The Good News of the Gospel
The Wonder in Heaven
“And a great sign was seen in the heaven: a woman clad with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars” (Revelation 12:1). The prophecy of Revelation 12 speaks of a great sign, but a sign indicating what? This prophecy is riddled with symbolism. And that makes it necessary to utilize prophecies previously given to provide more insight into its meaning.
But even without understanding the meaning behind the symbols, the intent of the prophecy is clear. It focuses the attention of its readers on a specific series of events. This in order to help believers validate in their minds when the authority of world rule has passed from the Roman Kingdom and into the hands of the people of Israel. It will be through this Kingdom that all nations will return to the God of Israel and obey the Laws of His Kingdom forever.
Notice that after the all the events between Revelation 12:1-9 occur, a declaration from heaven states: "Now has come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God” (Revelation 12:10). It is apparent that "the Kingdom" is referred to in Daniel chapter two. “The God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever” (Daniel 2:44). The disciples pressed Yeshua about this kingdom when they asked "What will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?" (Matthew 24:3). The “end of the age” they were asking about was the age of Rome. It is the last of the four Kingdoms prophesied to rule the earth before the everlasting Kingdom comes symbolized as a little stone. Rome had become the fourth power to rule over the Jews since Daniel’s prophecies were given and the Jews (including the disciples) were anxious to see the Roman age pass.
The disciples continued to press Yeshua for the precise timing of the Kingdom just prior to his ascension into heaven when they asked "Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?" He said to them: "It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority" (Act 1:6-7). While the disciples strongly believed that the Kingdom of Israel would be restored in their lifetime, we are still waiting for its fulfillment 2000 years later.
But Yeshua did provide his disciples literal signs when he spoke to them on the Mount of Olives. And if one carefully reviews all he stated, the symbolic images of Revelation 12 can be properly interpreted. Most importantly in all that he spoke that day, he directed his readers to the book of Daniel. "So when you see standing in the holy place 'the abomination that causes desolation,' spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand— (Matthew 24:15).
The abomination spoken of is an act of rebellion on the part of the descendants of the 12 tribes of Israel in rejecting the Holy Covenant. “He (the man of sin) will return and show favor to those who forsake the holy covenant…then they (the people of Israel) will set up the abomination that causes desolation” (Daniel 11:30-31). So the abomination referred to is Israel’s rejection of the mission given to them 3500 years ago. And the desolation occurs when YHWH turns His face from them and allows all nations to search them out and destroy them. “He (the man of sin) will be successful until the time of wrath is completed, for what has been determined must take place” (Daniel 11:36).
But according to the Covenant between YHWH and Israel, He states, “I will not reject them or abhor them so as to destroy them completely, breaking my covenant with them. I am the LORD their God” (Leviticus 26:44). And the woman fleeing into the wilderness is a direct fulfillment of the promise made in Leviticus. It is in the wilderness that the faithful remnant establishes and grows the kingdom; for unlike her wicked Israelite counterparts, the remnant “Obey God's commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus” (Revelation 12:17).
This is the “Good News” (the gospel) of the Kingdom that Yeshua speaks about in Matthew 24. “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come” (Matthew 24:14). Many have reduced the "preaching of the gospel" into pastors in pulpits speaking to multitudes via satellites, great missionary ventures and growth of church denominations. But the true preaching of the gospel will take place as the faithful people of Israel are being taken care of in the wilderness. The world will hate them and try to destroy them, but YHWH will prevail and the Kingdom will subsequently grow in number through those who abandon their loyalties with the Kingdom of the Beast.
But what precludes the flight of the faithful into the wilderness are the signs laid out Revelation 12:1-9. It says “His (the serpents) tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and flung them to the earth” (Revelation 12:4). Now many have taken this verse to mean that Satan drew one third of the angels from heaven in his original rebellion in heaven. But the book of Daniel informs us otherwise. “It (the power of Rome) grew until it reached the host of the heavens, and it threw some of the starry host down to the earth and trampled on them…. Because of rebellion, the host of the saints and the daily sacrifice were given over to it” (Daniel 8:10-12).
So the starry host being thrown to the earth refer to one third of the people of Israel who are to suffer under the curse of YHWH for the breaking of the covenant. This sudden destruction is part of the great wonder that all nations will witness just prior to the establishment of His Everlasting Kingdom on earth. Paul brings this same sequence of events to the forefront in his letter to the Thessalonians. Don't let anyone deceive you in any way, for that day (The Day of the LORD) will not come until the rebellion (of the Holy people) occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the man doomed to destruction…the coming of the lawless one will be in accordance with the work of Satan displayed in all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders” (2 Thessalonians 2:3 & 9). Note that the man of sin will collude with Satan and this collusion is being reflected in the great wonder sequence of Revelation 12.
Those who do not have a background in the Law of Moses; especially those who are religiously inclined will have difficulty determining that these signs and wonders are of a demonic nature; especially since the man of lawlessness will have a religious orientation. The signs and wonders performed by the man of sin will appear to those dwelling on the earth that his cause is right and the people of Israel are evil. Both he and the devil will convince the nations…”to make war against the rest of her offspring—those who obey God's commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus” (Revelation 12:17).
The attention of the multitudes will be focused on the children of Israel. Yet the good news of the Gospel will be given despite the difficult circumstances. Have you prepared yourself not to be swayed by the opinions of the multitude? Would you be prepared to stand with a remnant of people whose desire is to simply obey the word of God? Begin now to study your Bible and acclimate yourself to obedience to the Father's Commandments. They are not hard to learn and are not difficult to obey. Learn to keep them with all your heart mind and strength and so that you will have the courage to join His people should these signs occur in your lifetime.