsemen was two hundred million; I heard the number of them” (Rev. 9:16). At the time that John was writing this book, there were roughly this many people on Earth in total. This would be similar to imagining that every man and woman and child (and baby!) would be mobilized to fight on a global scale. To give you a comparison, there were roughly 67 million soldiers (on all sides) in World War II. Having an army of 200 million persons is something that the world hasn’t seen yet, and it was certainly inconceivable at the time John wrote this.
Humanity has exponentially filled the Earth in the previous century in a unique way. Consider this chart below:
According to experts in this area, overpopulation is only going to become a more pressing issue in years soon to come. For instance, in June 2013, Colin Sullivan of Scientific American states, “Earth’s human population is expected to coast upward to 9.6 billion by 2050 and 10.9 billion by 2100, up from 7.2 billion people alive today.” We feel that these projections are plausible, given the concept of exponential growth.
The perils of exponential population growth
While exponential growth starts slowly, it can quickly become out of control. For instance, if you fold a piece of cloth 33 times, it will become 3,400 miles long, stretching from Boston to Frankfurt. Likewise, Meadows and Randers offer another example of the rapidity of exponential growth:
A Persian legend tells about a clever courtier who presented a beautiful chessboard to his king and requested that the king give him in exchange one grain of rice for the first square on the board, two grains for the second square, four grains for the third, and so forth. The king agreed… The tenth square took 512 grains, the fifteenth required 16,384, and the twenty-first square gave the courtier more than a million grains of rice. By the forty-first square, a trillion (1012) rice grains had to be provided. The payment could never have continued to the sixty-fourth square; it would have taken more rice than there was in the whole world!
As the chart above demonstrates (see “Human Population Growth: AD 1 to 2013”), exponential growth can quickly accelerate, once it gains momentum. Humanity took thousands of years to reach one billion people on Earth. But it only took a little over a century to reach two billion—and then only 30 years to reach three billion and so forth. However, this rapid growth points toward a dismal conclusion: humanity cannot keep growing the way that it is without serious consequences. Richard Heinberg writes,
No one seriously expects human population to continue growing for centuries into the future. But imagine if it did—at just 1.3 percent per year (its growth rate in the year 2000). By the year 2780 there would be 148 trillion humans on Earth—one person for each square meter of land on the planet’s surface. It won’t happen, of course.
Population ‘blooms’ (or periods of rapid growth) are nearly always followed by crashes and die-offs.
Something catastrophic will need to occur in order to curb overpopulation. As Randers writes, “[Current factors project the] global population to reach a maximum of some 8.1 billion people in the early 2040s. Thereafter the global population will decline at accelerating speed.” We also believe that overpopulation will lead to other global problems that the Bible also predicts.
Go back to article: “Predictions of the End of Human History”
 The Encylopedia Britannica explains, “By the beginning of the Christian era, 8,000 years later, the human population approximated 300,000,000, and there was apparently little increase in the ensuing millennium up to the year ad 1000.” http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/470303/population/60687/Trends-in-world-population
 Meadows, Donella, Jorgen Randers, and Dennis Meadows. Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green, 2004. 18.
 Meadows, Donella, Jorgen Randers, and Dennis Meadows. Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green, 2004. 21.
 Heinberg, Richard. The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality. Gabriola Island, B.C.: New Society, 2011. 14.
 Heinberg, Richard. The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality. Gabriola Island, B.C.: New Society, 2011. 15.
 Randers, Jorgen. 2052: A Global Forecast for the Next Forty Years. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green, 2012. 62.