Stephen Whitsett BA
Giving an orthodox apologetic answer for Preterism / Dispensationalism
Rev 20.1 Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, holding in his hand the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain. 2And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, 3and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were ended. After that he must be released for a little while.
4Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. 5The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended. This is the first resurrection. 6Blessed and holy is the one who shares in the first resurrection! Over such the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and they will reign with him for a thousand years.
7And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison 8and will come out to deceive the nations that are at the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them for battle; their number is like the sand of the sea. 9And they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, 10and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
Why is it literal?
The Book of Revelation is about a series of real events, not spiritual ones. There is a real satan, a real beast, real armies, and so forth why do we all of a sudden comes to the 1000 years and assume it’s a spiritual time period?
Why a thousand years? Well we understand John knows how to count.
Rev 11.13 And at that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake,
So what leads us to believe the 1000 is not a 1000?
Common sense is telling us these 1000 years is different or why specifically say a thousand if nothing is different from any other time before? What makes these 1000 years special?
(1) Satan is locked up in a prison, with a great chain, thrown into a pit, its shut up, and sealed up over it.
2And he seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years, 3and threw him into the pit, and shut it and sealed it over him, so that he might not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were ended. 7And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison
The language could not be any clearer nor is the language figurative for “binding”, his freedom is taken away.
Being chained up, thrown into a pit and sealed up, is a prison, Verse 8
calls it a prison. Since when is someone who is in prison allowed to run
amok and deceive the nations?
(2) Christ returns to earth and rules on the earth. Zechariah 14 states, “Then the LORD my God will come, and all the holy ones with him… 4On that day his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives that lies before Jerusalem on the east, 9And the LORD will be king over all the earth. On that day the LORD will be one and his name one.
At Christ return we said three things happen, the Beast is killed and thrown alive into the lake, the dead are raised into their bodies,
and those who are alive are changed.- we ask why? Why do you need a body? Why would those who were alive be changed into a new body? Why would
we need to be gathered to him which is obviously Jerusalem?
“and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city”
The thousand years is when those who were killed by the beast and all Christians are vindicated as we will rule and reign with him from Jerusalem. We now live in a world where Christian are hated and ridiculed where we are laughed at for believing in a fairy tale. When Christ appears and the fairy tale story is real and then he lives with men again and rules from the throne of David in Jerusalem every man is without excuse. We will be vindicated before the world of the ungodly. Isaiah describes life during this time as a period of healing and restoration.
That's why we need our glorified bodies, to rule and reign with Him
“17 no weapon that is fashioned against you shall succeed,
and you shall refute every tongue that rises against you in judgment.
This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD
and their vindication from me, declares the LORD.”
25The wolf and the lamb shall graze together;
the lion shall eat straw like the ox,
and dust shall be the serpent’s food.
They shall not hurt or destroy
in all my holy mountain,”
says the LORD.
Most importantly we understand this time period is when the world will see Christ as being true, no more living by faith as we will see him as he is and know him and live with him. We who were either once dead or changed now live in the glorified spiritual body for a thousand years on the earth under its curse BUT we being set free will no longer face sickness or disease and we become the hope of those who will be born and die.
It is when the thousand years are over satan is released and again deceives the nations that we understand the evilness of deception, deception is a choice to believe that which is NOT true. When we have the evidence before our very eyes and yet people reject what they see, know, and understand the evilness of deception is exposed.