29 Nov. Revelation 20:1-15

29 Nov. The resurrection of the dead and the final judgement

"I saw an angel coming down from heaven. He had the key to the bottomless pit and a large chain in his hand. The angel grabbed the dragon, that old snake who is the devil and Satan, and tied him up for 1,000 years..."

"Then I saw some thrones and people sitting on them who had been given the power to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been killed because they were faithful to the message of Jesus and the message from God. They had not worshipped the beast [the Roman emperor] or his idol [his statue], and they had not received the mark of the beast on their foreheads or on their hands."

"They came back to life and ruled with Christ for 1,000 years. (The others that were dead did not live again until the 1,000 years were ended.) This is the first raising of the dead. Happy and holy are those who share in this first raising of the dead..."

"When the 1,000 years are over, Satan will be set free from his prison. Then he will go out to trick the nations in all the earth - Gog and Magog - to gather them for battle... And Satan's army marched across the earth and gathered around the camp of God's people and the city God loves."

"But fire came down from heaven and burnt them up. And Satan, who tricked them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulphur with the beast and the false prophet. There they will be punished day and night for ever and ever."

"Then I saw a great white throne and the One who was sitting on it. Earth and sky ran away from him and disappeared. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne."

"Then books were opened, and the book of life was opened. The dead were judged by what they had done, which was written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades [the world of the dead] gave up the dead who were in them. Each person was judged by what he had done."

"And Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. And anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire."

          (Revelation 20:1-15)

 

 

At the start of the climax of John's dramatic vision, the satan (‘the accuser’ on the ‘Day of Judgement’) is locked away for a thousand years. Believers who have died for their faith come back to life and reign with Christ for a thousand years.

The satan is then released for a short time after a thousand years; but he is defeated again, and his plans to condemn followers of Christ to eternal death are frustrated.

Consequently, the rest of the believers who have died before Jesus’s second coming are resurrected and rise from their graves to stand before God at the final judgement.

And so begins the final judgement of mankind at the end of time. The ‘Book of Life’ is opened and those who have died are judged according to what has been recorded about their faith and their deeds.

The wicked and ungodly, whose names are not in the ‘Book of Life’, are thrown into the ‘lake of fire’ (symbolising ‘the second death’ and the pain of being separated from God for eternity).

But those whose faith and deeds are rewarded with eternal life look forward to the amazing spectacle of a completely new creation...

The photo shows an open tomb at the Biblical Research Centre at En Kerem near Jerusalem.

You can read more about John's vision on The Bible Journey website @ https://www.thebiblejourney.org/…/the-resurrection-of-the-…/


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