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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 12

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1 AFTER that there appeared a great sign in heaven: a woman robed with the sun, beneath her feet the moon, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. 2She was about to bear a child, and in the anguish of her labour she cried out to be delivered. 3Then a second sign appeared in heaven: a great, fiery red dragon with seven heads and ten horns. On his heads were seven diadems, 4and with his tail he swept down a third of the stars in the sky and hurled them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that when her child was born he might devour it. 5But when she gave birth to a male child, who is destined to rule all nations with a rod of iron, the child was snatched up to God and to his throne. 6The woman herself fled into the wilderness, where she was to be looked after for twelve hundred and sixty days in a place prepared for her by God.

7Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels fought against the dragon. The dragon with his angels fought back, 8but he was too weak, and they lost their place in heaven. 9The great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent who led the whole world astray, whose name is the Devil, or Satan; he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels with him.

10I heard a loud voice in heaven proclaim: ‘This is the time of victory for our God, the time of his power and sovereignty, when his Christ comes to his rightful rule! For the accuser of our brothers, he who day and night accused them before our God, is overthrown. 11By the sacrifice of the Lamb and by the witness they bore a 12:11 the witness they bore: or the word of God to which they bore witness. , they have conquered him; faced with death they did not cling to life. 12Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you that dwell in them! But woe to you, earth and sea, for the Devil has come down to you in great fury, knowing that his time is short!’

13When the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he went in pursuit of the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14But she was given the wings of a mighty eagle, so that she could fly to her place in the wilderness where she was to be looked after for three and a half years, out of reach of the serpent. 15From his mouth the serpent spewed a flood of water after the woman to sweep her away with its spate. 16But the earth came to her rescue: it opened its mouth and drank up the river which the dragon spewed from his mouth. 17Furious with the woman, the dragon went off to wage war on the rest of her offspring, those who keep God's commandments and maintain their witness to Jesus.

Notes:

a 12:11 the witness they bore: or the word of God to which they bore witness.

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