Revelation 12:12 ¶ Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.Why the sea?
Is this referring to people inhabiting islands of the sea?Or are sailors also considered to be "inhabiters of the sea", because they live for months or years on the ships?
Additionally, it doesn't mention seas, plural, but sea, singular.Most of us have been taught, or conditioned, to somehow see the word "oceans", when the scriptures only says "sea".Does it mean a particular sea, or seas in general, generically?If particular, which sea would that be?I imagine that most of us would immediately think of the Mediterranean, but could it be the Aegean?A number of scriptures seem to be speaking generally when using sea, but some are particular:
Revelation 8:8 And the second angel sounded, and as it were a great mountain burning with fire was cast into the sea: and the third part of the sea became blood;
Revelation 10:2 And he had in his hand a little book open: and he set his right foot upon the sea, and his left foot on the earth,Perhaps the burning mountain wasn't cast generically into the oceans of the world, but rather into a specific location.Also, can someone's right foot be generically set upon the oceans of the world, or at a specific place?
Then the next chapter starts out with:
Revelation 13:1 ¶ And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.
I was continually taught that the beast rising up out of the sea meant that he would come out of the nations.They would cite the following as a proof text:
Daniel 7:2 Daniel spake and said, I saw in my vision by night, and, behold, the four winds of the heaven strove upon the great sea.3 And four great beasts came up from the sea, diverse one from another.
However, the other twelve times that, "great sea", is used, it is speaking of the Mediterranean, e.g. Israel's west border.But, even when shown that, the temptation is to say that sea still refers to the different nations that those empires came from.So if sea in Revelation 13:1 generically means Gentile nations, then what about John?Was he standing generically upon the Gentile nations?Or was John standing on the sand of the shore of the Aegean on the island of Patmos?If so, did he see the beast rise up out of the Aegean?How can we say that the first use of sea in line one is particular, but the second is generic?Maybe we only do that when we try to fit what we already believe, into line one, to help support what we already believe.
Then I read:
Revelation 21:1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
Again, I've been taught that means that there will be no more oceans on the new earth.Would that mean no bodies of water, at all?Or would that allow for smaller, fresh water lakes?John had been exiled to the isle of Patmos, in the Aegean.From anywhere on that island, all he saw was water.Perhaps on a very clear day, he could see a little of closer islands.And maybe, on the clearest of days perhaps he maybe could see the faint hint of the mainland.John was surrounded by water, which cut him off from the brethren, and love ones.He could not swim the distance, or charter a boat, as he was a prisoner.When he was young, and a fisherman with his father Zebedee, and his brother, water meant fishing.But on Patmos, water meant separation and exile.When I worked and lived, for 9 years on St Croix, I could only go a short distance in any direction, and there was water.That really got to a number of mainlanders who went to work there, they soon left, as they could not handle it.Staying there was not a vacation, it was work.However, Calvary Baptist church is there, and it is a great church with a great Pastor.John was in exile, not there to be part of some church of Patmos, it was not that kind of island at that time.From St Croix, on a very clear day, we could barely see a bit of St Thomas, 30 miles away.I was not a prisoner on St Croix, but it was rare and expensive to see family and loved ones.John had no such possibility.Perhaps, for a while, John thought that he would not see the brethren or love ones again, until he saw them in heaven.So, seeing, "no more sea", on the new earth, may have had a particular, personal meaning for John.On the new earth, the saved will no longer be separated by the sea.The word sea is used twenty six times in the book of Revelation, alone.Why the sea?