The Woman and the Dragon

Revelation text

Reading the Word

Revelation 12:1–6 (ESV)

1 And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. 2 She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth. 3 And another sign appeared in heaven: behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. 4 His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it. 5 She gave birth to a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne, 6 and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which she is to be nourished for 1,260 days.

Understanding and Applying the Word

This great sign of a woman and the mention of sun, moon, and stars reminds those familiar with the Old Testament Scriptures of Joseph’s dream in Genesis 37. Here we have a description of the nation of Israel represented by the pregnant woman who will give birth to a child. This child is Jesus the promised deliverer. The dragon is Satan who attempts to destroy the child and sabotage the redemptive plans of God.

Satan may attempt to destroy the plans and purposes of God, but he cannot and will not. In fact, as we read throughout Scripture, Satan’s attacks against God only serve to further God’s plans. We see this especially at the cross where Satan stands behind those who would crucify Jesus. However, Jesus’ death was needed as a sacrifice for mankind’s sin.

We serve a sovereign God and all things work together for his purposes. He protects those who belong to him and we can be encouraged that his plans cannot be thwarted by anyone or anything.

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