This chapter introduces many of the prophecy buzz words – the Millennial Reign, the Great White Throne Judgment, the second death and the lake of fire. John uses all of these to magnify the Gospel story.
The Millennial Reign
Is this a literal thousand-year period that will happen? Or is it merely a metaphor? “Who can tell?” was the answer Adam Clarke gave in his commentary on this chapter.
Here is what we know from the chapter.
- An angel binds Satan during this period and keeps him in a bottomless pit.
- Souls beheaded for their faith come back to life and reign with Christ.
- When this period ends, Satan is set free to gather a mighty army for battle.
- Fire consumes the enemies of God and Satan is thrown into the fiery lake to be tormented day and night.
John shows us the power and authority of Jesus Christ — our God does reign over all. John brings the Gospel story to its conclusion – the dead in Christ are raised to life to rule and reign with Him. John puts an exclamation point on Christ’s defeat of Satan.
The Great White Throne
John expands on the imagery in Daniel 7:9-10 to show God’s final judgment of man. In this scene, the dead stand before the throne of God. God opens the books, including the book of life.
He judges the people according to what they have done. Here is what they did. They rejected Jesus Christ and rebelled against the one true God. Their punishment is death. God throws them, along with death and Hades, into the lake of fire where they experience eternal separation from God.
Revelation for You
Even at the end, Satan still wants to battle the Lord. What does this tell you about the nature of deception?
In light of this final judgment of the lost, how important is it to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ?