The Thousand Year Reign: Revelation 20:1-20:15

Revelation 20:1-5 "Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while.
 
Here we are taken back to the beginning of the thousand year reign when Satan was bound. From that moment he was no longer able to deceive the nations. This is why the everlasting gospel was able to be read and preached in the Reformation. Satan is thrown into the bottomless pit, he is shut up and sealed for a thousand years. He doesn't wander around on a desolate earth for a thousand years, he is incarcerated during that time. SDA theology on this subject is wanting mainly due to their interpretation of the battle of Armageddon. The current theology is that Satan gathers the nations together, the new Jersualem descends to this earth and God then shows his face to the world destroying all the wicked in the process. Satan then wanders aimlessly around on a desolate earth for those thousand years. The main problem with this theology is that the final battle happens after the thousand years, not before, and it is situated around the old holy city of Jeruslaem not the New Jerusalem. When Satan is released there are people of all nations present on earth, (see Revelation 20:7 below and Revelation chapter 21 for confirmation).
 
Revelation 20:4-6 "And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years."
 
The twelve Apostles sat on thrones and judged the children of Israel, (Matthew 19:28, Luke 22:28-30). The one hundred and forty-four thousand Israelites were all beheaded for their testimony. They had not worshiped the Roman Empire or his image, Britain and the Church of England, and had not received the mark of the beast by having their doctrines in their minds or by doing the work of either. The one hundred and forty-four thousand were resurrected from the dead and lived and are reigning with Christ in heaven right now. But the rest of the dead, people from all nations, tribes, peoples and tongues, won't be resurrected and LIVE again until after the thousand years have finished. That was the first resurrection.
 
The SDA theology states that the first ressurection is only for the righteous and the second only for the wicked, but the Bible never actually says this. There are two resurrections for the righteous, one for the Israelites and one for the Gentiles. This theme is repeated through out the Revelation. The second death has no power over the one hundred and forty-four thousand who are now camped in Jerusalem with the Lord. The second death is the lake of fire, Jerusalem, after the cleansing of the sanctuary c.2370 AD, (see The 2300 Day Prophecy ).
 
Revelation 20:7-10 "Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison. And will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sands of the sea. They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever."
 
Here we are told that Satan is released after the thousand years have finished, not before. SDA theology states that Satan roams about on a desolate earth during the thousand year reign. But this verse tells us that Satan is bound and he only roams around the earth after he his released from his prison. He will then go out to deceive the whole earth again and gather the kings of the earth to battle. This also confirms that the earth is not desolate during the thousand year reign because there are people present on earth when Satan is released. Gog are people from the far north of Israel, Europe, (Ezekiel 38:15). Magog are the people of the coastlands, (Ezekiel 39:6).
 
The kings of the earth and their armies will surround the city of Jerusalem where our Lord and His army are camped. The armies of the earth are then destroyed by fire from heaven. The beast and the false prophet are thrown into the lake of fire. Satan is then captured and he is cast into the lake of fire as well. The three are tormented day and night by the eternal fire which lasts forever and ever. This is just and righteous because Satan accused the brethren in heaven, day and night, before he was cast to earth.
 
Revelation 20:11-15 “Then the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to their works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire."
 
Notice that after the final battle, which occurs after the thousand years, there is the second resurrection of the dead, the great multitude. Then we have the final judgment of these nations. Anyone not found written in the Book of Life is thrown into the lake of fire and they suffer an immediate second death. All of the people who are resurrected after the thousand years have finished will be judged. Both good and bad will be judged by according to what they have done during their lives. Many SDA theolgians tell us that those raised in the last resurrection are only the wicked, but the Bible never actually declares this. If these people were just the wicked why would God bother judging them? Instead we see a judgement where people's names are either written or not written in the Book of Life. Those not found written in the Book of Life are thrown into the lake of fire. Then Death and Hades are thrown in as well, there will be no more deaths from this point onwards. We are told the lake of fire is the second death. Those not found written in the Lamb's Book of Life will receive their final judgment and a second eternal death. Those who are found written in the Lamb's Book of Life will inherit eternal salvation and will stand on the sea of glass with the great multitude. Notice again that this occurs after the thousand year reign, not before it.