I was taught the Woman of Revelation 12 was a symbol for both The Church and The Virgin Mary. In addition, Fr. Tadros Malaty states that "She is also a symbol of each believing soul".
THE WOMAN CLOTHED WITH THE SUN
This section is considered the core of Revelation; because in
it war is clearly declared between the defiled trinity (the dragon, the
beast out of the sea and the beast out of the earth) and Jesus Christ,
symbolized in His church. Inspite of the bitterness and severity of
the war the Church, "the woman clothed with the Sun" remains
preserved in her Groom's hand.
1. The dragon resists the church: The woman clothed with
the Sun is the Church
, who is lit by the Sun of Righteousness. The
moon under her feet is the group of saints who, although are
physically dead, are luminous like the moon. The twelve stars
around her head are the Lord's disciples. She gives birth to faith in
Christ and forms this faith in the lives of many people.This woman is also Saint Mary who gave birth to Jesus
Christ. She is also a symbol of each believing soul
, she who is serious
in her worship and her testimony to Christ so that He may take
residence in many souls.
The dragon resists the Church, wanting to devour the child,
i.e. wanting to destroy faith in Jesus Christ.
This dragon is fiery red because he is a murderer of people
(John 8:44). He has 7 heads i.e. is continuously thinking of fighting.
He has 10 horns, i.e. many authorities will submit to him and work
for his kingdom. His tail draws a third of the stars of heaven; similarly
the Antichrist will mislead a third of the believers. Perhaps
here this refers to the angels who were deceived by Satan, and this
shows how dangerous he is! He destroyed angels and wants to
destroy faith in Jesus Christ in the life of the whole church.
Heaven does not stand silently watching the war of the Anti-
Christ, where Satan acts, but the Archangel and his angels fight
Satan and his demons and throw them out of heaven. They shall
have no right to accuse the believers before God. This is how the
heavenly creatures participate with the Lord, the Savior, in His love
Let us sing happily for there is no place for Satan and his
demons in our hearts as long as hearts are heaven. Woe to those
who made their hearts dust and earth, to which the devil is cast!
The woman was given two wings of a great eagle to fly into
the wilderness where God shall support her three times and a half
, i.e. during the time of the Antichrist. The two wings are the
two prophet witnesses who are sent to her by the Lord, or they are
faith and love for each believer, or loving God and loving our
neighbour, or eagerness for heavenly things and indifference
towards temporal things.
The serpent spewed a flood out of his mouth to drown the
woman; this flood is the blasphemy coming out of the mouth of the
From "An Introduction to the Book of Revelation" by Fr. Tadros Malaty, pp 51-52http://www.coepaonline.org/downDetails.php?nav=downloads&cat_id=1&subcat_id=23&thrdcat_id=48