This chapter talks about a woman giving birth – is this about the past or the future? Often prophecy is like this – it is speaking about the past and gives us clues about the future.
These verses seem to clearly be about the past, and give us clues to how John sees the birth and authority of Christ. He is born to Mary, and Satan tried to kill Him, and His mother, but could not. Satan was thrown down to the earth (through Christ’s victory on the cross and resurrection), and then Satan fought to hurt and kill the followers of Christ.
This battle has gone on for ages – and will continue. We need to be ready to resist Satan, and even to die for Christ. This too is the passing of the old world, and the ending of the great rebellion against the world’s true King.
The rebellion is all about pride – the lie that we can all be our own kings and queens, and not follow God. We can make sure we are on God’s side as we let that pride die, and offer up our lives to the freedom of God’s love, and follow Him.
|<< Revelation 12 >>
New Living Translation
The Woman and the Dragon
1Then I witnessed in heaven an event of great significance. I saw a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon beneath her feet, and a crown of twelve stars on her head. 2She was pregnant, and she cried out because of her labor pains and the agony of giving birth.
3Then I witnessed in heaven another significant event. I saw a large red dragon with seven heads and ten horns, with seven crowns on his heads. 4His tail swept away one-third of the stars in the sky, and he threw them to the earth. He stood in front of the woman as she was about to give birth, ready to devour her baby as soon as it was born.
5She gave birth to a son who was to rule all nations with an iron rod. And her child was snatched away from the dragon and was caught up to God and to his throne. 6And the woman fled into the wilderness, where God had prepared a place to care for her for 1,260 days.
7Then there was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon and his angels. 8And the dragon lost the battle, and he and his angels were forced out of heaven. 9This great dragon—the ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, the one deceiving the whole world—was thrown down to the earth with all his angels.
10Then I heard a loud voice shouting across the heavens,
“It has come at last—
salvation and power
and the Kingdom of our God,
and the authority of his Christ.a
For the accuser of our brothers and sistersb
has been thrown down to earth—
the one who accuses them
before our God day and night.
11And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb
and by their testimony.
And they did not love their lives so much
that they were afraid to die.
12Therefore, rejoice, O heavens!
And you who live in the heavens, rejoice!
But terror will come on the earth and the sea,
for the devil has come down to you in great anger,
knowing that he has little time.”
13When the dragon realized that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14But she was given two wings like those of a great eagle so she could fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness. There she would be cared for and protected from the dragonc for a time, times, and half a time.
15Then the dragon tried to drown the woman with a flood of water that flowed from his mouth. 16But the earth helped her by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that gushed out from the mouth of the dragon. 17And the dragon was angry at the woman and declared war against the rest of her children—all who keep God’s commandments and maintain their testimony for Jesus.
 Then the dragon took his standd on the shore beside the sea.
a 12:10a Or his Messiah.
b 12:10b Greek brothers.
c 12:14 Greek the serpent; also in 12:15. See 12:9.
d 12:18 Greek Then he took his stand; some manuscripts read Then I took my stand. Some translations put this entire sentence into 13:1.