Part 4a - The Second Scroll: The End of the Age and the New Creation [20-22:5]

note: these are very brief notes

  • This section is expanding on the very last few events of the victory of God
    • But takes us further into the future than any other visions
  1. The Dragon: subdued for 1000 years [20:1-6]
  2. The Dragon: released, fights, and is thrown into lake of fire [20:7-10]
  3. Great white throne. The dead are judged [20:11-15]
    • Judgement —for believers this is not on works but on what Christ has done for us
  • See the chart for where these things might fit

The Millennium

  • 3 possible interpretations:
    1. Premillenialism: between Christ’s coming and the judgment, we have another thousand years.
      • Disadvantages:
        • throws a monkey wrench into the timing—it doesn’t fit with the rest of the scheme. In the rest of Revelation, Jesus comes and then immediately there is judgment
        • according to the theory Jesus is reigning on earth for a thousand years, but at the end of this time everyone is against him. Not what we would expect!
        • we’ve already had the saints reigning—they’ve already been resurrected. it doesn’t make sense if they get raised again here.
        • a lot of coming and going from the abyss—Satan falls and rises twice in this scheme
      • Advantages
        • most straightforward reading of the text
        • seems to fit better with end-time promises in OT books—the lion lying with the lamb, etc.
    2. Amillennialism—the events of the thousand years are another statement of history from Christ’s coming to the end. Satan cast down is the same as chapter 12, when Jesus came. Satan loosed is the Great Tribulation, whereas he was bound before. A period of protection, then great persecution.
      • Advantages
        • makes all the timing simpler and cleaner—several things only happen once instead of twice, which seems to make more sense and fit in better
      • Disadvantages
        • needs a major section break at the start of chapter 20 so that we can return to the beginning of the era
    3. Postmillenialism (a variation of the timing of Amillenialism—the world gets better and better and more Christian until Jesus comes and practically everyone is saved. (e.g. Reconstructionism)]
  • Bottom line:
    • don’t get caught up in this argument—it makes very little practical difference. The sequence of events throughout the whole books is almost exactly the same whichever position you take. Christians have got caught up arguing and fighting and dividing over this issue which is such a minor one that it is pathetic and terrible to make it a big deal.
    • see chart of sequence of events
  1. A new heaven and a new earth [21:1]
  2. A bride adorned for her husband. “Behold, I am making all things new!” [21:2-8]
  3. The beauty of the city (the wife of the Lamb) [21:9-27]
    • there is no temple because Jesus is there, he dwells in the city so he is with us and in us
    • gold and precious stones is US. WE are the city, this is not where we will live.
    • this is new Eden imagery. Eden was described with precious stones, and the presence of God was there
      • Similar language was used to describe Solomon’s temple, which is a picture of the church, the people of God
    • But in Eden there were only two people—now there is a city
      • The new creation will be unimaginably more amazing than even Eden
    • Just as Adam was given a task in Eden, we will be called into new destinies and responsibilities
    • Picture language has to be used to describe the new creation because there is something about it that is totally out of our comprehension in its wonder and glory
  4. The River of Life [22:1-5]
    • [21:22]—the Father and Jesus are mentioned, but where is the Holy Spirit? [22:1,2]—the River of Life maybe symbolizes the Holy Spirit.
    • He flows through the city, so he is flowing through US, in an unlimited amount.
    • will there be animals in heaven? Rom. 8 says the whole creation groans and longs for its redemption.
      • Probably, but we can’t be sure. Anyway, it will be good!

Updated on 2011-05-27 by Andrew Fountain -