MP3: The Mighty Angels of Revelation 12
Hosts: Nathan Jones & Vic Batista
The Great Eagle
Nathan Jones: The last part of the Revelation 12 narrative reads in verses 13-17:
“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.”
This section of Revelation 12 continues the thought of the earlier sections. So far we’ve learned that the Dragon who has been cast to the earth is Satan, he persecuted the Woman who is Israel, who gave birth to the male Child which is Jesus. Now we are introduced to another character, one who is described as having two wings of a great eagle.
The Woman is in mortal peril so needs to flee from the Dragon, and God provides. The Woman is given two wings of a great eagle that she might fly into the wilderness to her place. Who or what is the Great Eagle? We can go to Exodus 19:4 to find the answer. “You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself.” And, we can look to Deuteronomy 32:11-12, “As an eagle stirs up its nest, hovers over its young, spreading out its wings, taking them up, carrying them on its wings, so the Lord alone led him, and there was no foreign god with him.” The Great Eagle is God Himself, particularly the Holy Spirit, who led the Israelites out of Egypt in the Exodus.
The Woman is nourished for a time and times and half a time, meaning 3.5 years, from the presence of the Serpent, which referred to earlier is Satan. The Serpent spews water out of his mouth like a flood after the Woman so 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, that being the Jews and the Tribulation Saints.
Vic Batista: What a fascinating passage! Verse 14 is talking about the Woman fleeing, and Jesus in Matthew 24 also refers to the Jews enduring great persecution during the Tribulation. This second half of the Tribulation, called the Great Tribulation, is a day of Judgment for the Jewish people, right? And yet, the Holy Spirit is going to be there to help secure the fleeing remnant of Jews to God’s protection.
Nathan Jones: Yes, Jesus told the Apostles in Matthew 24 and Luke 21 that a time will come when the Jewish people will have to flee out of their own country. Today we know the entire world is pressuring Israel to give up their country. The UN and the Arab world want Israel to give up so much of its land that the nation cannot defend itself.
The pressure on Israel during the Tribulation will become even worse. At some point Satan will come barging in with the Antichrist and his army and it will cause quite a number of Jews to flee into the wilderness of Jordan. We know it’s not all of them because Satan tramples Jerusalem for 3.5 years, so there are some Jewish people remaining in Jerusalem for the Antichrist to constantly assail all the way to the end of the Tribulation. There are likely Jews remaining around the rest of the world who will endure the Antichrist’s wrath as well, but fortunately a remnant of Jews will be protected by God in the wilderness.
I can honestly say I have never understood the part about how the Serpent spews water out of his mouth in order to carry the remnant away in a flood, but then the earth opens up and swallows the flood. I have no idea what that means because I cannot find a reference in the Bible that explains this. Whatever this water is that Satan floods out of his mouth, whether it’s actually an army, or he opens up a dam, but whatever it is, Satan tries to drown out the Jewish people.
God provides yet again! God causes an earthquake that opens up the ground so that the water is emptied into the fissure, or the armies all fall into the hole. This too is one symbol that’s not given a translation.
Vic Batista: When the Bible is silent, we will remain silent. It is good to say, “I am not sure here.”
God’s miraculous provision stands as an encouragement to the reader. Don’t freak out, because we believe if you have placed your trust in Jesus Christ you will not see any part of the Tribulation.
Nathan Jones: The Church is promised to be raptured off the earth before the Tribulation begins.
Vic Batista: Absolutely! For those who do not have a personal relationship with the Lord, you can start, even today.
Nathan Jones: They must give their life to Jesus Christ. Surrender your life, repent and ask forgiveness for your sins, and accept Jesus the Son of God as your Savior. Jesus promises that He will take the punishment for your sins upon Himself, and then you will be freed from the sentence of eternal judgment in Hell.
In the twenty-ninth segment of our series “The Mighty Angels of Revelation,” we’ll dive into Revelation 13 to learn more about Satan’s two main henchmen.