They are former angels—Satan the dragon’s army. They are deadly, vile, malignant, and very intelligent (in Greek, “demon” means “intelligence”).
These aliens to our planet are highly skilled, incredibly powerful, and usually invisible warriors. Demons can hear us talk, pass through walls, fly through space, inhabit human and animal bodies, alter human behavior, and afflict humans with disease, anguish, and turmoil. These extra-terrestrial beings can take on various forms that look human, look powerful, and look fearsome. They are watching over the realm of the serpent and his seed. You see, we saints of God are at war.
There is an intense conflict going on that most of us have not fully comprehended. Swirling around us, the unseen beings of the spirit world are locked in mortal combat. Behind the scenes in every boardroom, political planning session, military strategy session, classroom, worship service, and everywhere else—these unseen spirits watch, listen, and whisper their lies. It is the battle for the planet Earth that rages! The god of this world has dispatched his demon warriors with one target: blind the minds of earth’s inhabitants until they cannot see and thus will not follow God!
Revelation 12 is one of the more difficult chapters of the Bible because it is so full of pictures and symbols. In no other place in the Word of God is the conflict of the ages more clearly laid out than in Revelation 11:19-12:17 where He names the key players in the battle for planet Earth. And Revelation 12 is His battle plan!
Revelation 11:19-12:7 is divided into three powerful insights for our lives today:
We have victory in Jesus because God is faithful (11:19-12:6). That is why the passage starts with the temple and the ark of the covenant scene. Faithfulness is one of the attributes of God.
We have victory in Jesus because Satan is vanquished (12:7-9). God limits everything about Satan. Many of us tremble before Satan. But when Martin Luther wrote his great hymn, “A Mighty Fortress is Our God,” he had the right perspective: “We tremble not for him for lo his doom is sure. One little word shall fell him.”
We have victory in Jesus because saints suffer (12:10-17). Victory comes through our suffering. Peter tells us in his first epistle that suffering refines us, so we are called to go through various trials. David tells us in the Old Testament that suffering is that which causes us to experience afresh the life-giving and renewing power of God through His Word.
Are you getting the picture that you have victory in Jesus—no matter what is going on in your life? I encourage you to grab hold of that truth and press on with enduring hope for the help that is yours through faith!