“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 (1); And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered (2). And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads” (3).
This chapter takes place in the middle of the Tribulation Period. It shows the conflict between the two seeds which began in Genesis 3:15:
"And I will put enmity between thee (Satan) and the woman, and between thy seed (Antichrist) and her seed (Christ)."
The chosen seed (Christ) was to be born through His national seed of the world (Israel), and the enmity (warfare) will be continued by Satan’s seed, until he is cast into the Lake of Fire in Revelation 20:10. This chapter shows his attempt to exterminate the nation of Israel.
“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:”
The twelve stars on the woman’s head are referring to the Twelve Tribes of Israel, made up of the descendants of the Patriarch, Jacob’s, twelve sons. Jacob’s name was later changed to Israel. Some try to say the woman is Mary, but this is the nation of Israel. The error is disproved by Genesis 37:9,10.
“And he (Joseph) dreamed yet another dream, and told it his brethren, and said, Behold, I have dreamed a dream more; and, behold, the sun and the moon and the eleven stars made obeisance to me (9). And he (Joseph) told it to his father (Jacob / Israel), and to his brethren: and his father rebuked him, and said unto him, What is this dream that thou hast dreamed? Shall I and thy mother and thy brethren indeed come to bow down ourselves to thee to the Earth?” (10)
The moon under her feet shows the reflected glory of the Old Covenant at Mount Sinai, when God gave the Law. The sun over her head shows us the New Covenant of glory, in which she appears before God.
We always think of the Old Covenant, or, the Law, as being the Ten Commandments. There could not be anything further from the truth. If you read the whole book of Leviticus, and read the last verse of the last chapter, you will find out that all the laws that are given in the Book of Leviticus were given upon Mount Sinai. As one Jewish Rabbi told me, there are 720 laws in the Old Testament, and they cover everything from the Moral Law, to the Civil Law, to the Religious Law. There are over 720. People have the mistaken idea that there are only Ten Commandments.
Let us take this a step further. A lot of people say: “Well, I try to keep the Ten Commandments.” First of all, do you know that only nine of them are repeated in the New Testament—only nine. Do you know which one is missing? “Remember the Sabbath.” When we refer to the New Testament, concerning the commandments, we are excluding Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, as they are, primarily, Old Testament books, until the last chapters. They record the New Covenant made by Christ on the Cross of Calvary. Then we enter into the New Testament territory of the Church Age.
However, the Nine Commandments are repeated three times in the New Testament, with the exception of the one about the Sabbath Day. Why would that be? The Sabbath Day was always a Saturday, the Seventh Day of the week. We, now, worship on the First Day of the week. The keeping of the Sabbath is not in effect, as that was done away with. The Sabbath is part of the Law and was given only to the nation of Israel, not to the Gentiles in the Church Age.
“For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.” (Romans 10:4).
How sad it is that Israel did not accept the New Covenant, yet many Jews accepted Christ individually. On the Day of Pentecost, there were 3,000 saved. A short time later, there were 5,000 saved. But these would only be a “drop in the bucket,” compared to the 150,000 to 175,000 Jews that could have been in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost.
“And she being with child cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.”
The "she" is Israel, and the "child" is Christ. In Micah 5:2, God tells us that Christ is to be born in Bethlehem of Ephratah. This is significant, because there was also a Bethlehem of Zebulon, which was a larger city. Look up these comparisons of prophecy, and their fulfillment by Christ, which were given so as to eliminate an impostor.
|Prophecies Fulfilled by Christ|
|1. Come from the seed of Jacob, Numbers 24:17||Luke 3:34|
|2. Christ would be of the Tribe of Judah, Genesis 49:10||Luke 3:33|
| “The sceptre (the Tribal Identity) shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.” Genesis 49:10
This verse confirms that the tribal identity of Judah must be in existence when the Lord Jesus Christ comes. All the records for the twelve tribes were in the Temple. “Shiloh” is none other than Christ, the Bringer of Peace. So, the tribe of Judah had to be existing, along with the records, to document who came from what tribe. We have Christ’s genealogies in the Book of Matthew, and the Book of Luke. Those are the only records left of the genealogies that show Christ is the Messiah, who came of the lineage of the Tribe of Judah. When Titus came in 70 A.D., he destroyed all those records, along with everything else on the Temple Mount. They do not have those records today.
It is an amazing thing. The records had to be existing so Christ, legitimately, could show by those records that he had come out of the Tribe of Judah, as prophesied in Genesis 49:10 and fulfilled in Luke 3:33.
|3. Heir to the Throne of David, Isaiah 9:7||Matthew 1:1|
|4. Place of Birth Prediction, Micah 5:2||Matthew 2:1|
|5. Would Be Born of a Virgin, Isaiah 7:14||Matthew 1:18|
|6. Flight to Egypt, Hosea 11:1||Matthew 2:14,15|
|7. Would Be a Prophet, Deuteronomy 18:15||John 6:14|
|8. Would Have a Triumphal Entry, Zechariah 9:9||John 12:13,14|
|9. Would Be Sold for 30 Pieces of Silver, Zechariah 11:12||Matthew 26:15|
|For more “Prophecies Fulfilled by Christ,” see I Know Who Holds Tomorrow by author; pp 51-64|
These are only a few of the hundreds of prophecies concerning Christ’s First Coming. It would be impossible for any other man to fulfill all of them, to the minute detail, showing us this was the true Messiah, the very Christ.
“And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.”
The “dragon” is red, because his teeth are dripping with the blood of the martyrs he has slain. In John 8:44, we find he is a murderer and a liar.
The "dragon" is Satan, who will be the seventh ruler during the first three-and-a-half years of the Tribulation Period. He will suffer a death stroke by the sword, and have a resurrection. He will be considered the eighth ruler (Revelation 17:10,11). He will, then, declare himself to be God (2 Thessalonians 2:4). He will, then, exercise his authority as the one-world ruler, by placing ten subordinates to oversee his provinces. They will be the overseers of his kingdom, and be in complete subjection to him. The Antichrist, Satan incarnate, has now placed himself as God, king, and the ruler of the world. Satan has always wanted the throne of God, and the power to rule the world. Isaiah 14:13 reveals that to us,
“For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:”
Let us now see the contrast between Verses 1 and 3. Remember, God had promised Israel a Messiah who would sit upon the throne of David, giving Israel their inheritances (Ezekiel, Chapter 48), and with Christ ruling the world for 1,000 years, through them. No wonder Satan wanted to devour the child (Christ), for He would keep God’s Word from being fulfilled, and Christ from being the Ruler of the world!
“And 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.”
"And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven..."
The word “stars” is translated from the Greek word “astēr,” and it means “star.” The CONTEXT, however, tells us these “stars” are the third part of the angels that followed Satan when he tried to take over the throne of God. (Ezekiel 28 and Isaiah 14). It is the same Greek word used in Revelation 1:20, where Christ explains the “Mystery of the seven stars.”
“The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my [Christ’s] right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels [Gr. “angelos,” the messengers or pastors] of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches.”
The context, in Revelation 1:20, tells us the “seven stars” are the pastors of the seven churches. The context, here in Revelation 12:4, reveals that the stars, in this passage, are the third part of the angels that followed Satan into rebellion. They would not be the pastors described in Chapter One, as there are only seven churches. It would be gross error to say that Satan can drag them out of Heaven with his tail. No one, who has trusted Christ as their Savior, gets “dragged” out of Heaven, as those in Heaven have everlasting life (John 3:16). Satan is not as strong as Christ, and Christ says in John 10:28, He is the one doing the holding:
“And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.”
Something we overlook. All of the angels are created beings, and they were created prior to God creating the Earth. It is important to take a look back into the Old Testament to find out where this “old Dragon” came from.
The Origin of Lucifer, the Anointed Cherub and the Angels of God.
The question has been asked many times, “Where did the angels come from?” The Holy Spirit has directed His pen in Colossians 1:16 to give us the answer.
“For by him (Christ) were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in Earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.”
A natural follow-up question would be. “Where did Satan, and the demons, come from?” Satan, all the heavenly host, and everything that exists, Colossians 1:16 also informs us, are a direct result of Christ’s creation. Isaiah 14, and Ezekiel 28, both speak of Satan, thus giving us a good deal of information concerning Satan’s rebellion, which necessitated God’s judgment. Ezekiel 28:13, and 15, state that Satan was created.
“Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee” (15).
In Verse 14 it states that:
“Thou (Satan) art the anointed cherub.”
The original creation of the Earth, in Genesis 1:1, was to be occupied by Lucifer and the angels. This creation is what God is speaking about in Job 38:2-7.
“Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge? (v.2) Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me. (v.3) Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the Earth? Declare if thou hast understanding. (v.4) Who hath laid the measures thereof, if thou knowest? Or who hath stretched the line upon it? (v.5) Whereupon are the foundations thereof fastened? Or who laid the corner stone thereof; (v.6) When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? (v.7)”
Verses 4-6 describe the original creation, and we find, in Verse 7, the “stars” and the “Sons of God” are already in existence. Now, let us examine what these are:
“The Morning Stars.” At the creation of the Earth, Job 38:7 says that, “the morning stars sang together.” Some of the commentaries assume that these “stars” are referring to angels. However, in this CONTEXT, these are literal stars. Should one study the Doctrine of Angelology, you will not find anywhere where angels are said to sing. It is recorded that they shout and talk, but contrary to the opinion of many, they do not sing. Then, what are these “stars?” If they are literal stars, then, how do they sing? In his book, “Has God Spoken,” Arnold O. Schnabel, on Page 12, has this documentation that stars emit sound.
“The Hebrew word for “sing” is “ranan” and pertains to the emittance of a loud creak, shrill, or stredulous sound. Job declared that stars emit loud, shrill, stredulous sounds that are audible. In an attempt to determine whether stars emit sound, Grote Raber tried to detect radio waves from the sun. His results were negative. Raber tried again with “inconclusive” results.
The same year, United States Army scientists were testing secret radar equipment developed for detecting German aircraft. This equipment used a wave length of 400 to 500 centimeters. Suddenly, in February of 1942, the radar sets received extremely high noise so loud they could not be operated. At first it was thought to be a form of German “jamming.” The direction of the sound was soon traced; however, and found to be caused by the activities of a sun spot. ----
This discovery gave birth to the radio telescope as a research tool after the war. It is now known that radio waves that enter our atmosphere vary in length from 0.8 centimeters to 17 meters. The natural ear is not designed to hear the shrill of the stars.” God simply records their sounds as “singing.” In Psalm 98:9, we are told that the “floods clap their hands.” Isaiah 55:12 speaks of the “mountains and hills singing;” also, the “trees of the field shall clap their hands.” The flood waters crashing against objects is like “the clapping of hands.”
Anyone who has ever hunted in the mountains has heard the wind howling, as it blows against the side of the crevices, emitting a whistling sound described by God as the “mountains and hills singing.” If you have ever been in the woods when a strong wind is blowing, you have surely heard the tree limbs smacking together. God describes this action as the “trees clapping their hands,” just as God describes the stars that emit sound as “singing.”
It is important to keep in mind that the stars were already created, before God created the Earth. This is why you will not find in Genesis, Chapter 1, any record of stars being created when He remodeled the Earth, out of a chaotic condition, to make it fit for human life. They had already been created, prior to God’s creation of the Earth, in Genesis 1:1. It is also the reason you will not find the creation of the angels, or Satan.
“The Sons of God.” It must be recognized that the “sons of God,” here in Job 38, and in Job, Chapters 1 and 2, are the angels that God had created. These are sons of God by creation, not regeneration.
The “sons of God” in the New Testament are specified as such, because of their relationship to the Lord. Notice John 1:12 which substantiates this:
“But as many as received him (Christ), to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name.”
Not only did God create the stars prior to His creating the Earth, but, also, the angels were in existence in Genesis 1:1. When God created the Earth, the angels “shouted for joy.” Why would they shout for joy? Because God had created the Earth for them. This beautiful creation of Earth was to be their primary place of habitation. Lucifer (Satan) had been appointed as the overseer, a leader who was to guide them in love, faithfulness, and service to his Creator, God Almighty.
Satan and the First Garden of Eden. May I call your attention to Isaiah 45:18 where God states:
“For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the Earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.”
To see how beautifully God had created the Earth for the habitation of His angels, we find Exekiel describes the Earth as “…Eden the garden of God.” In Ezekiel 28:13,14, its description is beautiful.
“Thou (Satan) hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created” (13). “Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou has walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire” (14).
How marvelous, and magnificent, was God’s Earth that He created for the habitation of His angels, as we know them today. As we have seen from Job 38:4-7, the stars and the angels were already created, and in existence. Then, God created the Earth for their habitation.
In Isaiah 14:13,14 we have the five “I Wills” of Satan. Here is the record:
“For thou (Satan) hast said in thine heart I WILL ascend into the heavens, I WILL exalt my throne above the stars of God: I WILL sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north (13): I WILL ascend above the heights of the clouds; I WILL be like the most high (14).”
Notice, carefully, that stars and clouds have already been created, and are in existence, when the angels occupy the Earth.This Earth was Lucifer’s throne, as God’s Anointed Cherub.
“I will exalt my throne above the stars of God” was Satan’s ambition. The first “I will” was “to ascend into heaven.” The fifth “I will” was “to be like the most High.” At the very least, he would only settle for being co-equal with Jehovah.
The Judgment. God always judges sin wherever it is found, and, here, describes Satan sin.
"Thou wast perfect in thy ways from the day thou wast created, till iniquity was found in thee" (Ezekiel 28:15).
Briefly, we list only two of the many judgments God rendered against Satan, and the third of the angels that followed him. We are concerned with the following two, as they shed much light concerning the misunderstood time element between the original creation of the Earth for the angels, and God's remodeling of the Earth for man's habitation.
- Disembodiment. The angels, and Satan, became disembodied spirit beings. What kind of materialistic bodies they possessed while on Earth, we are not told. In Ezekiel 28:14, we are told,
"Thou (Satan as Lucifer) wast upon the holy mountain of God; and thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire."
Notice Verse 17,
"Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness..."
Walk, beauty, and brightness, are attributes of the bodies they had. They are now disembodied, and known to us as demons, or spirit beings. Remember, the angels with God can be seen in bodies, when permitted by the Lord. (Read Matthew 28:1-8.)
- The Earth Was Cleansed. The Earth, which had been contaminated by Satan's, and the angels’' rebellion, was cleansed by God's judgment to such a degree that it was found, without form, lying in waste like a wilderness. Genesis 1:2,
"And the Earth became (because of God's judgment) without form and void (a waste) and darkness was upon the face of the deep."
With this background, let us proceed. In Ezekiel 28:15 we are told that,
“Thou (Satan as Lucifer) wast perfect in thy ways from the day that thou was created, till iniquity was found in thee.”
This verse is very interesting, as it reveals some things we had not known, and conceals some things we will never know this side of eternity.
What We Know:
- We do know he was created. Satan had a beginning.
- We do know he was created with a free will.
- We do know that from his creation, until he inhabited the Earth, his ways were perfect.
- Iniquity was not found in him until, sometime after, he was appointed the “anointed cherub,” (Ezekiel 28:15) and given the Earth as his throne (Isaiah 14:13). Prior to that, according to Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28, God had created the angels. Their place of habitation was this Earth, before it was ever remodeled for man to inhabit. Satan was their ruler, and when pride came in, he wanted to exalt himself and take over Heaven also.
He was finally able to get one-third of the angels, that God had given into his control, to follow him into rebellion. Two-thirds turned, and went with the Lord. They are the angels that we have in Heaven, today, and they are the“innumerable company” (Hebrews 12:22). The third part, that followed Satan, are the demons that you have today. They are disembodied spirits, and they are with Satan.
What We Do Not Know:
- We do not know how long it was from the time Satan and the angels were created, until they were given the Earth (Genesis 1:1), which was designated as Satan’s throne.
- We do not know how long Satan occupied the Earth before iniquity (sin) was found in him.
- We do not know the length of time, from God’s creating the beautiful Earth, until He judged Satan’s sin. That judgment rendered the Earth a waste, desolated and uninhabitable, in total darkness, and covered with water, as found in Genesis 1:2.
- We do not know how long the Earth remained in this desolation, until God decided to remodel it for human habitation in Genesis 1:2b-23.
The Young Earth advocates do not want you to believe God’s Word concerning this, as they claim this only supports the time needed for evolution, and supports their opponents.This false philosophy, of these Young Earth people, would fade into oblivion should they realize the following. When God pronounced judgment and rendered this Earth a total waste, THERE WAS NOTHING ALIVE ON THE EARTH TO EVOLVE FROM!
You will find there was a Gap Period between Verses One, and Two, in Genesis, Chapter One.
“In the beginning God created the heaven (s) and the Earth.(1)
[An unknown period of time passes, until Satan’s heart becomes “lifted up” with pride, and he leads a rebellion against God. As a result, his beautiful Earth is judged, and destroyed. He, and the angels that followed him, become disembodied spirits. They are the demons that we have today.]
And the Earth was [“became,” Heb. “haya”] without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters” ( Genesis 1:1‑2).
And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became [Heb. “haya”] a living soul” (Genesis 2:7).
Some of the most wicked angels had a part in the Flood in Genesis, Chapter 6. The Bible tells us that God has reserved them in chains.
“For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell (tartarus), and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment” (2 Peter 2:4);
The Greek word for “hell” in this verse is “tartarus,” and it is the only place it appears in the Greek New Testament. It is a special place prepared for the most wicked of the third part of the angels, because of their influence, by demon possession, before the Flood. You can read this in Genesis, Chapter 6. They are chained, today, but the rest of them are still loose. Praise the Lord, two-thirds of that “innumerable company” of angels are with the Lord today!
“And 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 (the Ascension), and to his throne.”
The “man child” is Christ, the Messiah, who is to rule the nations with a rod of iron. Israel rejected Him, and they were offered another chance after His Resurrection, but they still, nationally, rejected Him as their Messiah. (Acts 1:10,11) He ascended back to Heaven, and God sent two angels to immediately proclaim…
“ And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel (10); ....this same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven" (11).
Between His departure, and return, we are in a period of time called the Church Age, when Christ is calling both Jew and Gentile to believe in His name. (Galatians 3:26-28). There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, now. We are all one in the Body of Christ.
“ For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus (26). For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ (27). There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus” (28).
There is, approximately, a 2,000 year period between Revelation 12:5 and Revelation 12:6. You have the whole Church Age contained in this period of time.
“And 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.”
"And the woman fled into the wilderness." This takes place in the middle of the Tribulation Period. It will be the length of the Church Age, plus another three-and-a-half years after the Rapture, then the Antichrist will break his covenant with the Jews. This is recorded in Matthew, Chapter 24. When the Antichrist enthrones himself as the “abomination of desolation,” he will try to kill every Jew he can get hold of.
“Where she hath a place prepared of God,...” The place, as many Bible scholars have taught down through the years, is undoubtedly Petra. It is called “the red rose city of stone.” God has preserved Israel for thousands of years. He will have no trouble doing it for another three-and-a-half years.
We have beautiful, color slides on that city, taken by a Rev. Estep, that we show to our church. He took them, years ago, on one of his tours. In Petra, you will find the most gorgeous buildings, temples, and treasury buildings cut out of the pure, brilliant, red stone.
Years ago, there was a preacher, named Blackstone, who believed these prophecies. He wrapped the Bibles in canvas, and sealed them with wax, the same way they shipped parts overseas in WWI. This process kept them from being corroded by the salt water and air. He took them to Petra and hid them in the recesses of the buildings, and some of the caves. When the Jews flee there, after three-and-a-half years of the Tribulation Period, they can find them and read them. In fact, Christ said, in Matthew 24:22:
“And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened”
If God did not shorten those days, there would be no Jews that survive. They will flee to Petra for the reason that it has a narrow, winding, entrance that goes back about a mile, just wide enough for two horses to walk abreast. One man, with a machine gun, could hold off a whole army. It has tremendously high cliffs, and this narrow gorge leads you back into this beautiful, red stone, city.
Blackstone had marked these prophecies in the Bibles that he hid back there. When the Jews flee there to escape the persecution of the Antichrist, I am sure they will look at those Bibles, marked with verses, telling them about the time that they are now in. There will be people that did not accept Christ during the Church Age, before the Rapture took place. That should be evidence that the Word of God is true. The hidden Bibles, left there years ago by a Bible-believing preacher, could be responsible for many Jews trusting Christ.
“And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,” (7) And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven (8). And 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” (9).
Michael, is mentioned. In fact, he is the Archangel, and the only Archangel ever named in the Bible (Jude 9). Michael, and his mighty army of angels, fight against the "dragon" (Satan), and his one-third of the angels. Satan loses and is cast out to the Earth.
"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" (Daniel 12:1).
Daniel 12:1 tells us that Michael, and his army of angels, stand up for Israel during the last half of the Tribulation Period. We will take the Lord’s Word for it when He says,
“For then shall be [the] great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).
While Daniel, by inspiration writes,
“…and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time:…” ( Daniel 12:1b).
When they came to arrest our Lord in the Garden, He told them,
"Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?" (Matthew 26:53).
Twelve Legions of Angels add up to 72,000 angels, as 6,000 individuals compose a Legion. When they came to arrest our Lord in the Garden, Christ could have called them down anytime He wanted to, and wiped out the whole mess!
Satan only has one-third of the angels. Two-thirds of the angels are still with God. Hebrews 12:22 tells us that God has an innumerable company of angels. That means God has so many angels that finite man cannot count them, but God can!
“But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,”
I want to point out something, because many people say, “I didn’t think Satan could be in Heaven. I didn’t think he was allowed to go to Heaven.” Here is something you need to understand. There are three heavens spoken of in the Word of God. First you have the atmospheric heaven, where the birds fly. Then, extended out, you have the planetary system, or second heaven. Clear out, past all of the galaxies out there, is the Third Heaven. Satan’s domain is in the first two heavens. According to Ephesians 2:2, he is “the prince of the power of the air.”
“Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience.”
Satan is “the god of this world” in 2 Corinthians 4:4,
“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.”
He is very much at work, today, trying to get you to believe that you are not saved by grace through faith. He wants you to believe that water baptism will take you to Heaven. He wants you to think that the preacher can forgive your sins. He wants you to believe anything contrary to the Word. He doesn’t care if you go to church—just DON’T read your Bible! That is why Ephesians 6:12 says,
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
We recapitulate: He is the “prince of the power of the air.” He has access into the atmosphere, and the planetary system. He does not have access into the Third Heaven. When the Tribulation Period comes, God is going to kick him out of even the first two heavens. God is going to control the atmospheric heavens, and the planetary heavens, as He sends out His judgment.
“And 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.”
Because Satan and his demons are now confined to the Earth, demon possession will be prolific. It is going to be natural to be demon possessed. It will be natural to be involved in occultism, etc. The restraints will be gone, and violent crime and murder will skyrocket. It will be natural to perform all sorts of sex orgies. It will be natural to kill anything that you want. We’re seeing the down payment right now. The abortions, same-sex marriage, legalized marijuana, and in-your-face homosexuality, is just getting the minds prepared of those people who will be left behind at the Rapture. The Rapture triggers the start of seven years of “Hell on Earth” for the ungodly.
Satan will no longer have access to accuse the brethren. Why? The Judgment Seat of Christ will be over. Christians are in Heaven because of their faith, and have been rewarded for their works. Now, God will not allow anyone to accuse His saints. By God’s Word, the Devil’s mouth will be shut, and by His power he is cast out of heaven. God casts the Devil out. He has power over him. (Job 1:12 and 2:4-6). God has the power to bind Satan (Revelation 20:1-3), the power to cast him into the Lake of Fire (Revelation 20:10), and the power to help Christians to resist Satan, by remaining steadfast in the faith (1 Peter 5:8,9).
“And 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.”
We are talking of the Tribulation martyrs, and what it will cost them to remain faithful to the Lord. They overcame Satan by the blood of the Lamb. This was their Salvation, and they knew they were going to Heaven. The word of their testimony was this,
"For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith" (4). Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?” (1 John 5:4-5).
The Lord has this to say to them,
"Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15).
The least we can do for the Lord is testify. The most we can do for Him is give our lives, as will the Tribulation martyrs. It does not cost us our lives to witness now. What is holding you back? Are you afraid of a little criticism?
In 1958, five missionary families from Wheaton College went to Ecuador to work with the tribes there. The men located a previously un-evangelized tribe, the Auca Indians, and were determined to reach them with the Gospel. At that time they would not be called civilized, and were, actually, dangerous. The men had spent a great deal of time, and planning, and felt it was safe to land the plane and talk with them. Of course, it was a story that went around the world. No one knows what happened, but the five men were killed, found with spears in their backs. They had guns and could have shot them. They had fired one shot in the air, and they could have easily killed their attackers, but they did not.
Later, Day of Discovery put out an inspiring video update. Marge Fleming, wife of one of the missionary martyrs, went back in to work with these tribal Indians. One of the men involved in the spearing of the missionaries was led to the Lord, and he gave this testimony. He said, “I’m going to see Nate Saint. I am going to see the ones that I killed in Heaven. I going to run up to him, and we’re going to be brothers in Christ. He will know that I did that in ignorance. I am so glad that they came back to tell us about Jesus Christ and to carry on the missionary work here.”
They surely gave their lives. And, those Auca killers are now saved, and are going deeper into the jungle to reach others with the Gospel.
“The legacy left behind by the five slain missionaries and their families still lives on today. The Auca Indians quickly realized their mistake in killing the very men that loved them enough to bring Christ’s message of reconciliation to them. The Auca Indians were able to accept the message spoken of Christ’s death because they were able to see the message lived.” By: Elisabeth Elliott and Rachel Saint. (The Auca Tribe is also known as the Huaorani Tribe. The book, Through Gates of Splendor, by Elizabeth Elliott, gives the account of what happened, and has photographs you will enjoy.)
Here is something I just don’t understand. Someone related to me, recently, that their church is studying how to be more spiritual, but made the point to me that they don’t evangelize. Is that really what Jesus wants us to do? I am just about sick of Christians that get themselves so absolutely “holy,” that they are absolutely no earthly good.
What God Uses
What God claims, I yield,
What I yield, He accepts;
And, what He accepts, He fills;
And what He fills, He uses;
And what He uses, He blesses.
Thus Speaketh Christ to Us
You call me “Master,” and obey me not,
You call me “Light,” and you see me not,
You call me “the Way,” and you walk me not.
You call me “fair,” and you love me not.
You call me “rich,” and you ask me not.
You call me “eternal,” and you seek me not.
You call me “gracious,” and you trust me not.
You call me “just,” and fear me not.
If I condemn you, blame me not.
(Epitaph found on a Tombstone in a Cathedral in Germany.)
”Therefore 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.”
Why rejoice? Because those in Heaven are there because of having believed in Christ. Their faith on Earth is now a reality, in Heaven. "Receiving the end of your faith, the salvation of your souls" (1 Peter 1:9). They rejoice, because they do not have to hear him accuse them and the brethren.
The Devil has now lost his access to Heaven. During the last three-and-a-half years of the Tribulation Period, mankind not only suffers from God’s wrath falling from Heaven, but he has the added danger of Satan being, personally, confined to Earth. Satan appeals to our old sin nature, “the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life” (1 John 2:16). We, as they, will someday put off the old nature, exchange it for a glorified body, and be freed from the bondage of this life and the enticements of Satan. We will be clothed with a new body, free of the old sin nature (Romans 8:2l-23; Revelation 21:3).
"For our conversation (Greek "citizenship") is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: (20) Who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself” (Philippians 3:20-21).
“And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the Earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.”
The “man child” is Israel’s Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Again, remember, the "woman" is Israel. Satan persecutes wherever he is. He will now unleash his fury against the nation of Israel, and those who have not taken the Mark of the Beast. He will never stop until he is cast into the Lake of Fire!
Christians should never think, because they have gotten a victory over the Devil one day, he will not be back the next. Sometimes his attacks are the most severe just after we have had a great victory, and we’re sitting on a mountain top thinking, “Man, that’s great! The Lord brought me through.” Your Christian life is made up of mountain tops and valleys. You may be on the mountain top one day, and the next day be down in the valley. But even “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,” you walk—you don’t run. There is nothing to be afraid about. “I will fear no evil: for thou art with me…” (Psalm 23:4). The Lord promises “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee” (Hebrews 13:5b).
If the Devil could exterminate Israel, he would prove the Word of God false. But God’s Word assures us that He protects His chosen ones, and His Word can never be broken. Therefore, in the past, Scripture tells us He has saved an ungrateful, rebellious Israel for these reasons:
- “Nevertheless he saved them for his name's sake, that he might make his mighty power to be known” (Psalm 106:8).
- “Thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” (Psalm 138:2).
- “Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” (Matthew 24:35).
“And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle…”
“And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.”
She is given eagle’s wings, because she has to fly into the wilderness—fast! In fact, let us go back to the book of Matthew and show you what the Antichrist is going to do. He is vicious, and Satan is his “Father.” Satan always paints a pretty picture, but, behind that picture, he’s out to get you. And, he hates Israel with a passion!
“That she might fly into the wilderness, into her place,”
Let’s go to Matthew 24:15, and find out why Israel has to “fly like an eagle” to get out of Jerusalem, and into the wilderness of Petra for that last three-and-a-half years of the Tribulation Period.
- The Two Witnesses have been killed. (Revelation 11:3-12).
- The Antichrist has gone into the Temple, and declared himself to be God. (2 Thessalonians 2:4).
- The Antichrist is now the most powerful person in the world, having conquered the first six kings. He is the seventh king, who becomes the eighth king, because he has a resurrection. (Revelation 17:10-12).
- One hour after the Two Witnesses have ascended to Heaven, a tenth part of the city of Jerusalem is destroyed by an Earthquake, killing 7,000 men. This has caused a remnant of 63,000 Jews to become believers, and they must now run for their lives!
- The best reason: Jesus told them to! Matthew 24:15 is the signal that Christ gave to every Jewish person, or Christian, living during the Tribulation Period in Jerusalem. They would know the day of terrible persecution at the hands of the Antichrist, predicted by the Prophet Daniel, at last, had arrived. Matthew 24:15 is the reason.
“When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand” (Matthew 24:15):
“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate” (Daniel 9:27).
This point is made very clear by the Bible expositor, Arthur Pink, in his book, The Antichrist. We quote:
“What our Lord there said was designed specially for the godly Jewish remnant who will be in Palestine during the Tribulation period. When the ‘abomination of desolation’ is set up in the holy place, whoso readeth should ‘understand.’…What, then, is it that those godly Jews should ‘understand?’ Why, that a crisis has been reached. That the Antichrist now stands fully revealed for the impious impostor that he is. And now that his career is clearly manifested, let them beware. Let them turn to Revelation 13:14, 15, and they will discover that death awaits them should they tarry any longer in Jerusalem.”
Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains (16): Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house (17): Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes (18). And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days! (19). But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day” (Matthew 24:16-20).
A mother can only travel as fast as her children. If it is winter, you won’t be able to go back to your house to get warm clothes. You better get out of there, now! Why not on the Sabbath Day? Because under the Old Testament Law, you were not allowed to travel any further than nine-tenths of a mile, or a “Sabbath Day’s Journey.” The Old Testament penalty for breaking the Sabbath is death! You could not light a fire. You could not prepare any food. It was a complete day of rest to where everything had to be prepared a day before the Sabbath.
To us, it is unthinkable that a person would risk death to themselves, and their family, simply because of an Old Testament Law. However, in the Tribulation Period, the Jews will believe they are under the Old Covenant of Law again, and the penalty for “Sabbath-breaking” was death by stoning. (Exodus 31:14). Remember the Israelites who, before the Captivity, burned their infants on the arms of the false god, Molech. Think of the mother in India who throws her newborn babe to the crocodiles in the Ganges, to be sure that all is well with her previous stillborn child. Last of all, look around at the many who, happily, blow themselves to pieces for a religion that tells them they will have a happier afterlife.
If they believe the Jewish leaders will retain enough power to enforce the Old Testament Law after the Antichrist breaks his covenant, it will be death to all who get caught. They have been warned. Our Lord could do no more than remind them of Daniel’s prophecy and say: “Whoso readeth, let him understand.”
“For then shall be [the] great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21).
There has never been, since the time of Adam and Eve until now, a time when such trouble and catastrophe has fallen on the Earth. There has never been anything—never—never—like what is going to take place after the Rapture of the Church. You want to miss it! I hope you have your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, or you’re going to be left behind, Folks! You will be going through these things about which God says:
“And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened” (Matthew 24:22).
The “elect” are the saved of Israel. Matthew 24:15-20 is an example of reading Scriptures that could, literally, save your life, if you have been left behind at the Rapture.
Reading about eagle’s wings, in Chapter Twelve of the Book of Revelation, is an example of taking Scripture, literally, when it is literal, and looking for what it symbolizes, when a literal interpretation doesn't make sense. After all, only one set of wings will not help an entire nation to flee. God uses many things in nature to illustrate a truth. Here, He is using an eagle to symbolize His power, and wings to fly, to illustrate the swiftness by which He takes Israel to a prepared place to escape the persecution of the dragon.
Isaiah 40:31 says:
“But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
If you use your strength to serve the Lord, He will lift you up as if you are soaring on the wings of an eagle. In your private Bible study, why don’t you look up the following to learn how God uses natural things from the world around us, or common objects from everyday life, to symbolize and illustrate a Bible truth:
- Exodus 19:4: Eagle’s wings.
- Exodus 32:11,12: God’s mighty hand.
- Isaiah 40:31: Eagle’s wings.
- Malachi 4:2: The sun, and calves of the stall.
- James 1:6: The wind.
- James 3:3: A horse’s bridle.
- James 3:4: The helm of a ship.
- James 3:1l,12: A fountain, salt water, fig leaves, and olive berries.
A Practical application. As God cares for and protects His chosen nation, that is Israel, we can depend upon Him to do the same thing for us, individually. The Body of Christ, which is the Church, is a…
”..chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people..." (1 Peter 2:9).
Just as the nation of Israel seems about to perish, God always provides a way of escape. We, as individuals, have another of God’s promises in 1 Corinthians 10:13,14,
"There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it (13).
Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry” (14).
“She [Israel] is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.”
God will "nourish" the "woman" for a "time, times, and half a time." Or;
"time" = one year,
"times" = two years; and
"half a time" = six months.
This is the same as Verse 6, giving 1,260 days, or three-and-a-half years. This is the last three-and-a-half years of the Tribulation, known as the Great Tribulation, as recorded in Matthew 24:2l. Remember, there are three tribulations spoken of in Scripture:
- The Tribulation Period, a period of seven years from the Rapture to the Revelation, also known as the Seventieth Week of Daniel (Daniel 9:27) and Jacob’s Troubles (Jeremiah 30:6,7).
- The Great Tribulation. This is the last three-and-one-half years of the seven-year Tribulation Period, when Israel will experience the greatest persecution.
“For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21)..
The Great Tribulation is so bad that God tells us that…
”..except those days should be shortened., there should no flesh be saved” (Matthew 24:22).
- Tribulation of the Saints during the Church Age. In Colossians 1:24, the word “afflictions” is the Greek word "THILIPSIS” and is better translated “tribulations.”(2 Thessalonians 1:4; 1 Thessalonians 3:4; 2 Timothy 3:12; 1 Peter 4:14.)
We know there are many Christians suffering persecutions, today, in foreign lands, even to bodily harm and loss of life. They love the Lord Jesus Christ, and it costs them dearly. Do you hesitate to speak out for the Lord simply because you think you might lose a friend? If you "lose" a friend because you witness to them, they were not a true friend to begin with.
“And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood” (15).
Many say, “I wonder what this flood is?” There are two schools of thought on that. Some think it is Satan opening a dam, somewhere, to drown all of Israel before they get to the city of Petra. The word “flood” is used to represent a large number of people, as in Revelation 13:1, and Revelation 17:1, 15. At other times, the word “flood” is used to represent an army. See Jeremiah 46:8; Ezekiel 38:9; Daniel 9:26.
Personally, I believe that this is an army that the Antichrist sends after Israel, and we are going to find out what God says here.
“And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth” (Revelation 12:16).
I believe that God is going to cause an earthquake, and he is going to swallow up everyone in the pursuing army, sent by the Antichrist to slaughter Israel, whom the Antichrist hates. Has God done this before? Most assuredly he has. Back in Numbers 16, a man named Korah led a rebelllion against Moses. God just opened up the Earth, and took the rebellious Korah, and his followers, right straight down. He took them in one second! Yes, God causes earthquakes, and he is going to use this one to take care of at least one division of the Antichrist’s army.
Did not God part the Red Sea until the Israelites passed through, and, after them, did He not allow the sea to roll back and drown the Egyptians? He most assuredly did! God takes care of His own. We will be watching from the windows of Heaven, for we will be with Christ when this takes place. Israel will no doubt be singing Psalm 124:1-8 after their deliverance.
"If it had not been the Lord who was on our side, now may Israel say (1); If it had not been the Lord who was on our side, when men rose up against us: (2): Then they had swallowed us up quick, when their wrath was kindled against us (3): Then the waters had overwhelmed us, the stream had gone over our soul (4): Then the proud waters had gone over our soul (5). Blessed be the Lord, who hath not given us as a prey to their teeth (6). Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers: the snare is broken, and we are escaped. (7) Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth” (8).
“And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”
No matter what dispensation of time we are living in, our help is certainly in the Name of the Lord! Just as God has sealed the 144,000, He has set His seal upon Israel. In Numbers 35, God appointed refuge cities for those who were guilty of manslaughter. Those guilty could flee to one of the cities.
Israel was, also, guilty of manslaughter, but God in His gracious mercy has provided a refuge city for them, called Petra. Israel was not responsible, alone, for the death of Christ. The whole world was guilty. “For all have sinned” (Romans 3:23), and God sent His Son to pay for the sins of the whole world (John 3:16). Just as God provided a refuge for Israel’s physical safety, He has, also, promised provision for our spiritual safety. Our refuge, spiritually, is in Christ.
The area to which Israel will flee will, undoubtedly, be south of Jerusalem in a great stretch of wilderness known as the land of Moab and Edom. In Daniel 11:41, we are told this land escapes the control of the Antichrist. It is in this region the city of Petra lies. Petra is almost 120 miles from Jerusalem.
Satan hates Christ and his followers. In Matthew 4, Satan could not defeat Christ, so he directed his attention to His children. Christ defeated him by the Word of God, “As it is written.” Satan could not destroy Christ, nor the Word of God, and neither can he defeat us if we read and obey what God says to do.
The Touch of the Master’s Hand
Twas battered and scarred, And the auctioneer
Thought it hardly worth his while,
To waste his time on the old violin,
But he held it up with a smile.
“What am I bid, good people” he cried,
“Who starts the bidding for me?”
“One dollar, one dollar, Do I hear two?”
"Two dollars, who makes it three?"
"”Three dollars once, three dollars twice,
Going for three, but, No.”
From the room far back, a gray bearded man
Came forward and picked up the bow.
Then wiping the dust from the old violin
And tightening up the strings,
He played a melody, pure and sweet
As sweet as the angel sings.
The music ceased and the auctioneer,
With a voice that was quiet and low,
Said “Now what am I bid for this old violin?”
As he held it aloft with its bow.
“One thousand? One thousand? Do I hear two?”
“Two thousand? Who makes it three?”
“Three thousand once, three thousand twice,
Going and gone.” said he.
The audience cheered, But some of them cried,
"We just don't understand."
“What changed its' worth?” Swift came the reply.
“The Touch of the Masters Hand.”
(Continued on the Next Page…)
And many a man, with life out of tune,
All battered and torn with sin,
Is auctioned cheap to a thoughtless crowd
Much like that old violin.
A mess of pottage, a glass of wine,
A game and he travels on.
He is going once, he is going twice,
He is going and almost gone.
But the Master comes, and the foolish crowd
Never can quite understand,
The worth of a soul, and the change that is wrought,
By the Touch of the Masters' Hand.
It is an amazing thing to see someone turn his life around. An inspiration to me was my uncle, a dire alcoholic. He drank a fifth a day and he was a “body” man. I don’t know if he ever got the fenders on straight, but everyone said he was one of the best body men they had ever seen. He drank a fifth a day. But when he trusted Jesus Christ as his Savior, he never drank a drop again. He’s been gone now a few years, but I’ll never forget his testimony. He said, “God’s delivered me from that, and if I can do it, anybody can do it!”
Through the power of the Holy Spirit, and with the help of the Lord Jesus Christ, he began to serve the Lord. He became a deacon in the church. He had been a drunk and an alcoholic all his life, but he quit in one day. And, believe it or not, he bypassed A.A. He did it with Christ, and he had quite a testimony.
When Uncle Boots had his last heart attack and knew he wasn’t going to make it, he called his son in. “Son, I remember when you were first saved and on fire for the Lord. Now, it seems like you have gotten away from serving the Lord, and it just doesn’t matter any more. I am just about to go home to be with the Lord. Nothing would please me better than for you to turn your life over to Jesus Christ, and let him use you the rest of your life.” Louis promised that he would. As far as I know, he did, until his untimely death in a car accident. Now, the father and son are both in Heaven. We are going to have a great family reunion one day!
Everyone is worth something to the Lord, and He can use you if you let Him. You will easily find the right road, if you are led by “the touch of the Master’s Hand.” There is a perfect example of that in the life of a little-known man in the Book of Judges, named Shamgar. Often we think, “Oh, if I could only become well-known, or famous, I could do a mighty work for God. That’s not the way God operates. His work is done by the weak and the little-known. He makes that perfectly clear in 1 Corinthians 1:27, when He says,
“But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;”
There is a reason for this.
“That no flesh should glory in his presence.” (1 Corinthians 1:29)
We find a little-known man, who is mentioned only twice in the Bible, in Judges 3:31 and Judges 5:6. His name is Shamgar. Even though his name means “Destroyer,” he certainly is not one of the Bible’s “greats.” You wouldn’t mention him in the same breath with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He’s not listed in Hebrews 11, the Great Faith Chapter. He was not spectacular like Samson who uprooted a city gate, nor Elijah who prayed down fire from Heaven. He was nothing like a John the Baptist, who cleared the way for Jesus.
No, Shamgar, was just a little fellow, mentioned only twice. Yet, his mighty work for God delivered Israel from her past enemies, the Philistines. This little guy. This little man was the Third Judge of Israel, after Joshua. He served in a very difficult time. Judges 17:6 tells us that...
“In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”
”..And the word of the LORD was precious in those days; there was no open vision,” (1 Samuel 3:1)
The Word of God was not proclaimed, as it is now. It was a time of spiritual darkness and death. There were no great prophets during the time of the Judges.
Shamgar served the Lord in some really dark days. We, likewise, live in dark days right now. Men have sold out for money, politics, sports, and even in churches. Think of that! The most crooked person in the world is the preacher who lets someone, other than God, be his “Boss.”
Let me say this. Ask your preacher if someone sends down his sermons. In most of your liberal churches, the “headquarters” sends down their messages. They say, “Preacher, you’ve got to do this,” especially around Christmas, and around Lent. They all have their Lenten message sent down from “headquarters,” and the “puppets” have to preach what those in the hierarchy, who are pulling the strings, tell them to do.
He preaches to please the liquor store owner, who puts a big offering in the plate. He soft-pedals God’s judgment on other sins, to avoid offending the “big givers.”
You may ask, “Well, what can I do about the world’s condition today? I’m just one person.”
Shamgar was like that. He was just one, insignificant, man, but this one man delivered the entire nation of Israel, when he used an ox goad to kill 600 Philistines. You ought to read it in Judges 3:31.
“And after him was Shamgar the son of Anath, which slew of the Philistines six hundred men with an ox goad: and he also delivered Israel.”
Shamgar was not an army. He was just one person in a dark day. Just like you and I are just one person in a dark day, today. You ask, “Well, what can I do? Liberalism is taking over the churches and denominations? The world’s going to the Devil!” All that is very true, but you can be just as influential as Shamgar.
I believe I mentioned this previously, but some things are worth repeating. Here is a great principle. In the days of darkness, God delivers His people through individuals. He may do it through just one person. God needs individuals more than He needs denominations, or great human organizations, more than He needs Congress, or the United Nations. He is looking for those dedicated, consecrated, yielded men, and women, who will use their lives for Him.
When the Lord needs something done, the ability He looks for is availability.
Are you available?