May 20 2022
Today, Friday May 20
The Unholy Trinity
Revelation 12:1-5 “Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars. Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth. And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born. She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne.”
We need to remember as we begin our study on a new chapter that Revelation 10-14 takes place basically in the middle of Seven-year Tribulation. First, this section somewhat looks back and gives us a little more detail of what happens in the first three and a half years (Rev. 10-11). Then it looks forward to the last three and half years setting the stage for what is about to happen when the “Great Tribulation” events unfold.
Revelation 12-13 introduces us to the three key characters in the drama of the last half of the Tribulation: Satan the dragon, the false Christ, and the false prophet. These three are, in a sense, an evil unholy trinity, opposing the true God and His people on earth. While these events will be of special significance to God's people at that time, the message of these two chapters can encourage suffering saints during any age.
Satan is the great enemy of the church, and he fights against God and His people by accusing the saints in heaven and attacking them on earth. However, Christ has overcome the old serpent, and He gives victory to His people.
In Isaiah 14, Satan was originally called Lucifer, “son of the morning”. We believe that Lucifer was one of three angels that are named in the Bible. The other two are Michael and Gabriel. They were each given authority over a third of angelic host of heaven. For some reason I believe that Lucifer was the angel in charge of leading the choirs of heaven in awesome praise to the glory of God. He was like a beautiful musical instrument. We are not told exactly when, but one day his heart was so lifted up with pride that he thought he was better than God and he made an attempt to replace God on His throne (Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28). He was cast out of heaven with a third of his angels.
Satan hates and opposes God. Satan hates humanity because they are created in the image of God. Jesus said that the devil is a thief and that he has come to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10). Jesus also told the Pharisees in John 8:44: “You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.”
Satan’s agenda has always been and still is to destroy mankind and especially the “seed of the woman” (Genesis 3:15), Jesus Christ. Satan is also called the Adversary. The adversary always works through human means, in this case, "the beast" (false Christ or Antichrist) and the false prophet. Satan is an imitator, a counterfeiter; and he seeks to control men by means of deception. "The beast" is the future world dictator who promises to solve the pressing problems of the nations; the false prophet is his "propaganda minister." For a time, it appears that the satanic trio is succeeding; but then their world empire begins to collapse, the nations assemble for one final battle, Jesus Christ appears, and the battle is over.
As believers and followers of Jesus Christ we never need to fear or lose hope in our conflict with Satan. We have been assured that Jesus Christ came to “destroy the works of the devil” (1John 3:8). We are also told, “Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4). We are promised, “If God be for us who can be against us” (Romans 8:31).
And finally, always remember Romans 8:37-39, “Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”