Revelation 12-13: A great battle
Hope after Hope Before Hope / Revelation 12–13
Chapters 12 and 13 are central to the book of Revelation
• There are a number of characters that are battling it out. Here is the list
• A dragon=satan directly opposing the church (the leviathan)
• A woman=Israel
• A child=The messiah, Christ
• further offspring= the church
• A voice= The messenger
• the First beast=satan manipulating the nations
• the Second beast=mimicking the true God to entice people to worship lesser things
• What we find is that while it seems like the enemy is winning, the reality is that he has already lost. He is a destroyed foe. Destroyed at the cross. Death and satan are destroyed already at the cross.
• In Revelation, at the end of all things, we will see the enemy and the world, any spiritual being, any group and any person, who has set themselves up against God, run full board to attack. They cannot handle not being center, not being first.
2 Peter 3:8–9 ESV
But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
• And while these chapters are overrun with evil, with satan who directly opposes God, we have to be reminded that someone has to address evil.
Where is Christ in the middle of Chaos?
Every and any attempt: Direct assault and trickery
• Satan comes with a direct attack against Christ and against the church, and against the world.
Revelation 12:9 ESV
And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.
• Let’s turn back to John Milton to see what satan may have been thinking in this moment. This comes from satan’s great speech about revenge against God, taking it out on humanity who bear God’s creative mark. He is in hell speaking to his demons and states:
Paradise Lost Book 1:656-669
• 656: Our first eruption, thither or elsewhere: 657: For this Infernal Pit shall never hold 658: Caelestial Spirits in Bondage, nor th’ Abysse 659: Long under darkness cover. But these thoughts 660: Full Counsel must mature: Peace is despaird, 661: For who can think Submission? Warr then, Warr 662: Open or understood must be resolv’d. 663: He spake: and to confirm his words, out-flew 664: Millions of flaming swords, drawn from the thighs 665: Of mighty Cherubim; the sudden blaze 666: Far round illumin’d hell: highly they rag’d 667: Against the Highest, and fierce with grasped arm’s 668: Clash’d on their sounding shields the din of war, 669: Hurling defiance toward the vault of Heav’n.
Revelation 12:3 ESV
And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems.
Revelation 13:11 ESV
Then I saw another beast rising out of the earth. It had two horns like a lamb and it spoke like a dragon.
› We’ve got to be able to see evil for what it is. A manipulative charlatan
› We’ve got to be able to see Satan for who he is. A manipulative charlatan.
• We can begin by looking at what the enemy is trying to copy. The enemy, the wolf in sheeps clothing, while manipulating, is pointing to a real need, so something much more incredible than he could even pull off himself.
• His manipulation and parody of Christ is a tell. Like poker players have a tell. because he cannot create he can only copy. And so he does. But he copies what is ultimately truly good.
Finding Christ in the middle of Chaos
Revelation 12:10–11 ESV
And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.
• The problem with evil is that it begets evil. Evil ramps up all sorts of evil reactions. and as long as we respond evil with evil we will lose. We will act on behalf of the enemy
• And when we find ourselves in it. When the church is caught up in it, our only solution, our first and last, is to look to Christ. To trust Him again in new situations.
Hearing Christ in the middle of Chaos.
We begin by speaking
• We address the anger and injustice.
• We pray our emotions.
• We pray our anger.
• We pray, bring before God the evil reality we are face to face with.
We end by listening
• But as these psalms address God, you see a shift happening.
• You can begin to locate God in the middle. God who has always been and will always be.