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Friday, June 29, 2012

War in Heaven


                                Michael fights rebel angels, by Sebastiano Ricci, c. 1720

Book of Revelation

The Book of Revelation, which consists principally of eschatological visions and opens with the words, “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show to his servants the things that must soon take place”, includes in those events a war in heaven.

Among its visions of things to come is one of “a great sign (that) appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars”, and “another sign appeared in heaven: behold a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads seven diadems. His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to give birth, so that when she bore her child he might devour it.” This is followed by:

Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world – he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.” (Revelation 12:7-9)

Book of Daniel

The war in heaven in Revelation 12 is an allusion to the war (without any casting out of heaven) "between the angel Gabriel and the princes of Persia and Greece in Daniel 10:13-14. The passage in question does not mention Gabriel explicitly nor speak of the princes of Greece; it does mention "Michael, your prince" as coming to the aid of the speaker who is identified with the angel Gabriel.

Book of Isaiah

Parallels are drawn to the passage in Isaiah 14:4-17 that mention the Morning star that had "fallen from heaven" and was "cast down to the earth". In verse 12 of this passage, the Hebrew word that referred to the morning star was translated into Latin as Lucifer. With the application to the Devil of the morning star story, "Lucifer" was then applied to him as a proper name.

Book of Enoch (not in the Christian Bible)

Book of Enoch 29:4, 31:4, where Satan-Sataniel is described as having been one of the archangels. Because he contrived "to make his throne higher than the clouds over the earth and resemble 'My power' on high", Satan-Sataniel was hurled down, with his angels, and since then he has been flying in the air continually above the abyss. According to Jewish thought, the passage in Isaiah was used to prophesy the fate of the King of Babylon, who is described as aiming to rival God.

Ezekiel 28

The Judeo-Christian tradition has stories about angelic beings cast down from heaven by God, often presenting the punishment as inflicted in particular on Satan. The name Lucifer, the Latin name (literally "Light-Bearer" or "Light-Bringer") for the morning star (the planet Venus in its morning appearances), is often given to the Devil in these stories. The brilliancy of the morning star, which eclipses all other stars, but is not seen during the night, may be what gave rise to myths such as the Babylonian story of Ethana and Zu, who was led by his pride to strive for the highest seat among the star-gods on the northern mountain of the gods (an image present also in Ezekiel 28:14), but was hurled down by the supreme ruler of the Babylonian Olympus. Stars were then regarded as living celestial beings.


Important thing is that what will happen to us by this War in Heaven.

God’s Word says in Revelation 12:10-12;

10Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:

“Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God,

and the authority of his Christ.

For the accuser of our brothers,

who accuses them before our God day and night,

has been hurled down.

11They overcame him

by the blood of the Lamb

and by the word of their testimony;

they did not love their lives so much

as to shrink from death.

12Therefore rejoice, you heavens

and you who dwell in them!

But woe to the earth and the sea,

because the devil has gone down to you!

He is filled with fury,

because he knows that his time is short.”


Lord Jesus, Supreme Commander of the Army of Heaven, deliver us from the evil one, Satan!

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