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Book of Revelation: Chapter 12

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Title: Book of Revelation: Chapter 12


1
Book of RevelationChapter 12
  • Basis of the ConflictThe Woman, Dragon, and Child

2
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • Basic outline of Revelation
  • The churchs conflict in and with the world
  • Chapters 111
  • The inner struggle between Christ and Satan
  • Chapters 1222

3
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • Chapter 12 begins Part 2 of the Apocalypse.
  • This part focuses on the sins of the empire and
    how complete its overthrow will be.
  • Revelation was written in a recapitulation
    pattern

4
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • First, the outcome is revealed then scenes are
    repeated to give additional information that
    explains why a certain result is reached.
  • We should be careful not to link the chapters in
    chronological order.
  • Understand that the pageantry recapitulates
    earlier visions, deepening our insight.

5
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • Part One tells about Romes sins against the
    church.
  • God offered her time and opportunity to
    repentsalvation from doom and overthrow.
  • First six trumpetspartial judgments against the
    empire
  • Sadly, instead of repentance, hearts hardened,
    and repentance became impossible!

6
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • In the first eleven chapters
  • The assured final outcome is revealed.
  • Characters are introducedthe beast versus Gods
    witnesses.
  • Winners are announcedChrist and the saints
    (church).
  • Several questions remain unanswered
  • Why the hostility toward the church and
    persecution of the saints?
  • From whence comes the power that motivates the
    persecutors?

7
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • In the first eleven chapters
  • Christ controls the worlds destiny.
  • He walks in the midst of the churches.
  • He is aware of the struggles and conflicts they
    face.
  • He has authority to carry out Gods plans.
  • Book openedit summarizes, from the gospels
    first message, Gods dealings with those on
    earth.
  • Men are called to repentance.
  • There are warnings (trumpets). Time is running
    out.
  • A brief summary of the result in chapter 11..stay
    tuned more details will be forthcoming!!

8
Deeper Spiritual Background
  • The next eleven chapters will reveal
  • Does the struggle involve just the church and
    Rome?
  • Remaining visions that show the struggle behind
    the scenes.
  • It actually originates in heaven.
  • The battle between God and Satan.
  • Righteousness versus evil.
  • The magnitude of the heavenly conflict.
  • The intent of Satan and his agents is realnot
    imagery!

9
Revelation 121
Now a great sign appeared in heaven a woman
clothed with the sun, with the moon under her
feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars.
10
Revelation 122
Then being with child, she cried out in labor
and in pain to give birth.
11
A Great Sign in Heaven
  • This struggle began in Genesis 315
  • The woman
  • Her appearance
  • In contrast to the great harlot, she is the
    bearer of the light.
  • Clothed with the sun
  • Moon under her feet
  • On her head a crown of 12 stars (victory crown)
  • Glory and purity emanate from her.
  • Light represents righteousness.

12
A Great Sign in Heaven
  • This struggle began in Genesis 315
  • The woman
  • Appears in heavenly splendorthe moon is her
    footstool.
  • The sun is her robe.
  • 12 stars in her crown (signifying victory)
  • Figurative languageheavenly bodies that rule day
    and night symbolize her exalted position in Gods
    order of things!

13
Revelation 124
His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and
threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood
before the woman who was ready to give birth, to
devour her Child as soon as it was born.
14
A Great Sign in Heaven
  • This struggle began in Genesis 315
  • The womans condition
  • With child
  • About to give birth
  • At this point, she represents Gods faithful
    remnant.
  • Micah 410
  • Later, she represents the churchall of Gods
    faithful people.
  • Before the saviors birtha faithful remnant
    following His death, the church.

15
Revelation 123
And another sign appeared in heaven behold, a
great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and
ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads.
16
Second Sign The Dragon
  • His appearance
  • Red blood of brutality
  • Seven headsperfect vitality (hard to kill)
    epitome of evil
  • Ten hornscomplete power (over the Roman beast)
    full of intelligence
  • Seven diademsroyal crowns (realm of evil), but
    not victorious like the previous ones
  • Ephesians 22 414 612
  • John 844 1231
  • 2 Corinthians 44

17
Second Sign The Dragon
  • His position and purpose
  • He is serpent, devil, Satan (129 1 Peter
    58)
  • He is powerful 1/3 of the stars (his angels) (2
    Peter 24 Jude 6)
  • Awaiting the Childs birth so he can devour it as
    soon as it is born!
  • Historical attempt by Satan to destroy the
    Messiahs seed line
  • Many attempts to cut off the seed of the woman

18
Second Sign The Dragon
  • His position and purpose
  • Many OT examples where Satan tempted the nation
    to turn away from God!
  • Many did reject God, but a faithful remnant
    always remained.
  • Satan failed to destroy the chosen family
    (Israel) from which the Messiah would come.
  • In the NT, he continues through his agent Herod
    (Matthew 216)
  • During Jesus public ministry, he tried many
    times, by using unbelieving Jews, to put Him to
    death.

19
Revelation 125
She bore a male Child who was to rule all
nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was
caught up to God and His throne.
20
Birth of the Child
  • His birth Jesus the Christ (Psalm 21-9)
  • His status to rule the nations
  • His ascension caught up to God and His throne
  • Whole period of Christ on the earth
  • Rod of iron He would rule with firmness
    absolute authority
  • Destiny of the nations is in His hands!

21
Birth of the Child
  • His death at first, it brought sorrow to His
    disciples. It seemed like evil had been the
    victor.
  • Sorrow turned to joy when Satan was defeated by
    His death!
  • Death, Burial, and Resurrection redemption for
    mankind! (1 Corinthians 151-4)
  • Ascended to God to rule, on His spiritual throne,
    over all nations (Daniel 713,14 Hebrews
    923-28 Ephesians 120-23)

22
Revelation 126
Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where
she has a place prepared by God, that they should
feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty
days.
23
Flight of the Woman
  • To the wilderness, a place of hardship
  • Statement further explained in vs.13-17
  • Satan failed in His attempt to destroy the
    Childnow turns his attention to an attempt to
    destroy Gods people!
  • Makes war with the remnant of the womans seed
  • Gods people flee under intense hardship and
    persecution

24
Flight of the Woman
  • To a prepared place
  • A place prepared by God, a spiritual refuge
  • Gods providential protection and care
  • Church becomes the type of the spiritual Israel
    of God
  • Church protected for an indefinite period of time
    as Gods enemies wage war against her
  • War waged by the beast and the false prophet
  • Church existed in a world of sin but was
    protected by Gods promise!

25
Revelation 127,8
And war broke out in heaven Michael and his
angels fought with the dragon and the dragon and
his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor
was a place found for them in heaven any longer.
26
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27
War in Heaven?
  • The apocalyptic scene shifts from earth to
    heaven.
  • The opponents
  • Michael and his angels (Daniel 1013,21 121
    Jude 9)
  • Dragon and his angels
  • Not his first defeat (2 Peter 24 Jude 6 Luke
    831)
  • Doesnt stop him from accusing (Job 1,2)

28
War in Heaven?
  • The apocalyptic scene shifts from earth to
    heaven.
  • The opponents (devil)
  • Power begins to diminish with the ministry of
    Christ. (Luke 1018 John 1430)
  • It is further limited by the coming of the Holy
    Spirit. (John 168-11)
  • Christ removed Satans power over death.
    (Hebrews 214 John 1231 1 John 38)
  • We now have an advocate with the Father. (1 John
    21,2 James 47,8)

29
War in Heaven?
  • Symbolic representation of Satans angry reaction
    to the Messiahs escape from his wicked plot to
    destroy Him!
  • Satans unholy army attempts to storm the
    citadel of heaven. Michael and his fellow
    angels engage them in battle!
  • Michael and his angels will prevail because they
    have Gods power and authority behind them!

30
War in Heaven?
  • Spiritual warfare behind the scenes.
  • Satans angels were not strong enough.
  • No longer is a place found for them in heaven
  • Resound defeat in the heavenly realm by Michael
    and his angels
  • Complete defeat for Satan, and complete victory
    for Christ
  • Satan no longer has legal ground to accuse
    Gods people its all been taken away! (Hebrews
    214,15)

31
Revelation 129
So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent
of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives
the whole world he was cast to the earth, and
his angels were cast out with him.
32
The Dragons Identity Confirmed
  • Story of the Garden of Eden that old serpent
    (Genesis 3)
  • Called the devil, Satan
  • Slanderer
  • Adversary
  • Constantly opposes mankind
  • Great force against God
  • Against His creation
  • Against His Son
  • Deception of the entire world (John 844)

33
The Dragons Identity Confirmed
  • Now the scene shifts back to earthcast out into
    the earth
  • Angels cast out with him
  • The devils adversarial role continues.
  • Yet, because of Christs death he cannot win!
  • Johns vision depicts the climax of war between
    the forces of righteousness and of evil.
  • This is NOT a discussion of Satans origin!

34
Revelation 1210
Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now
salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our
God, and the power of His Christ have come, for
the accuser of our brethren, who accused them
before our God day and night, has been cast
down.
35
The Response
  • Praise given to God for
  • The coming of salvation (manifested)
  • Power (vindicated)
  • Gods Kingdom (truly established)
  • Christs authority (revealed)
  • Accomplished by His death, burial, and
    resurrection
  • Ephesians 17
  • Colossians 113,14 215
  • Matthew 2818 1 Peter 322

36
The Response
  • God receives praise because
  • The accuser of the brethren has been cast down.
  • The devil lost the battle in his great warfare
    against God.
  • He was unable to destroy the man child born on
    earth.
  • Finally, at Christs death, Satan lost the
    spiritual battle in heaven!
  • He was unable to prevent the resurrection.
    (Romans 14)
  • Powerless in any confrontation with God (Romans
    833-39)

37
Revelation 1211
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony, and they did
not love their lives to the death.
38
Formula for Victory
  • WHO conquered and gained the victory and HOW did
    they do it?
  • The brethren, who suffered at the hands of Satan
    OVERCAME!
  • Three answers are given as to HOW
  • By the blood of the Lamb. God, through His grace,
    provided the means of forgiveness by sacrificing
    Christ! Thus, He purified our souls!
  • 1 Peter 118-20 Ephesians 28,9 1 Peter
    122,23Romans 63,4 Revelation 15,6.

39
Formula for Victory
  • WHO conquered and gained the victory and HOW did
    they do it?
  • The brethren, who suffered at the hands of Satan
    OVERCAME!
  • Three answers are given as to HOW
  • And by the word of their testimonyMore than
    confessing their sins (1 John 19)unashamed
    confession of their faith shown in their faithful
    lives. Unwilling to bow to Caesar as God!
    Committed Christians are known by the lives they
    live!
  • Matthew 1032,33 Romans 109,10 Galatians
    67,8.

40
Formula for Victory
  • WHO conquered and gained the victory and HOW did
    they do it?
  • The brethren, who suffered at the hands of Satan
    OVERCAME!
  • Three answers are given as to HOW
  • And they loved not their lives unto the death.
    Total commitment and love for God was seen in
    their willingness to die for their faith! No
    worldly compromise. Understood that mennot
    God--are to be feared! Obeyed the gospel and
    lived it!
  • Matthew 1028 1626

41
Revelation 1212
Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell
in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and
the sea! For the devil has come down to you,
having great wrath, because he knows that he has
a short time.
42
Cause to Rejoice!
  • All who belong to God can rejoice!
  • The heavenly angels and all the loyal saints who
    emerged from the great tribulation celebrate
    because of Satans defeat!
  • Woe to the earth he has lost in heaven, and
    only the earth is left!
  • Has only a short time to persecute Gods
    people!
  • He Knows his time is limited, so turns his evil
    arsenal on the churchGods children!

43
Revelation 1213
Now when the dragon saw that he had been cast to
the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth
to the male Child.
44
The Woman Persecuted
  • Satan knows he must fight on earth.
  • This antagonism originated with Satans hatred
    for Christ!
  • He turns his attention to the children of his
    conqueror!
  • Primary application to Revelation is the Roman
    persecution, the beasts great persecution of the
    church
  • Yet, to this day Satan persecutes Gods children
    by encouraging them to abandon their faith!

45
Revelation 1214
But the woman was given two wings of a great
eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to
her place, where she is nourished for a time and
times and half a time, from the presence of the
serpent.
46
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47
Flight of the Woman
  • God told the people of Israel that he carried
    them on eagles wings. (Exodus 194)
  • He delivered them by His power. (Deuteronomy
    3211 Psalm 367 Isaiah 4031)
  • He gives similar refuge to the church.
  • The woman flew into the wilderness to her
    place.
  • There, she will be nourished, away from the
    presence of the serpent.

48
Flight of the Woman
  • The woman represents those who stand for and with
    God.
  • She will be spiritually protected by God.
  • She will be able to resist evil and the devils
    scheme. (James 47,8 1 Peter 58,9)
  • She may suffer physical persecution, but will
    ultimately be victorious. (Romans 835-39)
  • For a time, and times, and half times, will be
    nourished through the time of testing!

49
Revelation 1215
So the serpent spewed water out of his mouth
like a flood after the woman, that he might cause
her to be carried away by the flood.
50
Revelation 1215
But the earth helped the woman, and the earth
opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which
the dragon had spewed out of his mouth.
51
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52
The Dragons Attempt
  • Though Satan ejected from his mouth a stream of
    water, as a flood to destroy her, the earth
    swallowed up the current and rescued the woman!
  • At one time, God used water to destroy evil. (1
    Peter 320,21)
  • Satans flood is the use of ungodly men and
    methods. (Psalm 184 1244,5 Isaiah 55-8
    5719,20 Ephesians 414)

53
Attempt Thwarted by God
  • God caused the earth to help the woman.
  • The world absorbs/drinks up the flood sent by
    Satan. Mankind falls for and follows after
    Satans lies.
  • A contrast between the evil world and the church
  • The earth came to the womans rescue by
    distracting Romes attentionpolitical uprisings,
    local wars, and other conflicts.
  • Divine providence protected and sustained the
    woman and her offspring!

54
Revelation 1217
And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and
he went to make war with the rest of her
offspring, who keep the commandments of God and
have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
55
Rest of Her Offspring
  • By this time the celestial woman and her
    offspring are one.
  • Following the persecution depicted in Revelation,
    the woman now represents the faithful children of
    God in the church.
  • Satan will attack her children because God loves
    them.
  • He attacks them one by one, but to no avail.
  • Gods armor protects themEphesians 610-18.

56
Summary
  • Key to this chapterGenesis 315
  • Word to remembervictory
  • Satan defeated in heaven
  • Satan limited to final defeat on earth
  • Vs.1-6 struggle between the seed (woman and
    dragon) Gods people protected
  • Vs.7-12 Christs birth, atonement, and ascension
    and its effects. Satan cannot destroy the woman
    or her offspring!
  • Vs.13-17 persecution of the womanGods divine
    protection!

57
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