Last week I spoke to you about reasons why we Christians can look forward to a New Year.
I choose a text out of Revelation chapter 20:1-3 where we saw that satan will no longer be an influence upon our lives or society during the millennial reign of Christ. Next in verses 4-6 we discover three things about the saints with Jesus during the 1000-year period:
• Who are the saints?
• How they have become saints
• What they will receive
First notice that there are three different groups that John sees here in verse 4 and 5:
a. “I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them”: John saw those who are seated and given authority to judge. Based upon Jesus’ words in Matt. 19:28 this would include the disciples but according to Paul’s words in 1 Cor. 6:2 where he says to the Corinthian believers will judge the world that would include you and I as well.
b. “Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God”: The next group John sees is those who were martyred during the tribulation period that he described in chapter’s 6 and 7 of Revelation. John describes why they were martyred:
1. For their witness of Jesus and the word of God
2. For their refusal to worship the beast and receive his mark So, then they were beheaded first for following the Lamb which caused them not to follow the antichrist.
c. “But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished”: This is a reference to the unbelievers who died apart from having a personal relationship with Jesus and will be judged at the “great white throne judgement” in verses 11-15. In the 6th verse John records characteristics or “beatitudes” of those who will reign with Jesus. This is the 6th out of seven beatitudes found in this book and it describes four special blessings given to those who share the first resurrection.
1. “Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection”: Our final disposition will be “Happy and holy” as we will share in His character and nature.
2. “Over such the second death has no power”: This literally means the 2nd kind of death. The bible speaks of two types of death physical and spiritual so we are told that we believers will never face the possibility of eternal separation from God.
3. “But they shall be priests of God and of Christ”: We will enjoy a special relationship with the Lord as well as those other citizens of the earth during the 1000-year reign of Jesus as their spiritual leaders.
4. “And shall reign with Him a thousand years”: We are given the privilege of service in His kingdom ruling over the nations.
So, saints, Satan will no longer be able to attack or harass and we will share in Jesus’ nature Never face separation from God, reign and serve with Jesus….HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!
This has been pastor Dale, Blessings!