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 Sermons on important subjects by Rev. Paul C. Jong

 

God's Church That Will Be Greatly Harmed in the Future


< Revelation 12:1-17 >

"Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars. Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born. She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne. Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days. And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, 'Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.' Now when the dragon saw that he had been cast to the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male Child. But the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent. So the serpent spewed water out of his mouth like a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood. But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ."



Exegesis

Verse 1: Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars.

This tells us of God's Church giving glory to Him through martyrdom. The "woman clothed with the sun" refers to God's Church on this earth, and the phrase "with the moon under her feet" means that the Church is still under the rule of the world. The phrase "on her head a garland of twelve stars," on the other hand, means that His Church will overcome Satan's persecution and threats with its martyrdom.

This verse refers to God's Church in the midst of the Great Tribulation. His Church will suffer great harms from Satan and be martyred in the end times, but it will nevertheless overcome Satan with its faith and be glorified by God. Even in the Tribulation's time, the saints of God's Church will overcome the Antichrist and triumph with their martyrdom by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

The children of God who have been born again by the water and the Spirit will most certainly be martyred in the end times. Those who would have already believed and served God before the advent of the Tribulation, and those who would believe in the gospel and rise up like so many mushrooms amidst the Tribulation, will both have the faith of martyrdom that can enable them to stand against and overcome the Antichrist.

Those who are excluded from martyrdom by betraying Him will also be excluded from Heaven, and fall into the hell of Hades along with Satan. And we should be prepared to embrace our martyrdom with bold faith lest we lose our eternal blessings prepared for us. And we have to know that all the born-again will face the threatening of Satan. Martyrdom will last only momentarily, and when this brief moment is over, the Millennial Kingdom and Heaven will be ours.

As such, we must live this present era knowing that when the end times come, we will be martyred by faith and through the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit will then give us the words with which to speak in this time of martyrdom, enabling us to courageously overcome our persecution and willingly embrace our martyrdom without betraying our faith.

Even in the midst of the fearful Tribulation, God's Church will still fight against Satan and overcome him by being martyred. It is most clear that the Church will receive its rewards from God by overcoming the Antichrist with its martyrdom, believing in the Lord's Word even in the last era of Satan.


Verse 2: Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth.

This verse tells us of God's Church in tribulations. It tells us of the whole Church persevering through the persecutions and tribulations of the end times brought by Satan. God's Church will pass through the Great Tribulation, the time of its struggle against the Antichrist. The saints would thus call upon God only when they go through the Tribulation. They would pray, "God, give us Your grace so that we may quickly pass through all these tribulations. Help us by abating all these tribulations. Allow us to overcome our tribulations. Make us overcome Satan!"


Verse 3: And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads.

When Satan makes his appearance on this earth in the future, he will act as if he were God, and that He will garner together all the nations of the world and use them as his instruments to fulfill his purposes. Also, he will most certainly kill the saints and reign the world like God and a king.

The phrase, "Behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads," shows that Satan, the peace-breaker, will move seven kings and ten nations at his own disposal. It tells us that Satan, in his very essence, stands against God fundamentally.


Verse 4: His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born.

This verse tells us what Satan does. The Dragon turned against God in Heaven and was thrown out of it. He drew a third of the angels of Heaven to his fold and led them to their destruction along with his own. He was thus driven out from the presence of God. But even while on this earth, he still tries to stop the work of God's gospel by persecuting those who believe in it.


Verse 5: She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne.

This tells us that God's Church, because it is martyred by believing in Jesus Christ, will be resurrected with Christ and be raptured to the Kingdom of Heaven.


Verse 6: Then the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, that they should feed her there one thousand two hundred and sixty days.

This verse tells us that God would feed His people for three and a half years in this world. God's Church will be fed and protected by God for 1,260 days before the advent of the full-scale tribulation, and when the time comes, it will fight against the Antichrist and be martyred.


Verses 7-8: And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer.

This refers to Satan being completely driven out of Heaven.

Before coming to this world, Satan will be thrown out of Heaven completely. The Devil will no longer be able to stay Heaven. Satan, who has the power over the air, sits on both the air and the earth and rules over them now. As he would thus be completely thrown out of Heaven, on this earth he would persecute the saints even more when the last days come. But Satan will then be cast out and totally bound in the bottomless pit and hell prepared by God.


Verse 9: So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

In the end times, Satan, as he is cast out from Heaven and thrown down to this earth, will persecute and kill the saints for the last time. Many saints will then be martyred at his hands.


Verse 10: Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, "Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down."

Satan would no longer be found in the Kingdom of Heaven. When the end times pass by, he will not be able to remain in Heaven anymore. This is why Revelation 21:27 tells us that neither evildoers nor liars are found in Heaven.


Verse 11: "And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death."

When the end times come, the saints will be martyred to defend their faith. Whosoever is a saint will achieve the victory of faith through his/her martyrdom of faith in the end times. The martyrs who believe in the Lord, in other words, will overcome in their fight against the self.


Verse 12: "Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time."

As Satan, thrown out of Heaven, temporarily has power over the world, he will torment and persecute the saints terribly when he comes down to this earth. But for the saints who would be martyred and lifted up to the air, only joy will await them. After the rapture, God will pour down the plagues of the seven bowls on all the earth and the sea.


Verse 13: Now when the dragon saw that he had been cast to the earth, he persecuted the woman who gave birth to the male Child.

This refers to the persecution of the saints to come during the time of the Great Tribulation. The saints and the servant of God will die at this time as they are martyred, but this would in fact be the achievement of their victory of faith. There will no longer be any more death, suffering, or curse for them. All that remains for them would be to praise God and be glorified forever in Heaven.


Verse 14: But the woman was given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness to her place, where she is nourished for a time and times and half a time, from the presence of the serpent.

The Bible tells us that the rapture will happen after the first three and a half years of the Great Tribulation pass by. This Word says that God will give the saints His special protection and nourishment in the midst of the natural plagues of the Great Tribulation. God will nourish those of us who keep our faith so that we may fight against and overcome Satan with this faith.

That we are now living for the gospel of the water and the Spirit is our nourishment, and so is our preaching of this gospel. Even until the plagues of the seven trumpets descend on this earth, we will continue to live our lives by preaching the gospel. Why? Because if we do not preach this gospel until the very last moment of our martyrdom, too many souls will be lost to hell. There is no other time but now.


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Verses 15-17: So the serpent spewed water out of his mouth like a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away by the flood. But the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed up the flood which the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

Before, Satan killed the saints by persecuting them and making them move away from the gospel. But nowadays, as the gospel has been widely spread through various ways, he tries to kill the saints by pouring down sin and drowning them in its flow. Satan has thus tried to bring death to many saints by pouring the river of sin and making them drink from its water, but those who have not been born again have drunk all of the water of this river of sin instead. As saints have survived and have not been killed even with this effort, Satan will come up with another method to kill them off completely, as shown in chapter 13.

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