Written by: Christopher Sernaque
The Millennium of Peace is a time that is much looked forward to, however people from all classes generally have questions about this doctrine. Normally, prior to studying the Millennium it is best to study the State of the Dead, the nature of the Lake of Fire, and the Judgment. This short post does not have the space to address these subjects, or even enter into a study on the Millennium itself. However, this post will address an objection that is often raised whenever the doctrine of the 1,000 years is presented. The objection is now presented, and a Biblical answer follows to meet it:
Why would God resurrect the wicked of past ages only to destroy them again?
1. If a doctrine is biblical, then it is biblical. We need to accept what the scripture says. It does not matter how foreign an idea seems to our human minds. God’s ways are higher than ours. (Isaiah 55:8-9) The Bible clearly teaches that the wicked are raised at the end of the 1,000 years. (Revelation 20:5). The Bible teaches in Revelation chapter 21 and verse 8 that the wicked receive the Second Death, and by implication this means they received a Second Life, or that they were resurrected again after they had died or were slain by the brightness of the Lord’s coming. (2 Thessalonians 2:8).
2. The wicked dead are raised because God’s character is on the line in the Great Controversy. The entire universe needs to admit that God is good, just, and loving, including the wicked dead from ages past. (Philippians 2:10-11)
3. People often complain about this doctrine, viewing it as being “cruel” in their eyes. Point #1 already established that God’s way of doing things are not always the way we would do them. Furthermore, God is a God of righteous judgement (Isaiah 30:18-John 7:24). Some awfully wicked individuals went to sleep in perfect peace! They received no recompense for their evil deeds. Thus, it only makes sense that they receive their just reward and admit that their actions were indeed wrong.
4. Revelation 20:4 describes the righteous dwelling with God in Heaven for 1,000 years sitting on thrones participating in the judgment. 1 Corinthians 6:2 says that the saints will participate in judging the world. Who else, but the records of the wicked of ages past, would the Saints be reviewing?
5. Revelation 20:5 states: “But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished…” If this is not referring to the wicked, then who is this referring to? The righteous were raised at the beginning of the 1,000 years (1 Thessalonians 4:16) so who is Revelation 20:5 referring to if not to the wicked?
6. Revelation 20:7-8 states: “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.” Satan most certainly is not gathering the righteous, for they are inside the New Jerusalem with Christ (Revelation 21:1-3, Matthew 25:31, Zechariah 14:5). So, if the wicked are not resurrected then who exactly is Satan gathering together for war at the close of the 1,000 years?
7. Revelation 20:13-15 states: “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. 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.” If the wicked dead have not been resurrected again for the execution of their just judgment, then who exactly is being destroyed here in the lake of fire?
Dear Reader, I appeal to you, be amongst the company that resides in the New Jerusalem, in the New Heavens and New Earth, with Jesus (Revelation 21:1-3, 2 Peter 3:13, Isaiah 65:17). Romans 9:28 says that the Lord will cut the work short! This means Jesus’ Second Advent is near; even at the doors! (Matthew 24:33). The only way to be assured that you will be among the company that greets the Lord with joy when he comes (Isaiah 25:9) or is raised with the righteous (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17) is to be sober and ready now (Titus 2:11-15)! Take the time to read 1 Corinthians 15:31 and 2 Peter 1:12. Die daily and proclaim the Present Truth!