On the types in the Old Testaments, the totality of God's redeemed people are typified in the Bible by the heavenly luminaries, the three lights created by God—the sun, the moon, and the stars (Gen. 1:14-18).
They are used to signify the whole house of Jacob, which was chosen and redeemed by God (37:9-10). God chose and redeemed them not according to what they were and did in their natural life but according to the will of God's sovereignty and His abundant mercy (Rom. 9:10-18). According to man’s view, they were evil and defiled, but according to God’s view, they were as bright as the heavenly luminaries, the three lights. Among them Jacob was like the sun, his wife Rachel was like the moon, and his twelve sons were like twelve stars.
The New Testament uses the sun, the moon, and the stars to signify the totality of the believers in the Old and New Testaments with the sign of the universal corporate woman (Rev. 12:1). Both the Old Testament and the New Testament believers are the saints chosen and redeemed by God. God looks at them according to His eternal view and the purpose of His economy, not according to what they are and do. In this view, they are clean and bright, like the God-created heavenly luminaries, the three lights, which serve as symbols of them.
The universal woman in Revelation 12:1 is clothed with the sun. The sun signifies God's people in the New Testament age. Before Christ came to the world, the Old Testament age was like a dark night. When Christ, as the rising sun, came from on high (Luke 1:78), the age of the sun came. Since Christ has come, the New Testament believers are living in the day, and since they are a part of Christ, they are part of the sun. The church, which is composed of all the New Testament believers, shines corporately in the day to show forth the glory of God (Phil. 2:15-16). The woman, who is clothed with the sun, indicates also that the New Testament believers constitute the major part of God’s people.
Before Christ came, it was the age of the moon, which signifies God's people in the Old Testament age. The moon is underneath the feet of the universal woman because the age of the moon is the age of the law, which, in God’s eyes, should not be exalted like the stars.
The stars signify the patriarchs, God's people before the law was given, shining individually in the dark night with the divine, heavenly light. According to Daniel 12:3, God’s redeemed in the Old Testament, that is, those who turn many to righteousness, who lead people to God, and who do righteousness by God, will shine as stars forever and ever.
In the New Testament, the believers who have received God's grace in the New Testament should shine much more as the heavenly stars in today’s dark age. The apostle Paul solemnly charges in Philippians 2:15-16 that we should be children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverted generation, among whom we shine as luminaries, reflecting the word of life, the embodiment of Christ. The Lord Jesus also said that we are the light of the world, and He charged us to let our light shine over people (Matt. 5:14-16).