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Copr. 1997, Bruce N. Cameron, J.D.

LESSON 1 - GOD'S CHURCH: PURSUED AND PROTECTED (REVELATION 12:1-16)

INTRO: GOOD TO SEE YOU AFTER 2 WEEKS. DURING TIME WAS ABLE TO SQUEEZE
IN BOTH A VACATION AND AN ILLNESS.
        THIS WEEK WE START A NEW QRTER. AND WE CONTINUE OUR STUDY OF
THE BOOK OF REV. THIS WEEKS LESSON IS A LOT EASIER THAN SOME OF THE
RECENT LESSONS HAVE BEEN, SO LETS START IT BY ME READING TO YOU.

I. THE WOMAN
      A. READ 12:1-5
      B. LIST FOR ME THE MAIN CHARACTERS (WOMAN, RED DRAGON AND CHILD. 
LATER THE DRAGON IS ID.ED AS A SERPENT)
      C. HAVE YOU SEEN THIS CAST OF CHARACTERS BEFORE?  IF SO, WHEN?
(GEN.3. WOMAN, SERPENT AND PROMISED CHILD.  WHEN SIN ENTERED THE
PICTURE, JESUS SAID THAT THERE WOULD BE 3 PROMINENT PLAYERS IN THE
STRUGGLE THAT WOULD FOLLOW.  WE NOW SEE THESE THREE AGAIN IN REV. 12)
      D. TELL ME ABOUT THE WOMAN:
            1. SAYS "CLOTHED WITH SUN." WHAT MEAN?
                  a.IS THAT THE SAME AS IF I SAID, "I SAW YOU IN
                        LIGHTS?"
                  b.WHAT DOES LIGHT TRADITIONALLY REPRESENT IN THE
                        BIBLE? (TRUTH, RIGHTEOUSNESS)
            2. WHAT DO THE MOON AND STARS ADD TO THIS PICTURE? (PICTURE
OF MORE LIGHT.)
            3. WHO IS SHE? (GOD'S CHURCH, COLLECTIVELY HIS PEOPLE)
            4. NOW SHE IS PREGNANT, ABOUT TO GIVE BIRTH, AND CRIES OUT IN
PAIN.  IS SHE HAPPY OR SAD? GOOD TIME OR BAD?
      E. WHY IS THE DRAGON INTERESTED IN THIS WOMAN? (THE CHILD. V.4B)
II. THE CHILD
      A. TELL ME ABOUT THE CHILD THAT SHE IS ABOUT TO BEAR:
            1. WHO IS HE? (12:5 RULES WITH IRON SCEPTER. 19:11-16 IN COJUNCTION
WITH JOHN CHPT.1 IDENTIFIES THE CHILD AS JESUS)
      B. WHAT IS IT THAT BOTH THE WOMAN AND THE DRAGON WANT IN
COMMON? (CHILD TO COME)
            1. BUT FOR DIFFERENT REASONS.
      C. THIS CHURCH WANTS JESUS TO COME.
            1. DO WE WANT JESUS TO COME IN THE SAME WAY THAT A PREGNANT
WOMAN WANTS HER BABY TO BE BORN.  TO HELP ME SORT THIS OUT, LIST FOR ME
THE THINGS THAT A WOMAN LOOKS FORWARD TO WHEN THE BABY IS BORN?
(KNOW WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE.  GET TO KNOW THE PERSON. GROWTH AND
DEVELOPMENT OF THE CHILD BEFORE BORN ETC.)
            2. DO WE GET THE PICTURE THAT REALLY WANTING JESUS TO COME
IS NOT ALL FUN AND GAMES?
      D. JUST LOOKING AT THIS SHORT DESCRIPTION, WHAT KIND OF LIFE ON
EARTH WOULD YOU SAY THAT JESUS HAD? (THE DRAGON WAS WAITING FOR HIM
THE MOMENT THAT HE WAS BORN.)

III. THE DRAGON
      A. VERSE 3 DESRIBES THE DRAGON, WHO IS HE? (DEVIL. 12:9)
      B. LETS ZOOM UP TO THE BIG PICTURE HERE.  DOESN'T IT SEEM THAT THE
DRAGON IS REALLY THE ONE WHO IS CALLING THE SHOTS?
            1. HE STANDS IN FRONT OF THE WOMAN (V.4)
            2. THE WOMAN RUNS AWAY FROM HIM (V.6)
            3. THE CHILD WAS SNATCHED AWAY FROM HIM(5)
            4. IS THIS SOMETHING THAT WE HAVE TO DEAL WITH TODAY?  IS THIS
JUST APPEARENCE OR IS THIS REALITY? 
            5. VERSE 7-9 REASSURES US THAT THIS IS JUST APPEARANCE. WHY?
(THE FIGHT ALREADY TOOK PLACE AND JESUS WON)
            6. READ 7-10. WHEN WAS SATAN "HURLED DOWN?" (SEEMS TWICE.
ONCE IN HEAVEN BEFORE CREATION.  AND THEN IT TALKS ABOUT HIM BEING
HURLED DOWN WHEN HE IS THE ACCUSER OF THE BRETHERN.  SO THIS PROBABLY
MEANS AT THE CROSS.)
      C. THE VISION SAYS THAT THE DRAGON WAS IN HEAVEN, YET JESUS WAS
BORN ON EARTH.  SO, WHO ON EARTH DOES THE DRAGON SYMBOL REPRESENT?
(ROME--HEROD TRIED TO KILL THE BABIES)
      D. SO FAR THE DRAGON HAS BEEN AFTER THE CHILD.  AFTER THE CHILD IS
TAKEN TO HEAVEN, WHAT DOES THE DRAGON DO? (HE TRANSFERS HIS HATRED TO
THE MOTHER.)
      E. CHPT. 12 ALSO TALKS ABOUT A FUTURE WAR BETWEEN THE DRAGON AND
THE CHURCH.  WHO WILL BE THE DRAGON IN THE FUTURE IN YOUR OPINION?
(LESSON SUGGESTS A "AN APOSTATE RELIGIOUS-POLITICAL POWER" AND REFERS
TO V. 17.  VERSE 17 TALKS ABOUT THE WOMAN SITTING ON THE DRAGON AND
CALLS HER "BABYLON." 
            1. WHAT WAS THE RELIGION OF THE TOWER OF BABEL AND BABYLON?
(MAN CAN DO IT W/O GOD)
            2. WAS THE POWER AND REASON OF MAN GLORIFIED IN THE ROMAN
EMPIRE? (YES) 
            3. WANT YOU TO JUST CONSIDER THIS.  IF YOU READ LIBERTY AND
SOME OF THE OTHER PUBLICATIONS YOU WOULD BE LEAD TO BELIEVE THAT OUR
POLITICALLY MINDED EVANGELICAL BROTHERS MAY BE THE PROBLEM.  IS IT
POSSIBLE THAT THE HUMANISTS/ EVOLUTIONIST ARE THE PROBLEM, THE TRUE
DESCENDANTS OF THE BABYLON SCHOOL OF THOUGHT?
      
IV. NEXT WEEK: REV. 12:17