John rushes us past the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, which secured our salvation, to His ascension and enthronement for a specific purpose he comes back to in verse 10…
Don’t miss what John is saying here! The death, resurrection and Kingly enthronement of Jesus has not only brought us salvation, but it has also silenced Satan’s accusations against us and caused him to be “cast down” a second time, limiting him to the earth until he is completely crushed by the Baby. Read the first few chapters of the book of Job and you will see that Satan had limited access to God’s presence, claiming dominion of planet earth due to humanities fall. But now, in light of the victory of the cross, he has been cast down, awaiting his certain crushing. This is why the announcement goes out in verse 12-13, to the onlooking universe that just witnessed the cross…
Why is the Devil so mad and full of wrath? Because he is a frustrated looser and he knows his time is almost up! He tried to fight Christ in heaven and he lost. He tried to stop the covenantal promises from being fulfilled through God’s people in the Old Testament narrative and though sometimes it looked like he was winning, he was defeated. Verse 4 hints at Satan’s attempted to take out Baby Jesus through King Herod’s Bethlehem massacre. And though the circumstances surrounding Christ’s birth made Him seem vulnerable, the Devil was defeated again. Then throughout Christ’s life and ministry he tried to stop Him and failed again. Then at the cross and on Sunday morning when death could not hold Jesus in the grave, then Devil was defeated for sure and his doom sealed! You see, I’ve discovered that when you’re in Christ, Satan’s greatest deception is to make you think he’s winning! But oh my friends, the Baby lying in a manger, who crushes the serpent, wants you to know for certain today that…
What May Seem Like Defeat, Is a Set Up for Overwhelming Victory
The Israelite army looked defeated when Goliath threatened them, but God used a shepherd boy named David and a stone to accomplish overwhelming victory. Moses and the Israelites looked defeated when the approaching army of Pharaoh was about to slaughter them by the Red Sea, but God caused His people to cross the same Red Sea on dry ground and accomplished overwhelming victory for His people; drowning Pharaohs army in the sea. And it’s been the same thing through the history of the church until now.
Since the Devil was defeated by Jesus at the cross, making his doom sure, the Devil decided to focus his attacks on Christ’s bride, the church. He initially did this through persecution from without by the Roman state. But as John mentions in verse 6 and 14, the Devil changed his strategy and persecuted the church from within for a period of 1260 prophetic years, from 538 AD to 1798 AD, by the Roman Papal church-state. It seemed like the church would be defeated. Yet God protected the faithful followers of Jesus during this time. And from then on this is how John describes the faithful followers of Jesus in verse 17, “And the dragon was enraged with the woman, and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Revelation 12:17 NKJV. You see, the Devil’s mad because time is almost up for him and he still can’t stop the witness of Christ through His faithful followers, even though it may seem at times like they’re defeated. These faithful followers of Christ give powerful witness to the story of Jesus with inspired, prophetic clarity.
You see, today Satan is not so much concerned with those who merely profess to be Christians and gather among the church once a week. Satan is upset and worried about the true, faithful followers of Jesus fully realizing that they’re being set up by God for overwhelming victory! So what’s the secret to this overwhelming victory over Satan? John reveals the secret in verse 11… “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” Revelation 12:11 NKJV. They have received the gospel by faith and are clear in their daily experience that they are saved by grace, through the blood of the Lamb and this gives them the ability to give fearless witness to the story of Jesus in their lives. Their testimony about Jesus is so compelling that not even the threat of death can stop them from lifting up Jesus!
Family, the serpent crushing Baby wants you to know that He has already accomplished your victory. All Jesus needs from you is some faith. Paul, in Romans 10:17, says that your faith comes from being in the word with the focus on Jesus. Don’t you, for one second, believe the lie from the Devil that he’s winning. If you’re in a relationship with Jesus, you are merely being set up for overwhelming victory! Listen to Paul’s encouragement in Romans 16:20, “…the God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly.” Romans 16:20 NKJV. I don’t care how defeating your circumstances may look to you. You look to Jesus in faith, for He has already accomplished your victory!
Look at that Baby in the manger and be astonished! Don’t be fooled by the swaddling cloths and cute little baby coos. This Baby is the greatest threat to Satan and every system of oppression he inspires that rises up against God and His people.
You see, at the time of the birth of Jesus, the only one in the Roman Empire who was supposed to be called Lord, Savior, Son of God, the king who brought peace on earth, was Cesar. These were all titles that Emperor Cesar Augustus claimed for himself. But the Gospel of Luke tells us Jesus was called Lord. Jesus was called Savior. Jesus was called Son of God. And Jesus was declared King of Kings who brings peace on earth. Now gaze at Him once again in the manger. For this Baby that crushes the Devil assures your present and future victory as you trust His past faithfulness, even when you seem defeated.
This is seen most vividly at the cross of calvary. See the serpent crusher as He is beaten, mocked and spat upon. Now watch Him as He struggles to carry the cross. Listen to the hammer as it pounds the nails into His flesh. Now stand their in amazement as you discover that these physical pains He suffered, where barely felt in comparison to nuclear explosion of our sins He took upon Himself as if He did them. Hear His agonizing cry to the Father as He feels your sin ripping His soul from the Father. On the surface, Jesus looks defeated on calvary. As a matter of fact Satan didn’t necessarily want Jesus to go through with it. He wanted to make this torturous experience so horrific for Jesus that He would give up on saving you. But Jesus looks at you and says your worth it all. He was committed to loving you, to saving you at any cost to Himself. His death was just the set up for overwhelming victory, for on that Sunday, Jesus got up from the grave with your salvation secured and the crushing of Satan certain. Receive Him by faith today!
FOLLOWER OF JESUS, HUSBAND, FATHER, PASTOR, AUTHOR & LOVER OF PEOPLE.