Search the Bible
* powered by Bible Study Tools

Revelation 12:15

    Revelation 12:15 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth after the woman water as a river, that he might cause her to be carried away by the stream.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And the snake sent out of his mouth after the woman a river of water, so that she might be taken away by the stream.

    Webster's Revision

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth after the woman water as a river, that he might cause her to be carried away by the stream.

    World English Bible

    The serpent spewed water out of his mouth after the woman like a river, that he might cause her to be carried away by the stream.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth after the woman water as a river, that he might cause her to be carried away by the stream.

    Definitions for Revelation 12:15

    Cast - Worn-out; old; cast-off.

    Clarke's Commentary on Revelation 12:15

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood - The water here evidently means great multitudes of nations and peoples; for in Revelation 17:15, the interpreting angel says, The waters which thou sawest - are peoples, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues. This water, then, which the dragon cast out of his mouth, must be an inundation of heathen barbarous nations upon the Roman empire; and the purpose which the dragon has in view by this inundation is, that he might cause the woman, or Christian Church: -

    To be carried away of the flood - Entirely swept away from the face of the earth. Dr. Mosheim, in the commencement of his second chapter upon the fifth century, observes "that the Goths, the Heruli, the Franks, the Huns, and the Vandals, with other fierce and warlike nations, for the most part strangers to Christianity, had invaded the Roman empire, and rent it asunder in the most deplorable manner. Amidst these calamities the Christians were grievous, nay, we may venture to say the principal, sufferers. It is true these savage nations were much more intent upon the acquisition of wealth and dominion than upon the propagation or support of the pagan superstitions, nor did their cruelty and opposition to the Christians arise from any religious principle, or from an enthusiastic desire to ruin the cause of Christianity; it was merely by the Instigation of the pagans who remained yet in the empire, that they were excited to treat with such severity and violence the followers of Christ." Thus the wo which was denounced, Revelation 12:12, against the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea, came upon the whole Roman world; for, in consequence of the excitement and malicious misrepresentations of the pagans of the empire, "a transmigration of a great swarm of nations" came upon the Romans, and ceased not their ravages till they had desolated the eastern empire, even as far as the gates of Byzantium, and finally possessed themselves of the western empire. "If," says Dr. Robertson, in the introduction to his History of Charles V., vol. i., pp. 11, 12, edit. Lond. 1809, "a man was called to fix upon the period in the history of the world, during which the condition of the human race was most calamitous and afflicted, he would, without hesitation, name that which elapsed from the death of Theodosius the Great to the establishment of the Lombards in Italy, a period of one hundred and seventy-six years. The contemporary authors who beheld that scene of desolation, labor and are at a loss for expressions to describe the horror of it. The scourge of God, the destroyer of nations, are the dreadful epithets by which they distinguish the most noted of the barbarous leaders; and they compare the ruin which they had brought on the world to the havoc occasioned by earthquakes, conflagrations, or deluges, the most formidable and fatal calamities which the imagination of man can conceive." But the subtle design which the serpent or dragon had in view, when he vomited out of his mouth a flood of waters, was most providentially frustrated; for: -

    Barnes' Notes on Revelation 12:15

    And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood - This is special and uncommon imagery, and it is not necessary to suppose that anything like this literally occurs in nature. Some serpents are indeed said to eject from their mouths poisonous bile when they are enraged, in order to annoy their pursuers; and some sea monsters, it is known, spout forth large quantities of water; but the representation here does not seem to be taken from either of those cases. It is the mere product of the imagination, but the sense is clear. The woman is represented as having wings, and as being able thus to escape from the serpent. But, as an expression of his wrath, and as if with the hope of destroying her in her flight by a deluge of water, he is represented as pouring a flood from his mouth, that he might, if possible, sweep her away. The figure here would well represent the continued malice of the papal body against the true church, in those dark ages when it was sunk in obscurity, and, as it were, driven out into the desert. That malice never slumbered, but was continually manifesting itself in some new form, as if it were the purpose of papal Rome to sweep it entirely away.

    That he might cause her to be carried away of the flood - Might cause the church wholly to be destroyed. The truth taught is, that Satan leaves no effort untried to destroy the church.