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Exploring Revelation
5858
“Revelation 12:1 Pt. 2”
by Art Sadlier   
March 23rd, 2009

THE SETTING

The Seal judgments and the Trumpet judgments have been unleashed on the earth. We are now beginning the last half of the tribulation period. The two witnesses have finished their testimonies, have been killed and caught up to heaven. Antichrist has also broken his covenant with Israel, Daniel 9:27.

The tribulation period has opened with Syria and Egypt coming against Israel. Then Russia and her allies, Iran and the Islamic nations that surround Israel have come against her. Both these attacks have been overcome. Actually God Himself had sent fire to annihilate Russia and the invading army.

Antichrist had taken the credit for the destruction of Russia, consolidating his position with Israel, appearing to be their Messiah. Until this midpoint of the tribulation, Israel had been living in peace and security guaranteed by Antichrist. Israel had been, for 3 ½ years practising Temple worship in the third Temple which had been built.

In Revelation 11:1 Israel and that temple worship had been evaluated. In verse 8, the evaluation is given, that is God's evaluation of Israel at this point. The purpose of this chapter is to bring Israel into focus. There is a great mystery surrounding Israel today. This chapter helps us to understand why they are in the land today. How they can survive though the Arabs around them out number them 50-1.

Revelation 12 represents the conflict of the ages, this conflict involves Israel, Christ, Satan and the Nations. This conflict describes the great conflict of the past and the great conflict of the future, however the present age of grace is not involved in Revelation 12.

Chapter12 is largely in symbolic form, rather than literal form. The bible is to be interpreted literally, that is the basic rule of interpretation. Always interpret the bible literally except where the bible indicates that symbolism is used.

In chapter 12, the Spirit of God speaking through John, goes to great lengths to emphasize that this is symbolic language. Why does the Spirit  do this? The answer is that the Spirit of God does not want us to take the rest of the book as also being symbolic language.

For the evidence that this chapter is symbolic language look verse 1, "And there appeared a great wonder in heaven''. The word  wonder means a sign, wonder and sign are translated from the same greek word. So we can read it, There appeared a great sign in heaven. A sign is of course is figurative of a truth.

Verse 3, ''And there appeared another great wonder (sign) in heaven''. So in chapter 12 we have signs or symbols that are figurative of truth.

Chapter 12 is also a chapter of great things, we see a great wonder, a great red dragon, great wrath. And two wings of a great eagle.

This is a very important chapter in the book.

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