The Woman and the Dragon
1And then a great wonder appeared in heaven: There was a woman who was clothed with the sun. The moon was under her feet. She had a crown of 12 stars on her head. 2The woman was pregnant. She cried out with pain because she was about to give birth. 3Then another wonder appeared in heaven: There was a giant red dragon. He had seven heads with seven crowns on each head. He also had ten horns. 4The dragon’s tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky and threw them down to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was ready to give birth to a baby. He wanted to eat the woman’s baby as soon as it was born. 5The woman gave birth to a son. He will rule all the nations with an iron scepter. But her child was taken up to God and to his throne. 6The woman ran away into the desert to a place God prepared for her. There she would be taken care of for 1,260 days.
7Then there was a war in heaven. Michael# The archangel—leader among God’s angels or messengers (Jude 9). and his angels fought against the dragon. The dragon and his angels fought back. 8But the dragon was not strong enough. He and his angels lost their place in heaven. 9He was thrown down out of heaven. (The giant dragon is that old snake called the devil or Satan. He leads the whole world the wrong way.) The dragon with his angels was thrown down to the earth.
10Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
“The salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God
and the authority of his Christ have now come.
They have come because the accuser of our brothers has been thrown out.
He accused our brothers day and night before our God.
11And our brothers defeated him
by the blood of the Lamb’s death
and by the truth they preached.
They did not love their lives so much
that they were afraid of death.
12So be happy, you heavens
and all who live there!
But it will be terrible for the earth and the sea,
because the devil has come down to you!
He is filled with anger.
He knows that he does not have much time.”
13The dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth. So he hunted down the woman who had given birth to the son. 14But the woman was given the two wings of a great eagle. Then she could fly to the place that was prepared for her in the desert. There she would be taken care of for three and a half years. There she would be away from the snake. 15Then the snake poured water out of its mouth like a river. He poured the water toward the woman, so that the flood would carry her away. 16But the earth helped her. The earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river that came from the mouth of the dragon. 17Then the dragon was very angry at the woman. He went off to make war against all her other children. Her children are those who obey God’s commands and have the truth that Jesus taught.
18And the dragon# Some Greek copies read “I.” stood on the seashore.