WONDERS IN HEAVEN
Revelation 12:1-6 (NKJV)
The Woman, the Child, and the Dragon
12 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. 2 Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth.
3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. 4 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. 5 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. 6 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.
Revelation 12:1-6 (KJV)
12 And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
2 And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.
3 And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.
4 And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
5 And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.
6 And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.
This is a chapter of great controversy. Many stumble here and fall into the trap of false doctrine. A person’s interpretation of the whole book hinges on what they believe about this particular passage of Scripture. As always, we will interpret the scriptures in a way that allows them to speak for themselves.
Notice the word “KJV – wonder”, it means a sign, an unusual event worthy of special notice. Something very strange is going on here. The vision that John is seeing is partly past and partly future.
Let’s spend a few minutes looking into these verses and notice some wonders in Heaven.
I. v.1-2 A WOMAN – (ISRAEL)
A. She has been variously interpreted as: The Virgin Mary, The Church, and many female cult leaders and even some women preachers have tried to set themselves as this woman.
B. Her true identity? – (Israel)
1. Seen in her attire: Ill. Gen. 37:9-11
Genesis 37:9-11 (KJV) – Joseph’s dream
9 And he dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me.
10 And he told it to his father, and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the earth?
11 And his brethren envied him; but his father observed the saying.
a. Sun – Glory, Isa. 46:13
b. Moon – Dominion – Gen. 13:15
c. Crown – Rule – The Jew will dominate the post-millennial world.
2. Seen in her crown – (12 Stars – Ill. 12 tribes – Gen. 37:9; 35:22)
C. Her Pain – This also displays her identity (Israel).
1. Her Cry – Israel has ever cried for her deliverer, the Messiah to come – Ex. 3:7, God has heard their pleas.
2. Her Travail – Israel has been in travail since the beginning. (Ill. All the persecutions and pain of the nation.) (Ill. Isa. 66:7-8) (Ill. Israel is not finished with pain and suffering, she will go through the tribulation.)
3. Her Pain – Israel desired and desires to see the Messiah come – Isa. 9:6.
D. The woman without doubt pictures Israel.
(Ill. God’s Wife – Isa. 50:1; Jer. 3:8)
The church is a virgin bride, 2 Cor. 11:2. The woman pictured here is obviously no virgin!
II. v.3-4 A DRAGON – (Satan)
A. The identity of the Dragon is clear from verse 9.
B. Let’s notice several features of his character.
1. Great – Power and control in the world – Matt. 4:8-9.
2. Red – His murders – John 8:44.
3. Dragon – His vicious nature – 1 Pet. 5:8.
4. 7 heads – His wisdom – Eze. 28:12.
5. 10 Horns – His power over the final kingdom of man.
6. 7 Crowns – His perfect authority in the world system – 2 Cor. 4:4.
C. His Activity
1. 1/3 of the stars – The angels who followed him in his rebellion – Isa. 14:13-14.
2. Destroy the child – Satan hates the child of the woman. This is a reference to the events surrounding the birth of Jesus – Matt. 2:13-18. Ill. Gen. 3:15. Throughout the history of Israel, satan has tried to corrupt or kill off the bloodline that would produce Jesus Christ. (Ill. Cain, Noah, Isaac, Jacob, David, Etc).
III. v.5 A MAN CHILD – JESUS
A. His Identity is plain (Jesus)
1. He will rule the world – Psa. 2:9
2. He will be caught up to God. A plain reference to the ascension of Jesus!
(Ill. His life and His work! – Mark 16:19) (Ill. Stephen – Acts 7:55-56)
(Ill. Heb. 1:3, 13; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2; 1 Pet. 3:22)
B. The child can only be the Lord Jesus! He alone is worthy!
IV. v.6 A JOURNEY – (Time of Great Persecution)
A. Speaks of a time of great persecution. (Ill. The events of the Tribulation – covenant, betrayal, murder, etc – Matt. 24:15-22; Dan. 9:27; 2 Thes. 2:1-4)
B. God will miraculously preserve His chosen people.
C. This will be a sad and perilous time for anyone left behind! God help us in the time left for us to work to get past the little old petty things and win some people to Jesus Christ!