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Series Theme: FRAMEWORKS: Revelation

(Return to Framework Contents)

 

(The objective of these ‘Frameworks' is to provide an easy-to-read layout of the text in order then to use these individual verses for verse-by-verse study or meditation. To focus each verse we have also added in italic a description of what is happening)

[NOTE: As we move on through this particular book it might be worth while reminding ourselves that this is a book of prophecy and prophecy often uses analogies and other picture forms that leave it open to different interpretations. Although these notes may make occasional references to this, what we provide are only meant as very basic notes to aid the reader digesting what they read, and any deeper comments about schools of interpretation etc. are beyond this goal.]

  

FRAMEWORKS: Revelation 12: The Woman & the Dragon

 

v.1-6 The Woman & the Dragon

v.7-9 War in Heaven

v.10-12 The kingdom comes with Christian believers

v.13-17 Satan wages war against Jews & Christians

 

(See comments at end of page)

    

v.1-6 The Woman & the Dragon

 

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

v.2 (she is about to give birth) She was pregnant and cried out in pain as she was about to give birth.

v.3 (a dragon appears) Then another sign appeared in heaven: an enormous red dragon with seven heads and ten horns and seven crowns on its heads.

v.4 (it brings down a third of the angels from heaven and waits to kill the child [see Herod Mt 2:16]) Its tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that it might devour her child the moment he was born.

v.5 (a baby who will be a king, eventually taken to heaven) She gave birth to a son, a male child , who “will rule all the nations with an iron scepter.” [Psa 2:9] And her child was snatched up to God and to his throne .

v.6 (the woman flees into the world for protection for 3½ years – see earlier) The woman fled into the wilderness to a place prepared for her by God, where she might be taken care of for 1,260 days.

 

 

v.7-9 War in Heaven

 

v.7 (good angels fight bad angels [the third]) Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back.

v.8 (Satan is cast out of heaven) But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.

v.9 (Satan & the demons [fallen angels] cast down on earth) The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan , who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.

 

 

v.10-12 The kingdom comes with Christian believers

 

v.10 (a heavenly declaration – salvation has come) Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: “ Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Messiah. For the accuser of our brothers and sisters, who accuses them before our God day and night, has been hurled down.

v.11 (saints now triumph over Satan) They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.

v.12 (there is glory in heaven, but strife on the earth as Satan leads unbelievers – see 1 Jn 5:19) Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to the earth and the sea, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury because he knows that his time is short.”

 

 

v.13-17 Satan wages war against Jews & Christians

 

v.13 (Satan persecutes Jews) When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child.

v.14 (but they are protected for a set period) The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent's reach.

v.15 (Satan seeks to sweep away the Jews - ?the Holocaust) Then from his mouth the serpent spewed water like a river, to overtake the woman and sweep her away with the torrent.

v.16 (but the earth swallows up his torrent of hatred - ?Second World War) But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon had spewed out of his mouth.

v.17 (Satan wages war against all believers) Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to wage war against the rest of her offspring—those who keep God's commands and hold fast their testimony about Jesus.

 

[Comments: In true prophetic form this apparent overview chapter comes with picture language. The only way to interpret it is to see how it lines up with what had appeared so far in history.

•  the woman who bears a child has to be Israel as a people

•  the child has to be Jesus who ascended to heaven

•  the Dragon, Satan, the adversary seeks to thwart God's plans and kill the baby.

•  when the ‘child' is taken back to heaven he turns his focus on persecuting the Jews. Perhaps his ultimate attempt has surely to be the holocaust and their subsequent existence is down to the Allies who triumphed in the war and eventually set up Israel in their own land again (where various wars against them subsequently have no doubt been the enemy's ongoing activity against them.

•  meanwhile he also wages war against the Christians, initially through a wave of persecutions in the first three centuries but also at subsequent times since. Such persecutions continue today in large measure around the world where, in many countries it is illegal to be a Christian believer.

 

We have omitted reference so far to v.7-11 the War in Heaven because this is the most speculative. How and when this occurred (?outside of time?) and if this is linked to the battle on the Cross as Christ carried our sin, is unclear. Other scriptures do give indication that Satan has power on the earth today, but only in so far as it is granted by God in accordance with His purposes.]