Who does the dragon represent in Revelation 12?
At the tail end of Scripture, we find a disturbing metaphor in Revelation 12 that provides insight into the origins of demons and evil itself. There is a woman laboring to give birth to a child, and there is a seven-headed dragon. I won’t spend a lot of time on the woman, but I’ll tell you she is symbolic of the nation of Israel. Her child is none other than Jesus Christ. It is the dragon that informs us of the origins of evil. Focusing only on the dragon and his minions, here is what the passage says:
“Behold, a great, fiery red dragon having seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems on his heads. His tail drew a third of the stars of heaven and threw them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth, to devour her Child as soon as it was born…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.” (Revelation 12:3-4, Revelation 12:7-9).
Here, in our mind’s eye, we observe a third of the stars of heaven being thrown to the earth by the dragon as it threatens the woman and her child. Our studies in part one acquainted us with the biblical connection between angels and stars. So, it shouldn’t surprise us to see the metaphor unveiled in verse 8 where we are told that the great dragon represents Satan and the stars are his angels. Evil entered our world when Satan and his angels determined in their hearts to oppose the plans of Almighty God.
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