Revelation Eagle Wings
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Revelation Eagle Wings (Revelation 12.13-14)

"When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. The woman was given the two wings of a great eagle, so that she might fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness [or "desert"], where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent's reach." (Revelation 12.13-14)✞

The Woman Escaped

Eagles WingsThe woman escaped on "the two wings of a great eagle." Again and again in the Old Testament eagle wings are the symbol of the supportive, rescuing and bearing arms of God. Deuteronomy 32.11-12 tells us that "like an eagle that stirs up its nest, that flutters over its young, spreading out its wings, catching them, bearing them on its pinions, the Lord alone did lead him." When the church allegorized Scripture, the most important theologian of the third century, Hippolytus of Rome (170-235 AD), saw in "the eagles wings" the symbol of "the two holy arms of Christ outstretched upon the Cross." Interestingly, Saint Hippolytus was according to tradition dragged to his death by wild horses.✞

Floor Tile Detail

Hippolytus in floor tile detailThe second picture in this Revelation passage is of the floods of water spewed out by the serpent's mouth. We have seen how the dragon of chaos was the Revelation sea dragon and therefore to connect the floods with the dragon is quite natural. Again and again in the Old Testament, tribulation and persecution are likened to an overwhelming flood. Psalm 42.7 reads, "All your waves and breakers have swept over me." The Jews had a great fear of bodies of water like the Mediterranean Sea and believed that demons lived beneath the waves. Someone who drowned was believed to have been killed by a demon below the waters. Because Israelis feared water, Phoenecian sailors were employed to bring goods like wood, stone and silver by boat to Israel. Here in Revelation however we are assured that though the waves of persecution sweep over us we can be confident in the eagle wings of the Almighty to rescue and support us.✞

"Revelation Eagle Wings"
by Ron Meacock © 2017

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