Introduction: If the titles of our lessons get any longer, we can just
study the title and forget the lesson! This week we enter an area that
is among the most disputed in Christianity. Does Christ come before
or after the millennium? Does He come before or after the
tribulation? Where are the righteous during the millennium? When is
evil destroyed? When does the new earth start? These are large issues
for one lesson, so let’s jump in and see what the Bible says!
- The Righteous and the Millennium
- Read Revelation 20:4-6. How many resurrections did we
discuss last week (Two)
- In which resurrection did you decide you wanted to be?
(The first because the second death (eternal death)
has no power over those who rise in the first
- Does the resurrection of the righteous come before or after
the 1,000 years (the millennium) according to these verses?
- Are these people who (v.4) “come to life and reign
with Christ” for the millennium all or just some of
the righteous? (Read 1 Corinthians 6:1-3. We are told
“the saints” (not just some of them) will not only
judge the world, they will judge angels.)
- Let’s take stock. You say the righteous are raised
before the millennium, and they spend the 1,000 years
as judges. Who are the righteous judging during the
millennium (other than angels)? Are they judging
- Isn’t the idea of the righteous judging “the
world” contrary to Acts 17:31 and John 5:22 where
we are told that Jesus will judge us?
- Can both Jesus and the righteous be judges?
- What are the righteous judging? On what are they
supposed to be passing judgment? (Revelation
20:12 and 15 tell us that there are two “destiny”
books. In one, the book of life, are written the
names of the righteous. Revelation 3:5 tells us
the names of those written in the book of life
are “acknowledged” by Jesus before the Father and
the heavenly angels. The “other book” records the
deeds of the lost. The righteous thus seem to be
judging those whose names are written in the
“other book,” not the book of life.)
- Why are the righteous judging the lost? (In the
American system of justice we have “appellate
courts” who review the decisions of “trial
judges.” The appellate judges supposedly have
limited review, but their job is to decide if the
decision below was correct. Jesus wants the
righteous to concur with His decision. I assume
this is particularly important for the loved ones
of the righteous whose names are not written in
the book of life.)
- What kind of time will this be? Will the
righteous be sad because they will think of
something they could have done to “turn
things around?” (This assumes unsound
theology. Do you really think the eternal
fate of someone else turns on your efforts?
What if you are a lazy slob? Should my
salvation depend on the extent of your
laziness? Is that how salvation works –
your fate is in the hands of others?)
- I know parents who refuse to acknowledge
the faults and sins of their children.
Everyone else on earth is responsible for
their children’s failures. What about
those kinds of people? Will they come away
from their judging angry? (This whole
concept of review makes clear that we will
see that everyone had multiple
opportunities to choose life. We will see
that God has been more than fair.)
- The Wicked and the Millennium.
- Where is Satan during the millennium? Let’s look at
Revelation 20:1-3, 7-9.
- Satan is “chained” in the locked and sealed “Abyss” or
“prison” for the 1,000 years. What is this place?
- If you answer, “the destroyed earth,” how can
Satan’s sealed prison be the same as (vv. 7-8)
his place of release? (Satan’s prison is a place
where he cannot deceive people (v.3). Since verse
5 tells us the wicked dead (second resurrection
people) did not come to life until AFTER the
millennium, a reasonable reading of this is that
Satan’s “release” is really the restoration of
the wicked. He gets returned to “population.”
Thus Satan and his angels ( Jude 1:6, 2 Peter 2:4)
spend the millennium in a destroyed earth
( Revelation 6:14-17) where all the wicked are
- After the millennium, when Satan and his angels are
released, and the wicked brought to life again, what do they
do? Let’s read again Revelation 20:7-10.
- What is the “city He loves?” (Compare Revelation 21:1-3 which pictures the New Jerusalem coming down to
earth from heaven. This makes it appear Satan and his
followers are attacking the New Jerusalem.)
- Why does God allow this attack?
- What is the final end of the wicked? (The second death
is being devoured by fire.)
- I’ve told you this is a highly disputed area in
Christianity. Does the sequence matter?
- Where do you want to be in all this? Does the sequence spur
you to be part of the first resurrection?
- We sometimes get the picture of Heaven and the New Earth as
a time when we are idly floating around on clouds – harp in
hand. Put yourself in the New Jerusalem as Satan and the
wicked are about to launch an all-out, final attack. Is this
- When you see the armies of the wicked assault the New
Jerusalem, when the destruction of the wicked comes,
will you be morally certain God is right? (I think
this is the reason for allowing the attack.)
- Read Revelation 19:1. Will this be your response?
- Second Chance?
- Some teach that the millennium is a time of second chances
for the lost. Is this true?
- If the wicked are rallied to attack the New Jerusalem,
isn’t this the opportunity for some to repent?
- Will some say, “Hey I’ve read the book. This is not a
- Does the sequence of Revelation 20:5-9 allow for second
chances? (Notice v.8 says that Satan is still deceiving
people. Somehow he will convince those who “have read the
book” this is their only hope – which it is!)
- Read Revelation 22:11-12. What does this teach about the
timing of second chances? When is the time for “our chance”
to turn to God?
- Friend, I want to be inside the walls of the New Jerusalem.
I want to be a citizen of the city that Jesus loves. If you
want that too, ask Jesus to forgive you of your sins, cover
you with His robe of righteousness and guide you to walk in
His way of life.
- NEXT WEEK: God Reveals His Righteousness