1,000 Years of Peace
You can be certain that it’s coming—an incredible millennium that will be ushered in after Christ’s return. And the devil doesn’t want you to know about it, his thousand-year prison sentence, because it reveals his true character. Indeed, Satan has concocted a counterfeit message for the millennium just to trick you! This is an awesome, fascinating study that could very well shake up everything you’ve heard. But now you can know the Bible’s amazing truths about the soon-coming 1,000 years!
1. What event begins this 1,000-year period?
“They lived [came alive] and reigned with Christ for a thousand years” (Revelation 20:4).
(For more on the subject of death, see Study Guide 10.)
Answer: A resurrection begins the 1,000-year period.
2. What is this resurrection called? Who will be raised in it?
“This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection” (Revelation 20:5, 6).
Answer: It is called the first resurrection. The saved—“blessed and holy” from all ages—will be raised in it.
3. The Bible says there are two resurrections. When is the second resurrection, and who will be raised in it?
“The rest of the dead [those who were not saved] did not live again until the thousand years were finished” (Revelation 20:5).
“All who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28, 29).
Answer: The second resurrection takes place at the close of the 1,000-year period. The unsaved will be raised in this resurrection. It is called the resurrection of condemnation.
Please notice: The resurrection of the saved begins the 1,000 years. The resurrection of the unsaved ends the 1,000 years.
4. What other momentous events take place when the 1,000 years begin?
“Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him” (Revelation 1:7).
“The Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout. … And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thessalonians 4:16, 17).
“There was a great earthquake, such a mighty and great earthquake as had not occurred since men were on the earth. … And great hail from heaven fell upon men, each hailstone about the weight of a talent” (Revelation 16:18, 21).
(See also Jeremiah 4:23–26; Isaiah 24:1, 3, 19, 20; Isaiah 2:21.)
Scholars’ estimates of the weight of a talent vary from 58 to 100 pounds!
Answer: Other momentous events that take place as the 1,000 years begin are: the most devastating earthquake and hailstorm in history strike the earth; Jesus returns in the clouds for His people; and all the saints are caught up into the air to meet Jesus.
(See Study Guide 8 for more on the second coming of Christ.)
5. What happens to the unsaved—living and dead—at Jesus’ second coming?
“With the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked” (Isaiah 11:4).
“When the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God” (2 Thessalonians 1:7, 8).
“Let the wicked perish at the presence of God” (Psalm 68:2).
“The rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished” (Revelation 20:5)
The living wicked will be slain by the brightness of Jesus’ second coming.
Answer: The living unsaved will be slain by the very presence of Christ at the second coming.
When an angel appeared at Jesus’ tomb, the entire group of Roman guards fell as dead men (Matthew 28:2, 4). When the brightness of all the angels, God the Father, and God the Son combine, the unsaved will die as if hit by lightning. The wicked already dead when Jesus returns will remain in their graves until the end of the 1,000 years.
6. Many believe the unsaved will have an opportunity to repent during the 1,000 years. What does the Bible say about this?
The righteous will be in heaven with Jesus during the 1,000 years.
“The slain of the Lord shall be from one end of the earth even to the other end of the earth. They shall not be lamented, or gathered, or buried; they shall become refuse on the ground” (Jeremiah 25:33).
“I beheld, and indeed there was no man” (Jeremiah 4:25).
Answer: It will be impossible for any person to repent during the 1,000 years because there will not be a person alive on the earth. The righteous will all be in heaven. All the wicked will be laying dead upon the earth. Revelation 22:11, 12 makes it clear that the case of every person is closed before Jesus returns. Those who wait to accept Christ until the 1,000 years begin will have waited too long.
The wicked will lay dead upon the earth during the 1,000 years.
7. The Bible says that Satan will be bound in the “bottomless pit” during the 1,000 years. What is this pit?
“I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit. …
He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he cast him into the bottomless pit … till the thousand years were finished” (Revelation 20:1–3).
Answer: The word for “bottomless pit” in the original Greek is “abussos,” or abyss. That same word is used in Genesis 1:2 in the Greek version of the Old Testament in connection with the creation of the earth, but there it is translated “deep.” “The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep.” The words “deep,” “bottomless pit,” and “abyss” here refer to the same thing—the earth in its totally dark, disorganized form before God made order of it. Jeremiah, in describing this earth during the 1,000 years, used virtually the same terms as these in Genesis 1:2: “without form, and void,” “no light,” “no man,” and “black” (Jeremiah 4:23, 25, 28). So the battered, dark earth with no people alive will be called the bottomless pit, or abyss, during the 1,000 years, just as it was in the beginning before Creation was completed. Also, Isaiah 24:22 speaks of Satan and his angels during the 1,000 years as “gathered in the pit” and “shut up in the prison.”
8. What is the chain that binds Satan? Why is he bound?
“An angel … having … a great chain in his hand … laid hold of … Satan, and bound him for a thousand years … 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” (Revelation 20:1–3).
Answer: The chain is symbolic—a chain of circumstances. A super-natural being cannot be confined with a literal chain. Satan is “tied down” because he has no people to deceive. The unsaved are all dead and the saved are all in heaven. The Lord confines the devil to this earth so he cannot roam the universe hoping to find someone to deceive. Forcing the devil to stay on the earth, alone with his demons for a thousand years with no one to deceive, will be for him the most galling chain ever forged.
The earth, in a torn-up, darkened condition, is the “bottomless pit” where Satan will be forced to stay during the 1,000 years.
REVIEW THE EVENTS AT THE BEGINNING OF THE 1,000 YEARS:
- A devastating earthquake and hailstorm (Revelation 16:18–21)
- The second coming of Jesus for His saints (Matthew 24:30, 31)
- The saved dead raised to life (1 Thessalonians 4:16)
- The saved given immortality (1 Corinthians 15:51–55)
- The saved given bodies like Jesus (1 John 3:2; Philippians 3:20, 21)
- All the righteous caught up into the clouds (1 Thessalonians 4:17)
- The living wicked slain by the breath of the Lord’s mouth (Isaiah 11:4)
- The unsaved dead remain in their graves until the end of the 1,000 years (Revelation 20:5)
- Jesus takes the righteous to heaven (John 13:33, 36; 14:2, 3)
- Satan bound (Revelation 20:1–3)
9. Revelation 20:4 says there will be a judgment in heaven during the 1,000 years. What for? Who will participate?
“I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. … And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years” (Revelation 20:4).
“Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? … Do you not know that we shall judge angels?” (1 Corinthians 6:2, 3).
Answer: The saved from all ages (and probably even good angels) will participate in the judgment during the 1,000 years. The cases of all who are lost, including the devil and his angels, will be reviewed. This judgment will clear up any questions the saved might have about those who were lost.
In the end, all will see that people are shut out of heaven only if they did not really want to live like Jesus or to be with Him.
REVIEW OF THE EVENTS DURING THE 1,000 YEARS:
- The earth in a battered condition from huge hailstones and a devastating earthquake (Revelation 16:18–21)
- The earth in total blackout and desolate, a “bottomless pit” (Jeremiah 4:23, 28)
- Satan bound and forced to stay on the earth (Revelation 20:1–3)
- The righteous in heaven participate in the judgment (Revelation 20:4)
- The wicked are all dead (Jeremiah 4:25; Isaiah 11:4)
During the 1,000 years, every soul who has ever lived on earth will be in one of two places: (1) on the earth, dead and lost, or (2) in heaven, taking part in the judgment. The Lord invites you to be in heaven. Please accept His invitation!
10. At the close of the 1,000 years, the holy city, New Jerusalem, will come down from heaven to this earth. Who will come with it? Where will it settle?
The holy city, along with all God’s people, will descend to earth at the close of the 1,000 years.
“I … saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. … And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men’ ” (Revelation 21:2, 3).
“Behold, the day of the Lord is coming. … And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two. … Thus the Lord my God will come, and all the saints with You. … All the land shall be turned into a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem” (Zechariah 14:1, 4, 5, 10).
Answer: The New Jerusalem will settle where the mount of Olives now stands. The mountain will be flattened to make a great plain, upon which the city will come to rest. All of the righteous people of all ages (Zechariah 14:5), the angels of heaven (Matthew 25:31), God the Father (Revelation 21:2, 3),
and God the Son (Matthew 25:31) will return to the earth with the holy city for Jesus’ special third coming. The second coming will be for His saints, while the third will be with His saints.
Jesus’ Three Advents:
First coming to Bethlehem in a manger.
Second coming in the clouds at the beginning of the 1,000 years to take His people to heaven.
Third coming with the holy city and all righteous people at the close of the 1,000 years.
11. What will happen to the wicked dead at this time? How will this affect Satan?
“The rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. …
When the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out
to deceive the nations” (Revelation 20:5, 7, 8).
Answer: At the close of the 1,000 years (when Jesus comes the third time), the wicked will be raised. Satan, loosed from his bonds, will then have an earth full of people (all the nations of the world) to deceive.
12. What will Satan do then?
“Satan will … go out to deceive the nations … of the earth … to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city” (Revelation 20:7–9).
Answer: Satan, true to his nature, will immediately begin lying to the people left on the earth—the wicked from all ages. (For more information on the origin of Satan, see Study Guide 2.) He may claim that the city is really his, that he was unjustly deposed from the heavenly kingdom, that God is power hungry and ruthless. He will convince them that, if they unify, God does not have a chance. With the entire world against one city, victory will likely appear certain to them. The nations will then unite and marshal their armies to surround the New Jerusalem.
13. What will interrupt Satan’s plan to capture or destroy the city?
“Fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them. The devil, who deceived them, was cast into … the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 20:9, 10; 21:8).
“ ‘The wicked … shall be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day that I do this,’ says the Lord of hosts” (Malachi 4:3).
Answer: Fire will suddenly come down from heaven (not up from hell, as many believe) upon the wicked and all will be turned into ashes, including the devil and his angels (Matthew 25:41). This fire that destroys sin and sinners is called the second death. There is no resurrection from this death. It is final. Notice that the devil will not be tending the fire, as is commonly believed. He will be in it, and it will put him out of existence.
(For full information on this fire, sometimes called hell, see Study Guide 11. For information on death, see Study Guide 10.)
14. When the wicked are burned up and the fire goes out, what glorious, thrilling event will take place next?
“Behold, I create new heavens and a new earth” (Isaiah 65:17).
“Look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells” (2 Peter 3:13).
“He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new’ ” (Revelation 21:5).
“The tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God” (Revelation 21:3).
Answer: God will create new heavens and a new earth, and the New Jerusalem will be the capital city of the earth made new. Sin and its ugliness will be gone forever. God’s people will at long last receive the kingdom promised to them. “They shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away” (Isaiah 35:10). It’s simply too fabulous to describe and too glorious to miss! God has a place prepared there for you (John 14:1–3). Plan to live in it. Jesus is waiting for your consent. (For full information on heaven, see Study Guide 4.)
REVIEW THE EVENTS AT THE CLOSE OF THE 1,000 YEARS:
- Third coming of Jesus with His saints (Zechariah 14:5).
- Holy city settles on the Mount of Olives, which becomes a great plain (Zechariah 14:4, 10).
- The Father, His angels, and all of the righteous come with Jesus (Revelation 21:1–3; Matthew 25:31; Zechariah 14:5).
- The wicked dead are raised; Satan is loosed (Revelation 20:5, 7).
- Satan deceives the entire world (Revelation 20:8).
- The wicked surround the holy city (Revelation 20:9).
- The wicked are destroyed by fire (Revelation 20:9).
- New heavens and earth created (Isaiah 65:17; 2 Peter 3:13; Revelation 21:1).
- God’s people enjoy eternity with God on the new earth (Revelation 21:2–4).
15. Can we know how soon all these momentous events will take place?
“When you see all these things, know that it is near—at the doors!” (Matthew 24:33).
“When these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near” (Luke 21:28).
“He will finish the work and cut it short in righteousness, because the Lord will make a short work upon the earth” (Romans 9:28).
“When they say, ‘Peace and safety!’ then sudden destruction comes upon them” (1 Thessalonians 5:3).
Answer: Jesus said when the signs of His coming are being fulfilled rapidly, as they are today, we should rejoice and know that the end of this world of sin is near—even at the doors. And the apostle Paul said we can know the end is near when there is a great movement for peace in the world. Finally, the Bible says God will cut the work short (Romans 9:28). So without a doubt, we are living on borrowed time. While on earth, Jesus taught that the Lord will arrive suddenly and unexpectedly—at an hour known to no one, but to God the Father only (Matthew 24:36; Acts 1:7). Our only safety is to be ready now.
16. Jesus, who loves you very much, has prepared a place for you in His fantastic eternal kingdom. Are you making plans to live in that glorious home custom-built for you by Jesus Himself?
1. How long will the time period be from the day the holy city descends until the wicked are destroyed by fire from heaven?
The Bible says it will be a “little while” (Revelation 20:3). Enough time will be required for Satan to persuade people to follow his plan and prepare weapons of war. The exact length of time is not revealed in Scripture.
2. What kind of bodies will people have in God’s new kingdom?
The Bible says the redeemed will have bodies like that of Jesus (Philippians 3:20, 21). Jesus had a real body of flesh and bones after His resurrection (Luke 24:36–43). The saved will not be ghosts. They will be real people, just as Adam and Eve had real bodies.
3. Does the Bible say how the lost will react at Jesus’ second coming?
Yes. The Bible says they will cry “to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of His wrath has come, and who is able to stand?’ ” (Revelation 6:16, 17). (See also verses 14 and 15.) The righteous, on the other hand, will say, “Behold, this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He will save us. This is the Lord; we have waited for Him; we will be glad and rejoice in His
salvation” (Isaiah 25:9).
4. Will the wicked be able to see the righteous people who are inside the New Jerusalem?
We don’t know with certainty, but the Bible does say the city wall will be the see-through type—clear as crystal (Revelation 21:11, 18). Some believe that Psalm 37:34 and Luke 13:28 suggest the saved and the unsaved will be able to see each other.
5. The Bible says God will wipe away all tears from the eyes of His people and that there will be no more death, sorrow, or pain. When will this happen?
From Revelation 21:1–4 and Isaiah 65:17, it appears that this will happen after sin is cleansed from the earth. During the final judgment and destruction of sin by fire, God’s people will have many reasons for deep sorrow. As they realize that relatives and friends are lost and that people they loved are being destroyed in the fire, anguish will doubtless bring tears and heartache to God’s people. But after the fire goes out, the Lord will wipe away their tears. He will then create new heavens and a new earth for His people, which will bring them unspeakable joy and fulfillment. And sorrow, sadness, crying, and heartache will be forever gone. (For more on the heavenly home of God’s people, see Study Guide 4.)
6. How will the destruction of wicked angels and people affect God the Father and His Son?
Doubtless they will be relieved and overjoyed that the ugly cancer of sin is gone forever and that the universe is forever secure. But just as certain, they will also experience deep sadness over the fact that so many of those they love—and for whom Jesus died—chose to cling to sin and reject salvation. Satan himself was once their friend, and many people in the fire were once their dearly beloved children. It will be like the agony of seeing one of your own errant children killed. Sin has been a crushing load upon both Father and Son since its inception. Their aim has been to love people and gently draw them to salvation. Their feelings are expressed in Hosea 11:8, which says, “How can I give you up, Ephraim? How can I hand you over, Israel? … My heart churns within Me; My sympathy is stirred.”
7. What kind of body does Jesus have?
He has a body of flesh and bones. After His resurrection, Jesus appeared to His disciples (Luke 24:36–43) and demonstrated that He was flesh and bones by having them feel His body and by eating some fish and honey.
He then walked with them to Bethany and, as He finished conversing with them, ascended to heaven (Luke 24:50, 51). The angel who appeared to the disciples as Jesus ascended explained, “This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11).
This Same Jesus Will Return
The angel’s emphasis was that this same Jesus (of flesh and bones) will come again. He will be real, not ghostly, and the risen saints will have bodies like His (Philippians 3:20, 21; 1 John 3:2). The saints’ new bodies will also be incorruptible and immortal (1 Corinthians 15:51–55).
1. Mark the events that will take place at the beginning of the 1,000 years of Revelation chapter 20:
Please select 10 correct answers
2. Every living person on earth will see Jesus at His second coming.
3. The righteous will have ghost-like bodies in heaven.
4. Which of the following items are true about the 1,000-year period?
Please select 2 correct answers
5. Which of the following are true regarding the events at the close of the 1,000-year period?
Please select 4 correct answers
6. The chain that binds Satan will
Please select 3 correct answers
7. Which statements are true of the bottomless pit?
Please select 2 correct answers
8. Which items are true about the first, second, and third comings of Jesus?
Please select 3 correct answers