Most recently, we talked about how Satan, who tried to kill the male child, now persecutes the woman who gave birth to the child.
And when the dragon saw that he was thrown down to the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male child. (Revelation 12:13 NASB)
From the first day of the revelation of the mystery, which occurred that day in the garden, he has attempted to kill anything that looked like the male child. Ah, and herein is an aspect of the mystery; your enemy did not know who this male child was.
For us this male child, in the broad view, is the nation of Israel (the male child is also seen as the woman.) This nation began its existence in Egypt with Jacob. By the time the new Pharaoh comes into power, God’s people lived in the finest and greenest area of Egypt, in vast numbers. This piece of information was so alarming that the Egyptians made slaves out of them.
How did that happen?
If you are aware of the plight of God’s people, then you know that they were making babies like there was no tomorrow, so the Pharaoh orders the midwives to kill the Israeli babies; one did not and we got Moses out of that. A narrow view of Revelation 12:13 would have us looking at Jesus as the male child.
Did Satan try to kill Jesus?
He certainly did, but he did not succeed, as Jesus is still alive.
Having tried to kill off any number of males, none of which slowed God down, he turned his perpetual attention to killing off anything that looked like the nation Israel. If you are familiar with the book of Esther,
He was bringing up Hadassah, that is Esther, his uncle’s daughter, for she had no father or mother. Now the young lady was beautiful of form and face, and when her father and her mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter. Esther 2:7 NASB)
I made a point of telling you her Jewish name, as this is a Jewish story and an example of how one man attempted to kill off the Jews in a holocaust.
You should be well aware that the man who created the havoc was Haman.
Then Haman said to King Ahasuerus, “There is a certain people scattered and dispersed among the peoples in all the provinces of your kingdom; their laws are different from those of all other people and they do not observe the king’s laws, so it is not in the king’s interest to let them remain. (Esther 3:8 NASB)
Wow, if you wanted to provoke a kings’ anger, you could not make a more conclusive list.
Do you think, in the environment that is rapidly developing around the Christ-followers today, that this very thing will not happen to you? Look at this.
“If it is pleasing to the king, let it be decreed that they be destroyed, and I will pay ten thousand talents of silver into the hands of those who carry on the king’s business, to put into the king’s treasuries.” (Esther 3:9 NASB)
Back to the broad spectrum view. We, who are followers of Christ, are also the male child.
Satan is still trying to kill the male child, and this is where we pick up the story.
Revelation 12:15 NASB And the serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, so that he might cause her to be swept away with the flood.
Poured – is the Greek word ballō and means to vomit.
Water, it seems like a simple, understandable word. It is the Greek word hudōr and means water, as if rainy.
After (the woman Israel) – This is the Greek word opisō and carries the idea of behind, or at one’s back. There is definitely a feel for this remnant of Israel running for their lives.
While you may not look at these words and see a massive torrent, capable of killing off approximately three million people, the verse continues.
“so that he might cause her to be swept away with the flood.”
Satan is trying to kill them all off.
Does Satan gain some advantage or a reprieve from God by killing off millions of people?
The answer is NO. God has a plan and it has always included putting Satan away for a thousand years, and then finally dispatching him to his permanent silencing in an eternal hell.
Revelation 12:16 NASB “But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and drank up the river which the dragon poured out of his mouth.”
Whoa, hold up here a minute; the earth helped the woman.
Helped is the Greek word boēthéō. It means to run on hearing a cry, to give assistance.
How do you read a statement like this and not see the earth as having some ability to comprehend and communicate?
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.” But Jesus answered, “I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!“
(Luke 19:39-40 NASB)
Here again, I see the earth as having the ability to communicate and comprehend, and the Psalmist conveys the idea that everything can call out to God.
Let the sea roar and all it contains, The world and those who dwell in it. Let the rivers clap their hands, Let the mountains sing together for joy” (Psalms 98:7-8 NASB)
“the earth opened its mouth and drank up the river which the dragon poured out of his mouth.”
Yes, I realize that I am limiting God by thinking this way, but I can only see one logical thing; and that would be the earth splitting open and any water flowing after escaping Israel, going into the crevice.
Mouth is an interesting Greek word that I became acquainted with in Horticulture. It is the Greek word stoma and means the mouth as if a gash in the face. In plants, it is an opening on the bottom of leaves from which the plant exchanges oxygen for carbon dioxide.
Revelation 12:17 NASB So the dragon was enraged with the woman and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus.
When I began this study into Revelation 12 I said, we have come back to our history lesson again.
If I apply that thought to Revelation 12:17 am I talking history or a future event?
The answer is both. History because Satan fell before time began, and has been at battle, in an attempt to kill off anyone who may have become the man child himself.
Of course, after Jesus Christ came, and the Father announced that He was the beloved Son in whom He was well pleased, there was no longer a need to kill off man-child possibilities. Don’t get me wrong, Satan is still out to kill you, through one of his demonic cohorts, but the reasons have shifted to, you look like the one I hate – Jesus.
“So the dragon was enraged with the woman, and went off to make war with the rest of her children, who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus.”
In this case, the man child is Israel, the nation; and all attempts at destroying Israel have failed. So he goes and, not just bothers, but makes war with the rest of her children. These are either, the followers of Christ or the Jewish community. I lean toward them being followers of Christ.
How do I know that?
Because, for one, they keep the commandments.
Ah, but can any of us keep the commandments?
No, and that is why we needed a savior.
You might think that we Christians are the ones that keep the commandments, but look within the church and then tell me, how many hold tightly to the testimony of Jesus?
My first reaction is to say, not many. Oh sure, we gather there, but it is more of a social gathering and our commonality is a thin moral fiber called God.
I occasionally think that as a blogger, that does Bible studies daily, that I am holding to the testimony of Jesus more than most; however, I know me and know that I have my bad days as well. It is conversations like this that make me think that we need to realize how God thinks is all that matters; that is where a statement like this comes into play. “I have engraved you on the palm of my hand, and I will never forget you.”(Isaiah 49:17 )This passage demonstrates the depth of God’s love for you.
When I read the Revelation there are always two main themes running through my head.
First, this book is a book about Jesus (We are told immediately that it is a revealing of Jesus😉 that seems odd doesn’t it, especially since, in many ways, the gospels revealed Jesus to us. But, for the most part, the gospels revealed Jesus as a gentle shepherd, who draws all to Himself through His actions and message; and, the gospels revealed Jesus as the lamb who was slaughtered and placed upon the cross.
Another thing that I am aware of is that an uncountable number, get their heads clear and hold on to Jesus; this, of course, costs them their physical lives.
Have you ever thought about that?
It is these puny, temporary lives that impede us from seeking out the God who made us.
Why then, wouldn’t we want to clear ourselves and join Him?
I am not talking about suicide, I am talking about changing your focus off worldly desires and on to Jesus. Death has a way of doing just that, as it removes you into the spiritual realm; if you belong to Christ, then you are immediately in His presence at death, while those outside of the family, merely lie quietly, waiting for the final judgment. This final judgment is what you see in Matthew 25, and yes, there is mercy shown to those who acted like sheep. The sheep are defined as those who provided for Jesus by showing mercy to other humans in need. Read the story and you will understand.
Turning your life to Jesus now, before what many call the “tribulation” comes. If you have been living under a rock, then you may not be aware that the Taliban has been given control of Afghanistan once again; and, they are killing Christians and those who assisted the Allied forces. For them, the tribulation has begun, and yet, what we call “the tribulation,” is wrath from God and far worse than what we have been seeing. Turn to Jesus, and give Him your life.