“And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. “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. ‘Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time‘”
And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought,
The fourth personage is “Michael,” the archangel (Jude 9). In heaven, Michael and his angels will fight with Satan and his demons toward the end of the Tribulation period.
Michael is a principal figure of the book of Daniel (10:12-21; 12:1). He was the guardian angel of Israel. Thus, this continues the theme of Israel during the Tribulation.
but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer.
Satan and his demons will not win the war of heaven. They will be cast out of heaven in the middle of the Tribulation period, the beginning of the Great Tribulation. Fallen angels (demons) will never go back to heaven again. Up until this time, they conducted a relay service between earth and heaven. They constantly carried messages to Satan.
So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.
This verse finally identifies the “dragon” as the Devil and Satan who deceives the whole world. He deceives the world by the beast (13:11) and the false prophet (20:11).
The term “Devil” is both a title and a descriptive term of his activity. The word “devil” literally means to cast through. Metaphorically, it means to slander. The New Testament uses this word three times for gossips and slanderers. (1 Timothy 3:11; 2 Timothy 3:3; Titus 2:3). Sins of the tongue are characteristic of the Devil. This is why many local churches have no spiritual punch. The Devil loves to defame Christians.
“Satan” means adversary. He accuses us before God. Satan deceives the whole world. He is a beautiful creature. He is on top of the pile of angels in a hierarchy. He does not have red skin or wears a red union suit. That modern portrayal has no basis in the Bible. It is a fairy tale. He deceives the whole world by beauty and good without God.
Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.
An announcement of the coming of the millennial Kingdom causes people to break out into praise. They sing of salvation, the salvation provided by the coming of Christ. They praise God’s “strength,” His inherent power that will crush the power of Satan.
They affirm that the kingdom of our God has come, and the millennial reign of Christ has begun. Jesus defeated the accuser of the brethren.
Accusing the brethren is the Devil’s current job. Just as he brought accusations against Job (chapter one), he brings accusations against us.
“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.
The two means of victory over Satan are 1) the blood of the Lamb and 2) the word of testimony. The angels used these two means to defeat Satan.
We should translate the word “by” as “because of.” It is because of the blood of the Lamb that victory comes. This is the bloodshed on Calvary’s cross. This is Jesus’ sacrificial death for sins.
Once people become Christians, they have a testimony. Their love for Christ will be great, and they will be willing to sacrifice their own lives for Christ. In contrast to the deception of Satan, the testimony of the saints sets forth the truth of the gospel. Our testimony is one of our most valuable possessions.
It made no difference to these people, whether they lived or died. Note Paul’s attitude toward death,
“For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain…. For I am hard pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better. Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you” (Philippians 1:21, 23, 24).
“But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24).
Do you have the belief you must live out a seventy-year life? That wasn’t Paul’s attitude. He was willing to shorten his life for the cause of Christ. Life will go on without us. We are not as important as we often think we are. There will be a few people who will miss us; this life is just a proving ground for eternity. Death is the beginning of eternity for us.
‘Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time”
The Devil’s days are numbered. Because he only has three and a half more years to do what he has to do, he vents his spleen. His program will come to an end, and he will wind up in the Lake of Fire.
Satan tries to prosecute Christians, but Jesus, our defense attorney, has enough evidence to free us from the charges.
Jesus defeated Satan. He came to an ignominious defeat. Why should we be deceived by his misrepresentations? Our defense attorney, Jesus Christ, makes an appeal for us in the courts of heaven.
As in any war, it is important to know the strategy of the enemy. If we do not know the plan of attack, we will be vulnerable to Satan’s war on our souls. If the Christian does not realize that he is at war with a supernatural being, he will be most vulnerable to his attack.
People who slander other Christians do the work of the Devil (Titus 2:3). Whenever we slander other Christians, we do the work of the Devil.
The Devil today deceives people into thinking that they are going to get to heaven by good works.
“But I fear, lest somehow, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received or a different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it!” (2 Corinthians 11:3-4).
Dr. Richison, Thank you for this web site. I have been studying revelations using your comments which I find very helpful in understanding this book. I noticed that you commented that Satan and his angles were in Heaven and will be cast out during the tribulation. Why are they still there now? I thought Satan and his demons were already cast out of Heaven long ago. How could God still have them in Heaven where only His saved ones are?
In Christ, James
James, this “heaven” is not the same heaven where Christians will go one day. It is more like the heavens where the stars are.
this has been very helpfull to me in my study of the book of revelation. God bless you
Thank you, Dr. Richison, for writing so plainly on a most challenging book. It is sad that evangelical Christians are divided into four camps over this book. I found your commentary/notes helpful, instructive, encouraging and clarifying. Thank you very much.
Paul, thank you for the encouraging words.
Thank you so much, I’ve been reading Revelations and found your site. It’s very informative and I believe you are right in my spirit of everything you said. I know Jesus is coming soon and I want to be ready for that day. The church doesn’t seem to talk about Jesus return anymore but I know now it could be any day. See you in Heaven for our celebration with the Lord.
My contribution is that satan was cast out from Heaven soon after Christ ascendf back to Heaven
Innocent, the context for the casting out of Satan is this context during the Tribulation period.
I am studying my Sunday School lesson, and we have a 7 day devotional for each week as well as the lesson and Revelation 12:7-11 was day #5’s scripture, and I have a hard time understanding this book, but I’m trying to learn more about My God and His Word, so I try to study daily, and I decided to look this scripture up and I found you. Thank you for your explanatory definition, it has helped very much, Thank you.
Hello, I once heard someone preach that there are 3 heavens. The first being the one we can see- the sun, moon & stars. The 3rd heaven where Christ resides in; The 2nd heaven which satan inhabits and wars against the saints on earth and accusing us before God the Father.
This is the only interpretation that seems to make sense to me- because how could satan still be in heaven with Christ? I always believed satan was cast out of Heaven long before. What are your thoughts?
Lee, Satan is not in the presence of God but in system that we call the universe.
Thank you for this site. I find easy to understand by the aid of the Holy Spirit within verse by verse. God bless.
Thank you Dr Grant for the publication of this material. However I have a question on the time that these events took place in Rev 12:9. Taking into consideration Ezekiel 28:16 from my understanding the Devil is already cast out of heaven. My question is Devil yet to be cast out of heaven or it has already happened?
Philip, the two events you reference are entirely different events. The first event had to do with Satan’s original fall.
Please will you explain why the devil was cast out of heaven to the earth where we reside? If the heaven could not contain him how can we humans on earth? Why should we be blamed when Satan deceives us to sin?
For instance if a father finds a snake I’m his room in the night will he drive or hurl the snake to his children’s room to battle with the snake? Please help me to properly understand this passage.
Peter, thanks for your question. First, this passage deals with world catastrophes during the Tribulation. The church has already been raptured. This catastrophe will not affect them.
In the original case where Satan was cast out of heaven, God did not leave us vulnerable if we use weapons for spiritual war (Eph 6; 1 Pe 5:8, etc.).
we have 3 heavens basing on the Bible.
.2 Corinthians 12:2,where Apostle Paul talks about being caught up in the third heaven.
.The first heaven is the earth’s atmosphere (Acts1:9-10).
.The second is the entire universe which contains all stars.(see Genesis 1:14).
.The third is beyond the two where God himself lives.(1 Peter 3:22).and it is the heaven of heavens (see Nehemiah 9:6.
See also Ephesians 4:10.
God bless you,
Kiiza Philip (Uganda).
Thank you Philip
It is troubling to hear that Satan fell from Heaven where God sits on his throne. Scripture tells us that Satan is a liar and murderer from the beginning. Heaven, we are told is a holy place where righteousness is found, nothing there is defiling.
Nowhere in my Bible does it refer that Satan fell from Heaven. Much wording in scripture is symbolic and not litural.
Alvis, it is important to take the extant statements of Scripture for what they say. Lucifer turn devil was originally cast from the presence of God (Ezek 28; Isa 14). Which “heaven” (the Bible describes 7 heavens) here is in question. The context here deals with the tribulation and events therein so it must deal with this particular situation. Satan went into the presence of God in the book of Job so he had some access to God. Something similar may be found in this context.
Thanks, was able to understand the relationship between all the events in this text.
Was not clear initially even after going through several other commentaries.
Hello Dr. RICHISON. Thank you for the teachings. If I may ask, “Does Satan and his demons come from heaven to trouble people on the earth and then go back to heaven? Any proving scriptures that they are still in heaven until the great tribulation?”
Risaman, the heaven where Satan is is the stellar heavens, not the place where the presence of God resides.