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Particulars of Christianity:
303 Bible Cosmology


Part 3: Christ's Return Through His Millennial Reign

Cosmology: Introduction and Definitions
Part 1: The Old Testament - Buildings in Heaven
Bodies in Heaven: Angels and Spirit Bodies
Humans and Angels: How Similar are We?
Hell in the Old Testament
Part 2: From Christ's Death to His Return
Part 3: Christ's Return Through His Millennial Reign
Part 4: The Final Judgment and Eternity
Replaced or Restored: "Restarts" vs. the First Start
Replaced or Restored: Genesis 1 and Angels
Replaced or Restored: Precedent Reveals Restoration (Part 1)
Replaced or Restored: Precedent Reveals Restoration (Part 2)
Replaced or Restored: More on the Creation of Angels (Part 1)
Replaced or Restored: More on the Creation of Angels (Part 2)
Cosmology: Composite Chart
Cosmogony Illustrations



During this third period of time, the changes are simple. Our concept of Sheol (minus Abraham's Bosom) continues in much the same way as during the previous time period. The wicked dead and fallen angels continue to be imprisoned in the abyssal region of Sheol as they always have been.

Revelation 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, 3 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. 4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. 7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, 8 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.

Heaven continues to exist unchanged. However, with the return of Christ Jesus to the earth to establish his millennial Kingdom here on earth, the righteous dead are resurrected and return to earth with spiritual bodies with Christ Jesus to reign with him during his 1000-year reign on earth.

There are two other significant changes during this time period. For the first time, we have a second location or definition of hell. The new location or definition is the Second Death or Lake of Fire. However, as we will see, this is not really a new location at all but the same location. We have established previously that part of Sheol was for the wicked dead and some fallen angels and that this compartment of Sheol was a place of fiery torment. We have also established Sheol is located beneath the surface of the earth. The Lake of Fire is not a new location for hell or for the fiery torment instead of Sheol. It is, in fact, simply this subterranean fire breaking through to the surface of the earth forming a lake on the surface.

The Song of Moses begins in Deuteronomy 31:30 and in chapter 32:16-22, Moses predicts that Israel will sacrifice to devils and for this sin (among other things) God will raise up a fire from hell to the lower parts of the surface of the earth, particularly at the "foundations of the mountains," which could easily be a reference to valleys. The Israelites did make such sacrifices, including sacrificing their own children to false gods, which they did in the valley of Hinnom (2 Kings 23:10, 2 Chronicles 28:3, 2 Chronicles 33:6, Jeremiah 7:31, Jeremiah 32:35.) The New Testament term "Gehenna," (Strong's No. 1067) used frequently by Jesus to refer to "hell," is the Greek name for the valley of Hinnom. The valley of Hinnom is located south of Jerusalem and Revelation 14:10-11 states that the wicked will be tormented with fire and brimstone forever in the presence of the Lamb. As we will see in the segments ahead, since Jesus is coming to reign in Jerusalem and then, after Jesus 1000 year reign, God the Father will also come here on the restored earth to dwell with man for eternity, the Lake of Fire may actually be a place where the fire from the abyss breaks through the surface of the earth near the actual valley of Hinnom, south of Jerusalem, in the presence of Jesus Christ eternally, where the subterranean fire of Sheol broke through to the "foundations of the mountains," a valley just outside the Holy City.

In Matthew 25:41, Jesus speaks of "everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels." Revelation 21 refers to this eternal fire as the Lake of Fire or Second Death (Revelation 2:11, 20:6, 14, 21:8.) Now, from the words of Christ Jesus here in Matthew 25, we know that this Lake of Fire was being prepared perhaps for some time prior to when Jesus made this statement, which makes perfect sense once we connect the Lake of Fire with the pre-existing subterranean Sheol. However, as the next quote shows, it is not until Revelation 19:20 that someone actually inhabits this Lake of Fire. The reason for this is that this is the first time that the fires of Sheol have broken through to form a lake at the surface of the earth.

Revelation 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.

The False Prophet and the Beast (Antichrist) are thrown alive (not dead) into the Lake of Fire. The significance of the false prophet and the antichrist being thrown into the pit alive relates to the fact that even the unrighteous will be resurrected. We have already seen this in Revelation 20:5-6, 11-15. And the reason that the unrighteous receive resurrected bodies is because the everlasting fire was prepared for angelic beings (Matthew 25:41). So, just as the righteous become like the angels in the resurrection (Matthew 22:30, Mark 12:25, Luke 20:36) so will the unrighteous, but with the end result being that they suffer as the wicked angels. And, although speculative, it would seem that the antichrist and false prophet are transformed and receive such spirit bodies without tasting death just as some of the righteous are transformed without first tasting death according to 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 and 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17.

Revelation 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

Revelation 21:8 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.

According to Revelation 20:15 and 21:8, the Lake of Fire is the eternal destiny of all of the wicked, both angels and humans.

The last change that takes place in this third time period of human history is that the chief adversary is chained in Sheol.

Revelation 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, 3 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.

This also means that prior to this point in time, although some fallen angels were already chained in Sheol for their interbreeding with human women according to 1 Peter 2:4 and Jude 1:4-8, the chief adversary was not among these fallen angels chained in Sheol and conversely must have been allowed some degree of freedom to roam about, at least until Revelation 12:7-9,12-13 when he is cast down to the earth, although he may perhaps still be invisible and intangible.
In conclusion, in this third period of time between the return of Christ Jesus and the Great White Throne Judgment, heaven continues unchanged from the previous time period with the exception that the subterranean fires of Sheol have broken through to the surface of the earth. Other than this, Sheol continues unchanged as the prison of the wicked dead and the fallen angels. However, one other prisoner is added at this point in time, specifically the chief adversary, the devil, the dragon, the old serpent. And also the Beast and False Prophet are cast alive into the Lake of Fire as well.

Having completed our examination of this third time period, we will move on to our fourth and final division of time, spanning from the Great White Throne Judgment of God throughout all eternity afterward.



Related Images



Cosmology
(Days of Creation)
(Figures 1-6)




Cosmology Chart