Daily Devotionals: (17th Aug.) The Church Preserved

by Aaron Dunlop

Reading: Genesis 3:15

The conflict between Satan and humanity is on three levels: individual (serpent and the woman), universal (seed of the serpent and the seed of the woman), and ultimate (Christ the God-Man, the specific seed of the woman through whom the victory is gained). This is the conflict described in Revelation 12. Christ is the child with whom the woman (the church) travails in birth and Satan (the red dragon) is waiting at the birth “to devour her child as soon as it was born” (12:4). The victory over Satan then is not only individual, as noted earlier, but universal; it is the cosmic conflict of good and evil. The church of Christ struggles against the powers and principalities of hell.

There are two great periods of struggle for the church identified in Revelation 12. The woman is afflicted as the dragon waits for the delivery of the child. After that child is delivered and brought to safety, the women flees into the wilderness where she is afflicted again. But between these two periods of struggle we see Satan in another conflict; it is a conflict not between Satan and the saints, but between Satan and their Saviour. Verse 11 says that they (the saints) overcame him (Satan), by the blood of the Lamb (the Christ).

Take courage Christian, the church is secure because the saint is secure. C. H. Spurgeon said, “Never think of the Church of God as if she were in danger.” There were times throughout the ages when the church was so beaten down that it was thought to be non-existent. God will always have His people to preserve truth on earth. He will not leave Himself without a witness.

The Church shall never perish!
Her dear Lord to defend,
To guide, sustain, and cherish,
Is with her to the end:
Though there be those who hate her,
And false sons in her pale,
Against both foe or traitor
She ever shall prevail.    Samuel J. Stone

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