September gave me opportunity to speak at three ministry events, each of which were such a huge blessing to my heart. Honestly, I am so very much in my sweet spot when I am standing on the speaking stage because it is what I was born to do. What about you? What does it look like for you to be doing what you were born to do? What is your sweet spot? I would love for you to share about it in the comments.
I shared a couple of weeks ago about the Come Awayretreat in THIS post. My final ministry opportunity in September found me in northeastern Georgia at Camp Pinnacle sharing with the ladies from Middle Georgia WMU (Women’s Missionary Union) at their annual retreat. It was such a sweet time as I shared the Legacy message with them. I also had the opportunity to share about Compassion’s Child Sponsorship program. Y’all, six precious children now have sponsors, and those sponsors have changed not only the lives of the children, but they have also given the families of those children hope for a better future for their child. Praise God!!
So, today in our study in the book of Revelation, we finish our look at chapter 12 by examining verses 13 – 17.
13 And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child.
14 But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time.
15 The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood.
16 But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth.
17 Then the dragon became furious with the woman and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and hold to the testimony of Jesus. And he stood on the sand of the sea.
Let’s get our bearings for a moment. In this post, we learned that the woman represents the nation of Israel, the child is Jesus, while the serpent represents Satan. A while ago in this post, we learned that the phrase ‘a time, and times, and half a time signifies a 3 ½ year period of time. Also, in this post, we reviewed Scriptures that told the story of Satan’s fall from grace.
So, today in our focal passage we find the devil lashing out at the woman (Israel), but she is rescued by a miracle and hidden in the wilderness for 3 ½ years.
Verses 15 and 16 depict an interesting scenario of the serpent trying to destroy the woman by a flood that pours forth out of his mouth. Israel is helped by the earth when it opens its mouth and swallows the river. A reasonable question here is whether this will be a literal occurrence, i.e. a real flood, or whether this is a symbolic reference to how Satan will try to destroy Israel, yet again.
Commentator Warren Wiersbe believes that this ‘flood’ symbolizes an unprecedented wave of anti-Semitism. There is no way to know with certainty what this flood is, but one thing is certain….God protects His people and provides a miraculous way of escape for them. When Satan cannot attack Israel, he turns his fury on those believers in Christ who are alive in that day.
Although there is really no biblical evidence to support the idea, some have speculated that the place where Israel is sheltered for 3 ½ years is Petra, which is in the mountains of in country of Jordan.
You might ask when this takes place. I believe these events occur during the last half of the 7-year period of tribulation, or the 3 ½ years that might be called the great tribulation. I believe this 3 ½ year period begins at the sounding of the 7thtrumpet as detailed in this post.
Satan hates Israel because God loves her. Over the millennia he has tried many times to obliterate the nation of Israel from the face of the earth, but each time God has spared her. Satan will keep trying and God will continue to protect her until the hearts of the Jewish people turn to Christ.
Next time we will journey into Revelation 13. See you then.
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