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Revelation  ◦   Chapter 12

1In my vision, I saw an incredible panoramic display across the sky: A woman clothed with the sun — symbolizing the true church clothed in God’s character of love — stood upon the moon, which symbolizes the dim light of the ceremonial teachings of the Old Testament. She had a crown of twelve stars on her head — symbolic of both the twelve patriarchs that gave rise to the twelve tribes, and the twelve Apostles upon which the church was founded.2She was pregnant and cried out as she was about to give birth — which symbolized the imminent birth of Jesus, the Savior.3Then I saw another panoramic display across the sky: A massive red dragon with seven heads, ten horns, and seven crowns on his heads — symbolic of Satan and the conglomerate of earthly political powers and false religions through which he works.4His tail dragged one-third of the stars out of heaven and threw them to the earth — symbolizing Satan's lies that deceived one-third of God's angels and dragged them into selfishness and sin. The dragon opposed the pregnant woman who was about to give birth, and stood ready to destroy the child the moment he was born — which symbolizes Satan's attempt to destroy the avenue through which Christ would come, and then destroy Christ when he was born on earth.5But the dragon failed, and the woman gave birth to a son–a male child Jesus, who would rule the world with a shepherd's rod of love that cannot be broken — and her child returned to God and stood at the command center of the universe.6The woman ran into the desert, symbolic of desolate retreats on earth prepared for her by God as hiding places where she would be sheltered for 1260 days.

7There was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought using truth and love against the lies and deceptions of the dragon, but the dragon and his angels fought back against the truth, spreading more lies about God and Jesus, his Son.8But his lies were not strong enough, and they lost their place of esteem and respect in heaven:9The great dragon–the ancient serpent called the devil or Satan that leads the entire world away from God and his methods of love–was cast out of the hearts, minds and affections of the loyal beings in heaven. He and his angels were cast to the earth–the only place in the universe where beings still believe his lies about God.

10Then I heard a powerful voice in heaven announce: "Now the Remedy that heals–and the power to apply it in order to advance God’s kingdom of love and exercise the authority of his Christ–has come, for the accuser of our brothers and sisters, who accuses them constantly before God, has been cast out of their hearts and minds.11They overcame him by partaking of the Remedy–the perfect character of Christ the Lamb, symbolized by his blood–and by the evidence of their self-sacrificing lives, as they no longer loved their own selves so much as to shrink from death: they were healed to love just like Jesus.12Therefore rejoice you who live in heaven, for the sacrifice of Jesus has exposed Satan as a liar and fraud, and confirmed God’s trustworthiness! But woe to the earth and to the sea of its inhabitants, as the devil–who has no beings left in the rest of the universe who will listen to him, and therefore is furious–has turned his entire focus on destroying you, because he knows his time is short!"

13When the dragon saw that he had been cast out of the affections of the heavenly beings, and that his lies were believed only on earth, he went after the woman–who had given birth to the male child–with a vengeance.14But the woman had been given wings with which to flee to the desert where she would be provided for–out of the serpent’s reach–during the time, times, and half a time, which symbolized the true church fleeing to desolate places during the 1260 symbolic days of persecution.15But the serpent sprayed water from his mouth, like a flood, to drown the woman–symbolic of masses of people hunting down the faithful to destroy them.16But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the flood of people sent by the dragon — which symbolized the discovery of new, unpopulated lands in which the populous could disperse.17Then the dragon was frantic with hate and rage at the woman and went off to make war against the remnant of her children–the end-time people who still embrace and practice God's methods of love and hold true to Jesus' testimony about his Father.