Thursday, April 4, 2013

Revelation, Chapters 11 & 12: Nightmare before Christmas

Chapter 11

We're back to measuring things, a la Ezekiel. An angel hands John a ruler and tells him to measure the temple, the altar, and all the people inside. He doesn't need to measure the courtyard because the Gentiles have taken it over for the next 42 months. The angel promises to give his powers over to two witnesses, who will stand there prophesying in sackcloth for the next 1,260 days. No doubt they will be every bit as convincing as old Zeke. When they finish talking, a beast will come out of hell and kill them. Their bodies will lie in the streets for 3 1/2 days, and people will rejoice and send each other presents because there is nothing worth celebrating more than when a prophet finally shuts up. After those 3.5 days, the witnesses will go up to heaven on a cloud, and a great earthquake will hit Jerusalem, killing 7000 and convincing the rest to glorify god.

Then the angel points two two olive trees and two candlesticks and informs us they're pyrokinetic and will burn anyone who tries to hurt them alive. They also have the power to turn the rain off and to turn the rivers into blood, and to unleash plagues on the earth.

Apparently all that was the second woe? And the third starts when the seventh angel blows his trumpet. When he does, a chorus says The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever (v. 15). Then the 24 elders all fall down to thank god for destroying the earth. Then the heavens open and the temple is visible through a thunderstorm, hail and another earthquake.

Chapter 12

Now a woman appears wearing the sun as a dress and some stars as a crown. She's standing on the moon, giving birth. Respect. Then a red dragon appears. He has seven heads, each topped by a crown and ten horns. He knocks down a third of the stars with his tail, then positions himself under the woman, ready to eat her kid. Alas, he doesn't get the chance as god scoops him up as soon as he's born and promises he'll rule the earth with an iron fist. The woman runs off into the wilderness, where god promises that whatever's in there will feed her for the next 1,260 days.

Now there's a war in heaven, with Michael the archangel and his angel army fighting the dragon. The dragon eventually loses and is kicked out of heaven. Another voice promises that everything will be fine now that Satan has been removed from the premises. Alas, the earth is SOL because Satan now lives here and he's got to do maximum destruction in a minimum amount of time. He immediately goes off in search of the woman, but she is given eagle wings and flies off to her nest, which has been stocked for the next 42 months.

Satan, not remembering that she can fly, upchucks a flood in hopes of flushing her out, but the earth helps her and swallows the water. This pisses Satan off, so he makes war with her descendents.

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