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The Identity of the Heavenly Woman of Revelation 12 in Harmony with the Divine Pattern

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Rev 12:1  And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:

Who is this Woman? Many try to answer this question, and the answer seems difficult, because in order to remain faithful to the context, and to maintain a coherent line of thinking, there has to be a complete application of the symbols in the answer given regarding this Woman.  Many without knowing adhere to the Catholic Commentary of Jerome in stating that the description of the Woman in Revelation 12 refers to Mary.  Others apply a double interpretation of the symbol of the Woman in question, saying that it refers to Mary when the text talks about the Woman being with child, but the description of her having to flee into the wilderness refers to the church. 

There is another popular interpretation among protestant churches, and it is that the Woman refers to the Church; it could be the Church founded by Christ in the New Testament or it could be the everlasting Church of God upon this Earth since the Old Testament Times right up to present time. 

The problem with all of these answers is that in all of them there is a missing application of all the symbols in the description given in Revelation 12.  To say that The Woman is Mary does not fit the description of her travailing in birth, and pained to be delivered (at least the Bible does not says that), having to flee to the wilderness and staying there 1260 prophetic days after giving birth to her son, and finally, being persecuted in the remnant of her seed.

To say that the symbol of the Woman has two interpretations, one being Mary, and the other being the Church, only brings problems, because it has to be one thing or another.  If we start to double apply meanings to every symbol that does not fits completely our understanding we are never going to arrive to the truth; we are going to be standing on shaky ground.

If we accept that the Woman is the Church here on Earth, how come she is described having a heavenly origin (same as the Dragon).  In Rev. 12:1 the Woman is described as appearing in heaven, clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet.  This clearly shows that her origin is in heaven not in Earth.  Another aspect that gives us some insight is the fact that while being in heaven she could not be harmed.  Since there is a church on Earth it has suffered persecution, but this Woman in heaven was not harmed or persecuted even when the Dragon was standing before her, waiting to devour her child.  It is clear that the Dragon can do nothing to the Woman while she is in heaven, but later on, in verses 5, 6 the battle is brought to Earth, and now the Dragon will try to destroy her.

Rev 12:5  And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron:

and her child was caught up unto God, and [to] his throne.

Rev 12:6  And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred [and] threescore days.

Now, who is this Heavenly Woman?  Well, the book of Revelation tells us of only two women, but they are opposed to one another.  One is worldly (after the flesh), the other is heavenly (after the spirit).  One is an adulterous woman and a prostitute, the other one is a faithful bride (according to Strong’s G1135 the word for woman means more specifically Married Woman) .  There are also two cities opposed to one another which describe two kingdoms and their ideologies; one is Babylon, the other is Jerusalem.  As I understand, these two cities describing the two kingdoms are also described in Revelation as two women; in other words, the city and the woman are two ways of describing a kingdom and its principles.

If we take for example the worldly woman, the harlot described in Rev. 17 we could see that this woman is described as a city, and also as a kingdom that is seated on the beast (kingdoms) and seeking to control all the kingdoms of the Earth by fornicating with them.

Rev 17:1  And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:

Rev 17:2  With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication.

Rev 17:3  So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns.

Rev 17:4  And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication:

Rev 17:5  And upon her forehead [was] a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.

Rev 17:6  And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration.

Rev 17:7  And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.

Rev 17:18  And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth over the kings of the earth.

It is often thought that this woman, this Mother of harlots represents only the Catholic Church, but it is much more than that.  If the heads of the Beast refer to successive kingdoms, and this woman is seated upon the Beast, and she has fornicated with the kingdoms which the heads represent this means that she is way older than the Catholic Church; this means the woman is older or just as old as the first head or kingdom of the Beast.  As soon as there was a worldly kingdom of men, there was a woman, seated upon the Beast fornicating with that kingdom and giving it to drink of her ideology.  This woman is not the papacy nor the Catholic Church, because if one of the heads of the Beast is the papacy and the pope is the head of the Catholic Church, and this woman is resting upon it imparting it her philosophy, they cannot be the same thing.  The only way I can understand these symbols is if the Mother of harlots, the Babylonian woman represents an ideology of a kingdom, the kingdom of the Dragon, the old Serpent; the kingdom of Satan imparting its philosophy to the kings of the earth, including the papacy and the Catholic Church. 

A few of the principles of the Divine Pattern (not that the harlot or the beast are divine in any sense) apply to this relation.  The Mother-Harlot is a source and the worldly kingdoms are the channels by which she imparts her ideology to the World (the many waters).   In a sense the woman is invisible, but the Beast and its kingdoms are visible.  These kingdoms expand, and amplify the ideology of the harlot, and they represent the harlot.  In this last sense is the way the Catholic Church is the Harlot, in a specific historic period it has been the channel by which the Mother of harlots, Babylon, has operated.

Now, going back to the Heavenly woman, just as the Mother-Harlot, represents a city, a kingdom and its principles, the Kingdom of God.  This Heavenly Woman of Revelation 12 is represented as a city, the New Jerusalem, and is also a Wife- Mother.

Rev 21:2  And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Rev 21:9  And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will shew thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.

Rev 21:10  And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God,

Rev 21:11  Having the glory of God: and her light [was] like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal;

Gal 4:26  But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.

The Kingdom which Christ inherits is represented as a Woman, but his inheritance was prepared for him from eternity.  He was made an heir of all that was his Father’s.

Heb 1:2  Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;

Psa 2:8  Ask of me, and I shall give [thee] the heathen [for] thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth [for] thy possession.   The Word heathen here means nations.

 In that sense this Woman, this kingdom, this holy city was Christ inheritance before the World began, and the World itself was supposed to be a part of that Kingdom.

There are a few details that let us know what the Heavenly Woman is.  I mentioned before that the origin of the Woman of Rev.12 was heavenly not earthly, and while in heaven the Dragon could not harm her.  But the hostility of the Dragon towards the woman who was with child was brought to Earth, and as soon as the woman gave birth to her Seed the persecution started in the fieriest way.  Christ is the Seed of the Woman, and the church He left here on Earth is the remnant of the Seed.  Sometimes we apply the meaning of the remnant to the last days’ people of God, but the remnant is a term for the faithful through church’s history.  As I see it, the Woman is the Kingdom Christ belonged to, the Seed is Christ, and the remnant of the Seed is Christ’s true church.  Sometimes we interpret the symbol of a woman just as a church because God uses a marriage as an example for the relation He sustains with the church, but the symbol is much more than that, especially in scatology.  The spirit of prophecy, talking about the Kingdom Christ receives, says:

“In the summer and autumn of 1844 the proclamation, “Behold, the Bridegroom cometh,” was given. The two classes represented by the wise and foolish virgins were then developed—one class who looked with joy to the Lord’s appearing, and who had been diligently preparing to meet Him; another class that, influenced by fear and acting from impulse, had been satisfied with a theory of the truth, but were destitute of the grace of God. In the parable, when the bridegroom came, “they that were ready went in with him to the marriage.” The coming of the bridegroom, here brought to view, takes place before the marriage. The marriage represents the reception by Christ of His kingdom. The Holy City, the New Jerusalem, which is the capital and representative of the kingdom, is called “the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” Said the angel to John: “Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” “He carried me away in the spirit,” says the prophet, “and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God.” Revelation 21:9, 10. Clearly, then, the bride represents the Holy City, and the virgins that go out to meet the bridegroom are a symbol of the church. In the Revelation the people of God are said to be the guests at the marriage supper. Revelation 19:9. If guests, they cannot be represented also as the bride. Christ, as stated by the prophet Daniel, will receive from the Ancient of Days in heaven, “dominion, and glory, and a kingdom;” He will receive the New Jerusalem, the capital of His kingdom, “prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.” Daniel 7:14; Revelation 21:2. Having received the kingdom, He will come in His glory, as King of kings and Lord of lords, for the redemption of His people, who are to “sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob,” at His table in His kingdom (Matthew 8:11; Luke 22:30), to partake of the marriage supper of the Lamb.” – {GC 426.2}

When Christ came to this planet, He came to represent his Father’s character, the ideology of the father’s Kingdom, the one He is an heir of.  

Mark 1:15 And saying, the time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.

Luke 10:9 And heal the sick that are therein, and say unto them, The kingdom of God is come nigh unto you.

Luke 17:20  And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Luk 17:21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

Christ was the representative of his Father’s Kingdom, and by His presence the Kingdom of God was present.  Christ left a remnant of his Father’s Kingdom in the person of his followers.  This is how the woman is persecuted, by persecuting the remnant of her seed.  When Satan was expelled from Heaven after the cross, when his true character was exposed to the unfallen universe, he could do no harm to the Kingdom of God from above, so he started persecuting the Kingdom through its remnant on Earth. Rev 12:13  And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man [child].

 It is clear that Christ has a Kingdom on Earth.  When we accept the principles and ideology of the Kingdom of God which Christ came to reveal, we become part of the Remnant of the Seed of the Woman, and we also become channels to God’s Kingdom here in Earth. 

When we apply the Divine Pattern to the Heavenly Woman many uncertainties seem to disappear.  The Jerusalem from above is the Mother, the source, while the Jerusalem below constituted by the remnant, the church, is the channel.  One is source, the other is channel, and they are not coequal.  We don’t see the New Jerusalem, in a sense it is invisible, but the principles of the Kingdom are visible in the remnant here on Earth.  We can say we are the bride because of our inheritance through Christ.  We are supposed to shine because we are light in the world, but it is not our own light, but the light of the New Jerusalem which is God and the Lamb.  We are an extension, expansion, and amplification of the Kingdom of God.  It is through our redemption that the principles of God’s Kingdom and the true character of God is made known to the Universe or better understood; in that sense we have amplified to the unfallen worlds the selfless love of God and His redeeming power.  Through our sanctified lives the principles of God’s Kingdom are supposed to shine to the perishing World (the brightness of God’s glory).  

Christ, right now, is receiving the Kingdom of Glory. We, as the Remnant of the Seed, are invited to the most solemn ceremony taking place in Heaven just now.  By the faith of Jesus, his grace, his merits, his intersession we can be there right now.  We are not the Bride, but we represent her.  If we understand our role and by faith wait for the Lord, when He will return from the wedding, we will be partakers of the marriage supper of the Lamb.