In his malicious desire to defeat the purpose of Jehovah God, he desperately tries to force the Kingdom preachers into his camp, where people still favor world domination by man-made political governments. During the “short period of time” allowed to him, how has the “dragon” proceeded to do this?
13. So how has Satan proceeded, and how does this line up with what God said in Genesis 3:15?
13 He does this by making war upon Christ’s disciples who are in line for a place with him in his heavenly kingdom of a thousand years. This warfare is, not imaginary, but as real as what Jehovah said to the symbolical serpent in the Garden of Eden after the rebellion of Adam and Eve. There Jehovah said: “I shall put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed. He will bruise you in the head and you will bruise him in the heel.” (Gen. 3:14, 15) That “enmity” has persisted to this day. That “original serpent,” the symbolic “dragon,” Satan the Devil, knows that God’s Messianic kingdom was born in the heavens in 1914, despite his efforts to prevent this. (Rev. 12:1-5, 9) The Kingdom’s birth is an accomplished fact that he cannot undo.
14. Whom does Satan now make his target of attack?
14 However, all during these past nineteen centuries, Satan has known that Jehovah has been calling and choosing joint heirs of Jesus Christ to reign with him for a millennium. There is now left on earth just a small remnant of such prospective joint heirs of Jesus Christ. These Satan makes his target of attack.
15. (a) How, for the Kingdom remnant, does God counteract the “woe” that afflicts mankind? (b) To defeat God’s Kingdom purpose, what does Satan still strive to do?
15 The remnant are “glad” with God’s “woman,” Jehovah’s heavenly organization, over the birth of her Kingdom “seed.” That remnant of Christ’s prospective joint heirs are the remaining ones of the “seed” of God’s heavenly “woman.” (Rev. 12:12, 17) Jehovah has not made it a woeful time for the Kingdom remnant yet on earth because of his having the “dragon” and his demon angels hurled down from heaven to earth. Rather, he has made this “time of the end” an increasingly blessed time for the Kingdom remnant. This spiritual blessedness counteracts the “woe” that afflicts those under the Devil’s rulership. But Satan the Devil tries to wreck the blessedness of the remnant of the Kingdom “seed.” He is still bent on trying to defeat God’s purpose to have 144,000 joint heirs of Christ. Desperately he still tries to prevent the remnant from proving worthy of a share in the Kingdom. How?
16. According to Revelation 12:17, how does Satan try to keep the remnant from proving worthy of the Kingdom, and since when?
16 Revelation 12:17 tells how. It tells what the “dragon,” Satan the Devil, and his demon angels do after being dislodged from heaven, namely: “And the dragon grew wrathful at the woman, and went off to wage war with the remaining ones of her seed, who observe the commandments of God and have the work of bearing witness to Jesus.” The symbolic “dragon” and his demon angels had battled unsuccessfully to maintain their position in the holy heavens after the birth of God’s Messianic kingdom in 1914 C.E. So now during their detention here in the neighborhood of our earth they spitefully direct their warfare against those on earth who are called to the Messianic kingdom against which they battled up in heaven.—Rev. 12:7-13.
17. How is this “war” really a “hot” one against the doers of God’s will, and how will Jesus put an end to it?
17 This is really a “hot war.” It has already cost the lives of many hundreds of Jehovah’s Christian witnesses in violent deaths, both among the “remaining ones” of Christ’s prospective joint heirs and among the “great crowd” of those who are preparing now to be earthly subjects of Christ’s thousand-year kingdom. (Rev. 7:9-17; 20:4-6) Unitedly the Kingdom remnant and the “great crowd” engage in doing the “will of God” by observing His commandments and carrying out the work of “bearing witness to Jesus.” They bear witness to Jesus as being now enthroned in heaven and making ready to put an end to the “dragon’s” warfare against his faithful disciples by destroying all the dragon’s earthly agents and thereafter binding and imprisoning him and his demon angels for the thousand years of His peace-bringing reign.
18. What fulfillment of God’s promise will the faithful remnant get, and with what effect on the Kingdom membership?
18 To those who are doers of God’s will on earth to the end, his promise will be fulfilled. The “dragon’s” all-out efforts to keep the remnant from gaining entrance into the heavenly kingdom are doomed to failure.
1. In view of the Devil’s “short period of time,” why is it now more urgent for doers of God’s will to exercise faith?
THE “short period of time” during which Satan the Devil and his demon army are restrained here at the earth is now nearing its close. (Rev. 12:7-12) He may therefore be expected to intensify his warfare against the “remaining ones” of the “seed” of God’s heavenly “woman” and against the “great crowd” of fellow proclaimers of God’s Messianic kingdom. So it becomes all the more urgent for these doers of God’s will to exercise faith in order to endure faithfully under the fire of the enemy.
2, 3. Despite the shortness of the time left for Satan, what counsel of Paul to Hebrew Christians do we targets of Satan’s fire need to follow?
2 All we who are now the target of Satan’s warfare are given much encouragement to remain faithful to the Sovereign Lord Jehovah until the enemy’s guns are silenced. This bringing of the warfare to a close should reasonably be near, especially since it is now more than fifty-six years since the symbolic Dragon and his demon army were hurled down from heaven to the neighborhood of our earth, to be left here on the loose for only “a short period of time.” In spite of the shortness of the time, we still must follow the counsel of the apostle Paul, written in Hebrews 10:36, 37:
3 “You have need of endurance, in order that, after you have done the will of God, you may receive the fulfillment of the promise. For yet ‘a very little while,’ and ‘he who is coming will arrive and will not delay.’”
4. How will God vindicate his promise to bring timely relief to his worshipers?
4 According to those quotations made by the apostle Paul from Habakkuk 2:3 and Haggai 2:6, Jehovah is “he who is coming” and who “will arrive and will not delay.” As an invincible Warrior he will gain the victory over all those who wage war against his long-harassed worshipers. By his glorious victory in the “war of the great day of God the Almighty” at Har–Magedon, he will vindicate his promise to bring lasting relief to his afflicted worshipers.
5. Why are Satan and his demon army now obliged to use visible earthly agencies, and what are the symbolic “wild beast,” the Seventh World Power, and the “image” of the wild beast?
5 The Dragon, Satan the Devil, and his demon army have been restrained from materializing visibly in the flesh in order to wage war on Jehovah’s Christian witnesses of today. Hence, they are obliged to use earthly agents under their unseen control, worldly persons, organizations and political governments. The political elements that are involved in the warfare make up the worldwide political system that Revelation 13:1-10 pictures as a ferocious “wild beast.” This includes the modern Anglo-American Dual World Power, the Seventh World Power spoken of in Bible prophecy. In fulfillment of Bible prophecy this Seventh World Power promoted the creation of an idolatrous “image” of the political “wild beast.” (Rev. 13:11-15) For more than fifty-six years now that “image” has attracted the attention of the world. The “image” is the international organization for world peace and security, first in the form of the League of Nations and now as the United Nations.
7. What do political patrioteers try to force everybody else to join them in doing, and for whom does this pose a test of faithfulness?
7 Patrioteers who worship the “wild beast” and its “image” proudly wear the “number of its name .” They put pressure upon everybody else to force them to join in worshiping the “wild beast” and thereby getting marked as belonging to the man-made political state, not to God. They resort to persecution of various kinds against Jehovah’s Christian witnesses.