2-07-12thelittletownofbethlehem
                          The Little Town Of Bethlehem
                                                             
REVELATION 12

In Malachi 1:1-3, The LORD explains to Israel how He has loved them. His answer is that they exist, while Edom does not.  Yet through nearly 4000 years of history, Israel, Godís people has continually faced annihilation.  The question is why?  Why have the Jews been so treated, Why have non-Jews been filled with such hatred, that a never ending war against Judaism is even being waged today.  The answer lies in a well organized satanic plot to prove God to be a God not worthy of our trust and therefore a God not worthy to place our trust in.  Ever since the wordís of Genesis 3:15 were given, Satan attempts to put a stop to the promises of God, in that they would be impossible to fulfill, because of the annihilation of the Jewish people.  Revelation 12 gives the complete Christmas story, and the underlying significant as to why the Jewish people suffer as they do.

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.

There has been great question on who is this woman.  It is interesting that this appearance is very similar to the vision Joseph had in Gen 37:9.  On that account the appearance of the woman represents Israel.  The twelve stars represent the twelve tribes, And she, being with child, cried, travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered.

Israel longed for the Messiah, as a woman longed for the birth of a child.  The pain, the travail, the awaiting in the mist of the treat of the constant threat of annihilation.  ďOh when will we be saved,Ē was their cry.  Not a salvation for eternal life but rather a salvation in terms of earthly peace under the rulership of the heir of
King David.

And there appeared another wonder in heaven; and, behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his head.  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 who was ready to be delivered, to devour her child as soon as it was born.  And she brought forth a male child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up unto God and to His throne.

After the birth of Jesus, Satan attempted to kill the Child.  King Herod, as he heard the news of the child had all the male children two and under killed in the region of Bethlehem.  However Joseph and Mary took the child to Egypt, for safety.  The child grew, and launch a public ministry at the age of thirty.  Satan again tried to killed Jesus, or at least discredit Jesusí ministry.  But the Fatherís hand of protection was on Jesus, no one could
harm Him in any way.  Even the winds obeyed His voice.  The devils trembled and pleaded with Him to be kind to them.  Yet the hatred grew in the lives of the people against Jesus, and finally they nailed Him to a cross, He
suffered and died, and three days rose from the grave to be alive forever more, for He is seated at the right hand of God.  Satan didnít give up.  He turned His attention away from Jesus, and went after the woman.  Israel, was
scattered to every corner of the world.  And in nearly every region that they settled they were persecuted severely, often killed by the millions.  In 1948, Israel regained statehood, and even in their own land, hundreds are killed yearly because of persecuted.  Satan had appearance that is very symbolic.  A great red dragon-powerful, red for the blood that will be spilled in his cruel attempts.  The dragon has seven heads, representing the seven evil empires that lead up to the revival of the Roman Empire.  The ten horns represent the ten nation confederacy that comes of the seventh head,  And the seven crown indicate his authority which will be given to the beast(anti-Christ) during the Great Tribulation.  Compare with 13:2.  At a time this dragon had great power over the heavenly host and a war was fought, one third of the angels sided with the dragon.  Isaiah 14:12-17.

And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a placed prepared by God, that they should feed
you there a thousand two hundred and threescore days.  And there was a war in heaven:  Michael and his angels
fought against the dragon, and the dragon fought and his angels.  And prevailed not, neither was their place found
any more in heaven. And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the devil and Satan, who deceived the whole world; he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.  Unable to defeat the Male Child, Satan attention is now on the women as stated.  God preserves Israel again.  For over 2000 years Israel receives the torments of Satan again trying to defeat Israel.  For all the promises are yet to be fulfilled.  Satan can still defeat Godís plan.  Again a satanic plot works its way out, yet each time Israel is spared annihilation.  Another war happens in heaven,  Satan is cast out, never to return.  And when he is cast out, He directs his attack personally on Israel.  Israel is protected again by God and is prevented from being exterminated.  The 1260 days are 3.5 years, the second half of the great tribulation.  The removal of Satan from
heaven brings great joy to its inhabitants.

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, who accused them before God day
and night.  And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; and they loved
not their lives unto death.  Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them.  Woe to the inhibitors of the
earth and the sea!

Heaven is free from Satan and there is great rejoicing.  No more accusation.  A three stanza hymn is given. 

1) Praise is given to celebrate the completion of Godís program, at least in heaven, soon on the earth as
well. 

2) Praise is given for the victory of the saints who overcame Satan by the blood of the Lamb.

3) They are rejoicing at the  removal of the devil to the earth.  However a woe is given to the earth, because Satan knows his time is short.

For the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

The wounded beast has but a little time to stop the plan of God.  He tries his hardest with all his armory.
And yet again God preserves His people.
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