"The Book of Revelation, An Eschatological Study of the Endtimes", by Chad J. McCoy
So what about the crown of 12 stars she was wearing? Does this make sense? We
know that the 12 stars represents the 12 tribes of Israel. There is nowhere in scripture
other than this passage that talks about 12 stars, so we have no other verses to
reference. But we know from all over the Old Testament that 12 is the number that
represents the 12 tribes of Israel.
Exodus 24:4 : He got up early the next morning and built an altar at the foot of the mountain and set up twelve stone pillars representing the twelve tribes of Israel."
Exodus 28:21: "There are to be twelve stones, one for each of the names of the sons of Israel, each engraved like a seal with the name of one of the twelve tribes."
1st Kings 18:31: "Elijah took twelve stones, one for each of the tribes descended from Jacob, to whom the word of the LORD had come, saying, "Your name shall be Israel."
Joshua 4:1-7: "So Joshua called together the twelve men he had appointed from the Israelites, one from each tribe, 5 and said to them, "Go over before the ark of the LORD your God into the middle of the Jordan. Each of you is to take up a stone on his shoulder, according to the number of the tribes of the Israelites, 6 to serve as a sign among you. In the future, when your children ask you, 'What do these stones mean?' 7 tell them that the flow of the Jordan was cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD. When it crossed the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever."
You can study more on this yourself if you're interested, but the number 12 is the number that represents Israel.
This woman in Revelation Chapter 12 is wearing a crown of these 12 stars. Crowns always represent Kings, or rulers. Was Mary one of these? No. But the word "crown" here is translated by the Amplified Bible to mean "crownlike garland or tiara". Who wears tiaras? Kings? Men? No. Miss America wears a tiara. Do kings generally wear garlands? No. So this isn't a king. It's the headgear of a woman. (Note: I would not lead you astray. The Greek word used here for "crown" can also be used to mean an actual kingly crown. The thing is, like so many other words, it can be a literal crown, or just a figurative crown. It can also mean a prize won in the public games [think laurel leaf]. When a word has multiple meanings, you must decipher the true intended meaning from the sentence and flavor of the language. [Just as we can tell the meaning of the word "read" by its tense in the sentence] Not being a student of the Hebrew and Greek languages, I choose to take the word of the translators. They understand the sentence and can better make that determination than I can. Some translators do a better job than others, and the Amplified Bible translators found reason to call this not a crown, but a crownlike garland, or tiara.)
So what would this tiara represent? In the Miss America Pageant, every woman wears… not a crown, but a sash that proclaims the region she represents. This tiara is the same idea. It means that the wearer represents Israel.
With that thought, a little idea pops up. Perhaps, if the tiara means the wearer represents Israel, then the entire woman may be Israel. We'll just keep that little thought tucked away, and if it turns out that the woman is not Mary, then we can go back and see if it could be the nation of Israel, itself. For now, though, we'll continue along the lines of it being Mary.
So we know Mary gave birth to Jesus. It could be said that she was clothed with the strength of God and stood on Jesus Christ. She represents Israel, meaning that this woman is Jewish.
Everything fits. We don't have a strong case here (only 2 verses for sun, only two verses for moon, and a word "crown" that could mean ruler, or it could just mean "garland"), but we do have a case, so far.
We have now tentatively identified the woman as Mary. We know the dragon is Satan because the bible tells us so, and we know the boy is Jesus through strong language in other places of scripture that describe him as being the one who will rule the nations with an iron rod. Let's continue on to Part Two of Chapter 12.
WOMAN - MARY
- clothed with the sun - strength of God
- moon under her feet - stands on Faithful Witness
- wearing crown of 12 stars - represents Israel
- pregnant - with Jesus
Gigantic Red Dragon - SATAN
- has 7 heads, with crowns on them
- has 10 horns
- drew 1/3 of stars w/tail and sent them to earth
- stood before woman to devour her child
Woman gives birth to boy who will rule nations w/iron rod
- Boy caught up to God
- Woman escaped to desert for 3 ½ years
Satan cast to earth
Heaven rejoices - Christ's rule has come
Satan knows his time is short
Satan persecutes woman
Woman given eagle's wings and escapes to wilderness
where she is hidden from Satan for 3½ years
Satan sends flood out of his mouth to drown woman
The earth opens up, swallowing the flood
Satan is angry, goes to war with her other children
who keep the words of Jesus
We see that this boy is caught up to God. Was Jesus ever caught up to God? Yes, at his death after the Crucifixion.
Now this is where it starts to get strange. When you read this passage in chapter 12, you are lead to believe that the boy is caught up to God as soon as he is born. But the bible never says when this happens, just that it does. We are led to think it happens when the boy is still a baby, because that is what the bible calls him - a male child.
But let's keep scripture firmly rooted in this quest for knowledge. We could be literal, and say that since the bible says "child", that this boy is caught up to God right at birth, or shortly after birth. We know this boy is Jesus. What scripture do we have that Jesus' spirit was brought before God in heaven at any time before his death on the cross? None. So we can't make the statement that Jesus was caught up to God at birth. We have no bible for it. We do have bible for it after his death on the cross, and that's all we have. So, let's not bend scripture to our own theories. Instead, let's bend the theory until it fits scripture.
So the boy is caught up to God. This is Jesus, and the event occurs after his death on the cross.
It makes sense. The dragon we know to be Satan was waiting in front of the woman Mary, ready to devour her child Jesus. King Herod, possessed by Satan, tried to have Jesus executed at birth. He failed. Satan thought he succeeded later at the cross, but all he did was play into the hand of God, and lost whatever hold he had on death and the grave. He never devoured Jesus.
You see, the dragon tried to devour Jesus, but he missed. Even later at Calvary, when he thought he had succeeded, he missed, for Jesus was caught up to God and His throne. So we see that although the prophecy in chapter 12 reads as if everything happens in certain timelines, it doesn't. This is the nature of prophecy. It can skip thousands of years between sentences, or even in the middle of a verse. Unless the prophecy is explained to us by the bible, it can be very difficult to sleuth out the correct interpretation.
Then it says that the woman escapes from the dragon into the wilderness for 3 ½ years.
The first thing that comes to mind here, is when Joseph took Mary and Jesus and fled to Egypt to avoid King Herod's murderous rampage. Can we prove they were in Egypt for 3 ½ years? No. The bible doesn't say how long they spent in Egypt. For now we'll give Mary the benefit of the doubt and say she was in Egypt for 3 ½ years.
Let's continue. It says that there was war in heaven, and Satan was cast out, down to the earth, and his angels with him.
Heaven then rejoices that the time of Christ's rule has come.
Satan, knowing his time left outside of Hell is short, persecutes the woman.
Ok, more detective work needs to be done. First of all, can we determine when this fall of Satan was?
Was this the original fall of Satan? No. How do we know this? Well, after this war in heaven, the bible says there was no longer any place in Heaven for Satan. That means he is no longer allowed to be there. It means that previous to this war, he was allowed to come and go in heaven! This might seem to be a revolutionary idea to some people, but check out the scriptures.
Job 1:6-12: One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them. 7 The LORD said to Satan, "Where have you come from?"
Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."
8 Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil."
9 "Does Job fear God for nothing?" Satan replied. 10 "Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face."
12 The LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands, but on the man himself do not lay a finger."
Then Satan went out from the presence of the LORD.
This shows that after the original fall of Satan, he was still allowed in and out of heaven.
Lest you think this was a one-time event, we see Satan enters heaven again in Job 2:1-7: On another day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them to present himself before him. 2 And the LORD said to Satan, "Where have you come from?"
Satan answered the LORD, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it."
3 Then the LORD said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason."
4 "Skin for skin!" Satan replied. "A man will give all he has for his own life. 5 But stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face."
6 The LORD said to Satan, "Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life."
7 So Satan went out from the presence of the LORD and afflicted Job with painful sores from the soles of his feet to the top of his head.
Zech. 3:1: Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him.
We see here that Satan was in heaven, accusing the high priest Joshua.
Rev. 12:10 shows us that Satan is in heaven all the time, accusing the believers of Christ: "Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: "Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of
our God, and the authority of his Christ.
For the accuser of our brothers,
who accuses them before our God day and night,
has been hurled down."
No, this war is not describing Satan's original fall into sin. This occurs after his fall. So when could it be? Well, we have a clue here, because after his being cast out of heaven for good, all of heaven rejoices and says that it is now time for Christ to rule the nations, and to set up his kingdom on the earth.
So Satan is cast out of heaven sometime here in the endtimes, rather close to the end of all the judgements. We know it's not at the very end of the judgements because Satan has a short time to run around the earth. If he were cast out of heaven after everything was all over, and there was nothing left to be done but to conclude the White Throne Judgement, then Satan would be cast out of heaven and straight into Hell. But he is cast to the earth for a short time. So we know this occurs towards the end of the days of tribulation on the earth.
A very good possibility is that he is cast out of heaven in the middle of the seven-year treaty that the antichrist has made with Israel. We can get into this treaty thing later. But you see, the antichrist makes a seven-year treaty with Israel. After 3 ½ years go by, he breaks the treaty. This is the time when he walks into the temple in Jerusalem and stops the sacrifices, proclaiming himself to be God. Why doesn't he do this earlier? Maybe it's because Satan is still roaming around heaven and earth. When he is cast out of heaven for good, he devotes himself full-time to the cause of destroying as much as he can.
Remember, Satan's original sin was that he wanted to replace God, and become God. Now the Antichrist says he is God. This has to be Satan speaking through him, because it just sounds so much like him. Isaiah 14:12-14: "How you have fallen from heaven,
O morning star, son of the dawn!
You have been cast down to the earth,
you who once laid low the nations!
13 You said in your heart,
"I will ascend to heaven;
I will raise my throne
above the stars of God;
I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly,
on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain.
14 I will ascend above the tops of the clouds;
I will make myself like the Most High.""
2nd Cor. 4:4 calls Satan the God of this World. "In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."
So if we had a timeline of the seven-year treaty, it would be divided in the middle, into two 3 ½ year parts, with the casting out of Satan from Heaven to the Earth being the dividing line:
3 ½ Years.......I......3 ½ Years
(By the way, we could add the 2 Witnesses to the first 3 ½ years of this timeline - we know they are taken to heaven before the end of the judgements of the earth. If they have to fit in one of the 3 ½ years or the other, it would have to be the first one.)
With Satan cast to earth, knowing his time is short, he will persecute the woman. Now wait a minute. At this time on the earth Mary is not here to be persecuted by Satan.
Our whole chain of logic has just collapsed. If the woman is Mary, then the woman has to be Mary throughout the whole thing. We can't keep changing who the woman represents just to fit our theories. We must change our theories until they fit the scripture.
The only other thing that suggested itself to us when we were trying to figure out the identity of the woman, was the nation of Israel itself. So let's start over all the way from the beginning, and see if the woman could possibly be Israel.
Could the nation of Israel be said to have brought forth the Messiah? Yes. Jesus was born of the Jews, of the nation of Israel. So it's reasonable that the Nation of Israel could be the woman, who gave birth to Jesus.
Can we say Israel is clothed with the strength of God? Yes, I suppose we could.
Can we say that the nation of Israel stands on Jesus Christ? No way. Most Jews do not recognize Jesus as being the Messiah. Even the Jews back i