Things to Come, Lesson 29, The Seven Personages of Revelation, The Archangel, Chapter 12, Part IV
Revelation 12:1-12, And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars: 2And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered. 3And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads. 4And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born. 5And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne. 6And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. 7And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. 10And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. 11And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. 12Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.
In this passage it is apparent that a chronology of events is taking place.
Now we know from scripture for those events that have already occurred that this passage is chronological.
The woman is Israel, the man child is Christ who came from Israel as a man child in the process of time, the dragon is Satan who tried in numerous ways to devour Christ, and the catching up of Christ to God occurred after his resurrection.
Now the remainder of the events in this passage have not yet occurred but it is reasonable to conclude that they will follow the chronological pattern of the events that have occurred.
So I believe the fleeing of the woman into the wilderness, the war in heaven, the dragon being cast to the earth and the coming of salvation and strength and the kingdom of God is yet future but will come in the order given in the passage.
We have studied in previous lessons concerning the seven personages of the book of Revelation, the woman, the great red dragon and the man-child.
This then brings us to a study of the forth character, the Archangel, Michael.
7And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
Now Michael is an angel who has charge of angels for they are called in this passage his angels.
Remember that Lucifer who is pictured here as the dragon, also had his band of angels for they also are called his angels.
Remember that the dragonís tail drew out of heaven a third part of the stars which we have said were his band of angels.
Now there are only three named angels in the Bible, Michael, Gabriel, and Lucifer.
With this in mind and the fact that Lucifer was in charge of one third of the angels it could be that each of these three angels, was given charge of one third of the total population of angels, with that population numbering in the millions.
Michael is mentioned in our passage in Revelation 12 and is also mentioned in four other passages in scripture, thrice in the book of Daniel and once in the book of Jude.
Daniel 10:13, But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me one and twenty days: but, lo, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me; and I remained there with the kings of Persia.
This was a statement made by an angel sent to give understanding to Daniel.
Note that Michael is called one of the chief princes.
Michael is again mentioned in Daniel 10:21, But I will show thee that which is noted in the scripture of truth: and there is none that holdeth with me in these things, but Michael your prince.
The use of Michael your prince indicates that Michael has a special relationship with the people of Daniel, the Jews.
And this is verified in Daniel 12:1:
And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
And lastly in Jude 9 where the title Archangel is connected to Michael, Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.
The word archangel is only mentioned twice in the Bible.
Once referring to Michael in Jude and the other referring to an archangel who shouts at the coming of Jesus Christ to receive his body, his bride at the Rapture.
At the Rapture a shout is given by the Archangel, which we have said before seems to be an announcement to Israel that things are coming to a head, as the Tribulation period is now to be ushered in.
The shout is heard, and then comes the trump of God to the church calling the Body of Christ to the Head of the church.
Attaching the word arch to angel means supreme angel.
The word is only attached to Michael in the scriptures and therefore it appears that Michael is the Supreme angel however he was called one of the chief princes so there may be more than one Archangel.
From Daniel 12:1 we learn that Michael is given the special duty as guardian angel over Godís elect of the Jewish people.
And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people:
The word "thy" refers to Daniel, so thy people is Danielís people, which means Israel.
and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
When you hear of a time of trouble this is the time of Jacobís trouble.
This is the culmination of Godís plan of deliverance of his people followed by the ushering in of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.
Michael is Godís warrior angel who is given to war with Satan which results in the casting down of Satan to the earth where he will use his full power to overcome Godís people, Israel, but as Jeremiah 30:7 tells us:
Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacobís trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.
Now the casting down of Satan and his forces to the earth is simply a part of the climatic events which God has ordained, whereby He will institute His wrath to bring all things to conclusion as He so deems.
This war in heaven is a war associated with the end times that appears to take place in or near the Tribulation period.
This casting down of Satan results from this war.
This war does not appear to have any thing to do with Satanís original rebellion for that rebellion took place in ages past but this war is yet future.
At the time when Anti-Christ appears the world will lie in the lap of Satan.
Perhaps this war is an attack by an emboldened Satan who sees victory because he has brought this world to celebrate sin and his man of sin is on the threshold ready to be crowned.
All looks well for the evil one.
But from Godís perspective it is simply a necessary event to rid Satan and his angels from any use of power in the heavens and a necessary event in order for Satan to focus all of his power against Israel.
It is Godís way of bringing all eyes to focus on one place where all power will be gathered, where every eye shall see Jesus Christ come in all His glory.
Revelation 1:7, Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him.
Michael the Archangel is the one chosen to begin the process of bringing Godís plan to culmination for he is the one who conducts the war in heaven against the dragon and his angels.
7And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, 8And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. 9And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
We have learned from previous study that wars rage here on earth during this time and wars rage in heaven but all wars will now be consolidated on earth after the casting down of Satan.
It is basically a concentration of battlefields with the ultimate result of Satan being cast into the bottomless pit.
From other scripture we have learned that Satan has had access to the heavenlies but this is the time when that access will cease.
His attempt to be victor has been thwarted and this war will result in the time when Satan will be evicted for good, never to return, headed first for the bottomless pit and then ultimately the lake of fire and brimstone never again to be a force against God.
Revelation 20:10, And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
This is the doom of the prince of the power of the air.
This war with Michael will bring him down to the earth and his power over the air will cease.
It is interesting to note as an aside how much the world system of communication is connected with the air and how easily the world system of communication is being used by Satan to promote his way.
When you look at it this way Satan is indeed the prince of the power of the air and his way is intensely promoted by the use of the air.
But Satan will no longer be that prince as he faces doom, a doom shared by all who rebel against our Almighty God.
And the greatest rebellion is refusing Godís hand of help offered in the person of Jesus Christ.
Now immediately after the casting of Satan to the earth a loud voice is heard in heaven.
Is this the shout, is this the voice of the Archangel that is heard at the calling out of the saints?
For the voice shouts: Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
And yet the Tribulation is yet to be but this announcement cannot wait.
Hope springs eternal in the life of Godís children and the children in mind here are the children of Israel for help is coming.
And the beginning of that help is that the accuser is no longer accusing.
He who accused them before God day and night no longer has a voice to God.
Remember Job, a hero of the Old Testament who did not curse God and die, was accused by the evil one day and night.
For he walked up and down going to and fro seeking whom he may devour and that devour means, who could he accuse before God.
And there has been no cessation of his desire to devour for we find Peter who was called Satan when he challenged Godís will for Godís son to write in the New Testament in:
I Peter 5:8, Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: 9Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
But the devilís days are numbered for with his casting out from the heavenlies once and for all his slander against Godís children will cease.
There have been battles in heavenly places since Satanís rebellion but this battle described in Revelation 12 is the climax of Satanís efforts to stand in the place of God.
Beloved, amongst the billions of this world walking on the broad way, we who walk the narrow way cling to and have hope in Jesus Christ for God's word is true.
Michael and his angels will be victorious in this battle and the devil and his angels will be defeated.
For they are cast down to conduct on earth the last battle before the kingdom, and then placed into prison, for 1000 years.
Satan has never wavered in his hatred of God and His Son.
The moment sin entered his heart he has been the archenemy of all that God is and all He desires his children to be.
He has chosen to love sin and to spread sin and to celebrate sin but even though he fills the whole earth with sin it is no match against the blood of Christ!
I Peter 1:18-19, Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; 19But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: