I hope that you are reading the chapter of the day before you read this . . . because you should prayerfully seek to gain understanding on your own. Don’t let me spoon feed you MY thoughts. What if I’m wrong? And, what if the Lord wants to give YOU some insights?? So, if you haven’t, go read chapter 12, then come back. 🙂
Now, chapter 12 is quite symbolic in the “story” that it tells. Generally, most of Revelation is NOT symbolic, as some have supposed. Here it is, but remember the Lord wants us to understand, so let’s not overcomplicate it, if we can. There is much to be learned and studied, for those who want to mine the depths of it. However, understanding IS available to all.
So, let’s first decode the two main symbols in this passage. The definition is actually right in the text. As a rule, the best way to interpret Scripture, is with Scripture. So, who is the “Woman” here?
See verse 17, it speaks of her “offspring” being “those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus”. This would tell us that “she” could be the Church, for this is what “births” believers, and is a consistent symbol throughout Scripture (the Church being a woman from which is born children of God). But, seeing that she is the womb from which Jesus came (v.5 describes her “Son” who will “rule the nations with an iron scepter” – clearly that is Jesus), we should define her identity the faithful remnant of Israel throughout history. With Jesus being born through “her” and bringing salvation to all, it is a more inclusive identity that DOES include the Church, since we are grafted into Israel through Him.
The Dragon may seem more obvious, but, still the answer is given to us in verse 9 — he is “Satan, who leads the whole world astray”.
The general story line here is the rage of Satan. He hates Jesus and he hates God’s people. He boils with anger and is bent on destruction against God’s purposes, His people, and the salvation of others. This chapter shows us why (as described in chapter 10 from yesterday) Jesus MUST displace and destroy many the governments of the earth — because the Antichrist will so violently oppose the saints and all that is good, and will turn the governments of the earth against them.
Chatper 13 only tells part of the story (chapter 14 will finish it), but let’s take a closer look.
Verses 1-6 set the stage by telling us what has already happened: Jesus, the Jewish Messiah was born. Satan tried to kill him off (remember that? Herod had all the firstborn sons of the day slain, but God led Mary and Joseph away during that time). Jesus was taken up to the Throne, where He is today (Colossians 3:1).
(Verses 7-9) Micheal the archangel and the angels make war against the devil and his demons. The angels win (of course) and the devil and demons are thrown to earth.
So, after the angels conquer the devil in heaven, who will defeat him on earth? WE WILL!!! It is the “glory of all the saints” to be the executors of God’s judgments against His enemies (see Psalm 149:6-9)! How does we do that?
We Overcome Satan by:
-the blood of the Lamb (v.11), and
-the word of our testimony (v.11)
1. The Blood of the Lamb- speaks of the finished work of Christ on the Cross. We overcome the works of Satan (sin, sickness, oppression, etc.) by fully appropriating all that Christ has accomplished for us — salvation, healing, deliverance, authority. Jesus came to destroy the works of the devil (I John 3:8), but He’s doing that today, though us! — how?
2. Through “the Word of our Testimony” — this is how we release the benefits of the work of Christ, thereby destroying the works of the devil:
It has a lot to do with the words of our mouth, like-
-declaring the Truth of the Word = worship, praise and prayer
-recounting the works of God in our lives (this is what we usually call “testimony”)
-staying faithful to the Gospel in what we say, and HOW WE LIVE
A little explanation on these:
-Revelation 6:9 speaks of those who were killed for staying faithful to the Lord — this was called “testimony they kept. Our lives completely surrendered to the Lord are an act of spiritual violence! It does damage to the kingdom of darkness as we live our lives holy to the Lord and do not dilute the Word in the way we live and profess.
-In Psalm 149 verse 6 it says: “the praise of God be in their mouths and a double-edged sword in their hands”, and that these are what we use to execute God’s jugments! So our two weapons to destroy the kindgdom of darkness are 1. PRAISE and 2. THE WORD, as Hebrews 4:12 tells us it is the double-edged sword (and I would contend that this is the Word spoken verbally in intercession). With these WE destroy the kingdom of darkness! What an authroity and privilege we have been given!
The End Time Church will be actively involved in this battle, as we continue to see over and over in this End Time Battle Plan!
How should we begin to prepare NOW for this day?
We MUST become people of praise, and not just on Sunday morning! The devil is at work all the time — we should be warring in worship all the time!
We Must EAT THE SCROLL (as in Revelation 10), continually devouring the Word and letting it become who we are. Are you thoroughly convinced of the importance of this yet?
Think about this: If we will “overcome” by these things (the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony), how do you think we will fare if we do NOT give ourselves to these things now? Do you see any place where it tells what happens to those who do not overcome? I don’t see any indication that anyone will overcome in any other way. It is not optional but to give ourselves to these things.
I look forward to overcoming our adversary with you!