Copyright 1994 - 2018 Bill's Bible Basics
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Published On :
June 18, 1998
Last Updated :
February 22, 2012
Mockers Of The Endtime, Survivors Of Magog, Satan's Final Judgment, Great White Throne Judgment, Second Resurrection, Second Death And Lake Of Fire, New Heavens And New Earth, No Survivors, Baptismal Fire, Destroy Not The Earth!, Isaiah's Millennial Prophecies?, A Tough Reign, The Millennium In The Gospels, Millennial Priesthood, The Prophecy Regarding John
This is precisely one criticism which modern atheistic man is constantly using against the Lord. Because of their own haughtiness and deluded state, some people accuse God of being some kind of a blood-thirsty, unfeeling monster. In their folly, they blaspheme Him daily saying that He is nothing but a power-hungry megalomaniac. In my dealings with people across the Internet, and in other message forums, I am constantly confronted with this kind of mentality. These people have absolutely no fear of the Lord whatsoever. It leaves me absolutely dumbfounded when I read how blatant they are in their defiance of the Lord. There are many who say in their hearts, "If I were in control, that isn't how I would run things"; and on and on they go with their crude and unfounded criticisms of the Lord. Either that, or they deny the Lord's existence altogether and put their faith in modern science and technology. Truly, these ignorant souls are fulfilling many ancient prophecies such as the following:
"Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation."
2 Peter 3:3-4, KJV
From a straight reading of the above Scriptures, it is impossible to tell exactly how many will actually follow Satan in this final battle between Good and Evil. All we are told is that "the number of whom is as the sand of the sea". This must truly represent a great number; but we must ask ourselves if it actually means everyone living on the Earth at that time. Personally, while I would like to believe that there will be many who will be found worthy of Eternal Life during this one thousand year period, I am not yet convinced that this will be the case. Considering the Lord's direct Rule and Reign on the Earth, we must ask ourselves how could they not accept Him? If we use the Battle of Armageddon as a model, we could assume that not everyone will go to fight against the Lord and His children in this final battle, just as not everyone will go to fight in the coming Battle of Armageddon either. You may recall that in Matthew chapter twenty-four, the Lord said that it will only be His Second Coming which will prevent the destruction of all flesh:
"And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened."
Matthew 24:22, KJV
It doesn't make sense to me that the Lord would save a part of humanity by His Second Coming, just to destroy them all a short time later during the Battle of Armageddon; so again, I don't believe that everyone is going to be killed during this soon-coming confrontation in the Middle East. Only those who participate directly in the Battle will be destroyed. There will be many other people still left alive in the world following the conclusion of this Battle. But the question still remains; will this final Battle of Magog one thousand years later follow the exact same pattern? This is all directly related to my personal views concerning Salvation. From my personal study of the Holy Scriptures, I am convinced that the Lord won't be satisfied until as many as can be saved, will be saved, for as the Apostle Peter wrote:
"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
2 Peter 3:9, KJV
However, at the same time, it is important that we keep things in proper balance by comparing Scripture with Scripture; thus, let us also not forget the Lord's own admonition when He said the following in the Gospel of Matthew:
"Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."
Matthew 7:13-14, KJV
Nevertheless, we must also realize that at some point, just as we parents do with our children, the Lord simply has to draw the line and finally say, "Look folks; this is it. You have had ample opportunity to repent of your unbelief and accept the Truth. Now the time has arrived to punish the incorrigibles". So will there be survivors from the Battle of Gog and Magog? Keep reading and you will find out what I currently believe. The Apostle John then tells us that following this Post-Millennial battle in which the wicked of the Earth are destroyed by Celestial Fire, Satan finally reaps his judgment as well and is cast into the Lake of Fire:
"And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever."
Revelation 20:10, KJV
Following Satan's judgment, we are given a view of the Celestial Throne as the Books of Records are opened, along with the Book of Life. It is at this time that the final resurrection of the dead occurs. As you will recall, John earlier described this resurrection of the remaining dead as the Second Resurrection:
"And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works."
Revelation 20:11-13, KJV
Almost two thousand years ago, Jesus spoke of this very same event in the Gospel of John when He said the following:
"Marvel not at 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 5:28-29, KJV
According to my understanding, this event represents the final judgment of everyone who has ever lived on the Earth since it was first created, except for certain individuals. To be more specific, it includes all of those people who lived during the first four thousand years of Earth's history who were not resurrected at the time of Jesus' own Resurrection -- please refer to Matthew 27:51-53 -- as well as those who will have lived for the two thousand years since Jesus' Resurrection to our current day, who will not have partaken in the First Resurrection of the Saints at the Lord's Second Coming. I believe it will also include all of those who will live during the final one thousand years of the Millennium. In short, the Second Resurrection will be for everyone who hasn't already accepted the Lord and been resurrected or changed previously.
This event is commonly referred to as the Great White Throne Judgment; or as most people know it, Judgment Day. During this event, people will either be deemed worthy of Eternal Life, or else they will be cast into the lake burning with fire and brimstone. John refers to this as the Second Death. For a more in-depth look at the Second Death and the Lake Of Fire, please refer to the article "Hell, the Lake Of Fire and Universalism":
"And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."
Revelation 20:14-15, KJV
"But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."
Revelation 21:8, KJV
What is also interesting to note about the Final Judgment scenario is that we are told that "the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them". We find a similar phrase used in the prophecies of Daniel where we read the following:
"Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshingfloors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth."
Daniel 2:35, KJV
Based upon this verse, as well as a few others, this phrase seems to imply total destruction. The Apostle Peter likewise vividly describes the destruction of the current Earth and the atmospheric heavens during the Great White Throne Judgment when he writes:
"But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men . . . But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness."
2 Peter 3:7, 10-13, KJV
It is right after this that the Apostle John launches into the final two chapters of the book of Revelation where he describes the wonderful New Earth and the New Heaven, and the beautiful Heavenly City, New Jerusalem, which will descend upon the pure New Earth:
"And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband."
Revelation 21:1-2, KJV
This returns us to a question I posed earlier. If the Old Earth and the Old Heaven are destroyed at the time of the Great White Throne Judgment, what happens to those who are still dwelling on the Earth at the end of the Millennium, that is, after the Battle of Gog and Magog when Satan is cast into the Lake of Fire, and the wicked are burned up? As shocking as this may be for you, it appears to me that perhaps there are absolutely no survivors! In other words, it seems that the world will be so evil, and so full of darkness in its final hours, in spite of the Reign of the Lord and His Saints, that everyone will participate in the Battle of Gog and Magog! It is for this reason that the Lord will send down fire to suddenly destroy them all; just as He sent the Flood in Noah's day to destroy the entire Earth:
"Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water."
1 Peter 3:20, KJV
While this may be hard to accept, at this current time, I simply find no other Scriptural way to reconcile the fact that there is no mention of any survivors following the Battle of Gog and Magog. The Lord destroyed them all once before by water; and it appears that He will do it once again by fire.
There are some very deep concepts here concerning baptism. First, we have the Earth being baptized and reborn by water in the days of Noah; next we have John preaching repentance and baptizing with water; and finally we have our physical birth being represented by water in John chapter three. Following a similar parallel, first we find mention of our birth of the Spirit in John chapter three; next we have Jesus baptizing with the fire of the Holy Ghost in Acts chapter two; and finally, we have the Earth being baptized and reborn by fire at the time of the Great White Throne Judgment. Considering these things, it might very well be that Peter's description of the destruction of the Earth and the atmospheric heavens by intense fire is exactly what John is referring to when he says that the Lord will send down fire from Heaven. This destruction by fire will not only destroy the final generation of the wicked during the Battle of Gog and Magog, but it may also be the catalyst which results in the birth of a New Heaven and a New Earth following the Great White Throne Judgment.
This brings us to another possible reason for the Millennium; and that is that it will serve as a very vivid example to all of humankind of how not to do things, and how not to destroy the Earth. Remember, prior to the Lord's Coming, not only will the Earth be ravaged by human warfare, quite possibly nuclear in nature, chemical pollutants, etc., but it will also be the target of the Seven Plagues/Vials of Wrath which include a third of the grass and trees being burned up, great earthquakes, the rivers and oceans being polluted and turned into blood, etc. In short, the Earth will be a physical wreck as we enter the age of the Millennium; and it may possibly remain that way for some time to come as a grim reminder of the sins and rebellion of mankind against his Creator. In the eleventh chapter of the Book of Revelation, we are told that those who destroy the Earth will also be destroyed by the Lord:
"And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth."
Revelation 11:18, KJV
While doing some Scriptural research for this series, I discovered that some of the verses which some people have erroneously attributed to the Millennium, may not apply to the Millennium whatsoever, but rather to the New Heavens and the New Earth at the termination of the Millennium. Allow me to pose another interesting question for you: Why would the Lord revitalize the surface of the Millennial Earth just to destroy it a thousand years later? It doesn't make very much sense, does it? Some of the verses commonly used to describe the Millennial Period are taken from Isaiah chapters eleven and sixty-five. Allow me to share a few of them with you:
"The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice' den. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea."
Isaiah 11:6-9, KJV
"The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD."
Isaiah 65:25, KJV
Allow me to bring several points to your attention. First of all, please notice that all of the animals mentioned here are herbivores, and that they don't harm each other or man. What is the only time in the entire history of the world when such a situation has existed? It was only in the very beginning when the Earth was young and new. It was only before the fall of man. During the Millennium, humankind will still be in a fallen state. If this weren't so, then the Lord's Rule with a Rod of Iron would be totally unnecessary, wouldn't it? Following are several more verses from both the Old and the New Testaments which mention this Rod Of Iron:
"Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel."
Psalms 2:9, KJV
"And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne."
Revelation 12:5, KJV
"And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God."
Revelation 19:15, KJV
The above Scriptures are a clear picture of the Lord smiting the Earth and beating the nations and people into submission to His will. It is not the pretty Millennial picture of nice men, women and children playing with lions and other wild beasts such as we find in the magazines of certain churches, denominations and organizations. Based upon what I have personally discovered through an honest study of the Holy Scriptures, I can only conclude that that is a totally false picture. The Millennium is going to be tough work for we the Saints of the Most High God under our Lord and King, Jesus Christ. We are going to have one thousand years in order to try to undo the damage of the past six thousand years; but sadly we already know exactly how it is going to end; with the Battle of Gog and Magog! Therefore, these people who survive Armageddon are not going to deserve the pretty picture described above. As I will prove without a shadow of a doubt in a minute, the above verses from Isaiah are describing the New Heavens and the New Earth reserved only for the Lord's faithful Believers.
Now let me draw your attention to another point in those verses from the Prophet Isaiah. Notice the mention of the words "my holy mountain". Is this phrase referring to the physical Earthly Mount Zion, that is, to Jerusalem? In my opinion, definitely not! As I have already shown in this article, as well as in my two-part article "Revelation's Babylon The Great", Jerusalem is going to be invaded and destroyed by fire, more than likely by Arab forces. The Scriptures are very clear on this. If this is the case, then in my view, this phrase "my holy mountain" must be referring to something else; and that is to the New Jerusalem which will not descend from Heaven until the Lord has created the New Heavens and a New Earth. The Lord certainly doesn't want His pure Holy City touching down on the current polluted Earth full of evil men.
With the evidence I have presented, are you now convinced that the so-called "lion and the lamb" scenario is not an accurate depiction of the Millennium whatsoever? I must admit that I have been leading you on because I want you to try to come to this conclusion for yourself. If you are not yet convinced that this is so, then allow me to present you with the icing on the cake so-to-speak. In the twenty-first chapter of the Book of Revelation, following the creation of the New Heavens and the New Earth, we read the following verse:
"And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful."
Revelation 21:5, KJV
Do you understand what the Lord is saying here? "Behold, I make all things new! I am going to start all over again!" God is going to make New Heavens, a New Earth, new animals which get along with each other, and new people! I believe that this is the very same thing to which the Prophet Isaiah was referring when he wrote the above lines. He was not talking about the Millennium at all; he was looking beyond it to something much greater than that. Here again is that final verse from Isaiah's prophecy:
"The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD."
Isaiah 65:25, KJV
Now, if we go back only eight verses before this one, we can put the above verse, as well as the other Scriptures from the eleventh chapter, in their proper time frame and context:
"For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be ye glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy."
Isaiah 65:17-18, KJV
There it is as plain as day! In the above two verses, not only is Isaiah talking about the creation of the New Heavens and the New Earth, but he is also prophesying the creation of the beautiful New Jerusalem as well which shall descend from Heaven, exactly as is described by John in the final two chapters of the Bible! Nowhere is Isaiah talking about these things happening during the Millennium. Despite what some Biblical teachers may say, it simply just isn't true. They need to go back to the drawing board and take a closer look at what is being said in these verses. So again, the idea of man and wild beasts dwelling together in peace and harmony occurs on the New Earth, and not during the actual Millennium.
The person who originally inspired this series was also wondering why Jesus didn't mention the Millennium in His Endtime teachings if it was so important. Upon doing a careful study of the Scriptures, I quickly discovered that the Lord did in fact mention it in quite a few of His parables. The problem seems to lie in the fact that this person did not recognize them as being Millennial in nature. As you will see from the following key verses, Jesus amply described how we will one day be rewarded according to our different levels of faithfulness, and will be permitted to sit down with Him as rulers in His Millennial Kingdom:
"There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out. And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God. And, behold, there are last which shall be first, and there are first which shall be last."
Luke 13:28-30, KJV
"Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing. Verily I say unto you, That he shall make him ruler over all his goods."
Matthew 24:45-47, KJV
"His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord."
Matthew 25:21, KJV
"And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities."
Luke 19:17, KJV
Something else we need to remember is that the Gospels do not contain every single thing that Jesus said and did. Consider these words found in the final chapter of the Gospel of John:
"And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen."
John 21:25, KJV
While a lot of the things which Jesus said and did were not recorded in the four Gospels, a few of them were included in some of the Epistles. As an example, consider these verses I shared earlier from the Epistles of Peter where he is specifically referring to us as the Lord's holy and royal priesthood. The fact that we are royal implies that we are also rulers; which in my view seems to be indicating that Peter is referring to the Millennium. The only way Peter could have known this is if the Lord had revealed it to him directly:
"Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ."
1 Peter 2:5, KJV
"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:"
1 Peter 2:9, KJV
While he wasn't one of the original Twelve Apostles, in his Epistles, Paul informs us that he learned from no man but rather by direct revelation of Jesus Christ. Exactly what were some of these things which were revealed to him by the Lord? In several of his Epistles, Paul makes the following comments:
"And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together."
Romans 8:17, KJV
"If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us:"
2 Timothy 2:12, KJV
It seems to me that Jesus very much wanted to let us know about the Millennium; and this is why that, in addition to His own parables, He used other people and other methods to tell us about it. Consider the following mysterious prophecy that the Lord made right before His Ascension into Heaven. In the final chapter of the Gospel of John, Peter inquires of the Lord concerning the fate of John, and here is what Jesus tells him:
"Peter seeing him saith to Jesus, Lord, and what shall this man do? Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me. Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?"
John 21:21-23, KJV
If we try to understand this incident with our human understanding, we might come to the same erroneous conclusion as above; that is, that John would not die until the Lord's Second Coming. In other words, by some miracle of the Lord, John is still alive today waiting like the rest of us for the Return of the Lord. However, this is not what Jesus was saying. We need to remember that Jesus did not always think and speak in terms of human time, because He was not subject to it. Everything Jesus said above came to pass exactly as He said it would. John did in fact tarry, or remain or abide, until He saw the Lord's Second Coming. That is exactly what the Book of Revelation is all about. It is a continuation of the Gospel of John some sixty years later after John, in his old age, is exiled to the isle of Patmos in the Aegean Sea off the coast of Asia Minor, what is today known as Turkey. By a miracle of God, John is lifted up in the Spirit, which might mean that the Lord permitted him to be whisked off through a vortex in the time and space continuum to the distant future, to witness the end of all things, and the beginning of the New Heavens and the New Earth.
Please go to part four for the conclusion of this series.
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