Lord's Supper in the Millenium
Sermón: The Lord’s Súper in the Millenium 4-1-07
Matt 26:29 I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in my Father's kingdom." [Lk 22:18 …until the kingdom of God comes."]
Reve 20:2 He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. 3 He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time. 4 I saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony for Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshiped the beast or his image and had not received his mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years. 7 When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison
JM - 20:1–22:21 Chapter 19 ends with the Battle of Armageddon [see Rev 16:16 Then they gathered the kings together to the place that in Hebrew is called Armageddon] and Christ’s second coming—events that mark the close of the Tribulation. The events of chap. 20—the binding of Satan, Christ’s 1,000 year earthly kingdom, Satan’s final rebellion, and the Great White Throne Judgment—fit chronologically between the close of the Tribulation and the creation of the new heaven and the new earth described in chaps. 21,22. 20:1 bottomless pit. The place where demons are incarcerated pending their final sentencing to the lake of fire (9:1; 2 Pet. 2:4). 20:2 laid hold. This includes not only Satan, but the demons as well. Their imprisonment will dramatically alter the world during the kingdom, since their destructive influence in all areas of human thought and life will be removed. dragon. Likening Satan to a dragon emphasizes his ferocity, and cruelty (12:3). serpent of old. A reference to Satan’s first appearance in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:1ff.), where he deceived Eve (2 Cor. 11:3; 1 Tim. 2:14). Devil … Satan. See 12:9. a thousand years. This is the first of 6 references to the length of the millennial kingdom (vv. 3,4,5,6,7). There are 3 main views of the duration and nature of this period: 1) Premillennialism sees this as a literal 1,000 year period during which Jesus Christ, in fulfillment of numerous OT prophecies (2 Sam. 7:12–16; Ps. 2; Is. 11:6–12; 24:23; Hos. 3:4,5; Joel 3:9–21; Amos 9:8–15; Mic. 4:1–8; Zeph. 3:14–20; Zech. 14:1–11; Matt. 24:29–31,36–44), reigns on the earth. Using the same general principles of interpretation for both prophetic and non-prophetic passages leads most naturally to Premillennialism. Another strong argument supporting this view is that so many biblical prophecies have already been literally fulfilled, suggesting that future prophecies will likewise be fulfilled literally. 2) Postmillennialism understands the reference to a 1,000 year period as only symbolic of a golden age of righteousness and spiritual prosperity. It will be ushered in by the spread of the gospel during the present church age and brought to completion when Christ returns. According to this view, references to Christ’s reign on earth primarily describe His spiritual reign in the hearts of believers in the church. 3) Amillennialism understands the 1,000 years to be merely symbolic of a long period of time. This view interprets OT prophecies of a Millennium as being fulfilled spiritually now in the church (either on earth or in heaven) or as references to the eternal state. Using the same literal, historical, grammatical principles of interpretation so as to determine the normal sense of language, one is left with the inescapable conclusion that Christ will return and reign in a real kingdom on earth for 1,000 years. There is nothing in the text to render the conclusion that “a thousand years” is symbolic. Never in Scripture when “year” is used with a number is its meaning not literal (2 Pet. 3:10). 20:3 released for a little while. Satan will be released so God can make a permanent end of sin before establishing the new heaven and earth. All who survive the Tribulation and enter the kingdom will be believers. However, despite that and the personal presence and rule of the Lord Jesus Christ, many of their descendants will refuse to believe in Him. Satan will then gather those unbelievers for one final, futile rebellion against God. It will be quickly and decisively crushed, followed by the Great White Throne Judgment and the establishment of the eternal state. bottomless pit. All 7 times that this appears in Revelation, it refers to the place where fallen angels and evil spirits are kept captive, waiting to be sent to the lake of fire—the final hell prepared for them (Matt. 25:41). 20:4 the souls of those who had been beheaded. These are tribulation martyrs (6:9; 18:24; 19:2). The Gr. word translated “beheaded” became a general term for execution, not necessarily a particular method. his mark. See 13:16. Tribulation martyrs will be executed for refusing the mark of the beast. reigned. Tribulation believers, along with the redeemed from both the OT and NT eras, will reign with Christ (1 Cor. 6:2; 2 Tim. 2:12) during the 1,000 year kingdom. 20:5 the rest of the dead. The bodies of unbelievers of all ages will not be resurrected until the Great White Throne judgment (vv. 12,13). first resurrection. Scripture teaches two kinds of resurrections: the “resurrection of life” and “the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:29; Dan. 12:2; Acts 24:15). The first kind of resurrection is described as “the resurrection of the just” (Luke 14:14), the resurrection of “those who are Christ’s at His coming” (1 Cor. 15:23), and the “better resurrection” (Heb. 11:35). It includes only the redeemed of the church age (1 Thess. 4:13–18), the OT (Dan. 12:2), and the Tribulation (v. 4). They will enter the kingdom in resurrection bodies, along with believers who survived the Tribulation. The second kind of resurrection, then, will be the resurrection of the unconverted who will receive their final bodies suited for torment in hell. 20:6 Blessed. Those who die in the Lord (14:13) are blessed with the privilege of entering His kingdom (1:3). second death. The first death is spiritual and physical, the second is eternal in the lake of fire, the final, eternal hell (v. 14). It could exist outside the created universe as we know it, outside of space and time, and be presently unoccupied (19:20). thousand years. See v. 2. 20:7 Satan … released. He is loosed to bring cohesive leadership to the world of rebels born to the believers who entered the kingdom at the beginning. He is loosed to reveal the character of Christ-rejecting sinners who are brought into judgment for the last time ever. 20:8 Gog and Magog. The name given to the army of rebels and its leader at the end of the Millennium. They were names of ancient enemies of the Lord. Magog was the grandson of Noah (Gen. 10:2) and founder of a kingdom located N of the Black and Caspian Seas. Gog is apparently the leader of a rebel army known collectively as Magog. The battle depicted in vv. 8,9 is like the one in Ezek. 38,39; it is best to see this one as taking place at the end of the Millennium. For the difference, see Ezek. 38,39. 20:9 beloved city. Jerusalem (Ps.78:68; 87:2), the capital city during Christ’s millennial reign (Jer. 3:17). The saints will be living around the city where Christ reigns (Is. 24:23; Jer. 3:17; Zech. 14:9–11). fire. Frequently associated in Scripture with divine judgment of wicked men (Gen. 19:24; 2 Kin. 1:10,12,14; Luke 9:54; 17:29). 20:10 deceived. Just as his demons will entice the world’s armies into the Battle of Armageddon, Satan will draw them into a suicidal assault against Christ and His people (16:13,14). lake of fire and brimstone. See 19:20. tormented day and night. See 14:11. Continuous, unrelieved torment will be the final state of Satan, fallen angels, and unredeemed men. 20:11–15 These verses describe the final judgment of all the unbelievers of all ages (Matt. 10:15; 11:22,24; 12:36,41,42; Luke 10:14; John 12:48; Acts 17:31; 24:25; Rom. 2:5,16; Heb. 9:27; 2 Pet. 2:9; 3:7; Jude 6). Our Lord referred to this event as the “resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:29). This judgment takes place in the indescribable void between the end of the present universe (v. 11) and the creation of the new heaven and earth (21:1). 20:11 great white throne. Nearly 50 times in Revelation there is the mention of a throne. This is a judgment throne, elevated, pure, and holy. God sits on it as judge (4:2,3,9; 5:1,7,13; 6:16; 7:10,15) in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ. See 21:5,6; John 5:22–29; Acts 17:31. earth and the heaven fled away. John saw the contaminated universe go out of existence. Peter described this moment in 2 Pet. 3:10–13. The universe is “uncreated,” going into non-existence (Matt. 24:35). 20:12 standing before God. In a judicial sense, as guilty, condemned prisoners before the bar of divine justice. There are no living sinners left in the destroyed universe since all sinners were killed and all believers glorified. books. These books record every thought, word, and deed of sinful men—all recorded by divine omniscience (Dan. 7:10, the verse that is the source of this text). They will provide the evidence for eternal condemnation. Cf. 18:6,7. Book of Life. It contains the names of all the redeemed (Dan. 12:1; see 3:5). judged according to their works. Their thoughts (Luke 8:17; Rom. 2:16), words (Matt. 12:37), and actions (Matt. 16:27) will be compared to God’s perfect, holy standard (Matt. 5:48; 1 Pet. 1:15,16) and will be found wanting (Rom. 3:23). This also implies that there are degrees of punishment in hell (Matt. 10:14,15; 11:22; Mark 12:38–40; Luke 12:47,48; Heb. 10:29). 20:13 Death and Hades. See 1:18. Both terms describe the state of death. All unrighteous dead will appear at the Great White Throne Judgment; none will escape. All the places that have held the bodies of the unrighteous dead will yield up new bodies suited for hell. 20:14 second death. See v. 6. 20:15 lake of fire. See 19:20. 21:1 As the chapter opens, all the sinners of all the ages, both demons and men, including Satan, the beast, and false prophet, are in the lake of fire forever. The whole universe has been destroyed, and God creates a new universe to be the eternal dwelling place of the redeemed. a new heaven and a new earth. The entire universe as we now know it will be destroyed (2 Pet. 3:10–13) and be replaced by a new creation that will last forever. This is an OT reality (Ps. 102:25,26; Is. 65:17; 66:22), as well as a NT one (Luke 21:33; Heb. 1:10–12). See 20:11–15. no more sea. Currently three-fourths of the earth’s surface is water, but the new environment will no longer be water-based and will have completely different climatic conditions. See 22:1,2. 21:2–22:5 By this point in the chronology of Revelation, OT saints, tribulation saints, and all those converted during the millennial kingdom will be incorporated into the ultimate redeemed bride and will dwell in the New Jerusalem. John described the consummation of all things in Christ and the New Jerusalem descending into the eternal state (19:7; 20:6; 1 Cor. 15:28; Heb. 12:22–24).
JM - CHAP.19 - 19:1–6 Alleluia. The transliteration of this Heb. word appears 4 times in the NT, all in this chapter (vv. 1,3,4,6). This exclamation, meaning “Praise the Lord,” occurs frequently in the OT (Pss. 104:35; 105:45; 106:1; 111:1; 112:1; 113:1; 117:1; 135:1; 146:1). Five reasons for their praise emerge:
1) God’s deliverance of His people from their enemies (v. 1);
2) God’s meting out of justice (v. 2);
3) God’s permanent crushing of man’s rebellion (v. 3);
4) God’s sovereignty (v. 6); and
5) God’s communion with His people (v. 7).
19:1 After these things. This is a time key. After the destruction of Babylon at the end of the Great Tribulation, just before the kingdom is established (chap. 20). This section bridges the Tribulation and the millennial kingdom. great multitude. Probably angels, since the saints join in later (vv. 5ff.; 5:11,12; 7:11,12). The imminent return of the Lord Jesus Christ prompts this outburst of praise. 19:2 judgments. Saints long for the day of judgment (6:10; 16:7; Is. 9:7; Jer. 23:5). Godly people love righteousness and hate sin, for righteousness honors God and sin mocks Him. Believers long for a world of justice and it will come (v. 15; 2:27; 12:5). 19:3 smoke rises. This is because of the fire (17:16,18; 18:8,9,18; 14:8–11). 19:4 twenty-four elders. Best understood as representatives of the church (4:4). four living creatures. A special order of angelic beings ( 4:6). These compose the same group as in 7:11 and are associated with worship frequently (4:8,11; 5:9–12,14; 11:16–18). 19:5 small and great. All distinctions and ranks are to be transcended. 19:6 Omnipotent. Or “Almighty.” Used 9 times in Revelation as a title for God (v. 15; 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7,14; 21:22). The great praise of the multitude sounds like a massive crashing of waves.
19:7 marriage of the Lamb. Hebrew weddings consisted of 3 phases: 1) betrothal (often when the couple were children); 2) presentation (the festivities, often lasting several days, that preceded the ceremony); and 3) the ceremony (the exchanging of vows). The church was betrothed to Christ by His sovereign choice in eternity past (Eph. 1:4; Heb. 13:20) and will be presented to Him at the Rapture (John 14:1–3; 1 Thess. 4:13–18). The final supper will signify the end of the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (21:2). While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so here (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:22–24), it ultimately expands to include all the redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book. 19:8 righteous acts of the saints. Not Christ’s imputed righteousness granted to believers at salvation, but the practical results of that righteousness in believers’ lives, i.e., the outward manifestation of inward virtue. 19:9 Blessed. See 1:3. those who are called. This is not the bride (the church) but the guests. The bride doesn’t get invited, she invites. These are those saved before Pentecost, all the faithful believers saved by grace through faith up to the birth of the church (Acts 2:1ff.). Though they are not the bride, they still are glorified and reign with Christ in the millennial kingdom. It is really differing imagery rather than differing reality. The guests also will include tribulation saints and believers alive in earthly bodies in the kingdom. The church is the bride, pure and faithful—never a harlot, like Israel was (see Hos. 2). So the church is the bride during the presentation feast in heaven, then comes to earth for the celebration of the final meal (the Millennium). After that event, the new order comes and the marriage is consummated (see 21:1,2). true sayings of God. This refers to everything since 17:1. It is all true—the marriage will take place after judgment. 19:10 fell at his feet. Overwhelmed by the grandeur of the vision, John collapsed in worship before the angel (1:17; 22:8). do not do that. 22:8,9. The Bible forbids the worship of angels (Col. 2:18,19). the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. The central theme of both OT prophecy and NT preaching is the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. 19:11 heaven opened. The One who ascended to heaven (Acts 1:9–11) and had been seated at the Father’s right hand (Heb. 8:1; 10:12; 1 Pet. 3:22) will return to take back the earth from the usurper and establish His kingdom (5:1–10). The nature of this event shows how it differs from the Rapture. At the Rapture, Christ meets His own in the air—in this event He comes with them to earth. At the Rapture, there is no judgment, in this event it is all judgment. This event is preceded by blackness—the darkened sun, moon gone out, stars fallen, smoke—then lightning and blinding glory as Jesus comes. Such details are not included in Rapture passages (John 14:1–3; 1 Thess. 4:13–18). white horse. In the Roman triumphal processions, the victorious general rode his white war horse up the Via Sacra to the temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill. Jesus’ first coming was in humiliation on a colt (Zech. 9:9). John’s vision portrays Him as the conqueror on His war horse, coming to destroy the wicked, to overthrow the Antichrist, to defeat Satan, and to take control of the earth (2 Cor. 2:14). Faithful and True. True to His word, Jesus will return to earth (Matt. 24:27–31; see 3:14). in righteousness He judges. See 20:11–15; Matt. 25:31ff.; John 5:25–30; Acts 17:31. makes war. This startling statement, appearing only here and 2:16, vividly portrays the holy wrath of God against sinners (Ps. 7:11). God’s patience will be exhausted with sinful, rebellious mankind.
19:12 His eyes were like a flame of fire. Nothing escapes His penetrating vision, so His judgments are always just and accurate (see 1:14; 2:18). a name … no one knew. John could see the name, but was unable to comprehend it (2 Cor. 12:4). There are unfathomable mysteries in the Godhead that even glorified saints will be unable to grasp. 19:13 a robe dipped in blood. This is not from the battle of Armageddon, which will not have begun until v. 15. Christ’s blood-spattered garments symbolize the great battles He has already fought against sin, Satan, and death and been stained with the blood of His enemies. The Word. Only John uses this title for the Lord. As the Word of God, Jesus is the image of the invisible God (Col. 1:15); the express image of His person (Heb. 1:3); and the final, full revelation from God (Heb. 1:1,2). 19:14 armies in heaven. Composed of the church (v. 8), tribulation saints (7:13), OT believers (Jude 14; cf. Dan. 12:1,2), and even angels (Matt. 25:31). They return not to help Jesus in the battle (they are unarmed), but to reign with Him after He defeats His enemies (20:4; 1 Cor. 6:2; 2 Tim. 2:12). Cf. Ps. 149:5–9. 19:15 sharp sword. This symbolizes Christ’s power to kill His enemies (1:16; Is. 11:4; Heb. 4:12,13). That the sword comes out of His mouth indicates that He wins the battle with the power of His word. Though the saints return with Christ to reign and rule, they are not the executioners. That is His task, and that of His angels (Matt. 13:37–50). rod of iron. Swift, righteous judgment will mark Christ’s rule in the kingdom. Believers will share His authority (2:26; 1 Cor. 6:2; see 2:27; 12:5; Ps. 2:8,9). winepress. A vivid symbol of judgment (see 14:19). Cf. Is. 63:3; Joel 3:13. 19:16 on His thigh. Jesus will wear a banner across His robe and down His thigh with a title emblazoned on it that emphasizes His absolute sovereignty over all human rulers (see 17:14). 19:17–21 These verses depict the frightening holocaust unparalleled in human history—the Battle of Armageddon, the pinnacle of the Day of the Lord (see 1 Thess. 5:2). It is not so much a battle as an execution, as the remaining rebels are killed by the Lord Jesus (v. 21; see 14:19,20; cf. Ps. 2:1–9; Is. 66:15,16; Ezek. 39:1ff.; Joel 3:12ff.; Matt. 24,25; 2 Thess. 1:7–9). This Day of the Lord was seen by Isaiah (66:15,16), Joel (3:12–21), Ezekiel (39:1–4,17–20), Paul (2 Thess. 1:6ff.; 2:8) and our Lord (Matt. 25:31–46). 19:17,18 supper of the great God. Cf. Ezek. 39:17. Also called “the battle of that great day of God Almighty” (16:14), it will begin with an angel summoning birds to feed on the corpses of those who will be slain (Matt. 24:27,28). God will declare His victory before the battle even begins. The OT frequently pictures the indignity of carrion birds feasting on human dead (Deut. 28:26; Ps. 79:2; Is. 18:6; Jer. 7:33; 16:4; 19:7; 34:20; Ezek. 29:5). 19:19 kings of the earth. See 17:12–17. their armies. See 16:13,14. His army. Zechariah describes this army of the Lord as “all the saints” (14:5). 19:20 beast was captured, and … the false prophet. In an instant, the world’s armies are without their leaders. The beast is Antichrist (13:1–4); the false prophet is his religious cohort (13:11–17). cast alive. The bodies of the beast and the false prophet will be transformed, and they will be banished directly to the lake of fire (Dan. 7:11)—the first of countless millions of unregenerate men (20:15) and fallen angels (cf. Matt. 25:41) to arrive in that dreadful place. That these two still appear there 1,000 years later (20:10) refutes the false doctrine of annihilationism (14:11; Is. 66:24; Matt. 25:41; Mark 9:48; Luke 3:17; 2 Thess. 1:9). lake of fire. The final hell, the place of eternal punishment for all unrepentant rebels, angelic or human (20:10,15). The NT says much of eternal punishment (14:10,11; Matt. 13:40–42; 25:41; Mark 9:43–48; Luke 3:17; 12:47,48). fire … brimstone. See 9:17. These two are frequently associated with divine judgment (14:10; 20:10; 21:8; Gen. 19:24; Ps. 11:6; Is. 30:33; Ezek. 38:22; Luke 17:29). 19:21 sword. See v. 15; cf. Zech. 14:1–13. birds were filled with their flesh. All remaining sinners in the world will have been executed, and the birds will gorge themselves on their corpses.
WIERSBE – THE KING AND HIS KINGDOM Revelation 19–20 How will it all end?” has been mankind’s major question for centuries. Historians have studied the past, hoping to find a clue to understanding the future. Philosophers have tried to penetrate the meaning of things, but they have yet to find the key. No wonder perplexed people have turned in desperation to astrology and spiritism! The prophetic Word of God shines like a “light... in a dark place” (2 Peter 1:19), and on that we can depend. Here in Revelation 19–20, John has recorded five key events that will take place before God “wraps up” human history and ushers in His new heavens and earth. Heaven Will Rejoice (Rev. 19:1–10) When Babylon fell on the earth, the command was given in heaven, “Rejoice over her!” (Rev. 18:20) and what we read in this section is heaven’s response to that command. The word alleluia is the Greek form of the Hebrew word hallelujah, which means “praise the Lord.” This is heaven’s “Hallelujah Chorus” and it will be sung for three reasons. God has judged His enemies (vv. 1–4). Since the “great whore [harlot]” of Revelation 17 was destroyed by “the beast” and his fellow rulers (Rev. 17:16) in the middle of the Tribulation, the “great whore” referred to here must be Babylon the Great. Comparing Revelation 17:2 with 18:3 and 9, the connection is obvious. Both the apostate religious system and the satanic economic-political system led the world astray and polluted mankind. Both were guilty of persecuting God’s people and martyring many of them. [Babylon refers to the entire worldwide political, economic, and religious kingdom of Antichrist, cf The capital of the Antichrist’s empire, according to Macarthur] The song emphasizes God’s attributes, which is the proper way to honor Him. We do not rejoice at the sinfulness of Babylon, or even the greatness of Babylon’s fall. We rejoice that God is “true and righteous” (Rev. 15:3; 16:7; 17:6) and that He is glorified by His holy judgments. As we discovered in Revelation 8:1–6, God’s throne and altar are related to His judgments. Revelation 19:3 should be compared with Revelation 14:10–11, and Revelation 19:4 with Revelation 5:6–10. God is reigning (vv. 5–6). The literal translation is, “The Lord God omnipotent has begun to reign.” This does not suggest that heaven’s throne has been empty or inactive, because that is not the case. The Book of Revelation is the “book of the throne,” and the omnipotent God has indeed been accomplishing His purposes on earth. This burst of praise is an echo of Psalm 97:1—“The Lord reigneth; let the earth rejoice!” God has been reigning on the throne of heaven, but He is now about to conquer the thrones of earth as well as the kingdom of Satan and “the beast.” In His sovereignty, He has permitted evil men and evil angels to do their worst; but now the time has come for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. Domitian was emperor of Rome when John was on Patmos, and one of his assumed titles was “Lord and God.” How significant it must have been, then, to John’s readers that he used the word alleluia four times in the first six verses of this chapter—truly, only Jehovah is worthy of worship and praise. The bride is ready (vv. 7–10). The bride, of course, is the church (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:22–33); and Jesus Christ, the Lamb, is the Bridegroom (John 3:29). At a wedding, it is customary to focus attention on the bride; but in this case, it is the Bridegroom who receives the honor! “Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him.” “What did the bride wear?” is the usual question asked after a wedding. The Lamb’s bride is dressed “in the righteous acts of the saints” (literal translation). When the bride arrived in heaven at the Judgment Seat of Christ, she was not at all beautiful (in fact, she was covered with spots, wrinkles, and blemishes according to Paul in Eph. 5:27); but now she is radiant in her glory. She has “made herself ready” for the public ceremony.
Jewish weddings in that day were quite unlike weddings in the Western world. First, there was an engagement, usually made by the parents when the prospective bride and groom were quite young. This engagement was binding and could be broken only by a form of divorce. Any unfaithfulness during the engagement was considered adultery. When the public ceremony was to be enacted, the groom would go to the bride’s house and claim her for himself. He would take her to his home for the wedding supper, and all the guests would join the happy couple. This feast could last as long as a week. Today, the church is “engaged” to Jesus Christ; and we love Him even though we have not seen Him (1 Peter 1:8). One day, He will return and take His bride to heaven (John 14:1–6; 1 Thes. 4:13–18). At the Judgment Seat of Christ, her works will be judged and all her spots and blemishes removed. This being completed, the church will be ready to return to earth with her Bridegroom at the close of the Tribulation to reign with Him in glory (Luke 13:29; Matt. 8:11). Some students believe that the entire Kingdom Age will be the “marriage supper.” Revelation 19:9 contains the fourth of the seven “beatitudes” found in the book (Rev. 1:3). Certainly the bride is not invited to her own wedding! This invitation goes out to the guests, believers from the Old Testament era and the Tribulation. During the eternal state, no distinctions will be made among the people of God; but in the Kingdom Age, differences will still exist as the church reigns with Christ and as Israel enjoys the promised messianic blessings. John was so overwhelmed by all of this that he fell down to worship the angel who was guiding him, an act that he later repeats! (Rev. 22:8–9) Of course, worshiping angels is wrong (Col. 2:18) and John knew this. We must take into account the tremendous emotional content of John’s experience. Like John himself, this angel was only a servant of God (Heb. 1:14); and we do not worship servants (see Acts 10:25–26). Christ Will Return (Rev. 19:11–20:3) First, John described the Conqueror (Rev. 19:11–16) and then His conquests (Rev. 19:17–20:3). The rider on the white horse (Rev. 6:2) is the false Christ, but this Rider is the true Christ. He is not coming in the air to take His people home (1 Thes. 4:13–18), but to the earth with His people, to conquer His enemies and establish His kingdom. Note the emphasis on Jesus’ names (Rev. 19:11–13, 16). He is “Faithful and True” (Rev. 3:14), in contrast to “the beast” who was unfaithful (he broke the covenant with Israel) and false (he ruled by means of deception and idolatry). Suffering saints need to be reminded that God is faithful and will not desert them, because His promises are true. Perhaps the “secret name” (Rev. 19:12) is the same as the “new name” (Rev. 3:12). Not knowing what this name is, we cannot comment on it; but it is exciting to know that, even in heaven, we shall learn new things about our Lord Jesus! “The Word of God” is one of the familiar names of our Lord in Scripture (John 1:1–14). Just as we reveal our minds and hearts to others by our words, so the Father reveals Himself to us through His Son, the incarnate Word (Rev. 14:7–11). A word is made up of letters, and Jesus Christ is “Alpha and Omega” (Rev. 21:6; 22:13). He is the “divine alphabet” of God’s revelation to us. The Word of God is “living and powerful” (Heb. 4:12); what’s more, it fulfills His purposes on earth (Rev. 17:17; Rev. 6:11; 10:7; 15:1). Jehovah Himself says, “I am watching to see that My Word is fulfilled” (Jer. 1:12). Just as the Word was the Father’s Agent in Creation (John 1:1–3), so the Word is His Agent for judgment and consummation. Christ’s most important name is “King of kings, and Lord of lords” (Rev. 19:16). This is His victorious name (Rev. 17:14), and it brings to mind references such as Daniel 2:47 and Deuteronomy 10:17. Paul used this same title for our Lord Jesus Christ in 1 Timothy 6:15. The title speaks of Christ’s sovereignty, for all kings and lords must submit to Him. No matter who was on the throne of the Roman Empire, Jesus Christ was his King and Lord! The greatness of Christ is seen not only in His names, but also in John’s description of the conquering King (Rev. 19:12–16). The eyes “as a flame of fire” symbolize His searching judgment that sees all (Rev. 1:14). The many crowns (diadems) indicate His magnificent rule and sovereignty. The vesture dipped in blood speaks of judgment and probably relates to Isaiah 63:1–6 and Revelation 14:20, the conquest of His enemies. It is not our Lord’s blood that marks His vesture, but that of His foes. The sharp sword is a symbol of God’s Word (Rev. 19:21; Eph. 6:17; Heb. 4:12; Rev. 1:16). This is in keeping with the fact that Christ will consume the enemy “with the spirit of His mouth” (2 Thes. 2:8; Isa. 11:4). We have met with the “rod of iron” before (Rev. 2:27; 12:5), a symbol of His justice as He rules over the earth. The image of the winepress must be associated with the judgment at Armageddon (Rev. 14:14–20; Isa. 63:1–6). Jesus is not alone in His conquest, for the armies of heaven ride with Him. Who are they? Certainly the angels are a part of this army (Matt. 25:31; 2 Thes. 1:7); but so are the saints (1 Thes. 3:13; 2 Thes. 1:10). Jude describes the same scene (Jude 14–15). The word saints means “holy ones” and could refer to believers or angels. It will be unnecessary for the army to fight, for Christ Himself will defeat the enemy through three great victories. He will defeat the armies of the kings of the earth (vv. 17–19, 21). These warriors have assembled to fight “against the Lord and against His anointed” (Ps. 2:1–3), but their weapons prove futile. The battle turns out to be a slaughter—a “supper” for the scavenger birds! The first half of Revelation 19 describes the marriage supper of the Lamb; the last half describes the “supper of the great God” (Matt. 24:28; Luke 17:37). The word flesh occurs six times in this paragraph. While John’s immediate reference is to the human body, eaten by the vultures, there is certainly a deeper meaning here: man fails because he is flesh and relies on flesh. The Bible has nothing good to say about fallen human nature. Recall the Lord’s words before the Flood: “My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh” (Gen. 6:3). (John 3:6; 6:63; Rom. 7:18; Phil. 3:3.) “All flesh is as grass” (1 Peter 1:24) and must be judged. This is the account of the well-known “battle of Armageddon,” which was anticipated earlier (Rev. 14:14–20; 16:13–16). All that our Lord has to do is speak the Word, and “the sword of His mouth” will devour His enemies. He will defeat “the beast” and false prophet (v. 20). Since Satan’s “henchmen” are the leaders of the revolt, it is only right that they be captured and confined. They are cast into the lake of fire (Rev. 20:10, 14–15), the final and permanent place of punishment for all who refuse to submit to Jesus Christ. “The beast” and false prophet are the first persons to be cast into hell. Satan will follow 1,000 years later (Rev. 20:10), to be joined by those whose names are not recorded in the Book of Life (Rev. 20:15). Today, when an unbeliever dies, his spirit goes to a place called hades, which means “the unseen world”—that is, the realm of the dead. When believers die, they go immediately into the presence of the Lord (2 Cor. 5:6–8; Phil. 1:19–23). Hades will one day be emptied of its dead (Rev. 20:13), who will then be cast into hell to join Satan, the beast, and the false prophet. Satan will be defeated (20:1–3). The “bottomless pit” spoken of in Revelation 20:1 is not the same as hell; it is the “abyss” that we have met before in our studies (Rev. 9:1–2, 11; 11:7; 17:8). Satan is not cast into hell immediately, because God still has one more task for him to perform. Rather, Satan is confined in the bottomless pit for 1,000 years. First, Satan was cast out of heaven (Rev. 12:9), and now he is cast out of earth! Some Bible students feel that the “chaining” of Satan took place when Jesus died on the cross and arose from the dead to ascend to heaven. While it is true that Jesus won His decisive victory over Satan at the cross, the sentence against the devil has not yet been effected. He is a defeated foe, but he is still free to attack God’s people and oppose God’s work (1 Peter 5:8). If Satan is bound today, it must be with a terribly long chain! Paul was sure that Satan was loose (Eph. 6:10ff), and John agreed with him (Rev. 2:13; 3:9). Having taken care of His enemies, the Lord is now free to establish His righteous kingdom on the earth. Saints Will Reign (Rev. 20:4–6) The phrase “thousand years” occurs six times in Revelation 20:1–7. This period in history is known as “the Millennium,” from two Latin words, mille(“thousand”) and annum (“year”)—the 1,000-year kingdom of Christ on earth. At last, Christ and His church will reign over the nations of the earth, and Israel will enjoy the blessings promised by the prophets (Isa. 2:1–5; 4:1–6; 11:1–9; 12:1–6; 30:18–26; 35:1–10). Is this a literal kingdom on earth, or should these verses be “spiritualized” and applied to the church today? Some interpreters say that the term “a thousand years” is simply a number meaning “ultimate perfection” (10 x 10 x 10 = 1,000). They assert that it is a symbol of Christ’s victory and the church’s wonderful blessings now that Satan has been defeated and bound. This view is known as amillennialism, which means “no millennium”—that is, no literal kingdom. The problem with this view is that it does not explain why John introduced the period with a resurrection of the dead. He was certainly not writing about a “spiritual” resurrection, because he even told how these people died! And in Revelation 20:5, John wrote of another literal resurrection. If we are now in the 1,000-year kingdom of victory, when did this resurrection take place? It seems reasonable to assume that John wrote about a literal physical resurrection of the dead, and a literal kingdom on earth. What is the purpose of the millennial kingdom? For one thing, it will be the fulfillment of God’s promises to Israel and to Christ (Ps. 2; Luke 1:30–33). Our Lord reaffirmed them to His own Apostles (Luke 22:29–30 And I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, 30 so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.). This kingdom will be a worldwide display of Christ’s glory, when all nature will be set free from the bondage of sin (Rom. 8:19–22). It will be the answer to the prayers of the saints, “Thy kingdom come!” It will also be God’s final demonstration of the sinfulness of sin and the wickedness of the human heart apart from God’s grace, but more on this later. The Tribulation martyrs will be raised from the dead and given glorious thrones and rewards. The church will share in this reign, as symbolized by the twenty-four elders (Rev. 5:10; 2:26–28; 3:12, 21; 1 Thes. 4:13–18; 2 Tim. 2:12). Some Bible students believe that the OT saints will also be a part of this “first resurrection” (Dan. 12:1–4). The phrase “general resurrection” is not found in the Bible. On the contrary, the Bible teaches two resurrections: the first is of the saved and leads to blessing; the second is of all the lost and leads to judgment (John 5:28–29; Dan. 12:2). These two resurrections will be separated by 1,000 years. Revelation 20:6 describes the special blessings of those who share in the first resurrection. They did not earn these blessings; they are part of the believer’s inheritance in Jesus Christ. This is the sixth of the seven “beatitudes” in Revelation; the final one is in Revelation 22:7. These resurrected believers will share Christ’s glorious life, reigning as kings and priests with Him, and never experience the “second death,” the lake of fire (hell, Rev. 20:14). During the Millennium, the inhabitants of the earth will include not only glorified saints, but also citizens of the nations who bow in submission to Jesus Christ (Matt. 25:31–40; 8:11). Because of the earth’s perfect conditions, people will live long lives (Isa. 65:17–25, v. 20). They will marry and have children who will outwardly conform to our Lord’s righteous rule. But not all of them will be truly born again as the Millennium progresses; and this explains why Satan will be able to gather a great army of rebels at the close of the Kingdom Age (Rev. 20:8). For many centuries, man has dreamed of a “golden age,” a “utopia” in which the human race will be free from war, sickness, and even death. Men have tried to achieve this goal on their own and have failed. It is only when Jesus Christ reigns on David’s throne that the kingdom will come and the earth be delivered from the oppression of Satan and sin. Satan Will Revolt (Rev. 20:7–10) At the close of the Millennium, Satan will be released from the pit and permitted to lead one last revolt against the Lord. Why? As final proof that the heart of man is desperately wicked and can be changed only by God’s grace. Imagine the tragedy of this revolt: people who have been living in a perfect environment, under the perfect government of God’s Son, will finally admit the truth and rebel against the King! Their obedience will be seen as mere feigned submission, and not true faith in Christ at all. The naming of “Gog and Magog” (Rev. 20:8) does not equate this battle with the one described in Ezekiel 38–39; for that army invades from the north, while this one comes from the four corners of the earth. These two events are related, however, inasmuch as in both battles, Israel is the focal point. In this case, Jerusalem will be the target (“beloved city,” Pss. 78:68; 87:2). God will deal with this revolt very quickly and efficiently, and Satan will be cast into hell. Note that “the beast” and false prophet will still be suffering in the lake of fire after 1,000 years! (Matt. 25:41) In one sense, the millennial kingdom will “sum up” all that God has said about the heart of man during the various periods of history. It will be a reign of law, and yet law will not change man’s sinful heart. Man will still revolt against God. The Millennium will be a period of peace and perfect environment, a time when disobedience will be judged swiftly and with justice; and yet in the end the subjects of the King will follow Satan and rebel against the Lord. A perfect environment cannot produce a perfect heart. God is now about to “wrap up” human history. One great event remains. Sinners Are Recompensed (Rev. 20:11–15) There shall be a second resurrection, and the unsaved will be raised and will stand before God’s judgment. Do not confuse this judgment at the White Throne with the Judgment Seat of Christ, where believers will have their works judged and rewarded. At this judgment, there will be only unbelievers; and there will be no rewards. John described here an awesome scene. Heaven and earth will flee away and no place will be left for sinners to hide! All must face the Judge! The Judge is Jesus Christ, for the Father has committed all judgment to Him (Matt. 19:28; John 5:22–30; Acts 17:31). These lost sinners rejected Christ in life; now they must be judged by Him and face eternal death. From where do these “dead” come? Death will give up the bodies, and hades (the realm of the spirits of the dead) will give up the spirits. There will even be a resurrection of bodies from the sea. No sinner will escape. Jesus Christ will judge these unsaved people on the basis of what is written “in the books.” What books? For one thing, God’s Word will be there. “The Word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:48). Every sinner will be held accountable for the truth he or she has heard in this life. There will also be a book containing the works of the sinners being judged, though this does not suggest that a person can do good works sufficient to enter heaven (Eph. 2:8–9; Titus 3:5). Why, then, will Jesus Christ consider the works, good and bad, of the people before the White Throne? To determine the degree of punishment they will endure in hell. All of these people will be cast into hell. Their personal rejection of Jesus Christ has already determined their destiny. But Jesus Christ is a righteous Judge, and He will assign each sinner the place that he deserves. There are degrees of punishment in hell (Matt. 11:20–24). Each lost sinner will receive just what is due him, and none will be able to argue with the Lord or question His decision. God knows what sinners are doing, and His books will reveal the truth. “The Book of Life” will be there, containing the names of God’s redeemed people (Phil. 4:3; Rev. 21:27; 13:8; 17:8). No unsaved person will have his or her name in the Lamb’s Book of Life; only true believers are recorded there (Luke 10:20). When the judgment is finished, all of the lost will be cast into hell, the lake of fire, the second death. Many people reject the biblical doctrine of hell as being “unchristian,” and yet Jesus clearly taught its reality (Matt. 18:8; 23:15, 33; 25:46; Mark 9:46). A sentimental kind of humanistic religion will not face the reality of judgment, but teaches a God who loves everyone into heaven and sends no one to hell. Hell is a witness to the righteous character of God. He must judge sin. Hell is also a witness to man’s responsibility, the fact that he is not a robot or a helpless victim, but a creature able to make choices. God does not “send people to hell”; they send themselves by rejecting the Saviour (Matt. 25:41; John 3:16–21). Hell is also a witness to the awfulness of sin. If we once saw sin as God sees it, we would understand why a place such as hell exists. In light of Calvary, no lost sinner can condemn God for casting him into hell. God has provided a way of escape, patiently waiting for sinners to repent. He will not lower His standards or alter His requirements. He has ordained that faith in His Son is the only way of salvation. The White Throne Judgment will be nothing like our modern court cases. At the White Throne, there will be a Judge but no jury, a prosecution but no defense, a sentence but no appeal. No one will be able to defend himself or accuse God of unrighteousness. What an awesome scene it will be! Before God can usher in His new heavens and earth, He must finally deal with sin; and this He will do at the Great White Throne. You can escape this terrible judgment by trusting Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour. By so doing, you never will be a part of the second resurrection or experience the terrors of the second death, the lake of fire. “He that heareth My Word,” said Jesus, “and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation [judgment], but is passed from death unto life” (John 5:24).
Have you trusted Him and passed from death unto life?
BKC - The song of hallelujah in heaven (19:1-10). the hallelujah of the multitudes in heaven (19:1-3). Revelation 4-18 dealt primarily with the events of the Great Tribulation. Beginning in chapter 19 there is a noticeable change. The Great Tribulation is now coming to its end and the spotlight focuses on heaven and the second coming of Christ. For the saints and angels it is a time of rejoicing and victory. 19:1. Beginning in chapter 19 a chronological development is indicated by the phrase after this (meta tauta). Literally this phrase means “after these things,” and refers to the events of chapter 18. Accordingly John heard what sounded like the roar of many people in heaven praising God, obviously because of the judgment on Babylon. Interpreters have shown much confusion in understanding the order of the events in chapters 19-20; thus it is important to note that this praise in 19:1 follows Babylon’s destruction in chapter 18. The word “roar” (phōnēn) is literally a “sound,” modified by the adjective “great” (megalēn). This loud noise is from a great multitude, the same phrase used in 7:9 where the “great multitude” refers to the martyred dead of the Great Tribulation. For them in particular the judgment of Babylon is a great triumph. The Greek word for Hallelujah is hallēlouia, sometimes translated “alleluiah.” The word “hallelujah” is derived from the similar Hebrew word in the Old Testament. It occurs in the New Testament only four times, all of them in Revelation 19 (vv. 1, 3-4, 6). This is the biblical “Hallelujah Chorus.” 19:2-3. In expressing their praise of God, God’s glory and power resulting from and caused by His salvation are mentioned along with the fact that His judgments are true and just. The destruction of the great prostitute (17:1, 4) is a proper act of vengeance for her martyring the servants of God (17:6). The judgment that is wrought on her, however, is only the beginning of the eternal punishment of the wicked, indicated in the statement that the smoke from her goes up forever and ever. the hallelujah of the 24 elders (19:4-5). 19:4-5. The 24 elders and the 4 living creatures also sing a hallelujah chorus. This is another reminder that the 24 elders, representing the church of the present Age, are distinguished from the Tribulation saints, described in verse 1 as “a great multitude.” The 4 living creatures, previously introduced in 4:6-8, seem to refer to angels who praise God. Still another voice of praise, apparently coming from an angel, also praised God and exhorted all you His servants (19:5) to join in this praise. the prophetic proclamation of the wedding of the lamb (19:6-9). 19:6-8. The fourth and final hallelujah of this chapter, according to John, sounded like a multitude of people, rushing waters, and loud thunder. Here the rejoicing is prophetic for what is about to happen rather than for the judgment just executed.
The second coming of Christ is anticipated in the words, for our Lord God Almighty reigns. John used the word “Almighty” (pantokratōr; also in 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7, 14; 19:15; 21:22). Along with the exhortation to rejoice, announcement is made that the wedding of the Lamb has come, and His bride has made herself ready. In Scripture, marriage is often used to describe the relationship of saints to God. In the Old Testament Israel is pictured, as in Hosea, as the unfaithful wife of Yahweh who is destined to be restored in the future kingdom. In the New Testament, marriage is also used to describe the relationship between Christ and the church, but the illustration contrasts with the Old Testament, for the church is regarded as a virgin bride waiting the coming of her heavenly bridegroom (2 Cor. 11:2 I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him). The fine linen with which the bride will be adorned is explained as representing the righteous acts of the saints (Rev. 19:8). (In the OT the high priest’s clothing included linen: Ex. 28:42; Lev. 6:10; 16:4, 23, 32.) While some think this refers to the fact that the saints are justified by faith, the plural expression “the righteous acts” seems to refer to the righteous deeds wrought by the saints through the grace of God. Though all this has been made possible by the grace of God, the emphasis here seems to be on the works of the bride rather than on her standing as one who has been justified by faith. This is the last of 14 outbursts of praise to God in the Book of Revelation by saints, angels, the 24 elders, and/or the 4 living creatures. The hymns or shouts of praise are in 4:8, 11; 5:9-10, 12-13; 7:10, 12; 11:16-18; 15:3-4; 16:5-7; 19:1-4, 6-8 (see the chart near 4:8). 19:9. The angel who commanded John to write (14:13) commanded him again to record the message, Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb! One of the false interpretations that has plagued the church is the concept that God treats all saints exactly alike. Instead, a literal interpretation of the Bible distinguishes different groups of saints, and here the bride is distinguished from those who are invited to the wedding supper. Instead of treating all alike, God indeed has a program for Israel as a nation and also for those in Israel who are saved. He also has a program for Gentiles in the Old Testament who come to faith in God. And in the New Testament He has a program for the church as still a different group of saints. Again in the Book of Revelation the Tribulation saints are distinguished from other previous groups. It is not so much a question of difference in blessings as it is that God has a program designed for each group of saints which corresponds to their particular relationship to His overall program. Here the church, described as a bride, will be attended by angels and by saints who are distinct from the bride. Expositors have debated whether the wedding will be in heaven or on earth. While the difference is not that important, the interpretive problem can be resolved by comparing the wedding described here to weddings in the first century.
A wedding normally included these stages:
(1) the legal consummation of the marriage by the parents of the bride and of the groom, with the payment of the dowry;
(2) the bridegroom coming to claim his bride (Matt. 25:1-13 Parable of 10 Virgins);
(3) the wedding supper (John 2:1-11) which was a several-day feast following the previous phase of the wedding.
In Revelation 19:9 “the wedding supper” is phase 3. And the announcement coincides with the second coming of Christ. It would seem, therefore, that the wedding supper has not yet been observed. In fulfilling the symbol, Christ is completing phase 1 in the Church Age as individuals are saved. Phase 2 will be accomplished at the Rapture of the church, when Christ takes His bride to heaven, the Father’s house (John 14:1-3). Accordingly it would seem that the beginning of the Millennium itself will fulfill the symbolism of the wedding supper (gamos). It is also significant that the use of the word “bride” in 19:7 (gynē, lit., “wife, ”) implies that phase 2 of the wedding will have been completed and that all that remains is the feast itself. (The word commonly used for “bride” is nymphē; John 3:29; Rev. 18:23; 21:2, 9; 22:17.) All this suggests that the wedding feast is an earthly feast, which also corresponds to the illustrations of weddings in the Bible (Matt. 22:1-14; 25:1-13), and thus will take place on earth at the beginning of the Millennium. The importance of the announcement and invitation to the wedding supper, repeated in Revelation 22:17, is seen in the angel’s remarks, These are the true words of God. the command to worship god (19:10). 19:10. So impressive was the scene in heaven with the four great hallelujahs and the announcement of the coming wedding feast that John once again fell down to worship the angel, as he had done before (1:17). Then, however, he was worshiping Christ, which was proper. But here the angel rebuked him, urging him to worship only God and not him since he was a fellow servant with John. The angel added, For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy, that is, the very nature or purpose of prophecy is to testify of Jesus Christ and to bring glory to Him. In the present Age one of the special functions of the Holy Spirit is to glorify Christ and to inform believers of “what is yet to come” (John 16:13). The tremendous revelation in the first 10 verses of Revelation 19 is a fitting introduction to what is about to be revealed, the second coming of Jesus Christ, the subject of the entire book (1:1).The second coming of Christ (19:11-21). As John saw heaven open, he saw prophetically Christ’s second coming and the events which will follow it. The second coming of Christ is a prominent doctrine in Scripture (Pss. 2:1-9; 24:7-10; 96:10-13; 110; Isa. 9:6-7; Jer. 23:1-8; Ezek. 37:15-28; Dan. 2:44-45; 7:13-14; Hosea 3:4-5; Amos 9:11-15; Micah 4:7; Zech. 2:10-12; 12; 14:1-9; Matt. 19:28; 24:27-31; 25:6, 31-46; Mark 13:24-27; Luke 12:35-40; 17:24-37; 18:8; 21:25-28; Acts 1:10-11; 15:16-18; Rom. 11:25-27; 2 Thes. 2:8; 2 Peter 3:3-4; Jude 14-15; Rev. 1:7-8; 2:25-28; 16:15; 22:20). So this is obviously a major event in the divine program. Conservative interpreters of the Bible almost universally recognize this as a yet-future event, as indicated in orthodox creeds throughout the history of the church. Just as the first coming of Christ was literal and was fulfilled in history, so the second coming of Christ which is yet future will be fulfilled in the same literal manner. Among conservative interpreters, however, the question has been raised whether the Rapture of the church, as revealed in such major passages as 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:51-58, is fulfilled at the time of the second coming of Christ to the earth or, as pretribulationists hold, is fulfilled as a separate event seven years before His formal second coming to the earth. It should be noted that none of the many details given in Revelation 19:11-21 corresponds to the Rapture of the church. In Revelation Christ returns, but in none of the Rapture passages is He ever pictured as touching the earth, for the saints meet Him in the air (1 Thes. 4:17). Most significant is the fact that in Revelation 19-20 there is complete silence concerning any translation of living saints. In fact the implication of the passage is that saints who are on earth when Christ returns will remain on earth to enter the millennial kingdom in their natural bodies. If the Rapture were included in the second coming of Christ to the earth, one would expect to find reference to such a major event in Revelation 19. But no such reference is to be found. For these and many other reasons chapter 19 is a confirmation of the teaching that the Rapture of the church is a separate earlier event and that there is no translation of the living at the time of His second coming to the earth. the revelation of the rider on the white horse (19:11-13). 19:11-13. As John gazed into heaven, he saw Christ on a white horse. Though some have identified this rider with the rider in 6:2, the context is entirely different. In 6:2 the rider is the world ruler of the Great Tribulation, while here the rider is a ruler who obviously comes from heaven itself. The white horse is a sign of His coming triumph. It was customary for a triumphant Roman general to parade on the Via Sacra, a main thoroughfare of Rome, followed by evidences of His victory in the form of booty and captives (2 Cor. 2:14). The white horse is thus a symbol of Christ’s triumph over the forces of wickedness in the world, the details of which follow. The horse’s rider is called Faithful and True for, as John declared, With justice He judges and makes war. His piercing judgment of sin is indicated in the words, His eyes are like blazing fire (Rev. 1:14), and His right to rule is evidenced by the many crowns He is wearing. Written on Him is a name that no one but He Himself knows, suggesting that Christ is the ineffable, indescribable One. But actual titles are given for Him. Revelation 19:13 says, His name is the Word of God (John 1:1, 14; 1 John 1:1), and Revelation 19:16 states that the name of His robe and on His thigh is king of kings and lord of lords (cf. 1 Tim. 6:15; Rev. 17:14). The rider obviously is Jesus Christ, returning to the earth in glory. That He is coming as Judge is further supported by the fact that He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood (19:13; Isa. 63:2-3; Rev. 14:20). the coming of the king and his armies of heaven (19:14-16). 19:14-16. The drama of the scene is further enhanced by the multitude of the armies of heaven described as riding on white horses and dressed in fine linen, white and clean (v. 8). In Christ’s mouth was a sharp sword (1:16; 2:12, 16; 19:21) which He would use to strike down the nations. The word for “sword” (rhomphaia) was used of an unusually long sword and sometimes used as a spear, thus indicating a piercing action. In addition to using the sword for striking down, He will use an iron scepter for ruling (Ps. 2:9; Rev. 2:27). Christ is also described as the One who treads the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God Almighty (14:19-20; cf. “Almighty” in 1:8; 4:8; 11:17; 15:3; 16:7, 14; 19:6; 21:22). This scene is a dramatic indication of the awfulness of the impending judgment. Matthew 24:30 "At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory.
indicates that those on earth will be witnesses of this impressive scene. The scene on earth is the final stage of the great world war that will be under way for many weeks. With armies battling up and down the Holy Land for victory, on the very day of the return of Christ there will be house-to-house fighting in Jerusalem itself (Zech. 14:2). Combatants will have been lured to the battle site by demons sent by Satan to assemble the armies of the world to fight the armies of heaven (Rev. 16:12-16). the destruction of the wicked (19:17-21). 19:17-18. The armies of earth are no match for the armies from heaven. The sharp sword in Christ’s mouth (v. 15) is symbolic of His authoritative word of command that destroys earth’s armies by divine power. Millions of men and their horses will be destroyed instantly. In keeping with this, John recorded that he saw an angel standing in the sun, who cried in a loud voice to all flying birds to gather together for the great supper of God to eat the carcasses of kings, generals, horsemen, and all people slain by Christ.19:19-21. The beast and his armies will gather to fight against Christ and His army. The outcome of this battle— referred to in 16:14 as “the battle on the great day of God Almighty”—is summarized in 19:19-21. The world rulers—the beast and the false prophet—will both be captured. Their former miraculous demonic power will no longer be sufficient to save them. Both of them will be thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. The wicked who have died throughout the history of the world up to this point are in hades (Luke 16:23). The fiery lake, a different place, was prepared for the devil and his angels (Matt. 25:41), and will not be occupied by human beings until later (Rev. 20:14-15). The armies themselves will be killed by Christ’s sword (19:21; cf. 1:16; 2:12, 16; 19:15). The number of dead will be so great that the vultures will have more than they can eat. The defeat of the earth’s wicked will then be complete, and will be finalized as later judgments search out the unsaved in other parts of the earth and also kill them (Matt. 25:31-45). The same inspired Word of God which so wonderfully describes the grace of God and the salvation which is available to all who believe is equally plain about the judgment of all who reject the grace of God. The tendency of liberal interpreters of the Bible to emphasize passages dealing with the love of God and to ignore passages dealing with His righteous judgment is completely unjustified. The passages on judgment are just as inspired and accurate as those which develop the doctrines of grace and salvation. The Bible is clear that judgment awaits the wicked, and the second coming of Christ is the occasion for a worldwide judgment unparalleled in Scripture since the time of Noah’s flood.
BKC - The millennial reign of Christ (20:1-10). This chapter presents the fact that Christ will reign on earth for a thousand years. If this chapter is taken literally, it is relatively simple to understand what is meant. However, because many Bible interpreters have rejected the idea that there will be a reign of Christ on earth for a thousand years after His second coming, this chapter has been given an unusually large number of diverse interpretations, all designed to eliminate a literal millennial reign. In general there are three viewpoints, each with a number of variations.The most recent view is what is known as postmillennialism. According to this view the thousand years represent the triumph of the gospel in the period leading up to the second coming of Christ. The return of Christ will follow the Millennium. Usually traced to Daniel Whitby, a controversial writer of the 17th century, this view has been advanced by other prominent scholars in the history of the church including Charles Hodge, A.H. Strong, David Brown, and more recently, Loraine Boettner. Basically it is an optimistic view that Christ will reign spiritually on earth through the work of the church and the preaching of the gospel. This view has largely been discarded in the 20th century, because many anti-Christian movements have prospered and the world has not progressed spiritually. A second major view is amillennialism, which denies that there is any literal Millennium or reign of Christ on earth. The millennial reign of Christ is reduced to a spiritual reign in the hearts of believers. This reign is either over those on earth who put their trust in Him or over those in heaven. Both the amillennial and postmillennial views must interpret Revelation 20 in a nonliteral sense. Often there is wide difference among amillenarians in their interpretations of various passages in the Book of Revelation. Amillennialism historically had its first important advocate in Augustine who lived in the 4th and 5th centuries. Before Augustine, it is difficult to find one orthodox amillenarian. Modern advocates include such respected 20th-century theologians as Oswald Allis, Louis Berkhof, William Hendriksen, Abraham Kuyper, R.C.H. Lenski, and Gerhardus Vos. A third form of interpretation is premillennialism, so named because it interprets Revelation 20 as referring to a literal thousand-year reign of Christ following His second coming. As the Second Coming occurs before the Millennium, it is therefore premillennial. Twentieth-century advocates of this position include Lewis Sperry Chafer, Charles L. Feinberg, A.C. Gaebelein, H.A. Ironside, Alva McClain, William Pettingill, Charles C. Ryrie, C.I. Scofield, Wilbur Smith, and Merrill F. Unger. Other premillenarians can be found from the first century on, including Papias, Justin Martyr, and many other early church fathers. Arguments for this position are based on the natural sequence of events in chapter 20 following chapter 19, viewing them as sequential and as stemming from the second coming of Christ. Many passages speak of the second coming of Christ being followed by a reign of righteousness on earth (Pss. 2; 24; 72; 96; Isa. 2; 9:6-7; 11-12; 63:1-6; 65-66; Jer. 23:5-6; 30:8-11; Dan. 2:44; 7:13-14; Hosea 3:4-5; Amos 9:11-15; Micah 4:1-8; Zeph. 3:14-20; Zech. 8:1-8; 14:1-9; Matt. 19:28; 25:31-46; Acts 15:16-18; Rom. 11:25-27; Jude 14-15; Rev. 2:25-28; 19:11-20:6). It should be evident that one’s interpretation of Revelation 20 is an important decision that serves as a watershed for various approaches to prophetic Scripture. The approach taken in this commentary is that the events in chapter 20 follow chronologically the events in chapter 19. Many also believe that chapters 21-22 follow in chronological order. the binding of satan (20:1-3). 20:1-3. Chapter 20 begins with the familiar phrase, And I saw an angel (7:2; 8:2; 10:1; 14:6; 18:1; 19:17). The “and” with which this chapter begins suggests that it continues the sequence of events begun in 19:1, which is introduced with the words “after this.” In chapter 19 the Greek has “and” at the beginnings of 15 verses (but it is omitted in the niv in vv. 4, 8, 10-11, 13-16, and 21 and is trans. “then” in vv. 5-6, 9, and 19 and “but” in v. 20). The use of the word “and” (kai) often indicates action that follows in logical and/or chronological sequence. Accordingly there is no reason why chapter 20 should not be considered as describing events which follow chapter 19. “And” (kai) continues throughout chapter 20, beginning each verse except verse 5. There is thus no linguistic or grammatical suggestion that these events are anything other than events following the second coming of Christ and occurring in sequence. In addition to the grammar which connects these incidents, there is also the causal connection of the events which follow naturally from the fact that Christ will have returned to the earth. In chapter 19 these events include casting the beast and the false prophet into the lake of burning sulfur and destroying their armies. Having disposed of the world ruler and the false prophet as well as the armies, it would be only natural that Christ should then turn to Satan himself, as He does in chapter 20. Accordingly John saw an angel descend from heaven holding the key to the Abyss and a great chain. The angel grabbed Satan, the dragon (12:3-4, 7, 9, 13, 16-17; 13:2, 4, 11; 16:13), that ancient serpent (12:9, 14-15), bound him, and threw him into the Abyss, and locked it, in order to prevent Satan’s work of deceiving the nations any more for a thousand years. An important interpretive question is whether Satan was bound at the first coming of Christ, as is commonly advanced by amillenarians, or will be bound at His second coming, as is held by premillenarians. Revelation 20:1-3 rather clearly contradicts the amillennial interpretation that Satan was bound at the first coming of Christ. Throughout the Scriptures Satan is said to exert great power not only against the world but also against Christians (Acts 5:3; 1 Cor. 5:5; 7:5; 2 Cor. 2:11; 11:14; 12:7; 1 Tim. 1:20). If there is still any question whether this is so, it should be settled by the exhortation of 1 Peter 5:8: “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” Amillenarians answer this by saying that Satan is limited by the power of God. But this has always been true, as illustrated in the Book of Job and elsewhere. To describe Satan’s present situation as being locked in the Abyss and unable to deceive the nations for a period of a thousand years is simply not factually true today, and it requires extreme spiritualization of the literalness of this passage as well as other New Testament references to Satan’s activities and present power. This same power of Satan is further revealed in the Great Tribulation when he empowers the world ruler (Rev. 13:4). Satan will have been cast out of heaven at the beginning of the Great Tribulation and will then be more active than ever (Rev. 12:9, 13, 15, 17). If Satan is actually deceiving the nations today, as the Scriptures and the facts of history indicate, then he is not now locked in the Abyss, and the thousand-year Millennium is still future. This interpretation is also supported by the final statement that after the thousand years, he must be set free for a short time (20:3). Here expositors again are at a loss to explain this except in a literal way, making possible a final satanic rebellion at the end of the millennial kingdom. the resurrection and reward of the martyrs (20:4-6). 20:4. Next in the series of revelations John recorded that he saw thrones on which were seated those who had been given authority to judge. In addition he saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their standing true to the Lord and His Word in the Great Tribulation. The fact that John could see them implies that they had received intermediate bodies in heaven and were awaiting their resurrections. A distinction should be made between what John saw and what he received as revelation. Though he could see the souls, he was informed that they had been beheaded because they had refused to worship the beast or his image and would not receive his mark. What John saw was not all the souls in heaven but a particular generation of martyred dead who had been contemporaneous with the world ruler, the beast out of the sea (13:1). If the church were raptured prior to this event, as premillenarians teach, it would make sense to single out these martyred dead for resurrection. But if the church were not raptured, it would be most unusual to ignore all the martyrs of preceding generations, the church as a whole, and to specify this relatively small group. John apparently was not told the identity of the individuals seated on the thrones. They evidently do not include the martyred dead themselves. Christ had predicted (Luke 22:29-30) that the 12 disciples would “eat and drink at My table in My kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the 12 tribes of Israel.” As the disciples are also a part of the church, the body of Christ, it would be natural for them to sit on these thrones.
According to the Scriptures a series of judgments is related to Christ’s return.
The beast and the false prophet will be cast into the fiery lake (Rev. 19:20),
Satan will be cast into the Abyss (20:1-3), and then
the martyred dead of the Great Tribulation will be judged and rewarded (v. 4).
In addition, Israel will be judged (Ezek. 20:33-38), and
the Gentiles will be judged (Matt. 25:31-46).
These judgments precede and lead up to the millennial kingdom. John stated that these martyred dead came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years. Their coming to life suggests that they will be given resurrected bodies. In addition to receiving the visual revelation, John was informed as to the meaning and character of the judgment that was here taking place.20:5. John was also informed that the rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This refers to the resurrection of the wicked dead, discussed later (vv. 11-15). John stated that what he was seeing is the first resurrection. Posttribulationists refer to this as proof that the church will not be raptured before the Tribulation and that no resurrection has taken place prior to this point in fulfillment of God’s prophetic program. It should be obvious, however, that in no sense could this be the number-one resurrection chronologically because historically Christ was the first to rise from the dead with a transformed, resurrected body. There was also the resurrection “of many” (Matt. 27:52-53) which took place when Christ died. In what sense then can this resurrection in Revelation 20:5 be “first”? As the context which follows indicates, “the first resurrection” (vv. 5-6) contrasts with the last resurrection (vv. 12-13), which is followed by “the second death” (vv. 6, 14). It is first in the sense of before. All the righteous, regardless of when they are raised, take part in the resurrection which is first or before the final resurrection (of the wicked dead) at the end of the Millennium.
This supports the conclusion that the resurrection of the righteous is by stages.
Christ was “the Firstfruits” (1 Cor. 15:23),
which was preceded by the token resurrection of a number of saints (Matt. 27:52-53).
Then will occur the Rapture of the church, which will include the resurrection of dead church saints and the translation of living church saints (1 Thes. 4:13-18).
The resurrection of the two witnesses will occur in the Great Tribulation (Rev. 11:3, 11).
Then the resurrection of the martyred dead of the Great Tribulation will occur soon after Christ returns to earth (20:4-5). To these may be added the resurrection of Old Testament saints which apparently will also occur at this time, though it is not mentioned in this text (Isa. 26:19-21; Ezek. 37:12-14; Dan. 12:2-3). 20:6. All those who share in the resurrection of the righteous are said to be blessed and holy, and the second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years. While all the righteous will be raised before the Millennium, individuals will retain their identities and their group identifications such as Gentile believers and believers in Israel in the Old Testament, the church of the New Testament, and saints of the Tribulation. It should be noted that the term “a thousand years” occurs six times in chapter 20. This was not something that could be seen visually; John had to be informed of it and the vision had to be interpreted as relating to a period of a thousand years. While amillenarians and others have tended to view this as nonliteral, there is no evidence to support this conclusion. This is the only chapter in Revelation where a period of a thousand years is mentioned, and the fact that it is mentioned six times and is clearly described as a period of time before which and after which events take place lead to the conclusion that it means a literal thousand-year period.
Since other time designations in Revelation are literal (e.g., “42 months,” 11:2; 13:5; “1,260 days,” 11:3; 12:6) it is natural to take “a thousand years” literally also. If the term “a thousand years” designates a nonspecific but long period of time, the present Age between Christ’s two advents, as amillenarians hold, then one would expect John to say simply that Christ would reign “a long time,” in contrast to the “short time” of Satan’s release (20:3). Events which precede the thousand years are (a) the second coming of Christ, (b) the beast and the false prophet thrown into the fiery lake, (c) the armies destroyed, (d) Satan bound and locked in the Abyss, (e) thrones of judgment introduced, and (f) the martyred dead of the Tribulation resurrected. These events revealed in their proper sequence make it clear that the thousand-year period follows all these events, including the second coming of Christ. The conclusion that the Second Coming is premillennial is clearly supported by a normal, literal interpretation of this text. the final doom of satan (20:7-10). Apart from frequent mention of the thousand years, no details are given concerning the reign of Christ on earth except that it is a time of great blessing. Many Old Testament passages supply additional information about the Millennium. The main point of the revelation here is that the Millennium follows the Second Coming. 20:7-8. John was told what would happen at the conclusion of the thousand years. Satan will be released from the Abyss, his prison, and will make a final attempt to induce nations—called Gog and Magog—to come and battle with him against Christ. Satan’s release will produce a worldwide rebellion against the millennial reign of Christ. The armies will be so vast in numbers that they are said to be like the sand on the seashore. Who are these who will follow Satan? Those who survive the Tribulation will enter the Millennium in their natural bodies, and they will bear children and repopulate the earth (Isa. 65:18-25). Under ideal circumstances in which all know about Jesus Christ (Jer. 31:33-34), many will outwardly profess faith in Christ without actually placing faith in Him for salvation. The shallowness of their professions will become apparent when Satan is released. The multitudes who follow Satan are evidently those who have never been born again in the millennial kingdom. The question has been raised as to whether this war is the same one discussed in Ezekiel 38-39, where Gog and Magog are also mentioned (Ezek. 38:2). These are two different battles, for in the war of Ezekiel 38-39 the armies come primarily from the north and involve only a few nations of the earth. But the battle in Revelation 20:7-9 will involve all nations, so armies will come from all directions. Furthermore nothing in the context of Ezekiel 38-39 is similar to the battle in Revelation, as there is no mention of Satan or of millennial conditions. In Revelation 20:7 the context clearly places the battle at the end of the Millennium, whereas the Ezekiel battle takes place in connection with end-time events. Why then is the expression “Gog and Magog” used by John? The Scriptures do not explain the expression. In fact it can be dropped out of the sentence without changing the meaning. In Ezekiel 38 Gog was the ruler and Magog was the people, and both were in rebellion against God and were enemies of Israel. It may be that the terms have taken on a symbolic meaning much as one speaks of a person’s “Waterloo,” which historically refers to the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo, Belgium, but has come to represent any great disaster. Certainly the armies here come in the same spirit of antagonism against God that is found in Ezekiel 38. 20:9. The armies will surround the camp of God’s people, the city He loves. This could mean only Jerusalem, which will be the capital of the world government of Christ throughout the millennial kingdom (Isa. 2:1-5). The result is immediate judgment. Fire will come down from heaven and devour them. In contrast with Ezekiel 38, there is no mention of earthquake, hail, or other disasters. The only similarity is that in both cases there is fire from heaven, a frequent method of divine judgment on the earth (Gen. 19:24; Ex. 9:23-24; Lev. 9:24; 10:2; Num. 11:1; 16:35; 26:10; 1 Kings 18:38; 2 Kings 1:10, 12, 14; 1 Chron. 21:26; 2 Chron. 7:1, 3; Ps. 11:6;). 20:10. After Satan’s followers will be destroyed, he will be thrown into the lake of burning sulfur. Being cast into the lake that was prepared for him and his angels is the final judgment on Satan (Matt. 25:41). Most significant as a support of the doctrine of eternal punishment is the concluding statement, They will be tormented day and night forever and ever. The word “they” includes the devil, the beast, and the false prophet. The lake of burning sulfur is not annihilation, for the beast and false prophet are still there a thousand years after they experienced their final judgment (Rev. 19:20).The judgment of the great white throne (20:11-15). the resurrection and judgment of the wicked dead (20:11-13). 20:11. The final five verses of chapter 20 introduce the judgment at the end of human history and the beginning of the eternal state. John wrote, I saw a great white throne. The events here described clearly follow the thousand years of verses 1-6. The great white throne apparently differs from the throne mentioned more than 30 times in Revelation beginning with 4:2. It apparently is located neither in heaven nor earth but in space, as suggested by the statement, Earth and sky fled from His presence, and there was no place for them. It is not indicated who sits on this throne, but probably it is Christ Himself as in 3:21 (Matt. 19:28; 25:31; John 5:22; 2 Cor. 5:10—though the throne in these references is not necessarily the same throne as in Rev. 20:11). While Christ is now seated on the throne in heaven and will be seated on the Davidic throne on earth in the Millennium (Matt. 25:31), this white throne judgment is a special situation. The question has been raised as to whether the earth and the starry heavens as they are today will be destroyed at this point in the future or will be simply restored to a new state of purity. Many references in the Bible suggest that the earth and the heavens, as now known, will be destroyed (Matt. 24:35; Mark 13:31; Luke 16:17; 21:33; 2 Peter 3:10-13). This is confirmed by the opening statement of Revelation 21, “the first heaven and the first earth had passed away.”
The present universe was created like a gigantic clock which is running down, and if left to itself, would ultimately come to a state of complete inactivity. Inasmuch as God created the universe and set it in motion for the purpose of enacting the drama of sin and redemption, it would seem proper to begin anew with a new heaven and a new earth suitable for His eternal purpose and built on a different principle. The new heaven and new earth described in chapter 21 has no similarity to the present earth and heaven. 20:12. The purpose of establishing the great white throne is to judge the dead. John wrote that the dead, great and small, stood before the throne. From other Scriptures it seems that all the righteous dead have been raised, including Old Testament saints, the dead of the Great Tribulation, and the church saints, the body of Christ (v. 5). Thus it may be assumed that verses 11-15 refer to the judgment of the wicked dead, who according to verse 5 would not be resurrected until after the thousand years and will have no part in what is called “the first resurrection.” At that judgment John saw books . . . opened, including a book called the book of life. The text does not state clearly what these books are, but the first opened books may refer to human works and “the book of life” is the record of those who are saved (3:5; 13:8; 17:8; 20:15; 21:27). The fact that these dead have not been raised before is evidence in itself that they do not have eternal life and that their judgment is a judgment of their works. All final judgments deal with works, whether the works of Christians rewarded at the judgment seat of Christ or the works of the unsaved which are in view here. The question of who is saved is determined not in heaven but in life on earth. What is revealed here is the confirmation of one’s destiny by means of God’s written records. Some view the book of life as the record of all the living and that when the unsaved die their names are deleted from it. A better view is that the book is the record of those who are saved whose names were “written in the book of life from the creation of the world” (17:8). Regardless of which view is taken, at this time only the saved are in the book of life. 20:13. In order for the wicked dead to be judged . . . the sea . . . death, and hades will give up their dead.
Those who are unsaved at the time of death go immediately to a state of conscious punishment described in the OT as sheol and in the NT as hades. Neither sheol nor hades ever refer to the eternal state and should not be considered equivalent to the English word “hell,” which properly is the place of eternal punishment. The lake of fire (vv. 14-15) referred to as “the fiery lake of burning sulfur” (19:20) is the same as gehenna (Matt. 5:22, 29-30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15, 33; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; Luke 12:5; James 3:6) and is translated “hell” in the NIV and KJV with the word “fire” added in several passages. Actually gehenna was originally a name for the place of burning refuse, located in the Valley of Hinnom south of Jerusalem. The term, however, goes far beyond this geographic background and refers to eternal punishment.
The statement “death and hades gave up the dead” means that the physical bodies of the unsaved will be joined with their spirits which have been in hades. The mention of “the sea” giving up its dead makes it clear that regardless of how far a body has disintegrated, it will nevertheless be resurrected for this judgment. the lake of fire (20:14-15). 20:14-15. Following the great white throne judgment death and hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death, the final destination of the wicked. The doctrine of eternal punishment has always been a problem to Christians who enjoy the grace of God and salvation in Christ. The Bible is clear, however, that the punishment of the wicked is eternal. This is confirmed in verse 10, where the beast and the false prophet are still in the lake of fire after the thousand years of Christ’s millennial reign. Though the wicked dead will receive resurrection bodies, they will be quite unlike the resurrection bodies of the saints. The former people will continue to be sinful but will be indestructible and will exist forever in the lake of fire.Though many have attempted to find some scriptural way to avoid the doctrine of eternal punishment, as far as biblical revelation is concerned there are only two destinies for human souls; one is to be with the Lord and the other is to be forever separated from God in the lake of fire. This solemn fact is motivation for carrying the gospel to the ends of the earth whatever the cost, and doing everything possible to inform and challenge people to receive Christ before it is too late.The new heaven and the new earth (21:1-22:6). the new heaven and the new earth created (21:1). 21:1. The opening verses of chapter 21 describe the creation of the new heaven and the new earth, which chronologically follows the thousand-year reign of Christ described in chapter 20. Chapter 21 begins with the familiar words I saw, an expression repeated in verse 2 (cf. v. 22, “I did not see”). This new creation is described as a new heaven and a new earth. That it is a totally new heaven and a new earth, and not the present heaven and earth renovated, is supported by the additional statement, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away (20:11). An amazingly small amount of information is given about the new heaven and the new earth. But one major fact is stated in this verse: there was no longer any sea. In contrast with the present earth, which has most of its surface covered by water, no large body of water will be on the new earth. The Bible is silent, however, on any features of the first heaven except the statement in 21:23 that there will be no sun or moon and, by implication, no stars. The new heaven refers not to the abode of God, but to the earth’s atmosphere and planetary space. No landmarks whatever are given concerning the new earth, and nothing is known of its characteristics, vegetation, color, or form. The implication, however, is that it is round and is the residence of all who are saved. A few other references are found in Scripture in relation to the new earth, including Isaiah 65:17; 66:22; and 2 Peter 3:10-13. Because in some of these passages the Millennium is also discussed, expositors have often confused the eternal state with the Millennium. However, the principle is well established in Scripture that distant events are often telescoped together. Examples of this are Isaiah 61:1-2 (cf. Luke 4:17-19), which speaks of the first and second comings of Christ together, and Daniel 12:2, which mentions the resurrection of the righteous and of the wicked together even though, according to Revelation 20:5, they will be separated by a thousand years. Sometimes even the chronological order is reversed, as in Isaiah 65:17-25 (vv. 17-19 refer to the new heaven and new earth whereas vv. 20-25 clearly refer to the Millennium). End-time events are all also brought in close proximity in 2 Peter 3:10-13, where the beginning and the end of the day of the Lord are mentioned in the same passage. Though expositors have differed on this point, the principle that clear passages should be used to explain obscure passages supports the conclusion that the second coming of Christ is followed by a thousand-year reign on earth, and this in turn is followed by a new heaven and new earth, the dwelling place of the saints for eternity. With the absence of any geographic identification and the absence of a sea, the new earth will obviously be entirely different. By contrast, the sea is mentioned many times in relation to the Millennium (Ps. 72:8; Isa. 11:9, 11; Ezek. 47:8-20; 48:28; Zech. 9:10; 14:8). The evidence is conclusive that the new heaven and new earth are not to be confused with the Millennium.
Baker Comm - By speaking of “the fruit of the vine” Jesus undoubtedly refers to wine. Note close relation between “vine” and “wine” in Isa. 24:7. See Num. 6:4; Hab. 3:17. At this time of the year (April), and under conditions then prevailing in Judea, it is hard to think of anything but fermented grape juice, that is, wine, the kind of wine used at Passover; hence, diluted or paschal wine. By saying “until that day when I am (or: shall be) drinking it new with you in my Father’s kingdom” Jesus in all likelihood means “until in the kingdom—see 4:23; 13:43—of my Father—a favorite phrase with Jesus; —I shall enter into everlasting, festive fellowship with you.” Then both passover and eucharist will reach their fruition (Luke 22:16). See 19:28. We see, therefore, that communion not only points back to what Jesus Christ has done for us but also forward to what he is still going to mean for us. “Drinking new wine in my Father’s kingdom” in all probability must be interpreted as a symbol for the glorious reunion and never-ending festivities awaiting the children of God in the hereafter. Isa. 25:6; Rev. 19:19; Matt. 8:11.
COLLEGE - Jesus does anticipate a reversal to his suffering and death as indicated by his promise of a heightened renewal of table-fellowship after his death. Just as the Passover observance anticipated a renewal of God’s favor upon Israel (Isa 25:6–9; 53:13), so the Lords’ Supper looks forward to a joyous celebration in the consummated kingdom (8:10–12; 22:1–14). Jesus thus speaks with confidence of his ultimate victorious triumph.
LIFE APP - Again Jesus assured his disciples of his victory over his imminent death and of a future in his Father’s kingdom. The next few hours would bring apparent defeat, but soon they would experience the power of the Holy Spirit, and they would witness the great spread of the gospel message. Jesus’ vow to abstain from wine was made before the fourth cup, which traditionally was drunk after the recitation of these words: “I will take you as My people, and I will be your God” (see 26:20–22). Jesus reserved the drinking of this cup for the future restoration. This powerful scene is accented by Jesus’ taking the third cup, saying, “I will redeem you,” sharing it with the disciples, and then pledging that together they would finish this celebration in the kingdom of God (see Isaiah 25:6; Luke 14:15; Rev 3:20; 19:6–9). Because Jesus would be raised, so his followers will be raised. One day we will all be together again in God’s new kingdom. The fruit of the vine in the kingdom will be new like Jeremiah’s new covenant (Jeremiah 31:31–34). When Jesus celebrates with his people, all God’s promises will be fully realized.
MACARTHER - As noted above, the divinely-ordained Passover remembrance ended when Jesus celebrated it that night with His disciples. Any observance of it since that time has been based solely on human tradition, the perpetuation of an outward form that has long since lost its spiritual significance. But for those who belong to Jesus Christ, that event in the upper room began a new remembrance of redemption that the Lord will honor until He returns in glory.
Fruit of the vine was a common Jewish colloquialism for wine, which Jesus told the disciples He would not drink with them again until that day when He would drink it new with them in His Father’s kingdom. He had instructed them to remember Him in the eating of the unleavened bread, which represents His sacrificed body, and in the drinking of the cup, which represents His shed blood as a sacrifice for sin. “Do this,” He said, “as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me” (1 Cor. 11:25). That memorial was to continue until that day in His Father’s kingdom.
The Lord’s promise to drink with the disciples in that future kingdom was another assurance to them of His return, an assurance that would take on intensified meaning after His death, resurrection, and ascension. “When I return to establish My kingdom,” He promised them, “you will all be there and you will all drink the cup new with Me.” In other words, the Lord’s Supper not only is a reminder of our Lord’s sacrifice for our sins but also a reminder of His promise to return and share His kingdom blessings with us. From those words we learn that the end of this present age does not signal the end of this observance. The supper concluded with the singing of a hymn, probably Psalm 118, the last psalm of the Hallel. Then they went out to the Mount of Olives, where Jesus would pray fervently to His Father, be betrayed by Judas, and be arrested by the officers of the chief priests and elders.
NELSON - 26:29 This verse anticipates God’s kingdom when Christ will reign on the throne of David. Today He is seated with the Father on His throne and intercedes for us.
NEW MANNERS & CUSTOMS - This was the traditional Passover meal that Jesus ate with the Apostles the night before His death. At this supper Jesus blessed bread and broke it, telling the disciples, “Take, eat; this is My body.” He then passed a cup of wine to them, saying, “This is My blood.” Jesus’ words refer to the crucifixion He was about to suffer to atone for mankind’s sins. He told the Apostles, “This do in remembrance of Me.” The actions of Jesus at the Last Supper are the basis for the Christian sacrament of Holy Communion, or the Eucharist, in which the faithful partake of bread and wine. Although called the “Last Supper,” this meal was actually a covenant meal that was eaten as part of the institution of the New Covenant that would be cut the next day in the body of Jesus on the Cross.
The Last Supper
The celebration of the Passover supper in the time of Christ differed somewhat from the time of its institution.
1. The cup of wine was filled for everyone and he who presided over the table pronounced the blessing, after which the wine was drank.
2. The bitter herbs, the unleavened bread, the charoseth (vinegar and water), and the flesh of the chagigah (a special voluntary peace-offering), were then brought in.
3. When these were all placed on the table, the head of the family, or president of the feast, took a portion of the bitter herbs in his hand, dipped it into the charoseth, and, after thanking God for the fruits of the earth, ate a small portion, and then gave a similar portion to all at the table. The unleavened bread was then distributed, and the paschal lamb placed on the table in front of the head of the family.
4. A second cup of wine was given, in accordance with Exodus 12:26–27. The first part of the “Hallel” (hymn of praise consisting of Psalms 113 and 114) was sung. Another blessing followed.
5. After the singing, unleavened bread and bitter herbs, dipped in charoseth, were eaten. Then the flesh of the chagigah was eaten, then the paschal lamb. A third cup of wine was poured out and drank, as well as a fourth. After the fourth cup, the rest of the “Hallel” was sung (Psalms 115 to 118). This is the hymn referred to in Matthew 26:30 and Mark 14:26. Many authorities believe that the specific verse that was sung was Psalm 118:24: “This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” It’s part of the Messianic passage in that Psalm.
COMM BIB MUNDO HISPANO - (2) Institución de la cena del Señor, 26:26–29. Aparentemente Judas salió de la Cena Pascual antes que Jesús comenzara la cena del Señor (ver Juan 13:27–30). Además del relato de la Cena en Mateo, hay tres más en el NT (Mar. 14:22–25; Luc. 22:17–20; 1 Cor. 11:23–26). Pablo usa cinco términos clave en referencia a la Cena: una conmemoración (1 Cor. 11:24, 25), un pacto (1 Cor. 11:25), una proclamación (1 Cor. 11:26), una esperanza escatológica (1 Cor. 11:26) y una comunión (1 Cor. 10:16). También es una ocasión de dar acción de gracias, o eucaristía . La Cena es en realidad una parábola en acción.
Ya no habría razón de matar otro cordero pascual, en adelante, recordando la liberación de Egipto. Ahora Jesús mismo era el cordero pascual (1 Cor. 5:7), inmolado una vez para siempre (Heb. 9:26) para quitar los pecados de su pueblo. En él se cumplió en un plano superior, el espiritual, lo que la Pascua simbolizaba en el plano terrenal. La Cena que el Señor instituyó estaba íntimamente relacionada con el reino que él vino a establecer.
Históricamente ha habido cuatro interpretaciones en cuanto al significado de la Cena. Primero, la Iglesia Católica Romana desarrolló la teoría de la transubstanciación, o sea, que el pan y el vino se transforman literalmente en el cuerpo y la sangre de Cristo aunque su apariencia no cambia. Esta posición considera que la Cena es uno de los siete sacramentos por medio de los cuales la gracia de Dios se comunica a los fieles. Segundo, Lutero y sus seguidores adoptaron una posición media, afirmando la consubstanciación. Para ellos los elementos no se transforman; pero la sustancia divina de Cristo está presente en ellos, de modo que el que los toma por fe, toma a Cristo con ellos. Tercero, Calvino hablaba de la presencia real de Cristo en los elementos, una ligera variación de la posición luterana. Cuarto, la mayoría de los evangélicos afirman que los elementos son simbólicos, y el valor de participar en la Cena es el valor de recordar vívidamente el precio que Cristo pagó para librarnos de la esclavitud y condenación del pecado. Un análisis de los textos apunta claramente a este significado simbólico de la Cena. Esto es mi cuerpo (v. 26) y esto es mi sangre (v. 28) son dos expresiones que usan el verbo intransitivo, una cópula, de significado simbólico. Dos cosas merecen la atención en la consideración de estas expresiones. Primero, cuando Jesús pronunció estas palabras, no había sido crucificado aún; su cuerpo y sangre estaban intactos. Por lo tanto, en ese momento el pan y el vino no eran realmente su cuerpo y sangre, sino símbolo de ellos; y así los discípulos lo habrán entendido. Segundo, el pronombre demostrativo esto (vv. 26, 28) es neutro en griego en ambas expresiones, y por lo tanto no se refiere literalmente ni al pan, ni al vino, ambos de género masculino. Este fenómeno se explica más naturalmente si la referencia es simbólica. Cuando tomó un pan entero y lo partió (v. 26), estaba dándoles una ilustración gráfica e inolvidable de lo que otros harían con su propio cuerpo el día siguiente. El pan simboliza el cuerpo entero que fue entregado sin reserva en la cruz. Probablemente los discípulos se acordaron de este dicho cuando observaron el trato cruel al cual los soldados sometieron el cuerpo de Jesús en la crucifixión.
|Los elementos de la CenaPara la preparación de la Pascua se necesitaba el pan sin levadura, el cordero, una taza para poner agua salada, hierbas amargas, arcilla y cuatro copas para el vino. No usar levadura recordaba la prisa con que habían comido pan simple; pues si hubieran usado levadura el día que salieron de Egipto, se hubiesen demorado demasiado, ya que esto exigía un período de fermentación para la masa. Del cordero se extraía la sangre. En el momento del éxodo la sangre había servido para untar los dinteles de las puertas de los hebreos, de modo que el ángel de la muerte no entrara en ellos. Las hierbas amargas recordaban las angustias sufridas en Egipto. Y la arcilla servía para que no olvidaran los trabajos forzados a que habían sido sometidos al hacer ladrillos con los pies, con las manos y con la vida. Las cuatro copas reafirmaban las promesas dadas por Dios según Exodo 6:6, 7. Quizá lo que menos se menciona es la taza con agua salada que son las lágrimas derramadas por tanto dolor pasado en el período de la esclavitud.|
La expresión lo bendijo (v. 26) incluye el complemento gramatical directo por el requerimiento normal del verbo en castellano, pero “lo” no está en el texto griego. Algunos opinan, de todos modos, que Jesús bendijo el pan (comp. 1 Cor. 10:16), tal vez porque “lo” tampoco se encuentra explícitamente con los verbos que siguen (partir y dar). Otros entienden que Jesús bendijo al Padre, o “pronunció bendición”. Sin embargo, ninguno de los cuatro relatos de la Cena especifica que se refiere al pan. Además, hemos de observar que el verbo habiendo dado gracias (v. 27; eucaristésas ), de donde viene eucaristía , en relación con la copa, es idéntico en tiempo y conjugación con el verbo “bendijo”. En relación con la copa, Jesús evidentemente no la bendijo, sino dio gracias al Padre por ella. En la Cena, como en la mesa de todos los días, bendecimos y damos gracias al Padre por lo que él ha provisto, o pedimos que él lo bendiga.
En los tres sinópticos no hay mandato de repetir la Cena, pero en el relato de Pablo se da por sentada la repetición (1 Cor. 11:20, 25, 26). En ninguna parte se establece la frecuencia con que la iglesia debe celebrar la Cena. Algunos entienden que el partimiento del pan (Hech. 2:42, 46), se refiere a la cena del Señor; pero en ese caso la práctica sería día tras día.
|La PascuaLa Pascua tiene el concepto original del momento en que el ángel de la muerte "pasó de largo" las puertas cuyos dinteles tenían señal de sangre del cordero. También significa "pasar sobre" las casas donde estaban las familias hebreas (Exo. 12:13). No obstante, Jesucristo le dio un nuevo significado. Es la liberación de la esclavitud del pecado, la limpieza por medio de su sangre en la cruz, y el pacto celebrado entre la nueva comunidad redimida y el Salvador. Siendo Jesucristo el cordero sacrificado, lo es una sola vez y para siempre, de modo que no son necesarios otros sacrificios. Hoy el término "pascua" tiene otras connotaciones. En la India, lo mismo que en algunos países europeos como Alemania, significa "aurora". Entre los latinos, es frecuente mencionar solamente "domingo de pascua", refiriéndose a la resurrección de Cristo. También se ha añadido una costumbre social que se manifiesta tratando de indicar la "grata sorpresa" del hecho pascual más sobresaliente mediante "el nido de conejito" o "de la gallina". La grata sorpresa se refiere a lo sucedido en la mañana de la resurrección, que Cristo vive y no está muerto. Era sorpresa para las mujeres que fueron al sepulcro, y es sorpresa para muchos hoy en día también.|
Mi sangre del pacto (v. 28) se refiere al “nuevo” pacto que Dios estaba iniciando con todos los creyentes en Cristo Jesús. Algunos mss. antiguos tienen en este pasaje la variante “pacto nuevo" (comp. Luc. 22:20; 1 Cor. 11:25). Los pactos que hizo Dios con su pueblo en el AT se hacían en base a la sangre de animales (Gén. 15:9–18; Exo. 24:8). Dios prometió por medio de Jeremías que haría un nuevo pacto con su pueblo (Jer. 31:31–33), lo cual cumplió en Jesús. Así fue que afirmó el nuevo pacto, no en sangre de animales, sino en la sangre preciosa de Cristo, como de un cordero sin mancha y sin contaminación (1 Ped. 1:19).
Sólo Mateo especifica el propósito del derramamiento de la sangre de Jesús: para el perdón de pecados para muchos (v. 28). La sangre era símbolo de la vida, pues se concebía que la vida estaba en la sangre (Lev. 17:11). De allí la prohibición de tomar o comer la sangre de los animales en el AT. Se derramaba la sangre de los animales sin defecto en lugar de los pecados de los hombres, pues sin derramamiento de sangre no hay perdón (Heb. 9:22). La sangre de Jesús, derramada una vez para siempre, logra el perdón perfecto, o remisión, de los pecados. Para muchos (v. 28) de ninguna manera habla de una provisión limitada, sino que es una expresión que significa literalmente “alrededor de muchos”. El modismo tiene la idea de encerrar a alguien con el fin de protegerlo. Lucas dice que su sangre fue derramada por vosotros (Luc. 22:20). Otros textos bíblicos indican que el sacrificio se hizo potencialmente a favor de todos, pero que es eficaz solamente para los que responden en fe (1 Tim. 2:6; Heb. 2:9; 1 Jn. 2:2).
Hasta aquel día... (v. 29) apunta al futuro indefinido cuando Jesús reunirá a todos los suyos en el reino eterno para el gran “banquete mesiánico”. La Cena testifica de una muerte cruel y en sacrificio, pero termina con una nota triunfante; con una promesa de victoria sobre la muerte, victoria para su reino en el fin de los siglos. Nuevo (v. 29) traduce kainón , un adjetivo griego que denota calidad o clase de vino que tomará, símbolo de una provisión sabrosa y perfecta del Padre.
|El fruto de la vidLas uvas de Palestina eran excelentes. Los hebreos pudieron compararlas con las de Egipto cuando entraron a reconocer la nueva tierra. Lo interesante es que la tierra las producía abundantemente. La calidad de los vinos de Gaza, Tiro y Sarón se compara con los de Sibma y Escol. Las cosechas se hacían todos los años, menos el sabático y el jubileo. En esa temporada se las dejaba a los pobres, huérfanos y extranjeros. La ley también permitía a los viajeros que pasaban cortar algunos racimos para comerlos en el mismo lugar. Junto con el cordero se bebía vino, según la costumbre de las cuatro copas. Cuando en la última cena Jesucristo ofreció la copa, habló del nuevo pacto diciendo que ese vino era la sangre que se derramaría para limpiarnos de pecado. Si bien en ese momento resultó una copa amarga, no por eso Jesús dejó de anunciar que en su regreso se bebería de nuevo el fruto de la vid como símbolo de alegría y de victoria (ver 26:29).|
MILLENNIUM in DICT
INTERNATIONAL BIB DICT – The great majority of evangelical Christians believe that the kingdom of God shall have universal sway over the earth, and that righteousness and peace and the knowledge of the Lord shall everywhere prevail. This happy time is commonly called the Millennium, or the thousand years’ reign. Divergent views are entertained as to how it is to be brought about. Many honest and faithful men hold that it will be introduced by the agencies now at work, mainly by the preaching of the gospel of Christ and the extension of the church over the world. An increasing number of men equally honest teach that the Millennium will be established by the visible advent of the Lord Jesus Christ. The aim of this brief article is to set forth some of the Scriptural grounds on which this latter view rests. No reference will be made to objections, to counter-objections and interpretations; the single point, namely, that the Millennium succeeds the second coming of Jesus Christ, that it does not precede it, will be rigidly adhered to. Those who hold this view believe that neither Christ nor His apostles taught, on fair principles of interpretation, that the Millennium must come before His advent.
THE TEACHING OF JESUS. The Lord Jesus said nothing about world-wide conversion in His instructions to His disciples touching their mission (Mt 28:19, 20; Mk 16:15; Lk 24:46–48; Acts 1:8)
THE MILLENNIUM NOT BEFORE THE ADVENT: They were to be His witnesses and carry His message to the race, but He does not promise the race will receive their testimony, or that men will generally accept His salvation. On the contrary, He explicitly forewarns them that they shall be hated of all men, that sufferings and persecutions shall be their lot, but if they are faithful to the end their reward will be glorious. But world-wide evangelism does not mean world-wide conversion. The universal offer of salvation does not pledge its universal acceptance. In His instructions and predictions the Lord does not let fall a hint that their world-wide mission will result in world-wide conversion, or that thereby the longed-for Millennium will be ushered in. But there is a time to come when the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters the sea, when teaching shall no longer be needed, for all shall know Him from the least to the greatest. Our dispensation, accordingly, cannot be the last, for the effects stated in that are not contemplated in the instructions and the results of this. To the direct revelation of Christ on the subject we now turn. In two parables He explicitly announces the general character and the consummation of the gospel age, and these we are briefly to examine.
1. Parable of the Wheat and Tares Matthew 13:24-30, 36-43.
Happily we are not left to discover the meaning and scope of this parable. We enjoy the immense advantage of having our Lord’s own interpretation of it. Out of His Divine explanation certain most important facts emerge:
a. The parable covers the whole period between the first and second advents of the Saviour. The Sower is Christ Himself. He began the good work; He opened the new era.
b. The field is the world. Christ’s work is no longer confined to a single nation or people as once; it contemplates the entire race.
c. His people, the redeemed, begotten by His word and Spirit, are the good seed. Through them the gospel of His grace is to be propagated throughout the whole world.
d. The devil is also a sower. He is the foul counterfeiter of God ’s work. He sowed the tares, the sons of the evil one.
e. The tares are not wicked men in general, but a particular class of wicked brought into close and contaminating association with the children of God. “Within the territory of the visible church the tares are deposited” (Dr. David Brown). It is the corruption of Christendom that is meant, a gigantic fact to which we cannot shut our eyes.
f. The mischief, once done, cannot be corrected. “Let both grow together until the harvest.” Christendom once corrupted remains so to the end.
g. The harvest is the consummation of the age. This is the culmination of our age; it terminates with the advent and judgment of the Son of God. He will send forth His angels who will “gather out of his kingdom all things that cause stumbling, and them that do iniquity, and shall cast them into the furnace of fire ..... Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.”
Here, then, we have the beginning, progress and consummation of our age. Christ Himself introduced it, and it was distinguished for its purity and its excellence. But the glorious system of truth was soon marred by the cunning craftiness of Satan. No after-vigilance or earnestness on the part of the servants could repair the fatal damage. They were forbidden to attempt the removal of the tares, for by so doing they would endanger the good grain, so intermixed had the two become! The expulsion of the tares is left for angels’ hands in the day of the harvest. This is our Lord’s picture of our age: a Zizanian field wherein good and bad, children of God and children of the evil one, live side by side down to the harvest which is the end. In spite of all efforts to correct and reform, the corruption of Christendom remains, nay, grows apace. To expel the vast crop of false doctrine, false professors, false teachers, is now as it has been for centuries an impossibility. Christ’s solemn words hold down to the final consummation, “Let both grow together until the harvest.” In such conditions a millennium of universal righteousness and knowledge of the Lord seems impossible until the separation takes place at the harvest.
2. Parable of the Pounds Luke 19:11-27. Jesus was on His last journey to Jerusalem, and near the city. The multitude was eager, expectant. They supposed the Kingdom of God was immediately to appear. The parable was spoken to correct this mistake and to reveal certain vital features of it. “A certain nobleman went into a far country, to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.” There is little difficulty in grasping the main teaching of this suggestive narrative. The nobleman is the Lord Jesus Christ Himself; the far country is heaven; the kingdom He goes to receive is the Messianic kingdom, for the victorious establishment of which all God’s people long and pray. The servants are those who sustain responsible relation to the Lord because of the trust committed to them. The rebellious citizens are those who refuse subjection to His will and defy His authority. His return is His second coming. The parable spans the whole period between His ascension and His advent. It measures across our entire age. It tells of Christ’s going away, it describes the conduct of His servants and of the citizens during His absence; it foretells His return and the reckoning that is to follow. Mark the words, “And it came to pass, when he was come back again, having received the kingdom.” It is in heaven He receives the investiture of the kingdom (Rev 5:6). It is on earth that He administers it. The phrase, “having received the kingdom,” cannot by any dexterity of exegesis be made to denote the end of time or the end of the Millennium, or of His receiving it at the end of the world; it is then He delivers it up to God, the Father (1 Cor 24–28)
The order and sequence of events as traced by the Lord disclose the same fact made prominent in the parable of the Wheat and Tares, namely, that during the whole period between His ascension and His return there is no place for a Millennium of world-wide righteousness and prosperity. But Scripture warrants the belief that such blessedness is surely to fill the earth, and if so, it must be realized after Christ’s second coming.
TEACHING OF THE APOSTLES.
1. EXPECTATION OF THE ADVENT: There is no unmistakable evidence that the apostles expected a thousand years of prosperity and peace during Christ’s absence in heaven. In Acts 1:11 we read that the heavenly visitants said to the apostles, “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye looking into heaven?” This attitude of the men of Galilee became the permanent attitude of the primitive church. It was that of the uplifted gaze. Paul’s exultant words respecting the Thessalonians might well be applied to all believers of that ancient time, that they “turned unto God from idols, to serve a living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven” (1 Thess 1:9, 10). It is the prominent theme of the New Testament epistles. In the New Testament it is mentioned 318 t. One verse in every thirty, we are told, is occupied with it. It is found shining with a glad hope in the first letters Paul wrote, those to the Thessalonians. It is found in the last he wrote, the second to Timothy, gleaming with the bright anticipation of the crown he was to receive at the Redeemer’s appearing. James quickens the flagging courage, and reanimates the drooping spirits of believers with this trumpet peal: “Be ye also patient; establish your hearts: for the coming of the Lord is at hand” (5:8). Peter exhorts to all holy conversation and godliness by the like motive: “Looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God” (2 Pet 3:12 margin). Amid the deepening gloom and the gathering storms of the last days, Jude 1:14 cheers us with the words of Enoch, the seventh from Adam, `Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousand of his saints, to execute judgment upon .... the ungodly.’ John closes the Canon with the majestic words, “Behold, he cometh with the clouds,” “Behold, I come quickly.” These men, speaking by the Spirit of the living God, know there can be no reign of universal righteousness, no deliverance of groaning creation, no redemption of the body, no binding of Satan, and no Millennium while the tares grow side by side with the wheat; while the ungodly world flings its defiant shout after the retiring nobleman, “We will not have this man to reign over us”; and while Satan, that strong, fierce spirit, loose in this age, deceives, leads captive, devours and ruins as he lists. Therefore the passionate longing and the assurance of nearing deliverance at the coming of Christ fill so large a place in the faith and the life of the primitive disciples.
2. POSSIBILITY OF SURVIVAL - ITS IMPLICATIONS:
In 1 Thess 4:17 Paul speaks of himself and others who may survive till the Lord’s coming: “Then we that are alive, that are left, shall together with them be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air” (compare 1 Cor 15:51, 52).
This implies fairly that the apostle did not know that long ages would elapse between his own day and Christ’s advent. There was to his mind the possibility of His coming in his lifetime; in fact, he seems to have an expectation that he would not pass through the gates of death at all, that he would live to see the Lord in His glorious return, for the day and the hour of the advent is absolutely concealed even from inspired men. The inference is perfectly legitimate that Paul and his fellow-disciples did not anticipate that a thousand years should intervene between them and the coming.
3. PROPHECY OF THE “MAN OF SIN”:
Furthermore, the Thessalonians had fallen into a serious mistake (2 Thess 9:1–12). By a false spirit, or by a forged epistle as from Paul, they were led to believe that “the day of the Lord is now present”, 2 Thess 9:2. The apostle sets them right about this solemn matter. He assures them that some things must precede that day, namely, “the falling away,” or apostasy, and the appearing of a powerful adversary, whom he calls “the Man of Sin,” and describes as “the Son of Perdition.” Neither the one nor the other of these two, the apostasy and the Man of Sin, was then present. But the road was fast getting ready for them. There was the “mystery of lawlessness” already at work at the time, and although a certain restraint held it in check, nevertheless when the check was removed it would at once precipitate the apostasy, and it would issue in the advent of the Man of Sin, and he should be brought to nought by the personal coming of Jesus Christ. This appears to be the import of the passage. Here was the appropriate place to settle forever for these saints and for all others the question of a long period to intervene before the Saviour’s advent. How easy and natural it would have been for Paul to write, “Brethren, there is to be first a time of universal blessedness for the world, the Millennium, and after that there will be an apostasy and the revelation of the Man of Sin whom Christ will destroy by the brightness of His coming.” But Paul intimated nothing of the sort. Instead, he distinctly says that the mystery of lawlessness is already working, that it will issue in “the falling away,” and then shall appear the great adversary, the Lawless One, who shall meet his doom by the advent of Christ. The mystery of lawlessness, however, is held in restraint, we are told. May it not be possible that the check shall be taken off, then the Millennium succeed, and after that the apostasy and the Son of Perdition? No, for its removal is immediately followed by the coming of the great foe, the Antichrist. For this foe has both an apocalypse and a parousia like Christ Himself. Hence, the lifting of the restraint is sudden, by no means a prolonged process.
4. NO ROOM FOR MILLENNIUM: The apostle speaks of the commencement, progress, and close of a certain period. It had commenced when he wrote. Its close is at the coming of Christ. What intervenes? The continuance of the evil secretly at work in the body of professing Christians, and its progress from the incipient state to the maturity of daring wickedness which will be exhibited in the Man of Sin. This condition of things fills up the whole period, if we accept Paul’s teaching as that of inspired truth. There appears to be no place for a Millennium within the limits which the apostle here sets. The only escape from this conclusion, as it seems to us, is, to deny that the coming of Christ is His actual, personal second coming. But the two words, [epiphaneia] and [parousia], which elsewhere are used separately to denote His advent, are here employed to give “graphic vividness” and certainty to the event, and hence, they peremptorily forbid a figurative interpretation. The conclusion seems unavoidable that there can be no Millennium on this side of the advent of Christ.
5. HARMONY OF CHRIST AND APOSTLES: Our Lord’s Olivet prophecy (Mt 24; 25; Mk 13; Lk 21) accords fully with the teaching of the apostles on the subject. In that discourse He foretells wars, commotions among the nations, Jerusalem’s capture and the destruction of the temple, Israel’s exile, Christians persecuted while bearing their testimony throughout the world, cosmic convulsions, unparalleled tribulation and sufferings which terminate only with His advent. From the day this great prophecy was spoken down to the hour of His actual coming He offers no hope of a Millennium. He opens no place for a thousand years of blessedness for the earth.These are some of the grounds on which Biblical students known as Premillennialists rest their belief touching the coming of the Lord and the Millennial reign.
ANCHOR DICT – In the NT we find an implicit reference to an interregnum in 1 Cor 15:23–28 But each in his own turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. 24 Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. 25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death. 27 For he "has put everything under his feet." Now when it says that "everything" has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. 28 When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all] where Christ will rule until the cosmic powers, including death, have been conquered and then he will hand over the kingdom of God (Col 1:12–13 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,). However, the only explicit reference to a messianic interregnum in the NT occurs in Rev 20:4–6, a text which has often taken on a fascination and extravagant importance for Christians. This pericope comprises the final acts of the mythic drama of the Divine Warrior portrayed in Revelation. It is the establishment of a temporary kingdom on the purified earth which appears to be refertilized by the blood of the slain (Rev 19:12–18). The saints, perhaps only the martyrs, experience “the first resurrection” and reign for a thousand years with the Messiah. Then comes the general resurrection, the judgment, and the creation of a new heaven and a new earth. Christians have traditionally interpreted this text allegorically and see it as a symbolic reference to the “death” and “resurrection” of Christians through baptism. They understand this to be the first resurrection. The thousand year span is the time from the birth of Christ until his parousia. Rev 20:4–6 is also used as one of the key texts which indicate that all baptized Christians share in the sovereignty and priesthood of Christ. A similar concept of the interregnum occurs in the Ascen. Is. 4:1–18??. Here Christ with his angelic forces destroys Beliar and his armies and takes them to Gehenna. Then he gives rest to the faithful who survive on earth with the saints who descend from heaven. No definite time span is mentioned. After this interim reign the faithful leave their bodies and ascend to heaven.
EASTON - Millennium — a thousand years; the name given to the era mentioned in Rev. 20:1–7. Some maintain that Christ will personally appear on earth for the purpose of establishing his kingdom at the beginning of this millennium. Those holding this view are usually called “millenarians.” On the other hand, it is maintained, more in accordance with the teaching of Scripture, we think, that Christ’s second advent will not be premillennial, and that the right conception of the prospects and destiny of his kingdom is that which is taught, e.g., in the parables of the leaven and the mustard-seed. The triumph of the gospel, it is held, must be looked for by the wider and more efficient operation of the very forces that are now at work in extending the gospel; and that Christ will only come again at the close of this dispensation to judge the world at the “last day.” The millennium will thus precede his coming.
NELSON NUEVO DICT - MILENIO (mil años). Período del Reino de Dios sobre la tierra, que sigue a la Segunda Venida de Cristo y precede al estado final, en el que el Señor establecerá un reino de justicia y paz, y regirá junto con los santos con una vara de hierro. Como otras cifras de Apocalipsis, «mil» tiene valor simbólico, sin ser equivalente de la eternidad. «Mil años» es una época muy larga que se contrasta con los tres años y medio de hegemonía satánica (11.2; 12.6) y con los diez días de tribulación (2.10). Muchos exégetas no aceptan este período intermedio porque:
1. Reviste un carácter muy judaico, es decir, contiene ideas propagadas por la literatura judía llamada «apocalíptica» (200 a.C.–200 d.C. → Apocalipsis)
2. Se basa en un solo pasaje (Ap 20.1–10). Pero hay otras indicaciones de tal período en el Antiguo Testamento y en el resto del Nuevo Testamento.
El concepto de un reino de Dios establecido en la tierra viene del Antiguo Testamento, especialmente de la enseñanza profética (Is 2.11; Jl 3.18; Am 9.11–15; Miq 4.1–5) y de Dn 2.37–45; 7.2–27. Estos pasajes no señalan un período intermedio diferente del estado final, sino ven el reino como un todo (Is 65.17–25); definitivamente enseñan que Jehová reinará políticamente sobre todas las naciones, y que establecerá la verdadera justicia y prosperidad. Daniel aclara que los «santos» reinarán con el Hijo del hombre (7.13s,18, 22).
En la literatura apocalíptica judía (hasta 100 d.C.) se ve claramente el desarrollo del concepto de un período intermedio, que oscila, según los escritos, entre cuarenta años y siete mil; solo un rabino habla de mil años, y este es contemporáneo de Apocalipsis. Muchos eruditos concluyen que esta literatura es la fuente de Ap 20, pero no es posible afirmarlo categóricamente puesto que no se ha podido determinar con certeza la fecha de estos escritos; algunos son más recientes que Apocalipsis. Otros sostienen que el autor de Apocalipsis creía, como muchos judíos, que el plan divino de la historia tenía una estructura de siete actos; esto formaría una semana en la que cada día representa mil años, y el séptimo sería el «sábado» del mundo (cf. Sal 90.4; citado en 2 P 3.8). De todos modos, la idea básica de un reino terrenal de Dios no proviene de esta literatura, sino del Antiguo Testamento.
Los Evangelios no mencionan un período intermedio, pero manifiestan que Jesús enseñó que muchos vendrían de lejos para sentarse con los patriarcas en el reino de Dios (Mt 8.11). Aun más claro es Mt 19.28, donde Jesús dice que en la regeneración sus discípulos se sentarán sobre doce tronos, para juzgar a las doce tribus de Israel. El escenario parece ser la tierra y una vez más se nota que los seguidores de Jesús participan en la administración del reino (1 Co 6.2s; 2 Ti 2.12).
Pablo tampoco menciona este período específicamente, pero es notable que 1 Co 15.23–28 da el orden de la resurrección así: 1) Cristo, las primicias; 2) los de Cristo en su parusía; 3) el fin, cuando Cristo entregue el reino al Padre, no sin antes suprimir toda oposición a su voluntad. Los adverbios de tiempo (traducidos «luego») parecen indicar etapas sucesivas en este proceso: desde la resurrección de Jesús hasta la parusía, y desde la parusía hasta el fin. Durante este último período Cristo sujeta todo el poder del mundo.
Los pasajes bíblicos señalados arriba enseñan: 1) la presencia literal y política del reino de Dios en la tierra; 2) la participación de los santos en la administración de ese reino. Aunque no dan claro apoyo a la idea de un reinado intermedio, dichos pasajes presentan estos dos elementos que a su vez son la base del milenio de Ap 20, donde se repite la frase «mil años» seis veces en los vv. 1–7. Además, la derrota de Satanás (Ap 20.2) no es una idea nueva (cf. Jn 12.31; 16.11); tampoco lo es la resurrección, llamada aquí «la primera», reservada a los creyentes (1 Co 15.23, 51s; 1 Ts 4.13–17). Compárese también la derrota de → Gog y Magog (Ap 20.8s), en Ez 38 y 39, después de la visión de la resurrección de Israel (Ez 37). Así, pues, Ap 20 recoge muchos asuntos tocados en el Antiguo Testamento, los Evangelios y Pablo, y, de acuerdo con el principio de la revelación progresiva en las Escrituras, les da su explicación final.
La interpretación del milenio ha sido un campo de batalla a través de los siglos. Los intérpretes de los siglos II y III entendieron los «mil años» literalmente. Orígenes y Agustín fueron los primeros que lo espiritualizaron, y enseñaron que el milenio empezó con la resurrección de Cristo y que se prolonga a toda la época de la Iglesia. Siguiendo esta línea, la iglesia romana ha rechazado la interpretación literal, tildándola de «quiliasmo» (del griego, jilı́as que significa mil).
En nuestros tiempos ha habido tres posiciones básicas y en torno a esta giran otras posiciones:
Premilenarista - Arguye que el milenio es un período iniciado por la parusía, en el que Cristo establece un reino de justicia en la tierra. Los programas de la Iglesia e Israel están separados. La gran tribulación y el milenio son períodos de siete y mil años respectivamente.
Veamos algunas subdivisiones de esta posición:
Posición pretribulacionista premilenarista - La Iglesia será raptada antes de la gran tribulación. El Rapto y la gran tribulación son actos separados.
Posición postribulacionista premilenarista - El Rapto de los creyentes será después de la gran tribulación. El Rapto y la Segunda Venida son el mismo acontecimiento.
Posición mesotribulacionista premilenarista - La Iglesia será raptada tras 42 meses (1.260 días) de la gran tribulación de 7 años.
Posición del Rapto parcial premilenarista - Solo algunos creyentes serán «raptados» antes de la gran tribulación. Los que «no estén preparados» deben pasar por el martirio para probar su fe.
Amilenarista - Niega que haya un milenio literal, pues la parusía y el juicio final vienen más o menos a un mismo tiempo para iniciar el estado final.
Esta posición se puede subdividir en dos:
Posición amilenarista de San Agustín - Apocalipsis trata simbólicamente del triunfo del Reino de Dios a través de la Iglesia. La gran tribulación y el milenio no son períodos de siete y mil años, sino que son cifras simbólicas que designan la larga lucha del mal contra la iglesia.
Una segunda posición amilenarista - Coincide con San Agustín, excepto en que no se ve al Reino de Dios obrando a través de la Iglesia en esta era.
Posmilenarista- Enseña que el milenio vendrá antes de la parusía, pero no antes de que el reino esté preparado, gracias a los esfuerzos humanos, para recibir a Cristo.
Posición evangélica posmilenarista - Israel y la Iglesia equivalen a un solo pueblo de Dios. La tribulación es prolongada, no dura solamente siete años. El milenio es el período de mil años en que Cristo reina, a través del ministerio de la Iglesia del Reino de Dios.
Como vemos, estos sistemas de pensamiento procuran explicar el plan del procedimiento divino para el futuro. Sin embargo, a pesar de los mejores propósitos que han guiado a muchos en la interpretación de la Palabra de Dios, no podemos afirmar que representan a plenitud la enseñanza bíblica pues son obvias sus diferencias. Por ejemplo, los partidarios de (2) alegan contra (1) que el premilenarismo trata demasiado literalmente un pasaje profético (Ap 20), haciendo así caso omiso del género literario; también objetan las condiciones mixtas que involucraría un milenio literal; por ejemplo, los resurrectos que viven junto a los mortales. Por su parte, los partidarios de (1) señalan que la expresión «volvieron a vivir» no debe entenderse en sentido espiritual en Ap 20.4 y en sentido literal en 20.5. Además, alegan que solo un reino literal de Cristo en un mundo donde existe la posibilidad del pecado demostrará que puede haber justicia en la presencia del mal. Les parece también que la expresión «regirá las naciones con vara de hierro» (Ap 2.27; 12.5; 19.15) no sería consecuente con el estado final, cuando todo se someterá a la voluntad de Dios y todo mal se eliminará (Ap 21.8, 27; 22.3, 15).
|Gen 37:28||…the average price of a slave at that time in the second millennium b.c. Although most slaves were part of the booty of …|
|Deut 1:1||…the book and the ancient Near Eastern treaty form of the mid-second millennium b.c. (the approximate time of Moses). These secular suzerainty treaties ( … to his vassals) followed a set pattern not used in the mid-first millennium b.c. These treaties usually contained the following elements: 1) preamble—…|
|Eternity We teach that after the closing of the Millennium, the temporary release of Satan, and the judgment of unbelievers (2 …|
|Lev 23:33||…It also celebrated the autumn harvest and will be celebrated in the Millennium (cf. Zech. 14:16).|
|1 Sam 2:35||…messiah who will defeat God’s enemies and establish His rule in the Millennium (see v. 10).|
|1 Chron 6:49||…could possibly point to the Zadokian high-priesthood for the temple in the Millennium (cf. Ezek. 40:46; 43:19; 44:15; 48:11).|
|Ps 110:4||…17, 21). The sons of Zadok will serve with Christ in the Millennium as His human priestly associates (cf. Ezek. 44:15; 48:11).|
|Ps 149:6||…that this section is eschatological in nature and looks 1) to the Millennium when all nations and peoples will acknowledge Christ as king and …|
|Isa 2:12||…5; 1 Thess. 5:2) and 2) at the end of the Millennium (see 2 Pet. 3:10). The DOL can occur through providential …|
|Isa 35:6||…was and is a precious commodity in Israel (41:18). In the Millennium, there will be no scarcity.|
|Isa 41:17||…but symbolizing here the spiritual quenching that will be Israel’s in the Millennium.|
|Isa 44:1||…of abundant blessing that was to be the nation’s portion during the Millennium. 44:1,2 My servant … whom I have chosen … made you… formed …|
|Isa 51:6||…8:6–11; 16:3–5), for a renewed earth during the Millennium. The actual “uncreation” or destruction of the present universe, of which …|
|Isa 54:10||54:10 mountains … hills … My kindness … My covenant. In the Millennium (48:6,7; 51:6,16) topography will change (see Ezek. 38:20; …|
|Isa 54:11||…to be the center of the future, eternal messianic reign following the Millennium (Rev. 21:18–21). As magnificent as this is, it is …|
|Isa 60:19||…the millennial kingdom, sees a view of the new Jerusalem following the Millennium (Rev. 21:23; 22:5). His prophetic perspective did not allow …|
|Isa 65:20||…taken his life for sin. The curse will be reversed in the Millennium, but it will not be removed until the eternal state (cf. …|
|Isa 66:22||…your descendants … remain. National Israel will have a never-ending existence through the Millennium, and on into the new heavens and the new earth throughout …|
|Ezek 36:37||…their men. There will be an increase in the population during the Millennium. When the male population came to Jerusalem, they brought vast numbers …|
|Ezek 37:26||…also true that these covenants will continue to be fulfilled after the Millennium in the eternal state. My sanctuary. The Spirit of God begins … the church era (1 Cor. 3:16; 6:19); 4) in the Millennium (Ezek. 37:26–28); and 5) in eternity future (Rev. 21:…|
|Ezek 39:29||…Magog assault in Rev. 20:7–9 at the end of the Millennium is another assault on Jerusalem patterned after certain images of the …|
|Ezek 44:5||…and being devoted to the Lord (cf. Jer. 29:13). In the Millennium, a Jew with an uncircumcised heart will be considered a foreigner (…|
|Ezek 45:9||…commercial dealings. This warning shows that there will be sin in the Millennium. The believing Jews who entered the 1,000 year reign of Christ …|
|Ezek 45:21||…and Christ’s death providing deliverance from sin. They continue on into the Millennium as a week long feast of remembrance, which will serve much …|
|Ezek 45:25||45:25 The Feast of Tabernacles continues on into the Millennium as confirmed by Zech. 14:16–21. This would be a …|
|Dan 2:4||…E. Revived Rome 2:33, 41–43; 7:7,8, 11, 24,25 F. Millennium 2:34,35, 44,45; 7:13,14, 26,27 II. Daniel 8/Daniel 11 …|
|Hos 3:5||…5 David. Cf. 1:11. This must refer to Messiah during the Millennium, as “in the latter days” specifies (cf. Is. 55:3,4; Jer. …|
|Micah 1:1||…timeframe surrounding the Second Advent of Christ and the beginning of the Millennium. Apart from Is. 2:2–4, three other passages from Micah …|
|Micah 4:2||…flow” (cf. v. 1) to worship the Lord in Jerusalem during the Millennium (cf. Zech. 8:20–23).|
|Micah 4:4||…25), this phrase looks forward to greater peace and prosperity in the Millennium (cf. Zech. 3:10).|
|Hab 3:3||…analogy of the future redemption of Israel at the beginning of the Millennium (cf. Is. 11:16). 3:3 Teman … Mount Paran. Teman, named …|
|Zeph 2:11||…nations. The final fulfillment of these predictions is yet future, depicting the Millennium when all the gods of the nations will be reduced to …|
|Haggai 1:1||…19), divine rulership (2:21,22), and national blessing (2:23) during the Millennium. Interpretive Challenges The most prominent interpretive ambiguity within the prophecy is … to which the wealth of other nations will be brought during the Millennium (cf. Is. 60:11; 61:6). It seems preferable, however, to …|
|Haggai 2:15||…24:15; 2 Thess. 2:4; Rev. 17:18 Ezekiel’s (Millennial) Temple Millennium Envisioned by the prophet Ezekiel To be built by the Messiah …|
|Zech 2:10||…the Messiah, dwelling on the throne of David in Jerusalem during the Millennium.|
|Zech 10:7||…joy of the restored nation of Israel at the beginning of the Millennium is likened to those who have been drinking wine (cf. Is. …|
|Zech 10:8||…of their faith in Messiah will survive the Tribulation and enter the Millennium to multiply greatly (cf. 2:4; Is. 54:1–3).|
|Zech 14:16||…worship the Lord and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles during the Millennium. Commemorating the time when God “tabernacled” with Israel in the wilderness, … of the year’s crops, and provided a time of rejoicing. In the Millennium, it will celebrate Messiah’s presence again dwelling among His people and … the Feast of Tabernacles, two other feasts will be celebrated in the Millennium, i.e., 1) Feast of the New Year (Ezek. 45:18–…|
|Rom 2:5||…that comes at the Great White Throne at the end of the Millennium (see notes on Rev. 20:11–15).|
|1 Cor 4:8||…Yet, Paul genuinely wished it really were the coronation time of the Millennium, so that they all might share in the glory of the …|
|1 Cor 15:23||…as well, will be raised up to reign with Him during the Millennium (Rev. 20:4; cf. Dan. 12:2; cf. Is. 26:19, … be the ungodly and that will occur at the end of the Millennium at the Great White Throne Judgment of God (see notes on …|
|1 Cor 15:24||…the earth that He created and that is rightfully His. During the Millennium, under Christ’s rule, rebelliousness will still exist and Christ will have …|
|1 Cor 15:26||…permanently divested of his weapon of death until the end of the Millennium (see notes on Rev. 20:1–10). At that point, having …|
|1 Thess 5:2||…period (cf. Rev. 19:11–21), and 2) the end of the Millennium. These two are actually 1,000 years apart and Peter refers to … 4:15) and it is used of the judgment which concludes the Millennium (2 Pet. 3:10). As a thief comes unexpectedly and without …|
|Rev 1:1||…events surrounding the second coming of Jesus Christ (chaps. 6–19), the Millennium and final judgment (chap. 20), and the eternal state (chaps. 21,22). … 24) C. The Return of the King (19:1–21) D. The Millennium (20:1–10) E. The Great White Throne Judgment (20:11–…|
|Rev 7:15||…the heavenly throne of God (see note on 11:19). During the Millennium there will also be a temple on earth—a special holy …|
|Rev 11:4||…the two witnesses, whose ministry points toward Israel’s final restoration in the Millennium). two olive trees and the two lampstands. Olive oil was commonly …|
|Rev 12:9||…his temporary release from the bottomless pit at the end of the Millennium, he will briefly resume his deceitful ways (20:8,10).|
|Rev 16:17||…except for final judgment on the rebellion at the end of the Millennium; 20:7–10) and immediately precedes the second coming of Christ. …|
|Rev 19:9||…then comes to earth for the celebration of the final meal (the Millennium). After that event, the new order comes and the marriage is …|
|Rev 20:2||…a long period of time. This view interprets OT prophecies of a Millennium as being fulfilled spiritually now in the church (either on earth …|
|Rev 20:8||…the army of rebels and its leader at the end of the Millennium. They were names of ancient enemies of the Lord. Magog was … to see this one as taking place at the end of the Millennium. For the difference, see notes on Ezek. 38,39.|
Search Analysis Aligned Hits In Context millennium The MacArthur Study Bible
…We teach that after the closing of the Millennium , the temporary release of Satan, and the
Gen 37:28 …a slave at that time in the second millennium b.c. Although most slaves were part
Lev 23:33 …autumn harvest and will be celebrated in the Millennium (cf. Zech. 14:16).
Deut 1:1 …ancient Near Eastern treaty form of the mid-second millennium b.c. (the approximate time of Moses). …
…a set pattern not used in the mid-first millennium b.c. These treaties usually contained the
1 Sam 2:35 …God’s enemies and establish His rule in the Millennium (see v. 10).
1 Chron 6:49 …the Zadokian high-priesthood for the temple in the Millennium (cf. Ezek. 40:46; 43:19; 44:…
Ps 110:4 …of Zadok will serve with Christ in the Millennium as His human priestly associates (cf. Ezek. …
Ps 149:6 …eschatological in nature and looks 1) to the Millennium when all nations and peoples will acknowledge …
Isa 2:12 …2) and 2) at the end of the Millennium (see 2 Pet. 3:10). The DOL …
Isa 35:6 …precious commodity in Israel (41:18). In the Millennium , there will be no scarcity.
Isa 41:17 …spiritual quenching that will be Israel’s in the Millennium .
Isa 44:1 …was to be the nation’s portion during the Millennium . 44:1,2 My servant … whom I have …
Isa 51:6 …3–5), for a renewed earth during the Millennium . The actual “uncreation” or destruction of the …
Isa 54:10 …mountains … hills … My kindness … My covenant. In the Millennium (48:6,7; 51:6,16) topography will change (…
Isa 54:11 …of the future, eternal messianic reign following the Millennium (Rev. 21:18–21). As magnificent as …
Isa 60:19 …a view of the new Jerusalem following the Millennium (Rev. 21:23; 22:5). His prophetic …
Isa 65:20 …sin. The curse will be reversed in the Millennium , but it will not be removed until
Isa 66:22 …Israel will have a never-ending existence through the Millennium , and on into the new heavens and …
Ezek 36:37 …be an increase in the population during the Millennium . When the male population came to Jerusalem, …
Ezek 37:26 …covenants will continue to be fulfilled after the Millennium in the eternal state. My sanctuary. The …
…Cor. 3:16; 6:19); 4) in the Millennium (Ezek. 37:26–28); and 5) in …
Ezek 39:29 …20:7–9 at the end of the Millennium is another assault on Jerusalem patterned after …
Ezek 44:5 …the Lord (cf. Jer. 29:13). In the Millennium , a Jew with an uncircumcised heart will …
Ezek 45:9 …shows that there will be sin in the Millennium . The believing Jews who entered the 1,000 …
Ezek 45:21 …deliverance from sin. They continue on into the Millennium as a week long feast of remembrance, …
Ezek 45:25 …The Feast of Tabernacles continues on into the Millennium as confirmed by Zech. 14:16–21. …
Dan 2:4 …33, 41–43; 7:7,8, 11, 24,25 F. Millennium 2:34,35, 44,45; 7:13,14, 26,27 II. …
Hos 3:5 …11. This must refer to Messiah during the Millennium , as “in the latter days” specifies (cf. …
Micah 1:1 …Advent of Christ and the beginning of the Millennium . Apart from Is. 2:2–4, three …
Micah 4:2 …to worship the Lord in Jerusalem during the Millennium (cf. Zech. 8:20–23).
Micah 4:4 …forward to greater peace and prosperity in the Millennium (cf. Zech. 3:10).
Hab 3:3 …redemption of Israel at the beginning of the Millennium (cf. Is. 11:16). 3:3 Teman
Zeph 2:11 …of these predictions is yet future, depicting the Millennium when all the gods of the nations …
Haggai 1:1 …21,22), and national blessing (2:23) during the Millennium .
…of other nations will be brought during the Millennium (cf. Is. 60:11; 61:6). It …
Haggai 2:15 …2:4; Rev. 17:18 Ezekiel’s (Millennial) Temple Millennium Envisioned by the prophet Ezekiel To be …
Zech 2:10 …the throne of David in Jerusalem during the Millennium .
Zech 10:7 …nation of Israel at the beginning of the Millennium is likened to those who have been …
Zech 10:8 …Messiah will survive the Tribulation and enter the Millennium to multiply greatly (cf. 2:4; Is. …
Zech 14:16 …to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles during the Millennium . Commemorating the time when God “tabernacled” with …
…and provided a time of rejoicing. In the Millennium , it will celebrate Messiah’s presence again dwelling …
…two other feasts will be celebrated in the Millennium , i.e., 1) Feast of the New …
Rom 2:5 …Great White Throne at the end of the Millennium (see notes on Rev. 20:11–15).
1 Cor 4:8 …it really were the coronation time of the Millennium , so that they all might share in
1 Cor 15:23 …raised up to reign with Him during the Millennium (Rev. 20:4; cf. Dan. 12:2;
…that will occur at the end of the Millennium at the Great White Throne Judgment of …
1 Cor 15:24 …created and that is rightfully His. During the Millennium , under Christ’s rule, rebelliousness will still exist …
1 Cor 15:26 …weapon of death until the end of the Millennium (see notes on Rev. 20:1–10).
1 Thess 5:2 …11–21), and 2) the end of the Millennium . These two are actually 1,000 years apart …
…is used of the judgment which concludes the Millennium (2 Pet. 3:10). As a thief …
Rev 1:1 …coming of Jesus Christ (chaps. 6–19), the Millennium and final judgment (chap. 20), and the …
…of the King (19:1–21) D. The Millennium (20:1–10) E. The Great White …
Rev 7:15 …God (see note on 11:19). During the Millennium there will also be a temple on …
Rev 11:4 …ministry points toward Israel’s final restoration in the Millennium ). two olive trees and the two lampstands. …
Rev 12:9 …the bottomless pit at the end of the Millennium , he will briefly resume his deceitful ways (…
Rev 16:17 …on the rebellion at the end of the Millennium ; 20:7–10) and immediately precedes the …
Rev 19:9 …for the celebration of the final meal (the Millennium ). After that event, the new order comes …
Rev 20:2 …time. This view interprets OT prophecies of a Millennium as being fulfilled spiritually now in the …
Rev 20:8 …and its leader at the end of the Millennium . They were names of ancient enemies of …
…as taking place at the end of the Millennium . For the difference, see notes on Ezek. …
See Lk.13:29 and 14:15
Sermón: The Lord’s Last Súper
Matt 26:29 I tell you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it anew with you in my Father's kingdom." [Lk 22:18 …until the kingdom of God comes."]
(NBLH) "Les digo que desde ahora no beberé más de este fruto de la vid, hasta aquel día cuando lo beba nuevo con ustedes en el reino de Mi Padre." [Lk.22:18… hasta que venga el reino de Dios."]
1 Thess.4:14-17 Rapture
2 Thess.2:1-9 Tribulation Anti-christ
Rev.20:2,3,4,5,6,7 Millennial reign
The first half of Revelation 19 describes the marriage supper [19:9] of the Lamb; the last half describes the “supper of the great God” (19:17)
What is the purpose of the millennial kingdom?
it will be the fulfillment of God’s promises to Israel and to Christ (Ps. 2; Lk 1:30–33)
This kingdom will be a worldwide display of Christ’s glory, when all nature will be set free from the bondage of sin (Rom. 8:19–22). It will be the answer to the prayers of the saints, “Thy kingdom come!” It will also be God’s final demonstration of the sinfulness of sin and the wickedness of the human heart apart from God’s grace
19:7 Hebrew weddings consisted of 3 phases:
1) betrothal (often when the couple were children)
2) presentation (the festivities, often lasting several days, that preceded the ceremony)
3) the ceremony (the exchanging of vows).
The church was betrothed to Christ by His sovereign choice in eternity past (Eph. 1:4; Heb. 13:20) and will be presented to Him at the Rapture (John 14:1–3; 1 Thess. 4:13–18). The final supper will signify the end of the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (21:2).
While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so here (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:22–24), it ultimately expands to include all the redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book. 19:9 Blessed. .. those who are called. This is not the bride (the church) but the guests. The bride doesn’t get invited, she invites. These are those saved before Pentecost, all the faithful believers saved by grace through faith up to the birth of the church (Acts 2:1ff.). Though they are not the bride, they still are glorified and reign with Christ in the millennial kingdom. The guests also will include tribulation saints and believers alive in earthly bodies in the kingdom. So the church is the bride during the presentation feast in heaven, then comes to earth for the celebration of the final meal (the Millennium). After that event, the new order comes and the marriage is consummated (21:1,2). It is all true—the marriage will take place after judgment.
A wedding normally included 3 stages:
(1) the legal consummation of the marriage by the parents of the bride and of the groom, with the payment of the dowry;
(2) the bridegroom coming to claim his bride (Matt. 25:1-13 Parable of 10 Virgins);
(3) the wedding supper (Jn 2:1-11) which was a several-day feast following previous phase of wedding.
In Rev 19:9 “the wedding supper” is phase 3.
And the announcement coincides with the second coming of Christ. It would seem, therefore, that the wedding supper has not yet been observed. In fulfilling the symbol, Christ is completing phase 1 in the Church Age as individuals are saved. Phase 2 will be accomplished at the Rapture of the church, when Christ takes His bride to heaven, the Father’s house (John 14:1-3). Accordingly it would seem that the beginning of the Millennium itself will fulfill the symbolism of the wedding supper (gamos). It is also significant that the use of the word “bride” in 19:7 (gynē, lit., “wife, ”) implies that phase 2 of the wedding will have been completed and that all that remains is the feast itself. (The word commonly used for “bride” is nymphē; John 3:29; Rev. 18:23; 21:2, 9; 22:17.) All this suggests that the wedding feast is an earthly feast, which also corresponds to the illustrations of weddings in the Bible (Matt. 22:1-14; 25:1-13), and thus will take place on earth at the beginning of the Millennium.
Jewish weddings in that day were quite unlike weddings in the Western world.
1st there was an engagement, usually made by the parents when the prospective bride and groom were quite young. This engagement was binding and could be broken only by a form of divorce. Any unfaithfulness during the engagement was considered adultery.
2nd When the public ceremony was to be enacted, the groom would go to the bride’s house and claim her for himself.
3rd He would take her to his home for the wedding supper, and all the guests would join the happy couple. This feast could last as long as a week.
Today, the church is “engaged” to Jesus; and we love Him even though we have not seen Him (1 Peter 1:8). One day, He will return and take His bride to heaven (John 14:1–6; 1 Thes. 4:13–18). This being completed, the church will be ready to return to earth with her Bridegroom at the close of the Tribulation to reign with Him in glory (Luke 13:29; Matt. 8:11). Some believe that the entire Kingdom Age will be the “marriage supper.”