« PreviousContinue »
3 and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and
cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand
years should be fulfilled : and after that he must 4 be loosed a little season. And I saw thrones,
and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them : and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands;
and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand 5 years. But the rest of the dead lived not again 6 until the thousand years were finished. This is
the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection : on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.
Second Stage of the General Judgment, or Second
Resurrection and Second Death.
The thousand years being expired, sin and wickedness again appear with the resurrection of the rest of the dead, the wicked, who after a short period of their revival, being deluded by the devil, come up against the beloved city, Gog and Magog for number, and are devoured by
fire from heaven, when the last enemy, death, altogether ceases, Messiah gives up his kingdom to the Father, and God becomes all in all. These are they who have no part in the city; “for without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.” Rev. xxii. 15. These are the worshippers of the seven headed beast, or men, who have conformed to this world under all its different governments or empires, for "all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world," whom, they who have part in the first resurrection, do not worship. “Upon the wicked he shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup." Ps. xi. 6. “ And they shall go forth, and look upon the carcases of the men that have transgressed against me ; for their worm shall not die, neither shall their fire be quenched; and they shall be an abhorring unto all flesh." Isa. lxvi. 24. “ Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them,—are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.” Jude, 7.
And when the thousand years are expired, 8 Satan shall be loosed out of his prison. And
shall go out to deceive the nations, those in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the
And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came
down from God out of heaven, and de10 voured them. And the devil that deceived them
was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone,where the beast and the false prophet are; and they
shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever *.
With the destruction of the devil the drama of prophecy ends. The succeeding portion of the Apocalypse, with regard to the new heaven, new earth, and the general judgment, is nothing more than the generalisation of what has just been stated with regard to the resurrection of the saints at the commencement, and of the wicked or the Gog and Magog at the end of the 1,000 years, as we have before explained at p. xxii. of the Prolegomena. The Beast and false Prophet, or civil jurisdiction over religious opinions and all human authority in religious matters, being abolished, the devil, or all false representations of things, all intellectual as well as moral error by which we see but in part, and prophesy but in part, vanish before the coming of him who is perfect, the true ark, Rev. xi. 19, when that which is in part is done away, and we no longer see through the false niedium of a glass darkly by reflection, but face to face, for unless truth come, the great Deceiver cannot be bound down. As to rise out of the bottomless pit, as in the case of the Beast, means to start into existence, so to be cast into the abyss means to be put an end to, though it seems with the possibility of reviving. The nations or Gentiles being the rest of the dead, are not deceived during the thousand years, because the rest of the dead do not exist till their expiration, the holy city being no longer trodden in by them, but all those that destroyed the earth being themselves destroyed in turn. Rev. xi. 18. In the general view which follows, of the events which happen during the 1,000 years and the short season succeeding, the separate rise of the wicked is expressed by the known symbol of the sea, or the world, or Gentiles giving up the dead which are in it, and the rise of both wicked and good by the figure of Death, the state of the bad dead, and Hades, the state of the good dead, giving up the dead which are in them; that which happens first being put last according to a method not unusual in prophecy as may be witnessed in the celebrated prophecy of Gen, üi. 15, to which we may also add Rev.xi. 19, with respect to the appearance of the ark before the hail, and also Rev.xiii. 10, as explained pp. 180, 181: And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; both Death and Hades delivered up the dead which were in them. Hades is first cast into the lake of fire or put an end to, when the good dead rise who live for ever. Death must be put an end to, when Gog and Magog are destroyed by the fire from heaven, which is called the second death, the same lake of fire with which our Lord appears, to destroy the Beast and false Prophet, according to Luke xvii. 29, 30; 2 Thess. i. 7, 8, 9; ii. 8; Ezek. xxxviii. 22. When the new heaven and earth, the new Jerusalem or beloved city, descends with our Lord at the commencement of the 1,000 years, there is no more sea or Gentiles who tread in the beloved city, i. e. enterinto the new social system, though at the end of the 1,000 years there is the sea, or Gentiles in the four quarters of the earth, without the city. “ For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.” With these the great deceiver, the author of all kinds of intellectual and moral deception, again appears, who is soon cast into the lake of fire for ever, with his adherents, there to be tormented with perpetual infamy throughout all ages, where also the false system of the Beast and false Prophet had long ago lost their character among the elect.
THE SEVENTH VISION
THE GENERAL JUDGMENT, NEW HEAVEN AND EARTH,
OR NEW JERUSALEM.
THE FIRST AND SECOND RESURRECTION, AND SECOND
The General Judgment.
The false church and her daughters being overthrown, and the Bride prepared, or whole number of saints made up for their mystic union and glorification with Christ by their resurrection, the sudden arrival of their Lord to the marriage takes place; at whose appearing the reign of evil passes away, and judgment begins. For he “ shall judge the quick and dead at his appearing and his kingdom.” 2 Tim. iv. 1. All are made to pass in review before the judgment seat of Christ; and the first or second resurrection alone determines the final separation of the sheep from the goats. The Millennium marks the distance of time between the execution of the two sentences; and while to the church, it is only the commencement of a happy eternity, over whose first resurrection the second death hath no power, to those who forget God in this world, it is but an awful respite to their future destruction. For these having risen to shame and everlasting contempt at the end of the 1000 years, when the door is shut, and the marriage solemnized, bring upon themselves their own condemnation by their unwarranted attack on the bride, the beloved city; and the horrible tempest is rained upon them, as a just punishment for their indomitable insurbordination. Then Death and Hades, or the intermediate states of bad and good, are both put an end to; and those not written in the book of life are put an end to with them. “When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: and before bim shall be gathered all nations; and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats : and he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall the king say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the beginning of the world.--Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels.—And these away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.” Matt. xxv. 31-34. " For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: that all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father.”_" For as the Father hath life in himself, so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; and hath given him authority to execiite judgment also, because he is the Son of man. Marvel not át this: for the hour is coming in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” John, v. 22, 23, 26—29.