"And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he
persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child."
The story of this chapter has movement and a build-up of conflict,
first between the "dragon" and the "man child," and then the
"devil" in anger turns his persecuting power against the "woman." It
is ironic that the "dragon" does much of its persecuting work directed by the
The Spanish Inquisition
The papal forces engaged the civil powers to carry out the most ruthless persecutions
against the faithful Christians as represented in the "woman."
It was at the behest of the papacy that the "Holy
Actually, the "dragon" never had any
affection for this "woman." The "dragon" had a history of animosity
and persecution of the early Church. The persecution abated when the "dragon"
wished to control the "man child."
However, once the "dragon" was cast out of the ruling
spiritual realm, the "woman" was no longer exempt from his hatred. Unless
the Lord had intervened on her behalf, she would have perished.
"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."
"Two wings of a great eagle" are the
"wings" of the Old and New Testaments. You never saw an eagle fly with one wing.
Both are needed for flight.
From Peter Waldo on, the messengers to the
Church engaged in bringing
the Bible to light. Peter Waldo translated the four Gospels into French. Wycliff
translated the Bible into English, as did Tyndale. Luther gave us the German Bible.
Woman in the Wilderness
It was on the wings of a "great eagle" that the "woman" was
transported into the "wilderness" of separation in spirit from the "face of
the serpent." This expression in itself is most interesting.
We are told the "times of refreshing shall come from the presence
[out from the face of] of the Lord [Jehovah]."
This conveys the thought that Gods favor is turned toward man.
When the "serpent" turns his "face" toward the "woman," it
indicates he has turned his full attention toward destroying this "woman" or
toward her "seed."
God has a "place" for the
"woman," underneath the "wings" of the Almighty. "She is
nourished for a time, and times, and half a time from the face of the serpent."
This is a specific time prophecy covering from CE 539 to 1799. It was
because of Gods tender care and providence that the "woman" was sustained
against the penetrating anger of the "serpent."
As the twelve hundred and sixty-year time period neared its close, the
"serpent" became exasperated and frantic. He must somehow overwhelm this
"woman" whom he loathes. Desperate ones must take desperate measures.
"And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood
after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood."
Normal serpents are not known to be able to cast out large amounts
of water. This "serpent" is in fact that "old serpent," the devil.
Water is a symbol of truth of any kind—either spiritual, or human rights and dignity
pertaining to mankind.
The French Revolution
The devil tried a bold move in France, a nation that never had a reformation and where the
truth never penetrated as it did in England and Germany.
The "serpent" raised up gifted men of letters who awakened
the sleeping nation of France to what America was all about.
These men such as Robespierre, Voltaire, Rousseau,
Danton, Mirabeau, etc., were brilliant writers who with penetrating analysis exposed the
evils of royalty and priestcraft. Also, there was no shortage of evil to expose.
However, most of these men renounced all Christian values and exalted
the goddess of reason. The devils first love of paganism was reinstituted.
Nonetheless, many truths of human dignity and human rights were proclaimed and were
anxiously received by the masses.
"Satan" was never good in handling truth, and in this
instance he more or less shot himself in the foot. His design was to make the revolution
in France so bloody and repulsive that all the nations of Europe would cringe at what
happens when you give people that much freedom. He expected such revulsion on the part of
the nations that they would clamor to go back to the old papal controls and authority.
Satan badly misjudged matters. These reforms were so overdue that the
people and nations received them gladly. Once you spill water on dry ground it is hard to
get it back again.
The world could look at two revolutions now, one in France and the
other in the United States. The difference was that France took the pagan route and the
United States took the Christian path of reform. It was easy to see which bore better
The real purpose of the "serpents" strategy was to
have "true Christianity," represented in the "woman," "carried
away of the flood." He misjudged how thirsty the earth was for this refreshing water.
Consequently, the last state was worse than the first.
He succeeded in causing light and liberty to prosper to his own
disadvantage. Satan performs better in darkness than in light.
"And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her
mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth."
Try as the "serpent" would, we see his utter frustration
and the defeat in this most carefully thought-out plan to harm the "woman." The
world was never going back to the old papal way of doing things. The cloak-and-dagger
politics where popes and kings could closet themselves in dark design were ending. The
people had been treated as serfs and peasants and were tired of the castles and churches
on the hill while they dwelt in hovels in dark valleys.
For the common people the terrors of the revolution were not all that
bad. They felt a sense of just retribution on the wickedness of the royalty and priests.
The Bastille Prison
stormed in the French Revolution
When the people stormed the Bastille in 1789, they got a first hand look at what had
happened to their friends and neighbors who had been carried hither.
The human mind cannot imagine how terrible were the instruments of
torture, how creative the demonic skills of men, and how poor victims were
The papal powers would never be able to return to such depths of
wickedness. The "serpent" could not recover a drop of water he cast out after
His boldest scheme had failed. He
was not only frustrated now but
angry. Things were not going better for him. From this point on, every move he made in his
warfare against true Christianity found him losing more than he gained. His options
running out and he found himself being moved against his will toward the "bottomless
While the "serpent" may still score some points, yet each
step he takes will require greater loss than his overall gain. In simple language, he is
taking a beating. Notice that while the "dragon" is outraged with the
"woman," he no longer will be able to persecute her.
Whatever happens to this "woman"? We are not told. She just
fades away and ceases to be involved in the struggle.
In the "time of harvest" the body of believers is
separated—the "wheat from the tares." The general body of believers is
separated into those truly consecrated saints and those who are merely parading as
"And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make
war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the
testimony of Jesus Christ."
"Went to Make War
with the Remnant of Her Seed."
To the saints living in these last days of the Gospel period, this last verse is of
paramount importance. Here we have absolute information of what lies before us.
Yes, there can be no doubt, the "dragon" "went to make
war with the remnant of her [the womans] seed."
Here God is telling us that those "which keep
the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ" must at some point
meet the "dragon" head on in battle. Is that battle over, or is it future? If it
is past, it has been an easy victory for us.
Most of the Lords people believe this is future. They will be
well-advised if they make every preparation for this confrontation. This time around, the
devil is going to be better prepared than he was in the French Revolution, when he badly
misjudged what the results would be. This will be his last chance at crushing the saints.
They have "smart bombs" now. Precision weapons are
replacing wholesale blanket bombing. We would be well-advised to expect the
"dragon" to join the battle with hi-tech focused weapons, with the name of every
saint clearly marked on it before being sent forth.
Just because the "dragon" has been slow to make this last
assault does not lessen the reality of what must yet take place. The very Word of the Lord
makes it clear: the "dragon
went to make war with the remnant of her
seed." It has not been consummated yet, but the Word of God cannot be broken. This
will occur just as certainly as the sun will rise on the morrow. Dismiss this warning at
your own peril.
Our story does not end in this chapter. The last verse prepares the
reader for the battle that the "dragon" has been carefully plotting. In the old
days when kings were uncertain that they could win, they sought allies in the battle. We
notice the "dragon" does not rush into this conflict. As a matter of fact, he is
forced into it.
In Revelation sixteen, we learn that "seven angels" are each
sent forth from the "temple" with a "golden vial [bowl]" to be
"poured out" just like "smart bombs." Each has a designated
sea, rivers and fountains of water, sun, seat of the beast, the great
river Euphrates, and the air.
These messages will be directed by God to reach their target. The
effect of these "plague" messages will be painful and will pull away the cloak
that has hidden the operations of the rulers of "darkness." The devil has really
been slow about entering this final battle. Anyone would be slow to enter a battle you
know you will lose.