1Then I saw a mighty angel descending from the heavenly realm, holding a heavy chain and a key—the key of the deep. # 20:1 Or “abyss.” 2He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent known as the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. # 20:2 Satan has been bound since the death and resurrection of Jesus. We now enforce the judgment that took place on Calvary. The thousand years is an obvious metaphor of the time in which we live (2 Peter 3:8). We are given the authority to “overpower the mighty man and tie him up” and plunder his goods (Mark 3:27). See also Matt. 12:29; John 12:31; Col. 2:15. 3The mighty angel threw him into the pit, locked it, and sealed it so that he could no longer deceive the nations until the thousand years were over. (After that he must be loosed for a brief time.)
4Then I saw thrones, and those who sat on them were given the authority to judge. I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and for the Word of God. They had refused to worship the wild beast or its image and did not have their foreheads or hands marked by the wild beast. They lived and reigned with the Christ for one thousand years. 5This is the first resurrection. # 20:5 The first resurrection took place when every believer was raised together with Christ. See Eph. 1:19; 2:6. (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) 6Wonderfully blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection! The second death holds no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of the Christ. And they will reign as kings with him a thousand years!
The Final Destruction of Satan
7After the thousand years are over, Satan will be let loose from his prison 8and will go out and deceive the nations of the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog. # 20:8 See Ezek. 38–39. He will bring them together for battle, and they will be as numerous as grains of sand on the seashore.
9They spread out over the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s holy believers and the beloved city. But fire came down from heaven and completely destroyed them. 10Then the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the same place with the wild beast and the false prophet—the lake of fire and sulfur—where they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
11Then I saw a great, dazzling-white throne and the One who sits on it. Heaven and earth fled from his presence and they were no more. # 20:11 Or “no place was found for them.” 12I saw the dead, the lowly and the famous alike, standing before the throne. Books were opened, and then another book was opened: the Book of Life. The dead were judged by what they had done as recorded in the books. 13And the sea gave up the dead souls that were in it. Then death and the underworld gave up their dead, and all were judged according to what they had done. 14Then death and the realm of the dead were cast into the lake of fire, for the lake of fire is the second death. 15And anyone whose name was not recorded in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.