Useful Bible Studies > Revelation Commentary > chapter 12

Satan, the accuser

Revelation 12:10

The angels (Godís special servants) have just defeated the devil (Satan) in a great war in heaven. However, the inhabitants of heaven do not praise the angels. They praise God.

Whenever Godís servants (whether angels or people) are successful, they do not consider that success to be the result of their own efforts. They know that they themselves are weak; only God is truly strong. Their strength, their power, their successes and even their lives belong not to themselves, but to God. Therefore, the honour belongs to God alone.

So, on this occasion, God uses his angels to defeat the devil. That particular defeat is a very great loss for the devil. Since the time of the first people, the devil has constantly been accusing Godís people.

We can see the devilís method in Job chapters 1 and 2. The devil cannot accuse God, because God is perfect in every way (James 1:17). Instead, the devil opposes God by words that falsely accuse Godís people. The devil argues that their relationship with God is not genuine. To support his claim, the devil offers evidence in their wrong attitudes, weaknesses and wrong actions. However, God knows the people who belong to him. He has begun his good work in their lives, and he will certainly complete it (Philippians 1:6). To accuse Godís people of these wrong things is to say that God is too weak to do his work.

Revelation 12:7-12 speaks about a time when the devil is unable still to accuse Godís people like that. In his defeat against the angels, the devil loses that power. We think that this happens shortly before Christís return. Then the devil turns his attention to the earth (12:12), and some very terrible things happen here (chapter 13). Soon afterwards, Christ will return and the devil will suffer an even worse defeat.

Next part: How Christians overcome (Revelation 12:11)


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© 2016, Keith Simons.