Revelation 12:13-17 Satan will launch a terrible attack against the woman. Over the centuries the Jewish people have faced more hatred and persecution than any other people. Much of that suffering was chastisement from God to turn the nation away from their sin and back to Him. God repeatedly warned Israel of the consequences of disobedience (Deuteronomy 28:15-68) and punished them when they failed to obey (2 Kings 17:7–23).
Within the sovereign purpose of God for His people, Israel also has suffered constantly and severely at the hands of Satan, acting as God’s instrument. Unlike God, however, Satan’s purpose in causing the Jewish people to suffer is not remedial, but destructive. He doesn’t seek to bring them to repentance and salvation, but to death and destruction. However any nation that touched Israel was severely judged by God. Daniel, like Jeremiah and Jesus, saw essentially the same scenario that John reveals in Revelation 12 (Daniel 12:1-11): a future time of unparalleled distress, persecution, and slaughter for Israel.
Two-thirds of the Jews alive at that time will be killed as God uses Satan to purge the rebels from the nation (Zechariah 13:8-9; Ezekiel 20:38). But the elect, believing remnant will enter the Messiah’s kingdom, along with those resurrected Old Testament saints who at that time will “awake … to everlasting life” (Daniel 12:2).
Satan’s onslaught against the Jews during the Tribulation will begin with the rise to power of Antichrist. During the first three and a half years of the Tribulation, Satan will work to extend Antichrist’s power. Once he becomes the ruler of the world, Satan will make use of him for his evil purposes. Antichrist will act as the protector of the Jews during the first half of the Tribulation. The covenant mentioned in Daniel 9:27 is a protection pact with the Antichrist that he will break in the middle of that seven-year period.
At that point, Antichrist will become Israel’s persecutor for the last half of the Tribulation. He will reveal his true nature when he breaks the covenant and sets up the abomination of desolation (Daniel 11:31; 12:11; Matthew 24:15-16; 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4) three and a half years into the Tribulation. At that time, Antichrist’s persecution of God’s people, which has been going on throughout the first half of the Tribulation, will focus on Israel and intensify. This passage describes three attacks that Satan’s forces will mount against Israel during the Tribulation. The first attack is described in Revelation 12:13-14.