We don’t suffer in America, or the Western world. Yet, the Church suffers. Revelation is vital to the suffering Church. This is a letter we need to read and understand. It’s not about escape from suffering. It is the understanding of why the Church goes through hard times. It is understanding the presence of Christ in that suffering.
Why does the Church suffer?
13 When the dragon saw that he had been hurled to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14 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, where she would be taken care of for a time, times and half a time, out of the serpent’s reach. 15 Then from his mouth the serpent spewed water like a river, to overtake the woman and sweep her away with the torrent. 16 But the earth helped the woman by opening its mouth and swallowing the river that the dragon had spewed out of his mouth. 17 Then the dragon was enraged at the woman and went off to wage war against the rest of her offspring —those who keep God’s commands and hold fast their testimony about Jesus. (Rev. 12:13-17, NIV)
We are the Church at war. You can’t claim pacifism on this one. There is an enemy locked and loaded.