And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,…
The heavenly things ("in heaven") are again represented by a battle - a war. There is ever contention on the earth between those forces that are evil and those that are Divine. The history of the human race is the history of an undying struggle - a struggle between the heavenly and the earthly elements; the good and the bad; the flesh and the spirit. Here the whole contending forces are leagued under two great captains, "Michael" and "the dragon." "Michael and his angels going forth to war with the dragon;" and "the dragon warred and his angels." There is no difficulty in deciphering their names. "Michael" is the angel of the Lord - "Who is like God." It is he who enters "the strong man's house, and spoils his goods;" he that "brings to nought him that hath the power of death, that is, the devil;" he who "was manifested for this purpose, that he might destroy the works of the devil." Yea, it is he, the "King of kings and Lord of lords." And the dragon is expressly affirmed (ver. 9) to be "the old serpent, he that is called the Devil and Satan." This scene is the central scene of the entire book, and represents the ceaseless strife. The issue is not doubtful. For the comfort of the Church, in all ages of her strife, "the great voice in heaven" proclaims "the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ." The struggle is elsewhere depicted. Here is the simple word of triumph.
1. "They [the dragon and his angels] prevailed not."
2. They were cast out: "Neither was their place found any more in heaven."
3. They were utterly routed: "The great dragon was cast down," "and his angels were cast down with him."
4. The triumphant reign of the Redeemer follows: "Now is come the salvation, and the power, and the kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ." The words of the great chorus rise to our lips, "And he shall reign forever and ever."
5. The accuser is silenced: "Who is he that condemeth?"
6. The triumph is traced to its true source.
(1) "They overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb, and
(2) because of the word of their testimony;" and
(3) because of their entire self devotion: "And they loved not their life even unto death."
7. The consequent heavenly jubilation: "Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and ye that dwell in them." Truly he is blessed who reads and understands these words. Herein the final triumph of the heavenly over the earthly, the sensual, the devilish, is distinctly depicted and undeniably affirmed. - R.G.
Parallel VersesKJV: And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels,