New Testament In a Year: December 20 – Revelation 12

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Revelation 12
(1-14) The Two Witnesses
In my previous readings of the book of Revelation, I was under the impression that the woman in this Scripture passage was the Virgin Mary. However, the woman is actually symbolic of Israel, the baby boy that she gives birth to is Jesus the Christ, and the great red dragon is Satan. Jesus came out of Israel.

Ever since God chose Israel to be His people and ever since the birth of Jesus, Satan has constantly been trying to have both Israel and Jesus destroyed. When Jesus had just been born, Satan used Herod to try to have Him destroyed by giving an order for all boys in Bethlehem who were two years old and under to be killed. God protected His Son just as this passage shows the newborn child being caught up to God to avoid being devoured by the dragon. God has also protected Israel from being destroyed throughout various moments in history.

The dragon’s tail sweeping a third of the stars to earth depicts the time when Satan rebelled against God in Heaven and was cast out, taking a third of the angels who joined in his rebellion with him.

(7-17) Satan Thrown Down to Earth
Michael and his angels fight against and defeat the dragon and his angels. The dragon is cast out of heaven and down to earth, along with his angels. Knowing that his time is short, the dragon will wreak havoc on earth in great wrath. But Heaven rejoices that Satan has been cast down, marking the arrival of the salvation and power and kingdom of Christ. It is not only Christ who conquers Satan, but us also. Because we are in Christ, we too are conquerors by His blood and by the word of our testimony.

On earth, the dragon (Satan) continues to pursue the woman (Israel). But God protects His people.

Favorite verse: (1) And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

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