The Woman and the Dragon 12 1A great and miraculous sign appeared in heaven. It was a woman wearing the sun like clothes. The moon was under her feet. On her head she wore a crown of 12 stars. 2She was pregnant. She cried out in pain because she was about to have a baby. 3Then another sign appeared in heaven. It was a huge red dragon. He had seven heads and ten horns. On his seven heads he wore seven crowns. 4His tail swept a third of the stars out of the sky. It threw them down to earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to have a baby. He wanted to eat her child the moment it was born. 5She gave birth to a son. He will rule all the nations with an iron rod. Her child was taken up to God and to his throne. 6The woman escaped into the desert where God had a place prepared for her. There she would be taken care of for 1,260 days. 7There was war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back. 8But the dragon wasn’t strong enough. He and his angels lost their place in heaven. 9The great dragon was thrown down to the earth, and his angels with him. The dragon is that old serpent called the devil, or Satan. He leads the whole world down the wrong path. 10Then I heard a loud voice in heaven. It said,   “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God have come. The authority of his Christ has come. Satan, who brings charges against our brothers and sisters, has been thrown down. He brings charges against them before our God day and night. 11They overcame him because the Lamb gave his life’s blood for them. They overcame him by giving witness about Jesus to others. They were willing to risk their lives, even if it led to death. 12So be joyful, you heavens! Be glad, all you who live there! But how terrible it will be for the earth and the sea! The devil has come down to you. He is very angry. He knows his time is short.”   13The dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth. So he chased the woman who had given birth to the boy. 14The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle so that she could fly away. She could fly to the place prepared for her in the desert. There she would be taken care of for three and a half years. She would be out of the serpent’s reach. 15Then the serpent spit water like a river out of his mouth. He wanted to catch her and sweep her away in the flood. 16But the earth helped the woman. It opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had spit out. 17The dragon was very angry with the woman. He went off to make war against the rest of her children. They obey God’s commands and hold firmly to what Jesus has said.
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