Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time. And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child. And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth. And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. Revelation 12:12-17.

Part II
by Brother Emerson A. Wilson

A Time Of Famine
Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. Amos 8:11. There we can see the prophet predicting a famine, not of something to eat or drink, but a famine of hearing the Word of God. A far greater ill has come on any people when God brings a famine of the Word of God, rather than a famine of literal food. So many people worry about a food shortage, but the existing famine of the Word of God is ten thousand times worse. We are so bound by the flesh and so living after the flesh that we don't get excited until we see a hard time coming on the flesh. Any nation, however, that God has brought judgment on to the place that there is a famine of hearing the Word of God, that nation is cursed the worst of any nation under heaven.

Don't forget what produces the famine: mankind's attitude toward the Word. Consider mankind's attitude toward the Word of God today. I get calls for needs of every kind, and I try to bring spiritual help to them. Whether they are dying, their home is breaking up, they are going bankrupt, their greatest need is spiritual help, which they REFUSE. I repeat, a famine of the Word of God is one of the saddest events that can happen to a divinely taught people.

Let us consider two scriptures: Revelation 12:6 tells us, And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a place prepared of God, that they should feed her there a thousand two hundred and threescore days. "They should feed her..." -- Who fed her? She was to rule all nations with a rod of iron, but my friends, because The Church let down the standard, she began being fed by preachers who were not even saved! Jude, verse 4 tells us, For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. They began to feed her things that were totally contrary to the Word of God--Bible truth. The devil can weaken you faster that way than any other way!

And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent. Revelation 12:14. There we see another phase of The Church: the ones who stood true. God had a place to keep them. They were taken care of by a great eagle that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place to be nourished there. There is a vast difference between feeding and nourishing. There is ONLY ONE THING that will NOURISH The Church. The Church will NOT grow or be nourished on funny stories or moving ideas. There is ONLY ONE THING that will NOURISH The Church: the Word of God--THE TRUTH!

Brothers and Sisters, God had a place for the ones who stood true. Certainly, there was an uprising: MAN-MADE religion was going to reign for 1,260 years. The point I want to make with you right now is that The Church is to be, has to be, MUST be, nourished.

Let's take a look at Acts 20:26-28. Wherefore I take you to record this day, that I am pure from the blood of all men. For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God. Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood. Could we, today say that we are "pure from the blood of all men"? If you can say that, you are making a BIG statement. Being a preacher of the Gospel means more than just putting on a black robe and being applauded by the people. Paul said he had not shunned (avoided, found a way to NOT do it) to declare unto them the "Counsel of God". What is that? All that God had laid on his heart! He wasn't worried about offending the deep pockets of his congregations. He wasn't worried about being politically (or for that matter, socially) correct! And then he went on in verse 28 to warn the "overseers". Who are the overseers? Come on, who are the "overseers" of "the flock"? Those in authority over the congregations! Those who so quickly decide that they are above reproach, that they cannot stumble and fall, that they are beyond temptation. Watch out!

Yes, Paul very plainly warned that For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Acts 20:29,30. He was warning them, not only were there going to be those moving through the congregations (bodies of believers), but preachers and evangelists and high-office deacons and teachers would speak perverse things--things NOT in line with the Word of God.

Brethren, if you do not live the truth, you canNOT preach it. God will not let you. Oh, yes, you can stand up before a crowd or group of folks and read scripture. You can tell the people what YOU think it means, but it (your sermon--message) will NOT feed (nourish) The Church unless the Holy Ghost anoints it!

It means something to "feed" (nourish) The Church! When you eat, there must be nourishment, or your health with suffer. You can always tell when there is nourishment in the messages that a group of believers is getting: The Church will grow and be strengthened.

Esteeming God's Word
Every kind of life requires nutriments. Too many people think that all man is made up of is appetite and sensation, but friends, we need to understand that man has a higher life than that! Only God's Word satisfies the cravings in mankind and solves the problems in life. Jesus said, I am that bread of life. John 6:48. Jesus also said, Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. John 6:54-56.

Listen to Job in Job 23:10-12: But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. My foot hath held his steps, his way have I kept, and not declined. Neither have I gone back from the commandment of his lips; I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food. THERE is the place of victory, which is exactly where God brought Job through to, Amen?

Brothers and Sisters, folks set the Word of God back in the corner while they satisfy their natural appetites and indulge in pleasure. Then they wonder why their spiritual feet slip and why they cannot stand as they ought. Natural food is necessary, but there is something much more necessary. Your soul is worth ten thousand times more than you body, if it could even be compared!!

Job said, "My foot hath held his steps..." How would you like to wake up one morning as the owner of two million dollars, only to find that evening that it had all be wrested from you? How would you like to lose everything in one day? What was Job's secret? Where he held God's Word was the secret of it all! People wonder why they are always falling, stumbling and slipping. If they would get some esteem for God's Word (and quit esteeming themselves!!!), it would take out the slips and stumbles and falls!

God's Word is meat indeed, and contempt for the Word can bring famine. Remember that Amos foretold of a famine of hearing the Word of God. Why did God do it? Because of contempt twoard His Word. Contempt toward God's Word will bring a famine. God can withhold religious privileges and leave His people in darkness. When they refuse and despise His Word, He just draws it away.

Many a sick chamber has been embittered and many a dying hour has been darkened by remembrance of warnings that God gave through the Word. They had been despised and rejected. In that dark hour, that person would have liked to have gotten hold of some light, but there was a famine going on in their life. The preacher couldn't get through to them, nothing that can be said is of any comfort. And this happens time and time each and every day in our world, now! Why? The famine! What brought the famine? In the first chapter of Proverbs, we are told that when we reject God's counsel and do not take His reproof, then when calamity comes, He will laugh. When you call for Him, the only answer you will get is FAMINE!

How To Avoid Spiritual Famine
Famine comes in The Church in the local congregation as well as on us individually. When the message or messenger is rejected, when the temple is profaned by worldly influences, when worship becomes a wearisome toil, God takes away His blessings. When God takes away His blessings, then men (and women) will know how real and rich the blessings really were, by seeking for them and not finding them!

Someone might ask, "How do we keep such a thing (famine) from happening?" Well, the Bible speaks EXPRESSLY to us about it in I Timothy 4:1-5.

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

Oh, that cuts a wide swath through a LOT of the world's "MAJOR" religions (doctrines), doesn't it? Let me tell you, when we refuse the truth, we throw ourselves OPEN to the lies of the devil! If you do not want to believe and accept the truth of the Word of God, the devil has ten million other things for you to fall for! He has seducing spirits of every kind. If you refuse to listen to the Holy Ghost, if you do not want the truth, then there is going to be a seducing spirit, a doctrine of the devil take hold of you.

This scripture passage right here points to the papacy and how its foundation was first set up. They did not believe the Word of God and because of their unbelief, they were turned away from truth! We know that the papacy, even today, teaches against marriage and that we are to abstain from meats. They are devilish doctrines! And every one of their false precepts were conceived out of falling away from THE TRUTH of the Word of God, which produced ONLY a work of darkness.

After Paul wrote this first letter, he told Timothy in II Timothy 4:1-4,

I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

What does God, through Paul, call the papacy's (and others') false doctrines? FABLES. And look at the millions who have been deceived by them!

The Measuring of "Time"
Returning to the Revelation, I would like to give you the "times" signal. The Holy City, The Church, according to Revelation, Chapter 11, was to be trodden underfoot for 42 months or 1,260 days (prophetic years). First of all, you have to realize that, in the Bible, time is in no way limited to a "year/day" method as we limit it. To the Jews, there were 12 hours to a day. The Jewish DAY was measured from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. The NIGHT was measured from 6 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Within the Bible, time is measured in many different ways. A day in the Bible may be expressed as a certain epoch of time, or a span of life. The Bible speaks of the day of creation. It took many hundreds of years, but it is called a day. It speaks of the day of salvation: "now is THE DAY of salvation" (II Corinthians 6:2). When? From AD 33 clear through to the end of time. It is called "a day", even though thousands of years are taken in.

The Bible also speaks of the "Day of Grace". In John 8:56, Jesus said, Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. He was speaking of the first advent of Christ clear through to His second advent. Second Peter 3:8 tells us, But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

Just the very word TIME is a measurement. And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. And he shall speak great words against the most High, and shall wear out the saints of the most High, and think to change times and laws: and they shall be given into his hand until a time and times and the dividing of time. Daniel 7:24-25. The little horn that raised up in the midst of the other horns is a picture of the Pope. He was to reign a time, times, and a half-time. The length of that reign was to be a time, times, and a half-time. There time itself is a measurement of time. When Jacob worked to gain the hand of Rachel in marriage, her dad Laban gave him Leah instead. Laban told Jacob that if he would "fulfill her week", he could also have Rachel. The Bible says that he worked seven (7) long (additional) years to get her. I want you to see that time is used in various ways throughout the Word of God.

With all this in mind, let's look at Revelation 12:6, which says this length of time was a thousand, two hundred, and threescore days (1,260 days). Revelation 12:14, speaking of the same period of time, said it was a time, times and a half-time. Revelation 12:2, speaking of the same time, said it was 42 months. Now get out your "ciphering pencil": forty-two months, multiplied by 30-day months, gives you 1,260 days again. The same period of time is spoken of as 1,260 days, 42 months, a time, times, and a half-time--all picturing that 1,260 years of dark ages.

In the Bible, whenever you read TIME, it always refers to one year. One year equals twelve months, and 30 days to a month equals 360 days. Whenever you read times (plural), and no number is given before it, it is always taken to mean two years. So times would be 2 years. And 24 months, multiplied by 30 days in a month, would equal 720 days.

Also in the Revelation, it referred to a dividing of times. Since time is one year, then the dividing of time would be six months, or 180 days. When you add them up, you get 1,260 days. So the period of time was 1,260 days or prophetic years, that The Church was trodden underfoot of man. Oh, God had a true people, but they were only individuals hidden away in the dens and caves. The TRUE Church could not come together in an outward way because she was trodden under the foot of men's religion.

The Flood Out Of The Dragon's Mouth
Now, what is the picture? Part of the woman is symbolized as fleeing and falling away, or apostatizing. There were also people who stood true, symbolized by the woman who was nourished by the Word of God. When the falling away moved to such an extent that men rose up to reign over The Church, God took the woman on two wings of an eagle, which shows divine deliverance. He kept her in the dens and caves during this particular time.

Revelation 12:17 tells us, And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed... Now that is what WE are--we are part of the remnant of her seed, the morning-time seed. Verse 15 of that same chapter tells us, And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. Many people say this was another seige of persecution, and certainly there was persecution, but by just staying with the symbols, I believe you will see something else there.

First, we want to consider why the serpent cast out the flood: to carry her away. Away from what? To carry her away from the true standard, to carry her away from the position she was standing in. He knows if he moves us from a solid positiuon, he has us. All he has to do is just carry us away a little bit. Then it is only a matter of time until we have no foundation!

What did he cast out of his mouth? He cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman. In the Old Testament, we find that Aaron was the mouth for God. In other words, Aaron was God's mouthpiece, through whom He spoke. Then we come on over into prophecy, and there God told the prophets to get the Word at His mouth, or STRAIGHT FROM HIM. My friends, we get a picture of God's true ministry getting the Word at God's mouth throughout the Bible. And right while God's true ministry was getting the Word at God's mouth, the dragon's ministers were getting the word at the dragon's mouth.

Brothers and Sisters, the very serpent talks. Out of the serpent's mouth came that which beguiled Eve. What beguiled her? What the devil said to her through the serpent's mouth. Every symbol of the Book is expressing the flood as coming out of the serpent's mouth. Now, what is he using against the remnant of the seed? My friends, it is still effective: he has never found anything better--it is STILL that which comes out of the serpent, or the dragon--the devil's mouthpiece.

Today, in America, he is burning Bibles or cutting off Christians' heads. Oh no! He has become so subtle! He has changed his tactics for today's people. He was using the Roman Empire, a carnal force, and killing Christians, but now he has turned to far more deceptive means--casting out of his mouth false falsities, the doctrine(s) of devils. Why? To carry The Church away from her true, Godly position in order to weaken her and get her down to his level where he can "handle" her. So, out of his mouth comes his force against The Church today.

Doctrines Of The Devil
What are some of the things that are coming of the dragon's mouth today? What are some of the seducing thoughts that will hit your mind? Why that old dragon will come right along, when the Word of God is preached (taught) and tell you, "I believe I ought to have liberty of thought," or "I have a right to think what I want to think about it all." I want you to see this as a flood coming out of the enemy's mouth!

God and His Word speak VERY plainly, but those old seducing spirits are hard at work today. He causes individuals to turn the truth aside. How? By causing you to feel, "Well, that is just Brother Wilson's opinion." I don't ask you to take everything I preach on blind faith and trust: measure it against the True Word of God and see if it is truth! If it is truth, then you'd better take it! There is a flood coming out of the dragon's mouth, much more of a flood than there was in the beginning.

These are some of the devilish ideas and doctrines of the devil: "That is just your view--there are two sides to every question. When you preach strong on The Church, you don't have charity. If you REALLY LOVED people, you wouldn't talk bad about their religion." I am talking about what comes out of the mouth of the dragon, and it WILL affect you and your Christian experience!

I have had more than one preacher say to me, "Well, I think the older brethren got carried away with zeal when they preached the Revelation and thrashed and lambasted Babylon. I think we need to love them." Well, that is what I am doing when I tell you the truth. I am talking about the flood that comes out of the mouth of the dragon. It is STILL coming at the remnant of the woman's seed. And what does he want to do? What is his purpose for this flood? To carry you away from your true position.

With too many people, there is no real, direct appeal to the Word of God and no abiding by the plainest Words of God. Many are using Pilate's infidelic question, "What is truth?" Truth personified was standing before Pilate and yet today, you will still have people question a sermon about the Word of God with, "What is truth?" That statement came from the mouth of the dragon through a man bound with infidelity, who went to hell. How can you and I EVER question, "What is truth?" when God has written so plainly in His Holy Word? Such statements, ideas, and impressions all come from the devil.

Seducing Spirits
Let us go back to the very beginning again: And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood. Revelation 12:15. Here was the second Adam's bride, just as the first Adam's bride stood. What came out of the first serpent's mouth? Now the serpent was more subtil (subtle, or 'aruwm which means "cunning") than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? Genesis 3:1. "Yea, hath God said...?" God had spoken so plainly, and Eve knew waht truth was. She could repeat it from memory: ...Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. Genesis 2:16,17. Yet out of the serpent's mouth came that devilish, doubting spirit, "Yea, hath God said...?" He caused Eve to question adn go in confusion as to what God had really said/meant.

Those seducing spirits are more present than ever, in this day and age. Whenever anyone has truth, those seducing spirits are there. I repeat, God has written truth plainly in His Book. Jesus said, Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. John 17:17. What else is Truth? That which God has written on the tablets of your heart and in your mind. But friends, if you give heed to seducing spirits and that which comes out of the mouth of the serpent, after God has written truth so plainly, you can be carried away into confusion and end up just like Pilate: "What is truth?"

It is not the dragon's rage that we are facing right now. We are facing the serpent's flood. This is what he is using to war against the remnant of her seed.

Paul said in II Corinthians 11:1-4:

Would to God ye could bear with me a little in my folly: and indeed bear with me. For I am jealous over you with godly jealousy: for I have espoused you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ. But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.

What did Paul fear for The Church? Not the dragon's rage, but the serpent's flood! Paul had already run into them, those men who had crept in with "another Jesus" (not the one of the Bible), "another spirit", (not the Holy Spirit), "another gospel" (not the Gospel of Jesus Christ)!

II Peter, Chapter 2, tells us that there were false prophets among the people back then just as there are false "prophets" (teachers) right among us today! They came in privily (privately, with cunning), bringing damning doctrines for which the Way of Truth was evil spoken of. II Corinthians 11:13, 14 tells us, or such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

Last but not least, look at the seven churches by AD 96; seventy-seven percent of The Church had fallen, and God's message to five of them was "Repent!" The falling away had worsened. How were they so carried away? By that which came out of the dragon's (serpent's) mouth!

Perilous Times
The message to The Church at Ephesus was, "You have left your first love." The letter to Pergamos lets us know that they were compromising with false teachers and being ruined with false doctrines. It still happens today! Certainly, we want to reach out our hands in fellowship to every blood-washed Brother and Sister in Christ, but when we know people are definitely teaching something false, we have no business putting them up in a teaching position! To do so is just asking for the devil to come in and take over!

Thyatira--this is one that gets hold of people today--had lost the spirit of judgment against wrongdoing because she had overstepped. Saints, don't overstep that tender conscience. God can tell us that something is wrong, but we can override it until we lose our sense of the difference between right and wrong!

Thyatira had lost her sense of right and wrong to the degree that she had people teaching and working in The Church who were immoral and committing adultery. It's NOT being fanatical to say I don't want to lose my sense of right and wrong! When you lose your sense of right and wrong, the most immoral and unclean work can get right in among us and feel perfectly free. We begin right there to kill our influence toward a lost world.

Sardis had lost her spiritual life. She had only a name that she lived, but she was dead spiritually. Laodicea was lukewarm because iniquity (wrong doing--sin) abounded. The churches of this time were filled with multitudes of nominal professors, with errors of heresy creeping in more and more all the time.

Let us return to Revelation 12:17 once more: And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. Having flooded out most of The TRUE Church, our enemy, the devil, makes war with the remnant of her seed who keep the commandments of God and have the true spirit of prophecy.

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. II Timothy 3:1. In Paul's eyes, what brought real perils on The Church? He did not say perilous times shall come because Rome is going to have chopping blocks or because they are going to burn you at the stake. Those are only quick ways to get to Heaven.

What brings perilous times on The Church? Well, the answer is right there in II Timothy 3:2-5: For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. When men and women become lovers of their own selves, covetous, proud; when their children become disobedient to their parents. It gets worse as it goes on: without natural affection, highminded, thinking far more highly of yourself than you ought! And what is it THE WORLD stresses now? Why good old "self-esteem". Self love.

Last, but not least, is the peril of loving pleasure more than loving God. The Church of God (body of believers) can live under chopping blocks, she can live under fire, but when her members let the spirit of the world get hold of them to the point that they love pleasure more than they love God, she has a hard time existing. That brings a terrible, perilous time upon The Church.

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