A godly woman gives birth to a child destined to rule the nations, but an evil monster tries to kill the baby. However, God protects the child and the woman so that the kingdom the child came to establish could be set up on the earth and the forces of evil brought to ruin. Sound familiar?
And they have conquered him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.
Revelation 12 is not your typical Christmas text. Set in the heavens and occurring at an unspecified time, the passage uses apocalyptic imagery to tell a story that echoes the biblical narrative of Jesus' birth.
A godly woman gives birth to a child destined to rule the nations, but an evil monster tries to kill the baby. However, God protects the child and the woman so that the kingdom the child came to establish could be set up on the earth and the forces of evil brought to ruin.
Sound familiar? The book of Revelation is describing a "Cosmic Christmas."
It is the story of the Lamb told without reference to Bethlehem, Galilee, or even Jerusalem. The Messiah is no longer a peasant rabbi but a Cosmic Christ, come to “rule all nations with a rod of iron" (Revelation 12:5).
No longer riding a donkey and coming in meekness, Christ returns on a white horse to destroy forever Satan and his evil forces (Revelation 19:11-21). In other words, the events in the gospel (the incarnation, the cross, the resurrection, the ascension) are, in reality, only a prelude, a prequel. The main event is yet to come!
"And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, 'Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God.'" (Revelation 12:10)
Revelation 12 tells us that every life has cosmic significance. There is a battle going on of eternal and universal dimensions, and every human being is involved. From all outward appearances, Satan has the upper hand. He has supernatural power, and his forces are formidable. But don't be fooled! Those in the army of the Lamb have a three-fold battle plan that makes them invincible. They will conquer Satan by (Revelation 12:11):
1. The blood of the Lamb
Victory in this battle comes not through our efforts, but His! Jesus' atoning blood renders impotent the accusations of Satan. Because of the forgiveness that comes through the cross, there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). In dying for sin, Jesus "disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him" (Colossians 2:15).
2. The word of their testimony
Victory comes only when we open our mouths and verbally identify ourselves as followers of Jesus. Those who fail to bear witness to Christ through fear or embarrassment live in constant defeat. The path to victory is in naming the Name: Jesus. "There is salvation in no one else..." (Acts 4:12).
3. Their readiness for martyrdom
"They loved not their lives even unto death" (Revelation 12:11) "Whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it" (Luke 9:24). Victory over Satan comes only to those who have come to a place of total surrender and full consecration so that they are ready to die if necessary for the One who died for them! Jesus said, "Whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it" (Luke 9:24).
Today, if you are feeling defeated, discouraged, or depressed, then follow the apostolic three-fold strategy for victory. It works every time. Jesus Himself guarantees it!
Originally published in Face to Face by Stan Key, Francis Asbury Press, 2019
Pray this week:
Thank you Lord for defeating Satan - by Your blood, by our testimony, and by our willingness to follow You in giving up our lives. Give us courage!
Christ came, Christ comes, Christ will come. Would you like some help to get ready for His coming again?