Summary: Saints overcome the dragon with two, maybe unexpected, weapons-the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony.
v. 7 And there was war in heaven, and Michael and his angels warred with the dragon, and the dragon warred with his angels
8. and he did not have strength, nor a was a place found for them any longer in heaven.
9. and the great dragon was thrown out, the old serpent, who is called the devil, and satan, who deceives the all inhabitants; he was thrown into the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.
10. And I heard a loud voice in heaven saying, “Now, salvation is come, and the power, and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ, because the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accused them before our God day and night.
11. and they had victory over him through the blood of the Lamb, and through the word of their testimony; and they did not love their own lives even to death.
12. Because of this, rejoice heavens, and those in dwelling in them! Woe to the earth and the sea, for the devil comes to you having great anger, knowing the time he has is short.”
v. 7 Does war in heaven sounds like a contradiction in terms? It does to me. James said wars come from within, from us desiring to have something we don’t have, and the willingness to hurt others to get what we want (James 4). It seems satan didn’t have what he wanted, and he was willing to make war to get it. But in the process he lost all the good he had.
v 8 This is the good news. The Accuser, the one who is there talking trash about you to the Lord every day, has no place in heaven. Instead, the One who is at the throne of God is constantly speaking on your behalf-your Advocate.
v 9 This is the bad news. Satan does have a place on this planet. Satan comes to deceive or lead astray, and accuse. The word Satan means Adversary, or Accuser, the plaintiff in a court of law.
v 10 see v 8. This is very good news.
v 11 He is defeated by the faithful believers by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony.
v 12 even this chapter, describing the fall of satan, includes horrors for the people of God. Yet the exhortation remains, “Rejoice!” Why? Because our final home is heaven, and there is no more place there for the only one who would have talked against you.
How do You Overcome?
The fact that you’re reading this means you’re already an overcomer. Satan, the dragon, comes for nothing but to steal, kill, and destroy. You’re not dead. You’re not destroyed. So, two-thirds of the victory is already there. But, do you ever feel that you’ve allowed something to be stolen from you? Maybe your virtue, maybe that honest spark inside of you that always wants to tell the truth, maybe the peace that passes understanding, maybe the joy that you know you had in the past but seems to elude you now. When portions of our being that are so precious are stolen, even everyday events can feel like battles in which we are defeated. But we can overcome. Tribulation Saints overcome the dragon with two, maybe unexpected, weapons-the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony.
The Blood of the Lamb
There is a spiritual battle going on in your head right now. We all have a voice in there that talks to us. That voice is not always our own (if you’d like a beautiful diversion from the daily grind that will give you insight into the strategies of the enemy, read “the Screwtape Letters” by CS Lewis this season when you have more than the usual amount of time to read). It says things like “You’re not good enough”, “You sinned again! You just can’t stop can you” “Everyone hates you”, “He doesn’t give you the respect you deserve”, “You’re going to fail again”, “It’s not worth it. No one cares anyway”. “You can’t forgive her-she doesn’t deserve it, and you just can’t”. Have you every heard that voice? “Satan” means “accuser”. Maybe it’s not just you’re voice in that head of yours. Do you know, really know, that Jesus died for all the sins of the world? His blood covers and cleanses and frees us from sin. We can have peace, not because we deserve it, but because He gives it. We can have joy, not by earning it, but as a gift. WE CAN FORGIVE, not because it’s in our nature, and not because anyone deserves it, but simply because Jesus loves that person I hate, and gave His precious blood to remove his sin. The blood of the Lamb overcomes satan like nothing else can. We need to remember His blood in all these thoughts and in every relationship. And when Jesus gives us victory through His blood, we need to tell the story.