Christ gives special care and protection from Satan to the elect unto a local church to be nourished
By Brother Mike (3-18-22; 40 minutes)
And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child
14 And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent .
I this study, we will see how Christ gave special care and protection from Satan to His eternal church, the elect, as He led them to one of His local churches to be nourished throughout the Church Age. Although when Satan perceived that he had been cast out of heaven to the earth after the cross, he persecuted Christ's eternal church, the elect, once each one of the elect were eternally saved in Jesus Christ during the Church Age, Christ gave each one of them special care and protection from the full persecution of Satan, for Satan knew that the best way to get back at God for having cast him out of heaven at the cross was to hurt God's eternal church, the elect, in any way possible. If he could greatly hurt them, he knew it would greatly and directly hurt God.
Now, may our great Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, who gave special care and protection to His elect during the Church Age, assure our hearts that He continues to give us special care and protection during Judgment Day that we are know in, amen.
13 And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man [child].
It is not surprising that when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man [child]. The woman, of course, refers to the eternal church, the elect. Remember what we previously learned back in verse 1 of Revelation 12
22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord .
23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church [Christ's wife] : and he is the saviour of the body .
24 Therefore as the church [the wife of Christ] is subject unto Christ [the husband of the Church] , so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything .
25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ [the husband of the Church] also loved the church [His wife] , and gave himself for it ;
26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word ,
might present it to himself a glorious church
[a glorious wife]
, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish
28 So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself .
29 For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourishes and cherishes it, even as the Lord [Christ] , the church [Christ's wife]:
30 For we [the Church] are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones .
31 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh .
32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ [who is the husband of the Church] and the church [who is Christ's wife].
Thus, we see that the word translated as woman in our verse that reads, And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man [child], is better translated as the wife who represents the wife of Christ who is the eternal church, the elect. So now, our verse reads, And when the dragon [Satan] saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the wife [the wife of Christ who is the eternal church, the elect] which brought forth the man child [Jesus Christ]. And, by the way, the word child as in man child is not in the Greek, so our verse is even more literally translated like this: And when the dragon [Satan] saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the wife [the wife of Christ who is the eternal church, the elect] which brought forth the man [Jesus Christ].
But now, how could the eternal church, the elect, have brought forth the man, Jesus Christ? I thought it was Mary who brought forth the Christ. Yes, Mary physically gave birth to the Christ (and, by the way,
Mary was not sinless to have given birth to Christ
For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus
To think that somehow Mary is more compassionate than Christ and, therefore, more likely to hear or better able to pass on your prayers to Christ or God is idolatry. Remember, we who have the Holy Spirit already have the best person praying for us as we read in Romans 8,
Ro 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit Himself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered .
Thus, we have no need for Mary, dead Saints, or anyone else in heaven, except Christ and the Holy Spirit, to help us with our prayers. To even think that Mary or dead Saints in heaven could deal with billions of prayers all at once is not only idolatry but absolute foolishness, not to mention all the vain repetition of prayers
Well now, our verse states, And when the dragon [Satan] saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman [the eternal church, the elect] .
Now, why would Satan have especially targeted the eternal church, the elect? I mean, all of creation was created by God and so destroying any part it would be an attack on God. But Satan had already guaranteed the destruction of God's creation when he instigated the fall of Adam and Eve. By getting them to sin in the garden, the whole creation of God fell from a state of incorruption to a state of corruption that would eventually grow old and die. And although God won back His creation at the cross, Satan knew that it would not be changed back to a state of incorruption until the Last Day, which is also when Satan, his angels, and his unsaved people would be eternally destroyed. Thus, Satan likely realized that there was nothing he could do further to destroy God's creation because he had already forced the creation into a state of corruption to slowly grow old and die, and even if he now worked to destroy God's creation faster, it would still eventually be transformed into a state of incorruption on the Last Day when Satan could do no more damage. So, ever since the cross, Satan knew he could not win!
But what if Satan focused his energy toward making the lives of God's elect here on earth extremely difficult and even miserable at times by persecution of every kind such as constant spiritual attacks and warfare, attacks against their finances, attacks through coworkers or employers, attacks against the elect's health, attacks on their marriages, attacks on their children or loved ones, attacks through their children or loved ones (remember, Christ taught that a man's foes shall be they of his own household), attacks on their churches when the elect were still in churches, attacks from men (remember, Christ said to the elect, ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake), attacks especially targeted on the elect's weaknesses, or whatever Satan, his demons, and unsaved people can do to bring tribulation, suffering, pain or even death to God's elect. And we read in Ephesians 5,
Eph 5:30 For we [the elect] are members of his body [Christ's body] , of his flesh, and of his bones .
Therefore, since the elect are members of Christ's body, of His flesh, and of His bones, Satan knew that if He persecuted the elect to bring tribulation, suffering, and pain to them, he would also be bringing the same upon God, for the elect's physical bodies of flesh and bones were and are the flesh and bones of Jesus Christ Himself, and Jesus Christ is God. So, whatever type of attack that Satan could bring upon the elect to cause them distress, tribulation, suffering, or pain would directly cause Jesus Christ distress, tribulation, suffering, or pain.
And that same conflict the elect still have in common with the apostle Paul is the choice to either escape all the sufferings we have been called to endure in this life by passing on to be with the Lord in heaven, which would be far better than remaining in this life, or to continue in this life to fulfill the sufferings of Christ who is in us by continuing to do our part for the sake of His kingdom and body, the elect. Like Paul said in Philippians 1 when he was in prison fulfilling the suffering of Christ through his own suffering, for his flesh and bones were of Christ who was in him, he said,
21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain .
22 But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labour [that Christ was being preached -see verse 18] : yet what I shall choose I wot not [I know not].
23 For I am in a strait betwixt two [I am being pressed by the two] , having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better :
24 Nevertheless to abide in the flesh is more needful for you .
25 And having this confidence, I know that I shall abide and continue with you all for your furtherance and joy of faith ;
26 That your rejoicing may be more abundant in Jesus Christ for me by my coming to you again .
Likewise, we, the elect, who have been called to not only believe in Christ but to fulfill the sufferings of Christ through our own sufferings, although we are conflicted at difficult times within as to whether we should stay in or leave this pit of hell on earth, we must not yet choose to depart to be with Christ when we experience such tribulations, hardships,
and based on Ezekiel 1 where Ezekiel saw visions of the four living creatures, we learned that they were defined as being visions of God (Ezekiel 1:1). Thus, we learned that the four living creatures each symbolize God Himself.
Then, in Revelation 4:7
13 And these are they which ye shall have in abomination among the fowls; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray ...
Yet, how can the fourth beast that we know represents God because the four living creatures in Ezekiel Chapter 1 are said to be visions of God be like an unclean bird? The only way this can be is if we see this unclean eagle as symbolizing Christ who became sin (unclean) for us. That is, He took all our sins upon Himself as He went to the cross and so became unclean for us to save us from our sins. As the scripture declares,
2Co 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin [unclean] for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him .
Thus, we see that the fourth beast who pictures God is a picture of Jesus Christ Himself who paid for our sins.
Yet, not only does the flying eagle picture Christ as our atonement, but it pictures the love of Christ in the care for and protection of His people. We can see this in such verses as Deuteronomy 32 where we read,
11 As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings : 12 So the LORD alone did lead him [Jacob], and there was no strange god with him .
And, Yahweh says in Exodus 19,
Ex 19:4 Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings, and brought you unto myself .
Thus, we see that the fourth beast which was like a flying eagle not only represents Christ, but also the loving care of Christ for His people, which brings us back to our verse that states,
Re 12:14 And to the wife [the eternal Church, the elect] were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent .
Now we know what the two wings of a great eagle symbolize! The great eagle, of course, represents Christ Himself who was sacrificed for us as we previously learned, and in that His two wings were given to His wife (to the eternal church, His elect) symbolizes that His special care was given to His eternal church, the elect.
We also learned that when Satan perceived that he was cast from heaven to the earth after the cross, he persecuted the eternal church, the elect. He persecuted them because he realized that by bringing trouble of every sort into the lives of the elect, it would bring great pain and suffering to them, which would also bring great suffering to Christ because the flesh and bones of the elect had become the flesh and bones of Christ when they were eternally saved in Jesus Christ. So, Satan set out to hurt the eternal church, the elect, in every way that he could. And do you suppose that Satan was out to hurt the elect more then, or now? That's right, now! He knows his time is almost completely over, so he is out to hurt God more than ever by trying to cause the elect, especially those who are being faithful to Yahweh by declaring judgment upon all the churches and the world, in any way possible whether by tribulation, affliction, torture, or death. But God is giving special care to His eternal church, the elect, for He would say to us,
Ex 19:4 Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings, and brought you unto myself .
How much more now will He bare us on eagles' wings until we are brought unto Christ in heaven, for if Yahweh brought His earthly and temporal people in Egypt to Himself in the land of Canaan, how much more will He finish bringing His heavenly and eternal people to the new heaven and earth to be created from this burned up heaven and earth on the Last Day.
Now, as we rejoice in God's special care for us, and until the next time, may Yahweh bless thee, and keep thee: Yahweh make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: Yahweh lift up his countenance upon thee, and G thee peace (Numbers 6:24-26).