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Old 02-12-2019, 10:18 AM
phareztamar phareztamar is offline
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A Wonder in Heaven

A Wonder in Heaven

“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, and to his throne. 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”.

Here in chapter twelve is one of the most amazing excerpts in the book of Revelation. Amazing not just for its mind-boggling events, but for its crystal clear revelation of the two worlds: the spiritual world and the physical world…the heavenly and the earthly.

Immediately after the blowing of the last trumpet, John begins in heaven. He see’s two great wonders: a woman travailing in birth, and a great red dragon standing before this woman, waiting to devour her child as soon as he is born. The child is caught up to God and to his throne. The woman then flees into the wilderness for 3 ½ years, where she is nourished and protected. She has a place prepared of God; reminding us of a similar promise from my Lord:

“I go to prepare a place for you…”

The great red dragon boasts a following of one-third of the angels of heaven. A breath-taking number, when we consider that stars represent angels throughout the scriptures. If we could count one-third of the stars in the night sky, we might get an inkling of the enormous size of the dragon’s army, and the epic size of this great battle. This massive force goes to war with Michael and his angels. Satan and his angels are soundly defeated, losing this war, and this is when John reveals the true identity of the dragon:

“that old serpent, called the devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world.

Not only is he badly beaten, but Satan and his billions are kicked out of heaven:

“neither was their place found anymore in heaven”.

Add to this that for the first time since Adam, Satan and his forces are confined now to the earth. They can no longer wander through the halls of heaven accusing the brethren. No longer are they free to roam about an endless universe, or attend the meetings with the sons of God. They are all earth-bound now, as a loud voice warns us from heaven, saying:

“woe to the inhabitants 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”.

Now that we know who the great red dragon is, we might ask who the woman and the man child are. This is where it gets interesting. When Satan is cast out of heaven to the earth, he is barred from ever returning to heaven. Now heaven, you’ll recall, is where the woman is safely hidden. Yet when Satan hits the earth with a thud, he immediately goes after who?

“and when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man”.

Now here is a very curious thing. The woman didn’t get kicked out of heaven. Yet here is an earth-bound Satan persecuting her on the earth. John saw a woman in heaven, while Satan persecutes the same woman here on the earth. This would seem to indicate that the woman exists in both the spiritual world, and in the physical world. The dual dimensions here revealed reminds us of a previous such phenomenon in the wilderness tabernacle. Moses saw a spiritual tabernacle in heaven, from which he patterned the physical tabernacle here on earth.

Even more intriguing is that the earthly woman mirrors the same rescue and safe hiding as the spiritual woman in heaven:

“and to the woman were given two great 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”.

Perhaps Moses tabernacle and the heavenly woman are just two witnesses from the scripture, suggesting that virtually all things in this marvel called life…nations, covenants, mountains, human souls, animals, kings and paupers…all have both an earthly existence, and a mirror image in heaven.

Satan has now lost the great war in heaven, has been kicked out of heaven and confined to the earth, and has let both the spiritual and the physical woman escape his grasp. Add to these failures knowing that he has but a short time, and his anger is mightily kindled. So he turns his wrath to his next target:

“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”.

If the church…the body of Christ…the children of the freewoman…was born into the heavens and caught up to God and to his throne, then who are these remaining ones which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ? We add this question to “who is the woman, and who is the manchild?

Regarding the woman, reference is often made to young Joseph’s dream, revealed to and hated by his eleven brethren. The woman in his dream represented the collective twelve tribes of Israel in their purest infancy. The woman here in chapter twelve of Revelation is still Israel; both spiritual and physical.

Another woman in scripture gives us a different facet of this same diamond. Paul proposes that only Israel will be saved…both the natural fig tree, and those of us who are grafted into that fig tree. He teaches those foolish Galatians about the two main covenants of law and grace. Hagar…a bondwoman, and Sarah…a freewoman, while living full, natural lives, were also allegories for future generations to discover. The two are portrayed as two Jerusalem’s…yet the same Jerusalem. One Jerusalem is in heaven and one is upon the earth. The earthly woman Hagar is the Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. The heavenly woman Sarah is the Jerusalem which is above:

“…is free, which is the mother of us all”.

When Jesus, the Christ of God, was born upon the earth, there was also a dragon waiting to devour him. Translated from the spiritual to the physical, an evil king has ordered the slaying of all male children two years old and younger. So his parents fled to Egypt with him, and hid from the face of the dragon. He was born of the Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage of the covenant of law. When her mirror image…the Jerusalem which is above…gives birth to a manchild, the dragon is also waiting to devour him. As Gentiles grafted into the fig tree, we became children of Abraham by that Holy Ghost baptism. Children of Abraham not by Hagar, but by Sarah…the heavenly Jerusalem…the freewoman…the mother of us all.

It appears then, that following the last trumpet, the church…both the dead and the living…are here born into the spiritual heavens:

“but Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all”.

“so then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free”.

If true, then John witnesses the manchild caught up to God and to his throne. The body of Christ has been pulled out of the earthly calamities about to be unleashed in the seven vials, and once delivered in heaven, rescued from the jaws of the dragon.

Regarding this manchild caught up to God and to his throne, it was said in the text verse:

“and she brought forth a manchild, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron”.

This is certainly a clear reference to Jesus, the Christ of God:

“I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me, thou art my son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel”.

But there is yet another place where that child is ruling with a rod of iron:

“But that which ye have already hold fast till I come. And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father”.

On earth then, it appears that the woman is Israel or Jerusalem, and the manchild is Jesus, the Christ of God. He was not caught up to God and to his throne, but fled to Egypt until the death of Herod. In heaven, barring a retelling of the incarnation, the woman is spiritual Israel or Jerusalem, and the manchild is the body of Christ being born into the heavens to the mother of us all. But if this is true, that nagging question remains: who are the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ?
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:56 AM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

The Woman is Israel. The Man Child is Messiah, that Israel was to bring forth and who is known to us as Jesus. The Dragon is the evil spirit behind the world system that not only sought (through its agent Herod) to kill Messiah at birth but which also sought to destroy Him throughout His ministry, eventually crucifying Him. But the Man Child was "caught up to heaven", a reference to His triumphant Ascension to Reign. "Man Child" is simply another way of saying Son of Man, so we see an allusion to Dan 7 and the Son of Man and His receiving of the Dominion (reign). Click here for my thread on the Identity of the Son of Man in Daniel 7 for more information.

The Dragon then sought to destroy the woman by a flood proceeding out of its mouth. This signifies the devil spewing out lies, deceptions, false doctrines, etc in order to carry God's people away. But the earth helped the woman by swallowing up the waters: the false doctrines, deceptions, etc infected the world order and "the inhabitants of the earth' while God's faithful remnant were spared, holding fast to the truth. God's people were hidden, out of sight as it were, an underground church if you will, and this kept her from being drowned by the flood of satanic influences. History has shown glimpses here and there of remnant believers that never bowed the knee to the world's religio-political system. Known by various names - always supplied by their adversaries - these people lived in the hills and hollows, the mountain valleys, always under the radar but repeatedly popping up as advocates for Christ and His Word, often burnt, drowned, hung, and otherwise persecuted for "heresy". The worldlings swallowed up all the genuine heresy, with their papal infallibility, Magisterium, Tradition, Creeds and Synods, Confessions, and other sundry delusions, both Catholic and Protestant. The remnant continued out of the spotlight, preserved by Divine Providence.

The Dragon, the spirit behind the world order and its religious, political, social, and economic systems and authorities, has always been antagonistic and hateful towards the seed of the Woman (the "children of Israel", which keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus, see James 1:1, Acts 26:7, 1 Peter 1:12, Romans 9:22-26, etc).

The thread on the Son of Man (linked to above) demonstrates how the Son of Man (Man Child) represents both Christ and His people, because His people share corporately in His destiny and experience. What Christ experienced, He experiences for us, and we participate in that by our identification with (and our being baptized into) Him. He has Ascended, and we have been seated (enthroned) in the heavenlies with and in Him. To persecute the church is to persecute Christ (see 1 Corinthians 11:20-29). Christ's victory over the world is working itself out in His people's corporate experience "down here on earth". The victory in the heavens is in the process of manifesting here in the earth.
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Last edited by Esaias; 02-12-2019 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 02-12-2019, 12:38 PM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

If true, then John witnesses the manchild caught up to God and to his throne. The body of Christ has been pulled out of the earthly calamities about to be unleashed in the seven vials, and once delivered in heaven, rescued from the jaws of the dragon.


There is no rapture whereby the church is physically removed from the earth to "escape calamities". The reason you see a mystery and conundrum concerning "who is the seed of the woman that seems left behind?" is the result of the error of thinking there is a rapture involved.

Consider verses 7-12. A war in heaven between two armies or "hosts". One side prevails and defeats (overcomes) the other. The victorious overcomers are identified in verse 7 as angels, but in verse 11 the overcomes are said to achieve their victory through the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony (martyria, martyrdom), which cannot be said of literal angels.

So this war in the heavenlies is not angelic beings fighting in the fifth dimension or outer space, but spiritual conflict in the spiritual realm, as spoken of in Matthew 11:12. It is between the adversary and his messengers (aggelos, angels), and between Michael ("He Who Is Like El/God", the Captain of the Lord's Host/Army, the "archangel" or Head/Chief/Ruler of Angels, the "Great Prince" or ruler - Daniel 12:1, the Angel of Jehovah or Angel of the Presence, the LOGOS, who incarnated as Christ) and His messengers (apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds/teachers - see 2 Corinthians 11:13-15, Galatians 4:14, and the fact that "evangelist" is a variation of "angel" or "messenger").

The war being described in Rev 12 is the war described in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, and is a spiritual war "in the heavenlies" - where we are ALREADY SEATED according to Ephesians 2:6 - between truth and error, Christ and the devil, the church and the world, correct doctrine and false doctrine, messengers of God and messengers of satan, teachers of righteousness and teachers of ungodliness.

So this chapter is not about being removed from the earth.

The "remnant of her seed which keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus" is the remnant of Israel, the church, those who obey God's commandments and who bear witness to Jesus as the crucified, buried, resurrected, and ascended Christ. The key distinction made in the passage is these are not just any and every one who claims to be Christian, but those who obey God's commandments as part of their Christian witness (see Matthew 7:21-23). Antinomians are not part of the remnant, but are sadly those washed away by the devil's floodwaters, because they are of the earth and not of heaven. Their house was built on sand, the floods came, and away they were carried...
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Last edited by Esaias; 02-12-2019 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 02-12-2019, 01:42 PM
phareztamar phareztamar is offline
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Smile Re: A Wonder in Heaven

Thank you for your response Esaias. Studying it and the links and scriptures you posted.
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Old 02-12-2019, 01:54 PM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

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Originally Posted by phareztamar View Post
Thank you for your response Esaias. Studying it and the links and scriptures you posted.
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Old 02-14-2019, 10:44 PM
phareztamar phareztamar is offline
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

OK. well that was a lot of homework. enjoyed your teaching about matt. 24 speaking of Jesus coming into his kingdom, as opposed to the 2nd coming.

for the record, I've never been an advocate of the modern day "rapture". It never seemed to be in God's character, or have precedent in the scriptures. so assuming me to holding "the error of thinking there is a rapture involved" is a little unfair. that is why I framed my statements with "it appears then" and "if true". maybe i'm not a good communicator, as Benincasa also misunderstood me:

So everyman is right in his own eyes?

Jesus and Paul taught that everything else is left up to opinion?

Where does the Bible teach us that there would only be 7,000 years of human history? If you can freely give out such information, then why didn’t Christ? Why didn’t Paul? I understand you are saying it is your opinion. But you insert it as it should be doctrine. So, why didn’t any Bible writer bring up any thoughts to a 7,000 year wrap up of history?

again i'm just stating what I understand the scriptures to say. And I share it here to hear other opinions, hoping to refine my understanding. never have understood why folks on this forum insist on acerbic digs (so this war in the heavenlies is not angelic beings fighting in the fifth dimension or outer space...) but it is what it is.

that being said, I have a couple of questions about your thread "the identity of the son of man" that will help me answer your response to my thread.

when, in the history of humanity, do these four beasts appear? the lion, the bear, and the eagle have their lives prolonged after the fourth beast is slain, and his body destroyed and given to the burning flame. their dominion is taken away, but their lives are prolonged for a season and a time. i'm assuming that these four beasts appear sometime between Daniel's life and vision, and the final judgment. you state that this is a vision of divine judgment against Israel's enemies by God, but "the judgment was set, and the books were opened" seems to suggest the final judgment at the great white throne.

your statement that the son of man figure is identified as the saints of the most high is based upon both possessing the kingdom forever. but an overview of the prophets and john's vision seems to suggest that Jesus, in the victory of his resurrection and glorification, is the son of man who receives dominion, and glory, and a kingdom. following that victory, these very same things are given to the overcoming saints of the most high.

"to him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my father in his throne"

the overcomers are also given power over the nations, to:

"rule them with a rod of iron...even as I received of my father."

in these and other scriptures, doesn't the theme suggest that there is a victorious giver (the son of man), and an overcoming receiver (the saints of the most high) of those same things given to the son of man?

thank you Esaias. always enjoy reading your posts.
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Old 02-15-2019, 02:34 AM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

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OK. well that was a lot of homework. enjoyed your teaching about matt. 24 speaking of Jesus coming into his kingdom, as opposed to the 2nd coming.
Well, actually I think I was pointing out that although Matthew 24 largely dealt with the destruction of Jerusalem, other passages that are often assumed to refer to either the "second advent" or the destruction of Jerusalem actually refer to His coming into His Kingdom. Sorry if I wasn't more clear on that.

Quote:
for the record, I've never been an advocate of the modern day "rapture". It never seemed to be in God's character, or have precedent in the scriptures. so assuming me to holding "the error of thinking there is a rapture involved" is a little unfair. that is why I framed my statements with "it appears then" and "if true". maybe i'm not a good communicator, as Benincasa also misunderstood me:
I was just going by what you said, that the church appeared to have been removed from the earth in what appeared to me as a "pre-Wrath rapture". Again, I apologize if I misunderstood.

Quote:
So everyman is right in his own eyes?

Jesus and Paul taught that everything else is left up to opinion?

Where does the Bible teach us that there would only be 7,000 years of human history? If you can freely give out such information, then why didn’t Christ? Why didn’t Paul? I understand you are saying it is your opinion. But you insert it as it should be doctrine. So, why didn’t any Bible writer bring up any thoughts to a 7,000 year wrap up of history?
I'm assuming this is a quote from brother Benincasa? I don't claim there is only going to be seven thousand years of history (although I also don't claim there won't be).

Quote:
again i'm just stating what I understand the scriptures to say. And I share it here to hear other opinions, hoping to refine my understanding. never have understood why folks on this forum insist on acerbic digs (so this war in the heavenlies is not angelic beings fighting in the fifth dimension or outer space...) but it is what it is.
I apologize if that fifth dimension comment came across as a dig, it was not meant to be. I think communicating by text leaves a lot to be desired.

Quote:
that being said, I have a couple of questions about your thread "the identity of the son of man" that will help me answer your response to my thread.

when, in the history of humanity, do these four beasts appear? the lion, the bear, and the eagle have their lives prolonged after the fourth beast is slain, and his body destroyed and given to the burning flame. their dominion is taken away, but their lives are prolonged for a season and a time. i'm assuming that these four beasts appear sometime between Daniel's life and vision, and the final judgment. you state that this is a vision of divine judgment against Israel's enemies by God, but "the judgment was set, and the books were opened" seems to suggest the final judgment at the great white throne.
I do not pretend to be an expert on Daniel, but I will answer as best I can based on my current understanding and studies. The three beasts are Babylon, Persia, and Greece, with the fourth beast being Rome. Those previous three lost their world dominion successively, but they continued for a time after that. Thus, Persia continued for some time after Greece was ascendant, Greece continued for some after losing the Empire to Rome, etc.

The fourth beast however is a bit different. It is a system that begins with the beast, but then there are the horns, and then there is the little horn. These represent successive stages in the Roman system's lifespan. The judgment described in Daniel 7 is not necessarily the Final Judgment. It certainly is a judgment scene, but of what? It could be a judgment upon the Empires of man. The text does not require that the judgment scene and the destruction of the fourth beast occur immediately together. So that what is being described is quite possibly God judging the Empires of man by taking their dominion away (and giving it to the Son of Man).

On the other hand, it could very well be the Final Judgment, indicating the fourth beast continues until that time, at which it is destroyed in the lake of fire (per Revelation; here in Daniel it is a river of fire). Verses 13 and 14 do not say WHEN the Son of Man figure is given Dominion, so I think it would be an error to just assume it occurs AFTER the events described by the judgment scene of vss 9-11. Also, verse 12 does not say when the three beasts had their dominion taken away, but vs 17, vss 4-7, and the known history (see also ch. 2), indicate they lost their dominions successively to each following beast, and thus not at once at a final judgment, nor at the same time the fourth beast was destroyed, or after it was destroyed.

Quote:
your statement that the son of man figure is identified as the saints of the most high is based upon both possessing the kingdom forever.
My identification is based directly upon vs 18, vs 22, and vs 27, which are three angelically given, inspired interpretations that identify the Son of Man figure as representing the saints of God.

Quote:
but an overview of the prophets and john's vision seems to suggest that Jesus, in the victory of his resurrection and glorification, is the son of man who receives dominion, and glory, and a kingdom. following that victory, these very same things are given to the overcoming saints of the most high.
My article on the Son of Man traces the Son of Man theme through the Gospels and Revelation, showing that Jesus appropriated the Son of Man figure to Himself, and explaining why and what that means: Jesus is the archetype of the Israel of God.

Quote:
in these and other scriptures, doesn't the theme suggest that there is a victorious giver (the son of man), and an overcoming receiver (the saints of the most high) of those same things given to the son of man?
Actually, I would say they confirm the core NT doctrine that we participate in His reign by being in Him, we are joint heirs with Him, etc.

Quote:
thank you Esaias. always enjoy reading your posts.
Thank you for the kind words. I too always enjoy reading your posts.
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Last edited by Esaias; 02-15-2019 at 02:51 AM.
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Old 02-15-2019, 02:49 AM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

Unbelievable. An entire post, responding to yours, wiped out by an inadvertant edit.

OK, I'll try again tomorrow.

In the meantime, let me apologize if I came across as acerbic, or unfair. Was not my intention at all.
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Old 02-15-2019, 02:53 AM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

Well, I recovered it, but then lost the other thing I was posting. sigh.

Be back tomorrow, Lord willing.
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Old 02-15-2019, 02:55 AM
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Re: A Wonder in Heaven

Here:

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So again we see a development of the son of man concept. In Daniel the son of man is the people of God. In the Gospels the son of man is Jesus, and furthermore Jesus is identified as fulfilling a similar role to the son of man/people of God in Daniel. Also, we find the later developed idea that Christ is the heavenly son of man, that is, the son of man come down from heaven, and ascended back to heaven. And finally, in the Revelation, Christ as the heavenly, ascended, and eschatological son of man is identified in some sense with YHVH/the Ancient of Days himself.

And all of that leads in to the consideration of Christ as the representative Israel, as seen here:

And was there until the death of Herod: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Out of Egypt have I called my son.
(Matthew 2:15 KJV)

When Israel was a child, then I loved him, and called my son out of Egypt.
(Hosea 11:1 KJV)

Israel was the son who was called out of Egypt, but this found a Christological fulfillment in Christ's own experiences. Thus, Christ is functioning as a representative of Israel. What is written concerning Israel finds it primary fulfillment in Christ, and applies to Israel by extension, that is, due to Israel's participation in Christ, their identification with Christ. So, Christ is the archetypal Israel. And thus, we can now better understand on what basis the son of man figure in Daniel - representing Israel in a collective sense - is identified with Christ in a personal sense.
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