Summary: Chapter 12 of the Book of Revelation
Revelation Chapter 12
VS 1-2 there is the first character in the great tribulation – a women with child.
Look how the woman bursts upon the scene. She is said to be a great “wonder” a sign from heaven, also she is in heaven.
This means that she is the heavenly representative of some earthly people.
Who is the woman on earth, what people does she represent?
1. This woman is not identified, but it is clear who she is.
· This refers back to the Old Testament to a dream that Joseph had
Note that Jacob understood exactly what Joseph meant: the sun represented the father Jacob, the moon the mother, and the 12 stars the brother. The dream was a picture of Israel; Joseph was dreaming the Israel would be saved from destruction through him.
· She is pregnant and the child is pictured as being born (v. 2, 5)
What is said about the child?
(Read Vs 5)
This clearly refers to Jesus Christ. He and He alone were born to rule all nations and he alone was exalted to the throne of God.
2. Now who is this woman? There are 4 main positions about who she is.
· Some say she is Mary, the mother of Jesus. But there are just too many supernatural things said about her for her to be an earthly being.
· Some say she is the church. But this is difficult to see, for the church did not give birth to Christ. On the contrary, Christ gave birth to the church.
· Some say she is the ideal Zion. The ideal Jerusalem, the ideal Israel, the chosen people, the community of God from which Christ came. These say the mother represents all the true people of God, those before Jesus came and those after He came.
Paul actually speaks of the Jerusalem which is above, who is the mother of the people of God on earth (Gal 4:6). This position is a possible identification of the woman. But again, this position does NOT fill All the things that said about the woman, not as well as Israel itself does.
· Some say that the woman represents Israel, the very people who gave birth to Jesus. This seems to be the clearest identification of the woman. As we progress through the passage, we will see that everything said about this woman fits Israel just like a glove.
Revelation Chapter 12
There is the 2nd character in the great tribulation - the great red dragon, that is, the devil. The dragon is also said to be a wonder or a sign from heaven.
1. There is a description and authority of the dragon or devil; the description is entirely different from what most people think. When people think of the devil, the picture of a fiery red serpent – like creature with 2 horns and a long pointed tail that holds a pitchfork in his hand. But this is a total misconception, a far cry from the truth.
When scripture speaks of Satan as a dragon, it is referring to the evil works he does, not to his looks or appearance. Scripture says that Satan was the highest and most glorious being ever created by God.
Look what this verse says about his description, and remember: THIS is NOT picturing what he LOOKS like. It is describing his authority & power.