Summary: Jesus first coming set in motion everything necessary to bring in His Kingdom, in its full extent, at His Second coming.
[Note: I used graphics of the constellations I found online as illustrations; you might consider doing the same.].
Christmas in Revelation? Yep!
1. I love a good "who done it mystery." I have to admit that Agatha Christie's books and Erle Stanley Gardner's, "Perry Mason." Sometimes you can't put them down.
2. Likewise, the plan of God is absolutely fascinating.
3. But the real gems are below the surface; they must be mined.
4. Our sermon today, "Christmas in Revelation" really begins in the book of Genesis:
Genesis 3:14-15 The LORD God said to the serpent, "Because you have done this, cursed are you more than all cattle, and more than every beast of the field; on your belly you will go, and dust you will eat all the days of your life; and I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed;
He shall bruise you on the head, and you shall bruise him on the heel."
5. Songwriter Charles Wesley, John's brother, wrote my all-time favorite Christmas carol, "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing!" Many hymnals, including ours, leave out one great verse:
Come, Desire of nations come, Fix in us Thy humble home; Rise, the Woman's conquering Seed, Bruise in us the Serpent's head. Adam's likeness now efface: Stamp Thine image in its place; Second Adam, from above, Reinstate us in thy love.
MAIN IDEA: Jesus first coming set in motion everything necessary to bring in His Kingdom, in its full extent, at His Second coming.
TS--------------→ Let’s look at how both comings age intertwined and what exactly has happened and is going to happen.
This passage has an awful lot of depth to it, and it can get pretty confusing. It is thick, but fascinating. I’ll try to keep it simple.
I. The Sign of the WOMAN (1-2)
A. The GOSPEL in the stars!
Psalm 19:1ff reads, "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge.
There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world."
• The stars are also an early source of Gospel information…
Speaking of the constellation Virgo, D. James Kennedy of Coral Ridge ministries wrote, "As Christians we can easily see here a reference to the seed of the woman (that is, the virgin) who will conceive and bring forth a child (Isaiah 7:14)." — from his book: The Real Meaning of the Zodiac
Institute for Creation Research founder Henry Morris writes, “God’s people, of course, are absolutely forbidden to practice astrology, witchcraft, Spiritism or any other form of occult “science” (Isaiah 8:19, 20; 47:12-15)...
"But false religion is all the more deceptive when based on a core of truth. It is very significant that the twelve signs of the Zodiac—the twelve constellations…seem to antedate all recorded history and are the same in all the nations of antiquity, whether Babylonia, Egypt, Arabia, China, Greece, or others. This is all the more remarkable in view of the fact that the constellations in most cases bear no resemblance whatever to the figures they are supposed to depict. It seems most probable that there was some primeval agreement among the early progenitors of the human race…
"It is remarkable that the successive constellations of the Zodiac (the Biblical “Mazzaroth”—Job 38:32) do depict in startling fashion the prophecies of the Scriptures concerning the promised Savior of the world. Their story begins with the great sign of Virgo, the heavenly Virgin, with her infant son pictured in the accompanying [constellation] of Coma, and terminates eleven months later with Leo, the great Lion, tearing to pieces the fleeing Serpent. In between these two signs appears in various ways the great prophecy of the promised “seed of the woman” who, though mortally bruised by the Serpent, would yet rise again finally to crush completely the old Dragon, Satan, and all his works (Genesis 3:15; Revelation 12:9; 20:10).
"Now it is highly probable that the Magi were familiar, not only with the corrupt system of astrology, but also in some measure with the original evangelical meanings of the heavenly figures. Then, when they suddenly saw a very bright star appear in the constellation Coma (the Virgin’s Son, and there is considerable secular evidence that a “nova” occurred in this constellation at about the time of Christ’s birth), they interpreted it as Balaam’s prophesied Star out of Jacob, and eventually set out with a caravan on the long journey to Jerusalem."
Let's note what we have in our text:
1. The woman represented by VIRGO
2. 12 stars represented by COMA BERNICE'S HAIR