Revelation 12:17 Index
"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."
Research Material

"...wroth with the woman..."

  • WOMEN: Still another term, sometimes causing perplexity, needs explanation -- that of a symbolic "woman" which occurs frequently in the Revelation. It is used by the prophet to symbolize a church, true or false. The intent is obvious -- a chaste woman, arrayed in pure white (Revelation 12), indicating a pure church; and a fallen women, garbed in suggestive scarlet (Revelation 17), portraying a fallen or apostate church. In logical harmony with the figure the impure woman is called a "harlot," or a "whore." Her illicit, compromising relations with paganism and with the nations of the earth are denominated spiritual "adultery" or "whoredom," after the similar Old Testament reference to the lapses of Israel and Judah into idolatry and national sins. (Jeremiah 3; Ezekiel 16). These opprobrious terms refer to spiritual adultery, or an unholy mingling of the sacred and the secular, churchly apostasy and illicit union with the world. They therefore refer not to personal impurity but rather to departure from God. (Froom 33)
  • Or, "was enraged."
  • Failure to destroy the church in the wilderness intensifies the wrath of the dragon, so much so that he sets about the great determination to wage war upon the people of God, particularly the "remnant of her seed." (7BC 812)

" . . . to make war . . . "

  • In an endeavour to destroy the Christian church. His supreme effort in this direction is still in the future (Revelation 13:11-17; Revelation 16:12-16). (7BC 812)
  • Those who love and keep the commandments of God are most obnoxious to the synagogue of Satan, and the powers of evil will manifest their hatred toward them to the fullest extent possible. John foresaw the conflict between the remnant church and the power of evil, and said, “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 12:17).
    • The forces of darkness will unite with human agents who have given themselves into the control of Satan, and the same scenes that were exhibited at the trial, rejection, and crucifixion of Christ will be revived. Through yielding to satanic influences, men will be transformed into fiends; and those who were created in the image of God, who were formed to honor and glorify their Creator, will become the habitation of dragons, and Satan will see in an apostate race his masterpiece of evil—men who reflect his own image. (7BC 974)
  • There are only two parties upon this earth—those who stand under the bloodstained banner of Jesus Christ and those who stand under the black banner of rebellion. In the twelfth chapter of Revelation is represented the great conflict between the obedient and the disobedient, "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 12:17). "And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon (Revelation 13:11). And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed (Revelation 13:12). And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child (Revelation 13:13). And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live (Revelation 13:14). And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed. (Revelation 13:15). And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads (Revelation 13:16): And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name" (Revelation  13:17).
    • "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 12:17). Satanic agencies have made the earth a stage for horrors, which no language can describe. War and bloodshed are carried on by nations claiming to be Christian. A disregard for the law of God has brought its sure result. (Ephesians 6:10; Ephesians 6:11; Ephesians 6:12).
    • The great conflict now being waged is not merely a strife of man against man. On one side stands the Prince of life, acting as man's substitute and surety; on the other, the prince of darkness, with the fallen angels under his command (Ephesians 6:12; Ephesians 6:13; Ephesians 6:10; Ephesians 6:11) (7BC 974-975)
  • Men will surely set up their laws to counterwork the laws of God. They will seek to compel the consciences of others, and in their zeal to enforce these laws they will oppress their fellow men.
    • The warfare against God's law, which was begun in heaven, will be continued until the end of time. Every man will be tested. Obedience or disobedience is the question to be decided by the whole world. All will be called to choose between the law of God and the laws of men. Here the dividing line will be drawn. There will be but two classes. Every character will be fully developed; and all will show whether they have chosen the side of loyalty or that of rebellion. (DA 763)
  • Although the law of God will be almost universally made void in the world, there will be a remnant of the righteous that will be obedient to God's requirements. The wrath of the dragon will be directed against the loyal servants of Heaven. Says the prophet, “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 12:17). We can see from this scripture that it is not the true church of God that makes war with those who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. It is the people who make void the law, who place themselves on the side of the dragon, and persecute those who vindicate God's precepts. (The Signs of the Times article "Preparation for the Testing-Time," April 22, 1889)
  • The commandment-keeping people of God erelong will be placed in a most trying position; but all those who have walked in the light, and diffused the light, will realize that God interposes in their behalf. When everything looks most forbidding, then the Lord will reveal His power to His faithful ones. When the nation for which God has worked in such a marvelous manner, and over which He has spread the shield of Omnipotence, abandons Protestant principles, and through its legislature gives countenance and support to Romanism in limiting religious liberty, then God will work in His own power for His people that are true. The tyranny of Rome will be exercised, but Christ is our refuge. (TM 206)

" . . . with the remnant . . . "

  • Greek loipoi, "remaining ones," from leipo, "to leave," "to leave behind." (7BC 812)
  • The condition of the world previous to the first appearing of Christ is a picture of the condition of the world just previous to His second advent. The same iniquity will exist, Satan manifests the same delusive power upon the minds of men. He is setting his trained agents at work, and moving them to intense activity. He is securing his army of human agents to engage in the last conflict against the Prince of life, to overthrow the law of God, which is the foundation of His throne. Satan will work with miraculous presentations to confirm men in the belief that he is what he claims to be,—the prince of this world, and that victory is his. He will turn his forces against those who are loyal to God, but though he may cause pain, distress, and human agony, he cannot defile the soul. He may cause affliction to the people of God as he did to Christ, but he cannot cause one of Christ's little ones to perish. The people of God in these last days must expect to enter into the thick of the conflict; for the prophetic Word says, “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 12:17). (4BC 1153)
  • In seeking to cast contempt upon the divine statutes, Satan has perverted the doctrines of the Bible, and errors have thus become incorporated into the faith of thousands who profess to believe the Scriptures. The last great conflict between truth and error is but the final struggle of the long-standing controversy concerning the law of God. Upon this battle we are now entering - a battle between the laws of men and the precepts of Jehovah, between the religion of the Bible and the religion of fable and tradition. (GC 582)
  • Century after century the blood of the saints had been shed. While the Waldenses laid down their lives upon the mountains of Piedmont “for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 1:9), similar witness to the truth had been borne by their brethren, the Albigenses of France. In the days of the Reformation its disciples had been put to death with horrible tortures. King and nobles, highborn women and delicate maidens, the pride and chivalry of the nation, had feasted their eyes upon the agonies of the martyrs of Jesus. The brave Huguenots, battling for those rights which the human heart holds most sacred, had poured out their blood on many a hard-fought field. The Protestants were counted as outlaws, a price was set upon their heads, and they were hunted down like wild beasts. (GC 271)
  • The trying experiences that came to God's people in the days of Esther were not peculiar to that age alone. The revelator, looking down the ages to the close of time, has declared, “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 12:17). Some who today are living on the earth will see these words fulfilled. The same spirit that in ages past led men to persecute the true church, will in the future lead to the pursuance of a similar course toward those who maintain their loyalty to God. Even now preparations are being made for this last great conflict. (PK 605)
  • As the people of God approach the perils of the last days, Satan holds earnest consultation with his angels as to the most successful plan of overthrowing their faith. He sees that the popular churches are already lulled to sleep by his deceptive power. By pleasing sophistry and lying wonders he can continue to hold them under his control. Therefore he directs his angels to lay their snares especially for those who are looking for the second advent of Christ and endeavoring to keep all the commandments of God.
    • Says the great deceiver: “We must watch those who are calling the attention of the people to the Sabbath of Jehovah; they will lead many to see the claims of the law of God; and the same light which reveals the true Sabbath reveals also the ministration of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary, and shows that the last work for man's salvation is now going forward. Hold the minds of the people in darkness till that work is ended, and we shall secure the world and the church also.
    • “The Sabbath is the great question which is to decide the destiny of souls. We must exalt the sabbath of our creating. We have caused it to be accepted by both worldlings and church members; now the church must be led to unite with the world in its support. We must work by signs and wonders to blind their eyes to the truth, and lead them to lay aside reason and the fear of God and follow custom and tradition.
    • “I will influence popular ministers to turn the attention of their hearers from the commandments of God. That which the Scriptures declare to be a perfect law of liberty shall be represented as a yoke of bondage. The people accept their minister's explanations of Scripture and do not investigate for themselves. Therefore, by working through the ministers, I can control the people according to my will.
    • “But our principal concern is to silence this sect of Sabbath keepers. We must excite popular indignation against them. We will enlist great men and worldly-wise men upon our side, and induce those in authority to carry out our purposes. Then the sabbath which I have set up shall be enforced by laws the most severe and exacting. Those who disregard them shall be driven out from the cities and villages, and made to suffer hunger and privation. When once we have the power, we will show what we can do with those who will not swerve from their allegiance to God. We led the Romish church to inflict imprisonment, torture, and death upon those who refused to yield to her decrees; and now that we are bringing the Protestant churches and the world into harmony with this right arm of our strength, we will finally have a law to exterminate all who will not submit to our authority. When death shall be made the penalty of violating our sabbath, then many who are now ranked with commandment keepers will come over to our side.
    • “But before proceeding to these extreme measures, we must exert all our wisdom and subtlety to deceive and ensnare those who honor the true Sabbath. We can separate many from Christ by worldliness, lust, and pride. They may think themselves safe because they believe the truth, but indulgence of appetite or the lower passions, which will confuse judgment and destroy discrimination, will cause their fall.
    • “Go, make the possessors of lands and money drunk with the cares of this life. Present the world before them in its most attractive light, that they may lay up their treasure here and fix their affections upon earthly things. We must do our utmost to prevent those who labor in God's cause from obtaining means to use against us. Keep the money in our own ranks. The more means they obtain, the more they will injure our kingdom by taking from us our subjects. Make them care more for money than for the upbuilding of Christ's kingdom and the spread of the truths we hate, and we need not fear their influence; for we know that every selfish, covetous person will fall under our power, and will finally be separated from God's people.
    • “Through those that have a form of godliness but know not the power, we can gain many who would otherwise do us harm. Lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God will be our most effective helpers. Those of this class who are apt and intelligent will serve as decoys to draw others into our snares. Many will not fear their influence, because they profess the same faith. We will thus lead them to conclude that the requirements of Christ are less strict than they once believed, and that by conformity to the world they would exert a greater influence with worldlings. Thus they will separate from Christ; then they will have no strength to resist our power, and erelong they will be ready to ridicule their former zeal and devotion.
    • “Until the great decisive blow shall be struck, our efforts against commandment keepers must be untiring. We must be present at all their gatherings. In their large meetings especially our cause will suffer much, and we must exercise great vigilance, and employ all our seductive arts to prevent souls from hearing the truth and becoming impressed by it.
    • “I will have upon the ground, as my agents, men holding false doctrines mingled with just enough truth to deceive souls. I will also have unbelieving ones present who will express doubts in regard to the Lord's messages of warning to His church. Should the people read and believe these admonitions, we could have little hope of overcoming them. But if we can divert their attention from these warnings, they will remain ignorant of our power and cunning, and we shall secure them in our ranks at last. God will not permit His words to be slighted with impunity. If we can keep souls deceived for a time, God's mercy will be withdrawn, and He will give them up to our full control.
    • “We must cause distraction and division. We must destroy their anxiety for their own souls, and lead them to criticize, to judge, and to accuse and condemn one another, and to cherish selfishness and enmity. For these sins, God banished us from His presence; and all who follow our example will meet a similar fate.” (TM 472-475)
  • In the scene representing the work of Christ for us, and the determined accusation of Satan against us, Joshua stands as the high priest, and makes request in behalf of God's commandment-keeping people. At the same time Satan represents the people of God as great sinners, and presents before God the list of sins he has tempted them to commit through their lifetime, and urges that because of their transgressions, they be given into his hands to destroy. He urges that they should not be protected by ministering angels against the confederacy of evil. He is full of anger because he cannot bind the people of God into bundles with the world, to render to him complete allegiance. Kings and rulers and governors have placed upon themselves the brand of antichrist, and are represented as the dragon who goes to make war with the saints—with those who keep the commandments of God and who have the faith of Jesus. In their enmity against the people of God, they show themselves guilty also of the choice of Barabbas instead of Christ. (TM 38-39)
  • In vision I saw two armies in terrible conflict. One army was led by banners bearing the world's insignia; the other was led by the bloodstained banner of Prince Emmanuel. Standard after standard was left to trail in the dust as company after company from the Lord's army joined the foe and tribe after tribe from the ranks of the enemy united with the commandment-keeping people of God. An angel flying in the midst of heaven put the standard of Emmanuel into many hands, while a mighty general cried out with a loud voice: “Come into line. Let those who are loyal to the commandments of God and the testimony of Christ now take their position. Come out from among them, and be ye separate, and touch not the unclean, and I will receive you, and will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters. Let all who will come up to the help of the Lord, to the help of the Lord against the mighty.”
    • The battle raged. Victory alternated from side to side. Now the soldiers of the cross gave way, “as when a standardbearer fainteth” (Isaiah 10:18). But their apparent retreat was but to gain a more advantageous position. Shouts of joy were heard. A song of praise to God went up, and angel voices united in the song, as Christ's soldiers planted His banner on the walls of fortresses till then held by the enemy. The Captain of our salvation was ordering the battle and sending support to His soldiers. His power was mightily displayed, encouraging them to press the battle to the gates. He taught them terrible things in righteousness as He led them on step by step, conquering and to conquer.
    • At last the victory was gained. The army following the banner with the inscription, “The commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus” (Revelation 12:17), was gloriously triumphant. The soldiers of Christ were close beside the gates of the city, and with joy the city received her King. The kingdom of peace and joy and everlasting righteousness was established. (8T 41-42)
  • 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 12:17). In the near future we shall see these words fulfilled as the Protestant churches unite with the world and with the papal power against commandment keepers. The same spirit which actuated papists in ages past will lead Protestants to pursue a similar course toward those who will maintain their loyalty to God.
    • Church and state are now making preparations for the future conflict. Protestants are working in disguise to bring Sunday to the front, as did the Romanists. Throughout the land the papacy is piling up her lofty and massive structures, in the secret recesses of which her former persecutions are to be repeated. And the way is preparing for the manifestation, on a grand scale, of those lying wonders by which, if it were possible, Satan would deceive even the elect.(5T 449-450)
  • Zechariah's vision of Joshua and the Angel applies with peculiar force to the experience of God's people in the closing up of the great day of atonement. The remnant church will be brought into great trial and distress. Those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus will feel the ire of the dragon and his hosts. Satan numbers the world as his subjects, he has gained control of the apostate churches; but here is a little company that are resisting his supremacy. If he could blot them from the earth, his triumph would be complete. As he influenced the heathen nations to destroy Israel, so in the near future he will stir up the wicked powers of earth to destroy the people of God. All will be required to render obedience to human edicts in violation of the divine law. Those who will be true to God and to duty will be menaced, denounced, and proscribed. They will “be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolk, and friends” (Luke 21:16). (5T 472-473; PK 587-588)
  • And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, everyone that shall be found written in the book” (Daniel 12:1). When this time of trouble comes, every case is decided; there is no longer probation, no longer mercy for the impenitent. The seal of the living God is upon His people. This small remnant, unable to defend themselves in the deadly conflict with the powers of earth that are marshaled by the dragon host, make God their defense. The decree has been passed by the highest earthly authority that they shall worship the beast and receive his mark under pain of persecution and death. May God help His people now, for what can they then do in such a fearful conflict without His assistance! (2T 212-213)
  • Satan hopes to involve the remnant people of God in the general ruin that is coming upon the earth. As the coming of Christ draws nigh, he will be more determined and decisive in his efforts to overthrow them. Men and women will arise professing to have some new light or some new revelation whose tendency is to unsettle faith in the old landmarks. Their doctrines will not bear the test of God's word, yet souls will be deceived. False reports will be circulated, and some will be taken in this snare. They will believe these rumors and in their turn will repeat them, and thus a link will be formed connecting them with the archdeceiver. This spirit will not always be manifested in an open defiance of the messages that God sends, but a settled unbelief is expressed in many ways. Every false statement that is made feeds and strengthens this unbelief, and through this means many souls will be balanced in the wrong direction. (5T 295-296)
  •  Satan and his host are at war with commandment keepers, and will work to bring them into trying positions. They should not by lack of discretion bring themselves there. (1T 356)
  • Those who are living amid the perils of the last days, days which are characterized by the masses turning from the truth of God to fables, will have close work to turn from the fables which are prepared for them on every hand, and have an appetite to feast upon unpopular truth. Those who turn from these fables to truth are despised, hated, and persecuted by those who are presenting fables to the people for their reception. Satan is at war with the remnant who are endeavoring to keep the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus. Evil angels are commissioned to employ men as their agents upon the earth. These can the most successfully exert an influence to make Satan's attacks effective against the remnant whom God calls “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” This, Satan is determined to hinder. He will employ everyone who will engage in his service to hinder the chosen people of God from showing forth the praises of Him who has called them from darkness into His marvelous light. To hide, to cover up this light, to cause people to distrust it, to disbelieve it, is the work of the great rebel and his host. While Jesus is purifying His people unto Himself, redeeming them from all iniquity, Satan will employ his forces to hinder the work and prevent the perfection of the saints. He does not exert his power upon those who are all covered up with deception and walled in by fables and error, and who make no effort to receive and obey the truth. He knows he is sure of them; but those who are seeking for truth, that they may obey it in the love of it, are the ones who excite his malice and stir his ire. He can never weaken them while they keep close to Jesus; therefore he is pleased when he can lead them in a course of disobedience. (2T 105)
  • I was shown that God's people should not for one moment relax their watchfulness or their vigilance. Satan is upon our track. He is determined to overcome God's commandment-keeping people with his temptations. If we give no place to him, but resist his devices, steadfast in the faith, we shall have strength to depart from all iniquity. Those who keep the commandments of God will be a power in the land if they live up to their light and privileges. They may be patterns of piety, holy in heart and in conversation. We shall not have ease, that we may cease watchfulness and prayer. As the time draws near for Christ to be revealed in the clouds of heaven, Satan's temptations will be brought to bear with greater power upon those who keep God's commandments, for he knows that his time is short.
    • The work of Satan will be carried on through agents. Ministers who hate the law of God will employ any means to lead souls from their loyalty to God. Our bitterest foes will be among the first-day Adventists. Their hearts are fully determined to make war against those who keep the commandments of God and have the faith of Jesus. This class feel that it is a virtue to talk, write, and act out the most bitter hatred against us. We need not look for fair dealing or for justice at their hands. Many of them are inspired by Satan with insane madness against those who are keeping the commandments of God. We shall be maligned and misrepresented; all our motives and actions will be misjudged, and our characters will be attacked. The wrath of the dragon will be manifested in this manner. But I saw that we should not be in the least discouraged. Our strength is in Jesus, our Advocate. If in humility we trust in God and hold fast to His promises, He will give us grace and heavenly wisdom to withstand all the wiles of Satan and to come off victors. (3T 570-571)
  • Under the symbols of a great red dragon, a leopard like beast, and a beast with lamb like horns, the earthly governments which would especially engage in trampling upon God's law and persecuting His people, were presented to John. The war is carried on till the close of time. The people of God, symbolized by a holy woman and her children, were represented as greatly in the minority. In the last days only a remnant still existed. Of these John speaks as they “which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ." (The Signs of the Times article "The Seal of God - No. 1," November 1, 1899).
  • As we near the close of time, Satan comes down with great power, knowing that his time is short. Especially will his power be exercised upon the remnant. He will war against them, and seek to divide and scatter them, that they may grow weak and be overthrown. (1T 210)
  • The doctrines must be plainly understood. The men accepted to teach the truth must be anchored; then their vessel will hold against storm and tempest, because the anchor holds them firmly. The deceptions will increase and we are to call rebellion by its right name. We are to stand with the whole armor on. My brethren, you are not meeting men only, but principalities and powers. We wrestle not against flesh and blood. (Let Ephesians 6:10-18 be read carefully and impressively before the church.) These men are voicing the words of the dragon. We have to meet the satanic agencies who went to make war with the saints. “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 12:17). These men who have apostatized leave the true and faithful people of God, and fraternize with those who represent Barabbas. “By their fruits ye shall know them” (Matthew 7:20). (9M 362-363)
  • A striking illustration of Rome's policy toward those who disagree with her was given in the long and bloody persecution of the Waldenses, some of whom were observers of the Sabbath. Others suffered in a similar manner for their fidelity to the fourth commandment. The history of the churches of Ethiopia and Abyssinia is especially significant. Amid the gloom of the Dark Ages, the Christians of Central Africa were lost sight of and forgotten by the world, and for many centuries they enjoyed freedom in the exercise of their faith. But at last Rome learned of their existence, and the emperor of Abyssinia was soon beguiled into an acknowledgment of the pope as the vicar of Christ. Other concessions followed. An edict was issued forbidding the observance of the Sabbath under the severest penalties. (See Michael Geddes, Church History of Ethiopia, pages 311, 312.) But papal tyranny soon became a yoke so galling that the Abyssinians determined to break it from their necks. After a terrible struggle the Romanists were banished from their dominions, and the ancient faith was restored. The churches rejoiced in their freedom, and they never forgot the lesson they had learned concerning the deception, the fanaticism, and the despotic power of Rome. Within their solitary realm they were content to remain, unknown to the rest of Christendom. (577-578)
  • The remnant people of God are to endure persecutions. "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 12:17)." They are to give the warning message against the power represented by "the beast" (Revelation 20:10). The prophet says of this power, which represents the Papacy: "And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months (Revelation 13:5). And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven (Revelation 13:6). And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations (Revelation 13:7). And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8). The remnant church of God are to give the warning of the third angel to the world; " If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand (Revelation 14:9), the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation" (Revelation 14:10). (The Sign of the Times article "Harmony With Apostate Powers a Sign of Enmity to God," June 18, 1894)
  • We are living in the last days, and we read that “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.” The powers from beneath are moving the people to take the measures that will bring the people of God into tribulation. Satan is ever seeking to weaken the church by bringing in dissension and discord, that we shall not fulfill the words of Christ, and be one as he and the Father are one, and so bear a decided testimony to the world of the divinity of Christ. But we must look by faith to Jesus, and the trial will lose its force, and no art of the enemy can avail to cripple our hope in Christ; for we shall realize that we have a Saviour who is mighty to save. Through the darkness of trial and sorrow, we shall be able to distinguish the marks of the crucifixion in his hands and feet and side, and shall hear the voice of the Lord of glory saying: “Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me.” Our whole future eternal life depends on whether we shall so live that our names may remain graven upon the palms of his hands. (The Signs of the Times article "Tribulation Worketh Patience," March 28, 1892)

" . . . keep the commandments . . . "

  • That the remnant is thus identified indicates that the commandments of God will be especially controverted in this struggle between the dragon and the church (Revelation 14:12). (7BC 812)
  • Satan is at work with those who keep the commandments of God and have the faith of Jesus. The most bitter hatred exists within him against all who are loyal to God and who obey His commandments. He sleeps not; he does not abate his vigilance for one moment. Would that God's professed followers were half as wise, diligent, and persevering in the work of God as Satan is in his work. (3T 456)
  • Under the symbols of a great red dragon, a leopardlike beast, and a beast with lamblike horns, the earthly governments which would especially engage in trampling upon God's law and persecuting His people, were presented to John. The war is carried on till the close of time. The people of God, symbolized by a holy woman and her children, were represented as greatly in the minority. In the last days only a remnant still existed. Of these John speaks as they “which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ” (The Signs of the Times article "The Seal of God - No. 1," November 1, 1899).
  • Who are these? God's denominated people—those who on this earth have witnessed to their loyalty. Who are they? Those who have kept the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ; those who have owned the Crucified One as their Saviour. (7BC 981)
  • We are one in faith in the fundamental truths of God's Word.... We have a world-wide message. The commandments of God and the testimonies of Jesus Christ are the burden of our work. (EV 179)
  • The vision that Christ presented to John, presenting the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus, is to be definitely proclaimed to all nations, people, and tongues. The churches, represented by Babylon, are represented as having fallen from their spiritual state to become a persecuting power against those who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. To John this persecuting power is represented as having horns like a lamb, but as speaking like a dragon.... (TM 117)
  • 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 12:17). We are plainly shown that two parties will exist at the appearing of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. In which party do we wish to be found? “Behold, I come quickly,” Christ says, “and My reward is with Me, to give every man according as his work shall be (Revelation 22:12). I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last (Revelation 22:13). Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city” (Revelation 22:14). This is the destination of commandment keepers. Should we not all wish to be among that number who have right to the tree of life, and who enter through the gates into the city? (TM 133)

" . . . testimony of Jesus Christ."

  • Or "witness of Jesus Christ."
  • In the Greek this phrase may be understood either as the "testimony" (or "witness") Christians bear concerning Jesus, or as the "testimony" (or ("witness") that originates with Jesus and is revealed to His church through the prophets (Revelation 1:2). A comparison with (Revelation 19:10) clearly favors the latter interpretation. There the "testimony of Jesus" is defined as the "spirit of prophecy," meaning that Jesus is witnessing to the church through the medium of prophecy. (7BC 812)
  • The close relationship between the "testimony of Jesus" and prophecy is further demonstrated by a comparison between (Revelation 19:10) and (Revelation 22:9). In (Revelation 19:10) the angel identifies himself as "thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus," and in (Revelation 22:9) as "thy fellowservant and of thy brethren the prophets." Thus, on the reasonable conclusion that these two expression of the angel are parallel, those who have the "testimony of Jesus" are identified with the prophets. Since it is the distinctive work of the prophets to bear messages from Jesus to the people (Revelation 1:1), the interpretation that the testimony of Jesus refers to the "testimony," or "witness," that Jesus bears to the church is strongly supported. Seventh-day Adventist thus interpret the passage and believe that the "remnant" will be distinguished by the manifestation of the gift of prophecy in their midst. The "testimony of Jesus Christ," we believe, is the witness of Jesus in our midst through the medium of the prophetic gift. (7BC 812)
  • We are one in faith in the fundamental truths of God's word. And one object must be kept in view constantly; that is, harmony and co-operation must be maintained without compromising one principle of truth. And while constantly digging for the truth as for hidden treasure, be careful how you open new and conflicting opinions. We have a world-wide message. The commandments of God and the testimonies of Jesus Christ are the burden of our work. To have unity and love for one another is the great [work] now to be carried on. There is danger of our ministers’ dwelling too much on doctrines, preaching altogether too many discourses on argumentative subjects when their own soul needs practical godliness. (CW 79)
  • The substitution of the precepts of men for the commandments of God has not ceased. Even among Christians are found institutions and usages that have no better foundation than the traditions of the fathers. Such institutions, resting upon mere human authority, have supplanted those of divine appointment. Men cling to their traditions, and revere their customs, and cherish hatred against those who seek to show them their error. In this day, when we are bidden to call attention to the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus, we see the same enmity as was manifested in the days of Christ. Of the remnant people of God it is written, “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 12:17). (DA 398)
  • My dear brethren and sisters, let the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ be in your minds continually and let them crowd out worldly thoughts and cares. When you lie down and when you rise up, let them be your meditation. Live and act wholly in reference to the coming of the Son of man. The sealing time is very short, and will soon be over. Now is the time, while the four angels are holding the four winds, to make our calling and election sure. (EW 58)
  • Then I was pointed to the glory of heaven, to the treasure laid up for the faithful. Everything was lovely and glorious. The angels would sing a lovely song, then they would cease singing and take their crowns from their heads and cast them glittering at the feet of the lovely Jesus, and with melodious voices cry, “Glory, Alleluia!” I joined with them in their songs of praise and honor to the Lamb, and every time I opened my mouth to praise Him, I felt an unutterable sense of the glory that surrounded me. It was a far more, an exceeding and eternal weight of glory. Said the angel, “The little remnant who love God and keep His commandments and are faithful to the end will enjoy this glory and ever be in the presence of Jesus and sing with the holy angels.” (EW 66)
  • I saw that God has honest children among the nominal Adventists and the fallen churches, and before the plagues shall be poured out, ministers and people will be called out from these churches and will gladly receive the truth. Satan knows this; and before the loud cry of the third angel is given, he raises an excitement in these religious bodies, that those who have rejected the truth may think that God is with them. He hopes to deceive the honest and lead them to think that God is still working for the churches. But the light will shine, and all who are honest will leave the fallen churches, and take their stand with the remnant. (EW 261)
  • From the days of Adam to our own time, our great enemy has been exercising his power to oppress and destroy. He is now preparing for his last campaign against the church. All who seek to follow Jesus will be brought into conflict with this relentless foe. The more nearly the Christian imitates the divine Pattern, the more surely will he make himself a mark for the attacks of Satan. All who are actively engaged in the cause of God, seeking to unveil the deceptions of the evil one and to present Christ before the people, will be able to join in the testimony of Paul, in which he speaks of serving the Lord with all humility of mind, with many tears and temptations. (GC 510)
  • As the Protestant churches reject the clear, Scriptural arguments in defense of God's law, they will long to silence those whose faith they cannot overthrow by the Bible. Though they blind their own eyes to the fact, they are now adopting a course which will lead to the persecution of those who conscientiously refuse to do what the rest of the Christian world are doing, and acknowledge the claims of the papal sabbath.
    • The dignitaries of church and state will unite to bribe, persuade, or compel all classes to honor the Sunday. The lack of divine authority will be supplied by oppressive enactments. Political corruption is destroying love of justice and regard for truth; and even in free America, rulers and legislators, in order to secure public favor, will yield to the popular demand for a law enforcing Sunday observance. Liberty of conscience, which has cost so great a sacrifice, will no longer be respected. In the soon-coming conflict we shall see exemplified the prophet's words: “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 12:17). (GC 592)
  • The trying experiences that came to God's people in the days of Esther were not peculiar to that age alone. The revelator, looking down the ages to the close of time, has declared, “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 12:17). Some who today are living on the earth will see these words fulfilled. The same spirit that in ages past led men to persecute the true church, will in the future lead to the pursuance of a similar course toward those who maintain their loyalty to God. Even now preparations are being made for this last great conflict.
    • The decree that will finally go forth against the remnant people of God will be very similar to that issued by Ahasuerus against the Jews. Today the enemies of the true church see in the little company keeping the Sabbath commandment, a Mordecai at the gate. The reverence of God's people for His law is a constant rebuke to those who have cast off the fear of the Lord and are trampling on His Sabbath.
    • Satan will arouse indignation against the minority who refuse to accept popular customs and traditions. Men of position and reputation will join with the lawless and the vile to take counsel against the people of God. Wealth, genius, education, will combine to cover them with contempt. Persecuting rulers, ministers, and church members will conspire against them. With voice and pen, by boasts, threats, and ridicule, they will seek to overthrow their faith. By false representations and angry appeals, men will stir up the passions of the people. Not having a “Thus saith the Scriptures” to bring against the advocates of the Bible Sabbath, they will resort to oppressive enactments to supply the lack. To secure popularity and patronage, legislators will yield to the demand for Sunday laws. But those who fear God, cannot accept an institution that violates a precept of the Decalogue. On this battlefield will be fought the last great conflict in the controversy between truth and error. And we are not left in doubt as to the issue. Today, as in the days of Esther and Mordecai, the Lord will vindicate His truth and His people. (PK 605-606)
  • The work that the Lord has given us at this time is to present to the people the true light in regard to the testing questions of obedience and salvation—the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. (1SM 165)
  • We call ourselves commandment-keeping people, but we do not comprehend the exceeding breadth of the far-reaching principles of the law of God; we do not understand its sacred character. Many who claim to be teachers of the truth, have no real conception of what they are doing in teaching the law of God, because they do not have a living knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. (1SM 402)
  • The commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus is the message we have to bear to the world. The Word of God is not one-sided, it is truth to be practiced. It is light extending on every side like the rays of the sun. It is light to lighten every man who will read and understand and practice its teachings. “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him” (James 1:5). (2SM 88)
  • Our work is to proclaim the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. “Prepare to meet thy God” (Amos 4:12), is the warning to be given to the world. It is a warning to us individually. We are called upon to lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us. There is a work for you, my brother, to do, to yoke up with Christ. Make sure that your building is on the rock. Do not risk eternity on a probability. You may not live to participate in the perilous scenes on which we are now entering. The life of no one of us is assured for any given time. Should you not watch every moment? Should you not closely examine your own self, and inquire, What will eternity be to me?
    • The great burden of every soul should be, Is my heart renewed? Is my soul transformed? Are my sins pardoned through faith in Christ? Have I been born again? Am I complying with the invitation, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28)? ... Do you count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus? And do you feel it your duty to believe every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God? (2SM 115-116)
  • No name which we can take will be appropriate but that which accords with our profession and expresses our faith and marks us a peculiar people. The name Seventh-day Adventist is a standing rebuke to the Protestant world. Here is the line of distinction between the worshipers of God and those who worship the beast and receive his mark. The great conflict is between the commandments of God and the requirements of the beast. It is because the saints are keeping all ten of the commandments that the dragon makes war upon them. If they will lower the standard and yield the peculiarities of their faith, the dragon will be at peace; but they excite his ire because they have dared to raise the standard and unfurl their banner in opposition to the Protestant world, who are worshiping the institution of papacy. (1T 223)
  • It is our work to magnify and exalt the law of God. The truth of God's holy word is to be made manifest. We are to hold up the Scriptures as the rule of life. In all modesty, in the spirit of grace, and in the love of God we are to point men to the fact that the Lord God is the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and that the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord.
    • In the name of the Lord we are to go forward, unfurling His banner, advocating His word. When the authorities command us not to do this work, when they forbid us to proclaim the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus, then it will be necessary for us to say as did the apostles: “Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye (Acts 4:19). For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard” (Acts 4:20).
    • (6T 395)
  • The commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus are united. They are to be clearly presented to the world.
    • In God's word we are shown the consequences of proclaiming the third angel's message. “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 12:17). A refusal to obey the commandments of God, and a determination to cherish hatred against those who proclaim these commandments, leads to the most determined war on the part of the dragon, whose whole energies are brought to bear against the commandment-keeping people of God. “He causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads (Revelation 13:16): and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name” (Revelation 13:17). (8T 117)
  • The remnant church will be brought into great trial and distress. Those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus will feel the ire of the dragon and his hosts. Satan numbers the world as his subjects, he has gained control of the apostate churches; but here is a little company that are resisting his supremacy. If he could blot them from the earth, his triumph would be complete. As he influenced the heathen nations to destroy Israel, so in the near future he will stir up the wicked powers of earth to destroy the people of God. All will be required to render obedience to human edicts in violation of the divine law. Those who will be true to God and to duty will be menaced, denounced, and proscribed. They will be betrayed “both by parents, and brethren, and kinsfolks, and friends” (Luke 21:16). (5T 472-473)
  • I urge those who claim to believe the truth, to walk in unity with their brethren. Do not seek to give to the world occasion to say that we are extremists, that we are disunited, that one teaches one thing, and one another. Avoid dissension. Let everyone be on guard, and be careful to be found standing in the gap to make up the breach, in place of standing at the wall seeking to make a breach. Let all be careful not to make an outcry against the only people who are fulfilling the description given of the remnant people who keep the commandments of God and have faith in Jesus, who are exalting the standard of righteousness in these last days. (TM 57-58)
  • We have the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ, which is the spirit of prophecy. Priceless gems are to be found in the word of God . Those who search this word should keep the mind clear. Never should they indulge perverted appetite in eating or drinking. (TM 114)
  • Nevertheless, the foundation of God standeth sure. The Lord knoweth them that are His. The sanctified minister must have no guile in his mouth. He must be open as the day, free from every taint of evil. A sanctified ministry and press will be a power in flashing the light of truth on this untoward generation. Light, brethren, more light we need. Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound an alarm in the holy mountain. Gather the host of the Lord, with sanctified hearts, to hear what the Lord will say unto His people; for He has increased light for all who will hear. Let them be armed and equipped, and come up to the battle—to the help of the Lord against the mighty. God Himself will work for Israel. Every lying tongue will be silenced. Angels’ hands will overthrow the deceptive schemes that are being formed. The bulwarks of Satan will never triumph. Victory will attend the third angel's message. As the Captain of the Lord's host tore down the walls of Jericho, so will the Lord's commandment-keeping people triumph, and all opposing elements be defeated. Let no soul complain of the servants of God who have come to them with a heaven-sent message. Do not any longer pick flaws in them, saying, “They are too positive; they talk too strongly.” They may talk strongly; but is it not needed? God will make the ears of the hearers tingle if they will not heed His voice or His message. He will denounce those who resist the word of God. (TM 410)
  • The law of God and the Spirit of Prophecy go hand in hand to guide and counsel the church, and whenever the church has recognized this by obeying His law, the spirit of prophecy has been sent to guide her in the way of truth.
    • (Revelation 12:17). “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.” This prophecy points out clearly that the remnant church will acknowledge God in His law and will have the prophetic gift. Obedience to the law of God, and the spirit of prophecy has always distinguished the true people of God, and the test is usually given on present manifestations.
    • In Jeremiah's day the people had no question about the message of Moses, Elijah, or Elisha, but they did question and put aside the message sent of God to Jeremiah until its force and power was wasted and there was no remedy but for God to carry them away into captivity.
    • Likewise in the days of Christ the people had learned that Jeremiah's message was true, and they persuaded themselves to believe that if they had lived in the days of their fathers they would have accepted his message, but at the same time they were rejecting Christ's message, of whom all the prophets had written.
    • As the third angel's message arose in the world, which is to reveal the law of God to the church in its fullness and power, the prophetic gift was also immediately restored. This gift has acted a very prominent part in the development and carrying forward of this message. (LLM 33)
  • We have the commandments of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ, which is the Spirit of prophecy. Priceless gems are to be found in the Word of God. Those who search this Word should keep the mind clear. Never should they indulge perverted appetite in eating and drinking. If they do this, the brain will be confused; they will be unable to bear the strain of digging deep to find out the meaning of those things which relate to the closing scenes of this earth's history. (18MR 24)