Anyone who sees Jesus as just a great moral teacher hasn’t really listened to Him. He said wild things like “Before Abraham was, I AM,” and, “If you’ve seen me, you’ve seen the Father,” and, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.”
I think you will find Dr. Campbell’s teaching not only illuminating this week but so very encouraging. There was a war in heaven, but it was won the day Jesus rose from the dead, and that’s when Satan fell like lightning from heaven. The accuser of the brethren was defeated, for as Campbell puts it: “At the moment of his [Christ’s] resurrection, he [Satan] is evicted from the counsel of God.” Jesus spoke these words before His resurrection, for He knew the end of the story. He went to the cross, setting His face like flint, to rescue His Bride from the power of the world, the flesh, and the devil.
What is also illuminating is Dr. Campbell’s take, which I believe he supports scripturally, that the tribulation and the “millennium” are the time between Christ’s ascension and return. While I know this “timing” is a matter of controversy, I think no matter what view you take, you will find agreement and encouragement in the fact that though the devil is now the prince of this world, Christ is ruling in our lives and victory is possible now and certain eventually.
We are in the wilderness now, but the wilderness, scripturally, is a place of God’s protection, as it was in Exodus. Satan cannot do anything without God’s permission, and God Himself may allow or lead us into the wilderness to test and teach us, and to speak to us tenderly.
One of the most memorable statements Paige drew from Romans 8:28-29 is similar: “Our sufferings can be stepping stones to glory.”
Because this is also the week leading to Thanksgiving, though I know you will be busy, I’ve added a few questions, related to the study, to help us give thanks. I want you to know how thankful I am to God for bringing each of you here, bonding you, and helping us be what the Body, connected to the Head, is meant to me. You bless me every day.
Also, please share how God works in your life this week through Thanksgiving Day or the time near it.
- What stands out to you from the above and why?
- Share a time when God spoke tenderly to you in the wilderness. Give thanks!
Monday: The Great Dragon Hurled Down
3. Read Revelation 12:7-12 aloud to yourself.
A. What stands out to you upon your first reading? Why?
B. Describe the war in heaven and who won. (vs. 7-8)
C. How is the dragon described in verse 9?
D. How is he described in verse 10?
E. How and when was he overcome according to verse 11?
F. Why should heaven rejoice but why should the earth and sea feel woe? (verse 12)
G. Why is the devil filled with fury now?
4. Read Dr. Campbell’s 1st paragraph under Warfare in Heaven up to “the vision continues…”
A. Why does Campbell think it is not surprising that events in heaven parallel events on earth?
B. Who was the power behind Israel’s oppressors of Greece and Persia? (Do you think he was and is also behind Hitler, Mussolini, and today’s terrorists? Why or why not?)
C. What does “devil” mean? What does “Satan” mean?
D. Does anything stand out to you from this paragraph for which you can praise or give thanks to God?
Tuesday: Christ’s Kingdom and Authority Have Come
Some views of Revelation believe the Kingdom of Christ is in the future beginning with a literal 1,000 year reign of Christ on earth. The Idealist view sees the numbers in Revelation as being symbolic, with a thousand years meaning a long time, and Christ’s reign beginning with His ascension. However, no matter the timing, I think we can agree on the application. But let us consider the Idealist view today.
5. In Rev. 12:10, what does the loud voice in heaven say after Satan is hurled to earth?
6. Read Dr. Campbell’s second paragraph under Warfare in Heaven beginning with “the vision continues.”
A. What insight does Dr. Campbell give on Psalm 2?
B. What insight does he give on Luke 10:17-20?
C. What else stands out to you from this paragraph?
7. Read the paragraph that begins: “The assurance is now given to the saints on earth…”
A. The fact that our suffering parallels Christ should teach us what?
B. Why does this long time Satan have to torment us on earth seem short to him?
C. What else stands out to you from this paragraph?
D. Paige said “Our sufferings are stepping stones that lead to glory.” How can you see that in your life?” Can you give thanks to God for one way you see that?
Wednesday: The Woman in the Wilderness
8. Read Revelation 12:13-17
A. What stands out to you from your initial reading and why?
B. Whom does the dragon pursue when he falls to earth?
C. From what you have learned, who does the woman and her male child represent in addition to Mary and Jesus?
D. What was the woman given, where did she fly, and for how long?
E. What will the dragon do in response to try to overcome her? What will the earth do?
F. Whom does the enraged dragon then go after?
G. How have you been nearly swallowed up by the dragon, yet then rescued?
9. Read Dr. Campbell’s 1st paragraph under The Woman in the Wilderness up to “Next come Satan’s response…”
A. What association does Dr. Campbell make with Exodus?
B. What association with Isaiah 40:3-11?
C. How does he interpret time, times, and half time to mean several different numbers?
D. How does this lend credence to the numbers in Revelation being symbolic rather than literal? Thoughts?
Thursday: The Dragon’s Techniques of Deception & Persecution
10 Read Dr. Campbell’s paragraph beginning with “Now comes Satan’s response…” up to “The picture of the Red Sea…”
A. How will Satan attempt to destroy the church from within? From without?
B. Share how one of these has impacted you and how you can overcome it in the future.
C. What else do you learn from this paragraph?
11. Read Dr. Campbell’s paragraph beginning with “The picture of the Red Sea” up to “the continuing warfare…”
A. How was the Red Sea parting a past fulfillment of this picture in Revelation?
B. How does Dr. Campbell see Isaiah 51:6-11 (read it!) as a future fulfillment for believers?
Friday: And he Stood on the Sand of the Sea
12. What picture does Revelation 13:1 give us? What do you learn from this? (Use your imagination.)
13. Read Dr. Campbell’s paragraph beginning with “The continuing warfare” to the end of the section.
A. How was faithful Israel represented in Isaiah 49:14-26? (Read it)
B. How was unfaithful Israel represents in Ezekiel 16 and Hosea?
14. Idolatry is equated with adultery in Scripture. How does this speak to you?
15. What is your take-a-way this week and why?