A genus of snakes prevalent in the ancient world, some of which were poisonous. Because the bite of the poisonous viper could be fatal, people naturally wanted to avoid any contact with any type. Consequently, the term “viper” came to be used figuratively as a designation for evil (Isa 30:6; Isa 59:5; Job 20:16) or for people who were evil (Matt 3:7; Matt 12:34; Matt 23:33; Luke 3:7). Paul’s encounter with a viper (Acts 28:3-6) caused people to think of him as a god.

Isa 30:6

6An oracle concerning the animals of the Negeb.
Through a land of trouble and distress,
of lioness and roaring lion,
of viper and flying serpent,
they carry the ... View more

Isa 59:5

5They hatch adders' eggs,
and weave the spider's web;
whoever eats their eggs dies,
and the crushed egg hatches out a viper.

Job 20:16

16They will suck the poison of asps;
the tongue of a viper will kill them.

Matt 3:7

7But when he saw many Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

Matt 12:34

34You brood of vipers! How can you speak good things, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

Matt 23:33

33You snakes, you brood of vipers! How can you escape being sentenced to hell?

Luke 3:7

7John said to the crowds that came out to be baptized by him, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

Acts 28:3-6

3Paul had gathered a bundle of brushwood and was putting it on the fire, when a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand.4When the natives saw ... View more

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