Hanserd Knollys – Revelation 12

An important portion of Revelation in terms of understanding the year day principle found in prophecy scripture.

knollys

Rev. 12.1:

This woman is the true visible constituted Church of God under the gospel, in the apostles days called a woman, in opposition unto the apostate Church of Rome, called the great Whore, and the mother of harlots; that is, of all false churches. (Re 17:1-18) The Church of God (his Jerusalem) is resembled by a fair and delicate woman. (Jer 6:2) A woman clothed with the sun, That is, covered with the robe of Christ’s righteousness; and clothed with the garments of his salvation, (Isa 61:10) called the perfection of beauty, (Ps 50:2) she is all glorious within. (Ps 45:13) The spiritual beauty of the primitive church under the gospel in the apostles days, and also in the latter days consisteth, First, in her head, the Lord of Glory, the Sun of Righteousness, (Mal 4:2) her crown and diadem of beauty. (Isa 28:5 Isa 62:2-4 Isa 60:1-2) Secondly, in her spiritual gifts, (1Co 12:4-8) and fruits of the spirit. (Ga 5:22-23) Thirdly, in all her spiritual administrations, and sacred gospel ordinances of Jesus Christ. And the moon under her feet. By the moon we may understand all sublunary things, as earthly honours, dignities, riches, and all the enticements and allurements of this world, and all the threatnings and tortures thereof; all these were under her feet. The church was faithful to Christ, as well as fair, (2Co 11:2) a chaste woman, who would not be enticed to commit fornication with the kings of the earth (as mystical Babylon did.) (Re 17:1,2) And upon her head a crown of twelve stars; which are the faithful ministers of Christ in his Churches of Saints. See Re 1:20. Who are the churches crown in subordination unto Christ, her principal crown and King of Glory; for the Church of God under the gospel, is builded upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ being the chief cornerstone. (Eph 2:20-22 Re 21:9-14)

Rev. 12.3:

By the great red dragon here, we may understand that old serpent, called the Devil and Satan, (Re 16:13-14 and Re 20:2) and metaphorically, the Roman pagan emperors, who bare the dragon in their standards or colors: The fourth beast, or fourth kingdom, (Da 7:19-23) that is, the fourth kingdom or monarchy. A great dragon for the greatness of the Roman Caesars dominion; and a red dragon for the bloody persecutions of the Christians, who are the woman’s seed, the church her children. This Roman pagan dragon is further described by his seven heads, that is several kinds of government under the Roman Caesars. (Re 17:9-10) See the exposition. See KNOLLYS on “Re 17:9” And his ten horns; that is, ten kings. See the exposition of Chapter 17, verse 12,14 See KNOLLYS on “Rev 17:12” See KNOLLYS on “Rev 17:14” They were ten provincial rulers or governors, until the Roman papal beast arose out of the sea of troubles, and then they got a kingly power one hour with the beast, and became ten kingdoms. (Re 13:1 Re 17:12) And seven crowns upon his heads, (not upon his ten horns.) The Roman pagan senate were the crown; that is, exercised rule and dominion, they were the dragons heads during the Roman pagan Caesars; Socrat. Hist. Lib. 1. Cap. 2. and Eusebius Eccles. Hist. Lib. 8 Cap. 2 See Prideaux Introduct. period 4th. page 207 and our exposition, chapter 17 verse 9-14. See KNOLLYS on “Rev 17:9”.

Rev. 12.4:

By the child we may understand the spiritual seed of the woman; that is, Christ, and all the Christians; so did Herod, (Mt 2:16) with Mt 27:26-37 and Pilate: And so did the Roman pagan Caesars, and their governors endeavour to kill all the Christians, Euseb. Lib. 6 Cap. 4 by their bloody persecutions for the space of three hundred years and more, from Tiberius to Dioclesian.

Rev. 12.5:

The man child brought forth was Christ, and his saints, the spiritual seed of this mystical woman, the church of the firstborn written in heaven, (Heb 12:22-23) the Jerusalem, that is above, which is the mother of us all. (Ga 4:26) This child was prophesied of. (Ps 2:6-10) And also her spiritual seed, the saints. (Re 12:16-17) Christ and his saints shall have the dominion over the nations, Da 7:27-28 and (Re 11:15) Eusebius de vita Constantini, Lib. 1 pag. 22. 43-46-51.

Rev. 12.6:

The time of Christ’s two witnesses, prophesying if sackcloth, and the time of the woman’s being in the wilderness, is the same, a thousand two hundred and threescore prophetical days; each day for a year. See KNOLLYS on “Rev 11:3” So by the wilderness here, we may understand the persecuted condition of the church of God, and his ministers, under the Roman Papal powers, the beast, the whore, and the false prophet, unto the day of the resurrection of the two witnesses, {Re 11:11-15} see the exposition thereof. See KNOLLYS on “Rev 11:11”

thousand two hundred and threescore years of the witnesses prophesying in sackcloth, and of the woman being in the wilderness, is much desired by the people of God, especially at this time. And therefore I am willing to show my opinion thereof upon scripture grounds.

Now to find out the end of these a thousand two hundred and threescore days, let us consider, first, that the Lord gave his holy prophets to number years by days, (Eze 4:4-6) each day for a year. And times by years. (Da 4:16,25,32) Seven times for seven years. So (Re 11:11) three days and an half are three years and an half; and (Re 12:14) the time, and times, and half a time, are three years and an half. And upon these scripture grounds, we may certainly conclude, that as the three days and an half are the ending time of the witnesses thousand two hundred and threescore days, so the time, times, and an half, are the last three years and an half of her thousand two hundred and threescore days.

Consider, secondly, that the three days and an half (which are the ending time of the witnesses a thousand two hundred and threescore days,) are expressly said to be between their being killed and their rising again. (Re 11:7-11) See the exposition thereof. And therefore, when we see the witnesses of Christ, his churches, and his ministers killed by the beast, we may certainly conclude, that the ending time of their thousand two hundred and threescore days, are come and begun.

Consider, thirdly, Christ told his servant John, that after three days and an half the spirit of life from God entered into the witnesses, and they prophesied again, (Re 11:11) before Kings, and bare their testimony again for Jesus Christ, as King of Saints, {Re 15:3} King of Zion, (Ps 149:1-2) and King of Nations, (Jer 10:7) King of Kings, the only potentate, (1Ti 6:15) King of all the earth, (Zec 14:9) And therefore, when we see the mystical resurrection of the witnesses, and hear them prophesy again, and bear their testimony publicly for Christ, his magistracy, ministry, churches, ordinances, worship, discipline and government, against antichrist, his magistracy, ministry, churches, ordinances, worship, discipline and government; we may certainly conclude, that the end of the thousand two hundred and threescore days is fully come. (Re 11:12-15)

Rev. 12.13:

By the woman, here we are to understand the church, so described Re 12:1,2 see the exposition. Called the woman; that fled into the wilderness. (Re 12:6) This was the Arian persecution, against the orthodox bishops, ministers, and churches, after the death of Constantine the Great; as Socrates, Eusebius, and other ecclesiastical historians do testify.

Gill agrees: he attacks the woman, the church, in a new way, by stirring up earthly minded professors of Christianity, the Arians, against her, and by bringing in an inundation of the barbarous nations into the empire, now become Christian; for this persecution cannot be understood of the persecution raised by the Jews.

Rev. 12.14:

Where she was nourished for a time and times, and half a time; that is, three prophetical days and an half. {Da 7:25} Read Ho 6:1-3 Re 11:11. And there she was fed by the ministers of Christ, and was preserved and hid from the face of the serpent, by God’s divine Providence.

Rev. 12.15:

This flood of waters was those heresies, superstitions, and idolatrous worship which were taught and practised by by Heterodox, bishops and false teachers, who brought in damnable heresies, (2Pe 2:1-3) will worship, and the doctrine of devils. (1Ti 4:1-3)

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