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Revelation 12:7-14:5

The Four Beasts of Revelation
#1. The Great Red Dragon
(Continued)

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Last month, we examined the short apocalyptic prophecy found in Revelation 12:1-6. 

 

Even though Revelation 12:1-6 is a short prophecy, it provides an excellent view of three critical points which we need to observe before proceeding into the next prophecy which begins with Revelation 12:7.

 

First, there is a very clear demonstration of chronological order:

 

1.   Woman standing on the moon, pregnant, in pain, dragon ready to devour her child the    moment it is born.
2.   Woman gave birth to a male child
3.   The dragon tried to kill the infant Jesus
4.   Jesus taken up to God and to His throne…
5.   Dragon chases woman. Women fled into desert for 1,260 days.

 

This chronological order affirms Rule 1. “Each apocalyptic prophecy has a beginning and ending point in time, and the events occur in the order given.”

 

Second, this short prophecy informs us that it was Lucifer himself, (the great red dragon) working through a demon possessed man (king Herod) who tried to kill Jesus at birth. Why is it important to know that Lucifer himselfattempted to kill baby Jesus?

 

>>>God wants His children to know that Lucifer is a living entity. He is a demon having evil objectives and unbelievable abilities. God wants His children to know that Lucifer and his fallen angels are very powerful, but they are limited by (a) divine authority and (b) human consent. […Resist the devil and he will flee from you.  James 4:7]

 

Over a period of time, a person can slip into demonic possession. Here is one scenario:

 

(1) Each time we refuse to surrender to the dictates of the Holy Spirit, our rebellion against God becomes deeper and stronger. The farther we go away from God, the more vulnerable we become to demonic influence. Demons study us. They are anxious to gain control of us because demonic control precedes demonic possession.

 

(2) Once a person is numbed by the Novocain of rebellion, he/she will do stupid things that will produce serious consequences and enormous guilt – without realizing at the time, the severity or consequences of these actions. Demons are delighted when this occurs because they are masters of preying upon a sense of worthlessness and self-loathing. Using guilt and shame, they bait the trap for demon possession.

(3) Once a person begins using drugs or alcohol to escape the realities and responsibilities of life, demons take over. The physiological connection between chemical addition and demonic possession is overwhelming. I believe millions of people are presently living under the control of demons even though they may not be totally possessed. This fact helps to explain the insanity that we hear in the evening news.

 

Herod’s sin of killing all baby boys ages two and under was a act of insanity and I want you to understand that another evil act, just as insane, is coming upon the saints of God. The saints are going to be attached – and victimized – during the Great Tribulation. So don’t be surprised! The devil is a violent predator.

 

He preyed upon the angels of God and one third fell.

He preyed upon Adam and Eve and they fell.

He preyed upon the antediluvians and they had to be destroyed.

 

He has relentlessly preyed upon mankind ever since Noah’s flood and history reveals that all nations, great and small, come to their end because he is a relentless predator. It is sad to realize that mankind has an unseen predator that is highly intelligent and desperately evil and most people have no idea that he even exists.

 

The devil is driven by hatred and motivated by malice. He has no regard or respect for anyone or anything except himself. He has but one objective in life: Bring everything that God has made to ruin.

 

Why? Because he knows that he is hopelessly doomed. He knows there is no recovery. He knows that God will fully punish him for his actions at the appointed time and he doesn’t care, so why not create as much grief for God and mankind until the end that he possibly can? This is a heart of hatred.

 

Ok, so far, Revelation 12:1-6 tells us:

1. Chronological order

2. Lucifer himself is a violent predator

 

The third thing about the short prophecy in verses 1-6 is the timely settingof this prophecy. This prophecy spans –1800 years. It began in 4 B.C. (shortly before the birth of Jesus) and it ended in 1798 (the end of the 1,260 years in the desert). How can we know for sure that this prophecy ended in 1798? 

 

If you remember our study on Daniel 7, you should recall three important things:

 

1. The little horn that arose from the fourth beast (the Roman empire) was the Roman Catholic Church. This conclusion is beyond reasonable argument when all the specifications given in Daniel 7 are examined and historically compared.

2. Daniel 7:25 indicates the little horn would uproot three horns and persecute the saints for a time, times, and half a time. The Roman Catholic Church was instrumental in the destruction of the three of the ten horns that overran the Roman Empire. Further, according to Rule 4, the Jubilee Calendar forces “a time, times and half a time” to equal 1,260 years. (Incidentally, Revelation 12:6 and 12:14 confirms the fact that 1,260 days equals a time, times and half a time.)

3. History says that in A.D. 533, the Roman Emperor, Justinian, gave the pope the authority to determine who could belong and who could not belong to the Holy Roman Empire. Within five years, the Ostragoths, Heruli and Vandals, the three tribal nations that were part of the original 10 horns that divided the pagan Roman Empire had been destroyed and the Holy Roman Empire functioned without theological impediment.

 

When all of these specifications are put on the table, we find that 1,260 years after the destruction of the three horns, the Holy Roman Empire collapsed during the French Revolution. The authority of the Church over the governments of Europe was finally broken in February 1798.

 

Revelation 12:6 says the devil chased the woman (e.g., the saints) to the desert for 1,260 years. It is obvious that Daniel 7:25 and Revelation 12:6 point to the same period of persecution because (a) this time is so large that there is no other place for it (b) the specifications in both prophecies link together to produce the same result.

 

Here’s the point: If you can understand how the devil used one man in his attempt to kill baby Jesus… Then, you should be able to understand how the devil used generations of evil men within the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church to persecute and destroy the saints for 1,260 years. 

 

It’s as simple as predatory violence.

 

Once it became politically powerful as “the corrector of heretics” – the Roman Catholic Church became a predator against anyone who challenged its teachings or authority. The history of the Christian Church parallels the history of Israel in many ways. Both persecuted those who love truth. Ironically, in both cases the persecuted eventually became the persecutor.

 

The Church was supposed to exalt – faith in love for Jesus Christ, but it became focused on growth and acceptance and over time that morphed into a need for political influence and control and that eventually that morphed into the need for absolute power. By 538 A.D., the church gained absolute power.

 

We have examined these things because it is imperative that you understand that: Revelation 12:1-6 is a Lucifer versus God prophecyand the prophecy that we are going to study today, Revelation 12:7-14:5, is a Lucifer versus the saints (the woman) prophecy.

 

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