I know it’s an apocalyptic vision for the future, but I’m thinking there’s a sense in which it is also an appropriate view for the present.
Hovering over Revelation 12 and mesmerized a bit by “a great red dragon.” A dragon who seeks to devour a child to be born “to rule all nations with a rod of iron.” But the dragon fails as the child is “caught up to God and to His throne.”
Once a force to be reckoned with in heaven, in his rebellion the dragon is defeated and thrown down to earth.
And then the great dragon is identified. He is the “ancient serpent.” The one called the devil. The one referred to as Satan. The deceiver of the whole world and the accuser of the people of God. He’s been exiled to earth, and he is ticked!
“Woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!”
(Revelation 12:12b ESV)
But even as he’s thrown down to do what the devil’s gonna do, John hears 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. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them!”
(Revelation 12:10-12a ESV)
The kingdom is coming in power. The authority of God’s Christ to be established on earth. Like I said, it’s gonna happen.
How it plays out in those last days, I don’t exactly know. But I do know that, at some level, it’s playing out even as we awake to our day. The future is now.
Satan is alive and well today on planet earth. The ruler of this age wreaking havoc even as he knows his time is short. Prowling around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour (1Pet. 5:8).
But the power and the kingdom of our God, under the authority of His Christ has also come. While not visibly established in earthly, governmental structures, nevertheless the kingdom of heaven is alive and well on planet earth through those who have overcome and conquered the devil “by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony.”
While earth will one day be the physical battlefield where the final war is waged to end the age, today it is a spiritual battlefield. An angry, defeated dragon seeking to destroy God’s created world even as he fights a futile battle against a redeemed people.
Stand fast, saints of the living God. The power and the kingdom and the authority of the Christ has come. Our enemy IS defeated. And the skirmishes of the day WILL give way to the fullness of His kingdom, in visible majesty and glory, coming soon to a planet near you.
According to God’s grace. Ultimately for God’s glory.