Friday 29 September 2017

Bible Book:

"The accuser of our comrades has been thrown down" (v. 10)

Revelation 12:7-12 Friday 29 September 2017

Psalm: Psalm 103


Biblical prophecy is not so much a matter ofpredicting specific future events in micro-detail. It is aboutapplying to contemporary situations the principles of living inharmony with God's creative and re-creative love that are set outin the opening books of the Hebrew Scriptures (the Torah - thefirst five books of the Old Testament). Apocalyptic writings (suchas the book of Revelation) are even less concerned with detailedprediction of the future. They are often written when it is hardfor people to discern God's creative love in contemporary events.They pull back the curtain, as it were, to show what is happeningbackstage. In other words, they show things with an addeddimension, God's dimension. To do that they use all sorts of ideasand images, drawn from Scripture and elsewhere. These are broughttogether creatively. Sometimes what is heard in the Scriptures isreinterpreted by what is seen. At other times the inner meaning ofwhat is seen is given by a voice from heaven.

The name "Satan" (v. 9) originally referred tothe public prosecutor in the heavenly court. But by referring tothe picture of the Serpent in Genesis (Genesis 3) it is shown that Satan has startedto entrap people, leading them to do wrong so that he can prosecutethem successfully and punish them. It feels as if there is littlehope for us. And Michael, the defence counsel, can do little forus. But in resisting Satan's temptation and showing that thepunishment arranged by Satan was undeserved, yet voluntarilyundergoing it, Jesus (the Lamb of God) has broken Satan's power inheaven. Jesus' followers ("our comrades") who are prepared to walkthe way of his cross with him continue to break Satan's power onearth. They do so above all by worshipping (verse 12) because whereGod is acknowledged the war at the heart of things is resolved.

To Ponder

  • What images and ideas help you to see the God-dimension inthings?
  • Are there times when you feel both trapped and condemned andunable to do anything about it?
  • How can worship help you accept that Jesus has broken the powerof evil and encourage you to walk the way of the cross? 
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