Here in East Tennessee we are blessed with an abundance of lakes, rivers, and the Great Smoky Mountain National Park─a beautiful area and some very scenic roadways, much enjoyed by motorcycle enthusiasts. One such nearby highway that attracts riders from all over the world is called: The Dragon─a serpentine stretch of road that snakes its way up the mountains of Tennessee ending just across the state line into North Carolina. It has an incredible 318 switchbacks over an 11 mile length as its tail whips back and forth climbing up the mountainside.
Many a young rider has come challenging the Tennessee beast on their Japanese sport bikes only to suffer the same fate as some who have come before them in thinking they could conquer it. Too much gasoline-fueled adrenaline, way too much horsepower under their seats, combined with too little common sense in their heads is a recipe for disaster.
There have been innumerable crashes on the mountain and lives lost to the Dragon, in attempts to better a time set years ago on the roadway. There is a motel at the end of the highway in Deals Gap, that proudly displays a variety of wrecked bikes all lumped together suspended from a tree, looking like a huge Tim Burton Christmas ornament. The message for all newcomers to the highway is: Slow down, take it easy, enjoy the ride but beware the Dragon─it will bite you.
For the past eight years or so, I have been flying predominately out of China─being based at various times in Hong Kong, Shanghai and up until recently, Shenzhen. The country of China has a long history, and for centuries was shrouded in mystery until explorers like Marco Polo made inroads into the country and opened it up to the western world. They are famous for past dynasties, a terracotta army, introduction of fireworks and of course the Great Wall of China (it is said that the Great Wall is so long─approx. 5500 miles long─that it can be seen from space). I’ve flown over it numerous times on our descent into the Beijing area, and because of the mountainous terrain it usually takes a while to locate it. If the astronauts can see it from space, I need to start drinking more Tang!
China is also associated with the dragon. They have depictions of dragons in artwork, sculptures, statues, and seem to have an unending affinity for the beast. If the country can be identified by any creature─as America is with the bald eagle and Russia with the bear, then China would certainly be thought of as the dragon. With a population exceeding one billion people, they have harnessed a massive cheap labor force into the economic powerhouse that they are today. They recently passed Japan as the world’s second strongest economy and they have been building up their military at an ever-increasing rate.
The Bible says during the Tribulation period, that some kings from the East will march an army of 200 million into the northern plains of Israel; probably to secure crude oil to keep their economy fueled. China most certainly could easily field an army of that size with their huge population. With their rise to economic power and quest to be a military force to be reckoned with, the surrounding East Asian countries─most notably Japan, with their history of atrocities committed against China during WWII (and the Chinese have not forgotten) are wary of the reawakening and rise of the dragon.
In the Bible, there are many references made to one who is called the dragon. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines dragon as: a huge serpent; a mythical animal usually represented as a monstrous winged and scaly serpent or saurian with a crested head and enormous claws; a violent, combative, or very strict person; and lastly, something or someone formidable or baneful. While these descriptions conjure up some very vivid imagery, they can rightly be attributed to the one that seeks our destruction.
In medieval folklore there were legends of terrible fire-breathing beasts that usually resided in a cave out in the wilderness, and on occasion would take flight, swoop down over the town, terrorizing the local populace. The king would send out some gallant knights armed with body armor and swords in an effort to slay the dragon and rid the kingdom of this awful menace. In most of the tales, a majority of the would-be heroes were unsuccessful, and their carcasses lay strewn across the path to the dragon’s lair.
In much the same way, we have an enemy out in the spiritual realm seeking to slay us. He is fire breathing in the sense that his lies, deceptions, false doctrines and methods emanate from the pit of hell, with the accompanying odor and heat of fire and brimstone. He takes to the air in the sense that he is “the prince of the power of the air” (Ephesians 2:2) and that our battle against him is a spiritual battle:
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12).
He has been terrorizing humanity since his first encounter with man in the Garden of Eden; still going strong through the present age; will be an even stronger force through the Tribulation period; and even makes a final onslaught at the end of Christ’s 1000 year Millennial reign. Many have fallen victim to his snares in their attempt to do battle with him without being properly armed:
Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God (Ephesians 6:11-17).
His victims lie strewn across the annals of time and are spending a Christ-less eternity in the dragon’s lair. It is incredible to think that the one who became the dragon was once an archangel of the highest order:
Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx, and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold: the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou was created.
Thou art the anointed cherub that covers; and I have set thee so: thou was upon the holy mountain of God: thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.
Thou was perfect in thy ways from the day that thou was created, till iniquity was found in thee.
By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire.
Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.
All they that know thee among the people shall be astonished at thee: thou shalt be a terror, and never shalt thou be any more (Ezekiel 28:13-19).
And Isaiah in chapter 14 adds:
Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations.
All they shall speak and say unto thee, Art thou also become weak as we? art thou become like unto us?
Thy pomp is brought down to the grave, and the noise of thy viols: the worm is spread under thee, and the worms cover thee.
How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms;
That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners? (Isaiah 14:9-17)
It is amazing that that much pride led to the downfall of Lucifer. What is even more astounding is the fact that he swung his tail and drew a third of the angelic host with him (Revelation 12:4). How could he hold that much sway to get that many to rebel against God and think they could be victorious?
He has many descriptions throughout the Scriptures. He is called a liar and the father of lies. He is referred to as the evil one, a murder from the beginning, a deceiver and an accuser of the brethren. He brings up charges against us continually to God the Father, as such an encounter of his with the Lord is described in the opening verses of Job.
I wonder if he will be present when the judgment seat of Christ takes place after the Rapture, and all believers will be rewarded for service. We are told that he isn’t totally banished from the presence of God until the midpoint of the Tribulation, so he will have access to heaven when the body of Christ is present there.
Make no mistake about it; he is our enemy. He would like nothing more than to thwart God’s desire to populate heaven with as many of His created beings as possible. We are created in God’s image and the dragon seeks to destroy us. He is ruthless, cunning and out to deceive; he has had thousands of years to perfect his craft.
Think of all the different -ism’s there are in the world to deceive the masses and keep them in darkness: Hinduism, Buddhism, Shintosim, Islam, Communism and a plethora of others─all designed to confuse and keep people from the truth. There are untold millions of people lost in this world, but they believe their particular–ism is the correct one and will even kill others to defend or promote it.
Look at what the dragon has been responsible for regarding the Jews. There is no secular reason why there has been so much hatred for them over the centuries. Yet, most of the Arab/Islamic world and even some in the West would like to see the Jews disappear. It is a satanically driven hatred and the dragon has more than enough willing accomplices to carryout his plans against God’s chosen people.
Be on your guard against the dragon (the devil) for the Bible says:
Be sober, be watchful: your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8).
He seeks our destruction; he wants to keep as many as possible out of heaven. He will ratchet up his activities in the soon coming Tribulation period. Midway through it there will be an all out assault on Jews, new believers in Christ, on actually everybody. The bloodlust will be insatiable. All cunning, all strategy, any and all methods to destroy will be employed. He has had eons to prepare for his game plan for that final hour. It will be no holds barred, anything goes, the rules of engagement tossed out. No Geneva Convention to govern rules of warfare, no timeouts only winner takes all and he will be out to get everything.
Don’t go through the Tribulation period! Don’t go to hell! Don’t be deceived! Hell is not a party. AC/DC may sing about and try to glorify about being on the highway to hell, but it will be a massive pileup. Wrecked lives will litter the place. There will be no rest areas. No comfort, no ease, no meeting up with past friends, no partying. Just sheer dread, hopelessness, terror, pain, suffering, loneliness, and it is a continual state, it will never improve, never change.
Beware the dragon; beware of his deception. Jesus Christ created you; Jesus Christ died for you; Jesus Christ loves you and wants to spend eternity with you in a place that is filled with love, comfort, fulfilled dreams, an abundance of opportunity, and a forever existence with loved ones.
Don’t fall prey to the devil, but pray to receive Jesus Christ right now before it is too late to receive His free gift of salvation!
If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Romans 10:9).
I thank Jesus for this article, thank you Jesus for your undying love for us in that you went to the cross to save us, and may you receive all glory and honor in all that we do!
The author can be e-mailed at GoTitans25@aol.com