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Lesson 25: Satanís Vacation

In many of our earlier lessons we have studied about the return of Jesus to the earth. We have learned that it is when Jesus returns that the dead are resurrected, and that at His coming the wicked are destroyed. In this lesson we bring all these great events into one study, so that we can have a clear picture of what is coming and when.

The Bottomless Pit

1. What strange punishment comes to Satan at the end of the world? Revelation 20:1-3.

"And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season."

Note: The term millennium means 1,000 years. Some people talk about the millennium as though it were to be a time of wonderful peace on earth. As we continue our study, you will see what the millennium really is.

Before we go into that, however, letís explain the strange expression, "bottomless pit," where Satan is bound. What kind of place is it? And where will it be?

2. What was the earth like in the very beginning? Genesis 1:2.

"And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters."

Note: The word deep, or abyss, comes from the Greek abyssos which is used in Revelation 20:3 to mean bottomless pit. The word that is used in Genesis 1:2 to describe the world in the very beginning has the same meaning. It refers to a desolate, barren, useless, empty, usually an uninhabited place. That is just what the world was like in the beginning.

3. How does Jeremiah describe the earth after Jesusí coming? Jeremiah 4:23, 25, 26.

"I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the LORD, and by his fierce anger."

Note: Jeremiah tells us that the day is coming when the earth will again be without form and void; it will be in such a condition of ruin and desolation that it is referred to as a "bottomless pit."

The Earth Desolated

4. What will the wicked do at Jesusí return? Isaiah 2:19.

"And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth."

5. What will cover the earth? Jeremiah 25:33.

"And the slain of the LORD shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground."

Note: The earth will be covered with dead bodies, unburied and unlamented because no person will be left alive on earth to bury them or lament. [cry over them]

6. How is the earth brought to this terrible condition? Isaiah 24:1, 3, 20.

"Behold, the LORD maketh the earth empty, and maketh it waste, and turneth it upside down, and scattereth abroad the inhabitants thereof. The land shall be utterly emptied, and utterly spoiled: for the LORD hath spoken this word. The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall, and not rise again."

Note: At the coming of Jesus, the earth will be violently shaken. The prophet Amos says that the sun will go down at noon. See Amos 8:9. The sudden motions of the earth at Jesusí coming will cause the most violent earthquakes. John, in Revelation also refers to this earthquake. "And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done. And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great. And every island fled away, and the mountains were not found." Revelation 16:17, 18, 20

Through the centuries, there have been earthquakes that have killed many people. In 1755 there was an earthquake in Lisbon that it is estimated to have killed 50,000 people. In 1908 Italy was shaken by an earthquake that killed 160,000, and in 1920, 180,000 were killed in an earthquake in China. What will that terrible day be like when God arises "to shake terribly the earth"? The slain in that day will be strewn from one end of the earth to the other.


The Wicked Slain

7. How will the wicked living at the time of Jesusí return feel about their gold and silver? Isaiah 2:19, 20.

"And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the earth, for fear of the LORD, and for the glory of his majesty, when he ariseth to shake terribly the earth. In that day a man shall cast his idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which they made each one for himself to worship, to the moles and to the bats."

Note: Today most people are too busy with a job, a business, or the cares of life, to take time for Jesus, for Bible study, and for prayer. Money seems to count most now. In that day, when people realize that they have allowed money-getting to cheat them out of eternal life, they will throw their gold and silver to the moles and bats. But it will be forever too late! They will have waited too long to prepare for Jesusí coming.

Nowadays young people, as well as older ones, are too busy having a good time, but when Jesus comes, all will suddenly change. People will look up and, to their terror, realize that the end of the world has come and that they are not ready.

8. Where will the wicked seek to hide? Revelation 6:14, 15.

"And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places. And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains."

Note: As the wicked see Jesus coming in the clouds of heaven, they cry for the rocks and mountains to fall on them, the earth shakes violently under their feet. Nothing is solid; nothing is safe; all is confusion and terror. Then as Jesus draws near to the earth, His glory destroys all the wicked who are still living. See 2 Thessalonians 2:3. Only the righteous can endure that glory, and they can behold it only by the strength given them by Jesus. All the wicked fall dead at the glorious appearing of Jesus.

The Gathering of the Righteous

9. What great event does Paul connect with the end of the world and Jesusí second coming? 1 Thessalonians 4:16.

"For the Lord Himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first."

Note: The next great event to take place, following the resurrection of the righteous dead, is that the living righteous are caught up to Jesus. That the righteous dead leave this earth and go with Jesus is made very clear by the words of Jesus in John 14:3. "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."

All the wicked are slain, but all the righteous, including those who were dead and have been raised, are taken to heaven for a thousand years.

The Millennium

10. What will the righteous do in heaven? 1 Corinthians 6:2, 3.

"Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?"

Note: During the thousand years in heaven the righteous will be able to look over the record books and see why some people were not saved. Many whom they thought were very good will be missing. In that day the cases of all the lost, as well as the records of the fallen angels, will be open for investigation by the saved; and all will be able to see that God was just in His judgment.

It is during this period of time that Satan and his angels are bound to this earth in its desolate conditionó"bottomless pit"ófor a thousand years. For about six thousand years Satan has deceived the people of this earth During the thousand years there is no one to tempt or deceive, for all the righteous have been taken to heaven and all the wicked are dead.

For one thousand years Satan will be forced to think over the results of his awful rebellion. Surrounded by ruined cities, desolate wildernesses, and the bodies of the countless dead, he will realize to some extent the horror that sin has brought upon the world.

There is also another reason for Satan to be on earth will all the dead. Through the ages Satan has deceived his closest followers, telling them that he has power to raise them from the dead. Well, he will have a thousand years to try, and the fact is, he cannot do it. Satan does not have life in him at all and he canít raise anybody from the dead!! All he can do is trick and deceive people.

In that day Satan will think of some of you; he will think of how he tempted you and how sometimes he made you feel that you just couldnít give up certain things for Jesus, that you just couldnít obey His commandments. Then Satan will remember how Jesus helped you; how you firmly took your stand for the right, and how you went all the way and forsook everything for the Lord. Because of your surrender, you will be with Jesus in heaven during those thousand years. In that day you will be so thankful that you gave up all for Jesus!

11. What happens to the wicked at the end of the thousand years? Revelation 20:5, 7, 8.

"But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea."

12. What did Jesus call this resurrection? John 5:29.

"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."

Note: The earth is again covered with people; millions of the lost of all ages are again alive on the earth. Satan and his angels are alone no longer. They are loosed out of their prison of isolation and go out to deceive the nations to gather them to battle against God.

Descent of the Holy City

13. What then comes down from heaven? Revelation 21:2, 10.

"And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God."

The End of Sin

14. Where does Satan lead the wicked? Revelation 20:9.

"And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them."

Note: As the wicked look around at the vast multitude, Satan seeks to convince them that they far outnumber those within the city and that they are well able to capture it.

15. What did John see come down from God out of heaven? Revelation 20:9.

"And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them."

Note: Led by Satan, the wicked come up against the city to capture it, but fire comes down from heaven and ends their plans.

16. What is this death called? Revelation 20:14.

"And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death."

17. What will God then do for the saved? Revelation 21:4.

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."

Note: All the marks and sorrow of sin are forever wiped from Godís universe.

18. What does God then do? Isaiah 65:17.

"For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind."

Note: The saved will get to watch as God re-creates this world lovelier even that it was in the beginning! In the new earth, there will be no reminders of sin and wickedness. The terrible curse of sin, with all the pain and suffering it caused will be wiped from the universe, and all will be peace and happiness. There we will be able to realize our fondest dreams. Oh friends, any sacrifice we make in this life is worthwhile in order to be ready for Jesusí coming.

If you havenít already given your heart to Jesus, wonít you do it right now? Kneel down and say, "Dear Jesus, I accept Your offer to save me. I choose to be your child. Please get me ready to meet You when You come. Teach me Your truth and give me Your power to live as You want me to live. I canít do it myself, but I know I can do all things through You! In Jesus Name. Amen!

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