June 10, 2018 – Revelation 11:19-12:17
Read only to vs. 12
Summer of ‘42 my father driving us through FORT RILEY, Kansas, when we were stopped by the M.P.’s. Fort Riley was home of the 9th and 10th Cavalry Regiments of the U.S. Army. We waited by the road for a few minutes and then suddenly about 300 horsemen came charging right across the highway, hooves thundering, banners flying, our whole family watching with mouths agape at this spectacular display of military might. HAVE NEVER FORGOT THAT FASCINATING SPCTACLE!!
I am hope this story helps you visualize this whole chapter. first we see the archangel
Michael at war with the Dragon in Heaven Vs 7, casting the DRAGON down to the earth. Then the People of God CONQUERING the DRAGON IN Vss 10-12, AND in the rest of this book.
THIS IS A PICTURE OF MISSIONARY WARFARE, MISSIONARY WORK IS WARFARE!!
IT IS THE LAMB OF GOD WHO leads the people of God! TOGETHER THEY CONQUER that DRAGON! “by the blood of the LAMB and the word of their testimony.” Vs. 11
But that conquest is still future. RIGHT NOW! The war is raging all around us! It is the great DRAMA of HISTORY! – A TITANIC STRUGGLE that lies at the base of all human was reflected in our war with Adolph Hitler/NAZIS in 1942. It is reflected in the battles going on in our congress, the conflicts that go on in our marriages, and all the conflicts that fill the earth. My theme, however, is positive:
When Jesus rose from the dead and commissioned his disciples to “make disciples of all nations” they REJOICE WITH THE LAMB IN HIS MISSIONARY VICTORY OVER THE DRAGON
were filled with a missionary zeal- Rejoicing as seen in Rev.12:12 (read-expand!!) The church spread at a rate of 40% per decade in the first two centuries of Christian history until 58% of the Roman empire were believers in Christ within 300 years. Sixteen Missionaries landed in Mombasa in 1895 now 100s of millions of believers in East Africa. Iran and Afghanistan are the fastest growing churches in the world today. Today there are over 2.4 billion Christians in our world. 1 Christian 4 every 362 people 100 AD, 1 for every 40 in 1900, 1 for every 9 in 2004 (last date with that statistic)
Successful missionary activity has been going on all over the world for over 2000 years BUT… It has been war all the way. Millions of Christian martyrs have been imprisoned, tortured, killed. To continue this war against this Murderous DRAGON we need to understand such a passage as Rev. 12. This chapter helps us REJOICE WITH THE LAMB WHILE WE CONTINUE OUR WAR WITH THE DRAGON.
Bulletin outline 3 PERSONS FILL HISTORY WITH THE DRAMA OF THIS WAR
- THE GLORY OF THE WOMAN- Who is committed to glorifying God!
“Clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of 12 stars.”
Vern Poythress refers to her as one who is “Arrayed in Cosmic Light”* – Wonderful Reality Here!
Poythress and other commentators see this woman as a collection of both O.T. and N.T. Saints and with the virgin Mary, as an outstanding member. We are part of this glorious body -YOU! and I!
We are all part of this TRULY GLORIOUS BODY OF SAINTS WHO ARE BATHED with COSMIC LIGHT:
- CRUCIFIXION OF JESUS FLOODING OUR LIVES WITH FORGIVENES, ATONEMENT
- RESURRECTION OF JESUS, RENEWING OUR LIVES, WITH THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT ENERGIZING US TO OBEY OUR SAVIOR WITH JOY, DELIGHT
- ASCENSION OF JESUS WHICH ENTHRONES THE SAVIOR IN GLORY, AND SEATS US BESIDE HIM
These 3 Redemptive acts of Jesus in our behalf cover us with COSMIC LIGHT, ETERNAL GLORY! IN ALL HUMILITY, BECAUSE CHRIST IS IN US, WE ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD!
HE IS THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD AND YOU ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
2 Important Parallel Texts:
Daniel 12:3 And those who are wise shall shine like the brightness of the sky above; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever.
Romans 15:14 Paul says, I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another.
NOTICE: The glorious woman succeeds in birthing the child in spite of the Dragon,
And then, though not mentioned in this text, she nurtured Him, trained Him, discipled Him!
POINT: You can nurture your children in spite of the DRAGON, Who also wants to devour your children! You can disciple them in the Love of God, reverence for his holy name, JOY IN SERVING HIM!
GIVING THEMSELVES IN LOVING SERVICE TO THE DESPERATE SINNERS WHO SO NEED OUR LOVE.
YOU CAN CREATE A GOD-CENTERED AMBIENCE IN YOUR HOME– Scripture, Prayer, Singing.
- THE HORRORS OF THE DRAGON Who is committed to glorifying himself!
He is trying desperately to create a culture of self-centered Ambience, which glorifies Himself! – Leading us to glorify ourselves – Part of PROTESTS going on!!
- Ephesians 2:1-4 “prince of the power of the air” creator of atmosphere/ambience
- I Thess. 2 describes “the lawless one – anti-Christ” Satan created “lawlessness”
* SUICIDES DISCUSSED IN SUNDAY SCHOOL – Listened to funeral yesterday
* 3 Ways DRAGON creates this kind of Lawless, death dealing ambience, atmosphere
- Vs 4. Murdering the Image of God, John 8:44b “he was a murderer from the beginning.”
WAR with Hitler and ISIS, conflict in Congress, Abortion murders in mothers’ wombs.
Dragon-Satan at work creating a death-culture, a death Ambience. Walking through tombs
- Vs. 9 Lying Deceiving the whole World. “Liar and the father of lies” John 8:44, cheating in every sphere of life, Opioid Crisis, drugs and alcohol, porno, T.V. Advertising
Vs. 15 –Rare agreement among commentators: This river is the flood of lies flowing out of Serpent’s
Mouth – lies like he first spoke to Eve in the garden now swelling to a flood of propaganda, Fake
News and DRAGON propaganda that creates DRAGON AMBIENCE – Murderous shooters in schools
homes and churches, Terrorism led by ROGUE governments, Political chaos as in Washington.
- Vs. 10 Accusing our Brothers Vs. 10 Internal sense of guilt, overpowering us with anxiety, driving us into the hopelessness of depression and suicide, murder of a whole households
DRAGON IS CAUSING GREAT PAIN FOR ALL OF US RIGHT NOW!
- Normal life in a fallen world
- But this pain is “Temporary” because THE DRAGON IS TEMPORARY!
- He will certainly be destroyed in the Lake of fire – Rev. 20:10
- We desperately need my last point here
III. THE TRIUMPH OF THE “GOD-MAN-LAMB” Who Leads Us into eternal life.
First I must Identify this GOD-MAN-LAMB –
- OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, THE Most glorious personality in History.
- A personality that radiated the steadfast love of God – Key expression in Psalms
- All of Old Testament History was pregnant with HIM, every prophecy full of him
- Virgin Birth was a Miracle as Grand as the Miracle of Creation
- His 33 years of perfect obedience to His Father was the most phenomenal achievement in human history, demonstrating what all Mankind can become the VERY image of God.
- HE ALONE qualified as God-Man to become THE LAMB OF GOD by dying on Calvary for our sin
- Towering Wonder, the Ultimate achievement of this “GOD-MAN-LAMB.
FINALLY must understand Rev 12:10-12 as spoken in fully developed Kingdom of God
- Spoken after the Savior’s Resurrection and Ascension, and Pentecost.
- Then bathed in the infinite Majesty of the Holy Spirit’s Illuminating Grace
THIS ALMIGHTY SAVIOR LEADS US TO CONQUER THE DRAGON
“by the blood of the LAMB and the word of their testimony.”
YOU AND I ARE CONQUERING HIM NOW
BY PREACHING AND TEACHING HIS BLOOD AND HIS RESURRECTION
WE ARE CONQUERING THAT DRAGON
AND ALL OF THE SAVIOR’S ENEMIES
I conclude with my own brief testimony.
My dear Savior has wonderfully blessed this old sinner by making ME a part of that beautiful woman pictured in the first verses of this text. Unworthy as I am I have shared in her radiant glory and have enjoyed the company of dear brothers and sisters who have ridden their cavalry horses beside me into the great warfare that we are winning. Now I am in a small congregation of my fellow-cavalrymen, lifted up and carried along by the magnificent truths of this text.
In February this year I received a phone call about a fellow elder, a dear brother, Ted Schmidt who served as a ruling elder on the session with me. I had married him to his wife Beverly when he was just out of college and they became some of our dearest friends in this battle. What a joy to work and fight the devil alongside these dear souls.
Then last March he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, one of the Dragon’s tools, and just Friday this last week Ted died with his wife Beverly and their two grown children beside him.
But two days before he died, A PCA congregation in Detroit, where he had stayed for treatment. Their choir, meeting on Wednesday night got on the skype phone and sang his favorite hymn for Him:
ROCK OF AGES, CLEFT FOR ME, LET ME HIDE MYSELF IN THEE
When we use weapons like that to fight our battles,
and comfort our soldiers,
The old Serpent does’nt have a chance
THE DRAGON WILL BE UTTERLY DEFEATED AND
OUR DEAR LORD JESUS CHRIST WILL BE CROWNED FOR ALL ETERNITY
Other data Chip Edgar assembled in early 2018:
- 7.3 billion people in the world in 196 nations , 7,100 languages
- 2.4 billion Christians represent 31% of world population.
- Of 16,000 people groups, 10,000 have some Christians.
- 3,600 people groups have the Bible in their language. There are 7100 languages in the world.
- 10.2 Million Muslims converted to Christ in 2017; only 600,600 Christians converted to Islam.