A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars; and she was with child; and she cried out, being in labor and in pain to give birth…. And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up to God and to His throne. (Rev. 12:1-2, 5 NASB)
The third and longest segment of this book describing the things which must take place after this [Church Age] (1:19) is supernaturally complex; it warrants disciplined Spirit-led study to mine it’s unfathomable depths and riches. Praise God He progressively (and patiently!) reveals Jesus Christ to us, the members of His Body, by His Spirit (see John 16:12-14 and 1 Cor. 2:10-12) as we press into Him and study His word together like this. I thank all of you who have contributed to the writing of this series with your questions, and I encourage the true students amongst us to keep your heart-felt questions coming; we are fast approaching the end of the series.
May God grant us the Spirit of wisdom and revelation as we close ourselves off from all distractions, settle in, and study His astounding purposes for us as the male child… caught up… to His throne, that we may apprehend them, for the time is near! Amen.
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Given that our study is of God’s exalted position of His overcomers in the end-times and not a study of end-time prophecy per se, we will jump from the raptured overcomers’ enthronement as the twenty-four elders in Chs. 4 and 5 (see Part 9) to their worship in Ch.11 at a pivotal awe-evoking point in The Revelation of Jesus Christ: the sounding of the seventh trumpet. This is the third of three woes to the inhabitants of the earth (see Rev. 8:13), and it ushers forth this blessed proclamation and worship in heaven:
15 Then the seventh angel sounded [the seventh trumpet]; and there were loud voices in heaven, saying,
“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever.”
16 And the twenty-four elders, who sit on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17 saying,
“We give You thanks, O Lord God, the Almighty, who are and who were, because You have taken Your great power and have begun to reign. 18 And the nations were enraged, and Your wrath came, and the time came for the dead to be judged, and the time to reward Your bond-servants the prophets and the saints and those who fear Your name, the small and the great, and to destroy those who destroy the earth.”
19 And the temple of God which is in heaven was opened; and the ark of His covenant appeared in His temple, and there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and an earthquake and a great hailstorm. (Rev. 11:15-19).
(How can one write or read anything immediately after absorbing this?!)
This supremely important turn of events for all of heaven and earth is immediately followed by the key twelfth chapter of The Revelation of Jesus Christ. This highly symbolic chapter and the two chapters following it constitute yet another parenthesis in this book between the sounding of the seventh trumpet and the pouring out of the seven bowls of wrath.
Chapter 12 describes the spiritual warfare within the heavenly realms which precipitates the spiritual warfare on the earth below: the great tribulation. You may recall that Eph. 1:9-10 indicates heaven is brought under Christ’s rule before the earth is (and the latter won’t occur until the Millennium). Well, this is the chapter which illustrates that we, the enthroned overcoming members of Jesus Christ Himself, will make known the manifold wisdom of God… to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places (Eph. 3:10 emphasis added), actually causing Satan and his fallen cohorts to be thrown out of heaven to the earth below.
This critical twelfth chapter contains another description of the raptured overcoming remnant, and it is this: the male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron… caught up to God and to His throne (v.5).
Before we study it in the context of the highly symbolic chapter, I believe it will help first to point out two key internal details.
First, the Greek word translated caught up is harpazo, the same word Paul used to describe God’s rescuing His overcomers from the coming wrath in 1 Thess. 4:17 (see Part 7). It implies a violent seizing or snatching up by God in both Scriptures. The male child thus does NOT represent Jesus, for His ascension up to heaven was not a violent seizing or snatching up by God immediately after He was born. Furthermore, Jesus was crucified and resurrected before He ascended, and the cross does not appear in this chapter. Even more, this section of The Reveation of Jesus Christ is prophetic: Jesus told John in His outline of the book that this third part is what will take place later (1:19), and the word prophecy is used to describe this book in 1:3, and 22:7,10,18, & 19. Lastly, of course, Jesus Christ was NOT seized up to heaven by God to be protected from Satan – this male child is, as will be seen shortly.
The second observation is that this male child is caught up… to God and His throne, where he will rule all the nations with a rod of iron. Here we see fulfillment of Jesus’ promise to the Laodicean overcomers: He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne (3:21), as we saw fulfilled also by the raptured overcomers symbolized as the twenty-four elders on thrones in Rev. 4 and 5 and in 11:16 (see above).
We then see fulfillment of the first part of His promise to the Thyratiran overcomers: He who overcomes, and he who keeps My deeds until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations; and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, as the vessels of the potter are broken to pieces, as I also have received authority from My Father (2:26-27). Note that the underlined words are Jesus’ direct quote of His Father’s promise to Him in v.9 of Psalm 2 – because His Bride is one Body with Him, bone of His bone, flesh of His flesh (see end of Part 4: The Bride of Christ), we receive this astounding promise from our Father with our Bridegroom! Praise God for exalting us to rule as “the Christ” – one Body with His glorified Son! Oh, worship Him with me now…
Having covered these preliminary matters, let’s now study the key fifth verse in context in the first third of Revelation Ch. 12.
1 A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars; 2 and she was with child; and she cried out, being in labor and in pain to give birth.
1 The term A great sign appeared in heaven indicates that what transpires here is of great significance. Letting Scripture interpret Scripture, Gen. 37:9-11 tells us the woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars symbolizes the nation of Israel. This comes from Joseph’s second dream, which his father, Israel himself, interpreted therein as including himself (the sun), his wife (the moon), and their children / the twelve tribes of Israel (the stars).
2 Multiple other OT Scriptures describe the nation of Israel as a woman in labor, including the Isaiah 66:7-8 passage cited above, Isaiah 26:17-18, Micah 4:9-10, and Micah 5:3. (Notably, the amazing Isaiah 26 passage then immediately goes on to describe the resurrection of the dead with an allusion to the rapture in verses 19-21! The mosaic nature of God’s prophetic word is astounding, isn’t it?!)
3 Then another sign appeared in heaven: and behold, a great red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads were seven diadems. 4 And his tail swept away a third of the stars of heaven [angels] and threw them to the earth [fallen angels]. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth so that when she gave birth he might devour her child.
3 The forthcoming 9th verse confirms that the dragon is Satan. The ten horns are the ten kings of Dan. 7. The seven heads are most likely the seven major kingdoms of the earth as relayed in the Scriptures: Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome, and the final Rome (the latter being the divided kingdom of Dan. 2 vv. 33, 41-43 made of iron and clay, ruled by the ten kings of Dan. 7).
4 In Genesis 3:5, God decreed to the serpent, “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed…” This is the first prophecy of Scripture, and God spoke it Himself to Satan. From then on, Satan’s seed has always tried to destroy Christ, who is the seed of the woman (see Gal. 3:16). Satan’s seed includes not only the fallen angels, but his instruments, the kings of the earth (see Psalm 2:2). Time and again Satan and his seed tried to destroy the Messianic line throughout the OT. King Herod tried to destroy the baby Jesus directly via male infanticide (see Matt. 2:13-18). The annals of history show that the kings of the earth continued persecuting the person of Christ, His Church, from the First Century onward (most notably via the Catholic Church during the dark ages) until this very day. This Scripture prophesies that these instruments/ horns of Satan will continue persecuting those who are one with Christ, who is the seed of the woman, until Christ is fully formed, and He is formed in us (see Gal. 3:29, Eph. 4:12-13, also Gal. 4:19).
5 And she gave birth to a son, a male child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron; and her child was caught up to God and to His throne.
5 We’ve already demonstrated that (1) this key verse refers to the rapture of Christ’s overcomers (2) their rapture was previously alluded to in Rev. 4:1-2 (see Part 8: The Doors, the Trumpet, and the Transformation), and (3) this key verse fulfills some of Jesus’ promises to His overcomers in Chs. 2 and 3. Note that this verse also depicts their enthronement, alluded to in Daniel 7 (see Part 6: The Thrones and the Court) and described in Rev. 4 and 5 (see Part 9: The Twenty-Four Elders on the Thrones).
2 & 5 Finally, regarding the woman, Israel, travailing for and giving birth to the overcomers: salvation is from the Jews (John 4:22). Our Savior was of Jewish descent, and He travailed greatly on behalf of His Church. He then sent forth His apostles, the first of whom were all Jews, to make disciples of all the nations. As we know from The Acts of the Apostles and the epistles, these Jews likewise travailed tremendously on behalf of the Church, and many were martyred as Christ was. Equating the labor and pain of childbirth with the labor and pain of building up the Church, Paul told the churches of Galatia they were his dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you… (Gal. 4:16 NIV).
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I dedicate this labor of love to PaulJ, to whom I promised this six weeks ago in a comment in Part 5. God bless you, dear brother!
May God richly bless all those who study the Scriptures like Bereans!
8 thoughts on “Part 10: The Male Child Caught Up to God and to His Throne”
Thank you for your writing ministry and sharing your walk of faith! I pray for you to receive more revelations!
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Thank you for your gratitude and for your blessed prayers! Look at all the Scriptures the Lord has linked together as a result of your prayers! Your intercession is much appreciated…
i speak blessings and provisions as God continue to give you visions and revelations to edify the body of Christ. i declare that He will strentghen you and use you even more to be a channel of blessings to others. In Jesus’ name.
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I receive your blessing in Jesus’ name and humility. Praise God and thank YOU so much for YOUR perseverance in your walk with Him – we are all so vitally interdependent in this blessed and glorious Body of Christ!
Hi Deanna! I’m reading through these posts again since we are in Revelation at church. I was wondering if you could expound a bit on the “lmproper Greek” used to describe the male child in Revelation and Isaiah 66. I understand the child is the raptured church. Just trying to understand further. I’ve always been confused some about this child; is it Jesus or church. Honestly I think there is a great series that could be taught or preached at Christmas time reference the manger scene and the Christ-child and what is really being foretold in the future reference that Child and His connection with His Church which is also the male child. I would title it “What’s Going on in that Manger?”
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Hi Greg! Yes, here is the link to Doug Riggs’ website of an exceptional set of series of videos: http://www.dougriggs.org/Videos.html. According to notes I took back in January and February, Doug, a student of Dallas Theological Seminary very knowledgeable of the Hebrew and the Greek, provided specifics on that particular issue in “The Celestial Court” Part 4. Heads up: the Lord taught me so very much through this wonderful brother in Christ – he is not your typical “head knowledge only” theologian, but has tremendous experiential knowledge of Jesus Christ. Do know, however, that Doug does NOT yet realize Jesus Himself taught of the imminency of His rapture in His Olivet discourse as discussed in Part 7. (Doug and I have spent hours in email communications about this).
Wow. Thank you for sharing the link Deanna. Honestly I’m overwhelmed right now from the one video. Must press more. Not only overwhelmed by the vast amount of scripture God gave us to press into Him reference Jesus’ return and the church but how God has revealed this to us throughout the whole Bible, all the way back to Genesis 3. But what is overwhelming me right now is how much God loves us to give us this knowledge, not to blow us up with knowledge, but to worship Him. It’s all coming true just as God told us….I’ve got to stop typing and just praise Him now.
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Praise God!!! So glad you’ll be watching them!
Yes, Doug’s entire set of videos on that page of his vastly informative website are tremendous. They started as teachings on “The Byte Show” radio show many years ago. Then, since they are overflowing with Scriptural references, Doug added the Scriptures via video. When I linked it for you yesterday, I saw that he had since markedly improved the visuals. I spent well over 100 hours listening intently to them and taking notes last winter; they were a key part of what the Lord gave me to write the “Our Exalted Position” series, as were many of Chuck Missler’s exegetical videos …