Lesson 13

Redemption

(Revelation 20-22)
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Introduction: This is the last in our series of lessons about Rebellion and Redemption. The good news is that we wrap things up with the great news about our redemption and our eternal destination. Let's dive into our study and get a boost of encouragement!

  1. Bound


    1. Read Revelation 20:1-3. How do you react when your "enemy" is no longer a part of your life?


      1. When you think of the worst thing that one human has done to another, Satan is the one who inspired that evil. How great is it that Satan gets chained up in the Abyss and the top is locked and sealed?


      2. What tempers your relief about this news? (That Satan is getting out after 1,000 years. But, we are told his freedom will continue only for a short time thereafter.)


  2. Saved


    1. Read Revelation 20:4-5. What is happening during the thousand years that Satan is bound? (A group, which has been resurrected, lives with Jesus.)


      1. What does it mean when it says that some have been "given authority to judge?" (This first group, the righteous, are making a judgment of some sort.)


      2. Are these only people who have been beheaded? (We are told that these martyrs are part of the group, but the way this is written they seem to be just a part of the larger group which has not worshiped the bad guys through either agreeing with them (forehead mark) or being coerced into agreeing (hand mark).)


    2. Read Revelation 20:6. What is your goal when you read this news? (Be a part of the first resurrection group because "the second death has no power over them.")


      1. What is the bad news here? (They are with Jesus 1,000 years - the time that Satan is bound. Being with Jesus is wonderful, but I would like to be with Him forever.)


    3. Read Revelation 20:7-9. Wait a minute, from where do these people come? (This is apparently the second resurrection. Satan is released, the wicked who have died are resurrected, and they create a huge army to attack Jesus, the New Jerusalem and the saints who were raised in the first resurrection.)


    4. Let's skip ahead a few verses. Read Revelation 21:1-3. From where does the "Holy City, the new Jerusalem" come? (Down out of heaven.)


      1. Look again at Revelation 20:9 What is being surrounded? (This sounds like the New Jerusalem.)


      2. Revelation does not give us information in chronological order. How would you put the pieces of the puzzle together to make a reasonable story? (There is a first resurrection of the righteous. They go to heaven and Satan goes to the abyss. In heaven, they reign with Jesus for a thousand years and engage in some sort of judgment. During the thousand years the wicked are all dead - which might explain in part how Satan is "bound." After the thousand years the New Jerusalem comes down from heaven with the righteous, the wicked are raised in the second resurrection and Satan is released. Under Satan's leadership they attack the New Jerusalem.)


    5. Let's go back now. Read Revelation 20:9-10. How does this attack on the New Jerusalem end? (The attack fails because the wicked are "devoured" by fire and Satan and his principal allies are tossed in the lake of fire.)


    6. Read Revelation 20:11-15. What happens to those whose names are not written in the book of life? (They are thrown into the lake of fire.)


      1. Notice the phrase "the lake of fire is the second death." What did we learn in Revelation 20:6? (Those who are part of the first resurrection do not experience this "second death." This makes clear that the first resurrection is for all the righteous, and the second resurrection is for all the wicked who attack the New Jerusalem and then experience the "second death.")


      2. Who are the "dead, great and small" who are judged according to the books that are opened? (This is the "second death" group, the wicked are judged by their deeds.)


      3. What is the other book, the "book of life?" (If your name is written in the book of life, you are not judged in the judgment of the wicked.)


        1. What does this teach us about grace? (When we accept Jesus, His life, death and resurrection on our behalf, our name is written in the book of life, and we are not judged by our wicked works.)


        2. We learned in Revelation 20:4 that the righteous who are in heaven for the thousand years have some authority to judge. How does that fit into our story? (A thousand years is a long time! The logical sense is that the righteous are looking at how God made His judgment regarding the wicked. They may be asking God about why certain things happened in their lives. They are invited to satisfy themselves that God has been fair in His judgment.)


          1. Is there anything else you would like to do during the thousand years? (I would like to learn all about my relatives who are saved. It would be wonderful to talk with the heroes of the Bible. During this thousand years we become a strong community in love with our Lord.)


  3. Triumph


    1. Re-read Revelation 21:1-3. Recall our concern about living with Jesus in heaven for only a thousand years? What does this say about Jesus' new residence? (Jesus now lives on earth. He lives with us forever!)


    2. Read Revelation 21:4. You have no doubt read this verse many times before. Ask yourself what are the causes for crying, pain or mourning? Those are all gone. They are part of the "old order!"


    3. Read Revelation 21:5. Are these promises uncertain? (God dictated these "trustworthy and true" promises and ordered that they be written down so that we could know and trust them.)


    4. Read Revelation 21:6-7. What kind of relationship will we enjoy with God in the earth made new? (We have a parent and child relationship. And, we have a great parent!)


    5. Read Revelation 21:8. This is an extremely important, and on first glance odd, text. Tell me why the sin listed the very first (before being vile or a murderer) is being "cowardly?" What could courage have to do with salvation?


      1. Notice the next sin listed. Once again, before those who murder is listed the sin of not believing! Why is this so important? (Putting cowardly and unbelieving first on the list points to grace and faith. God calls us to trust Him and believe in Him.)


      2. I'm rather sure that not many reading this lesson are murderers. However, have you failed to trust God? Have you suffered through fear because you failed to trust that God would make things right?


    6. Read Revelation 22:1-5. Would you like to live there?


    7. Read Revelation 22:6. What guarantee do we have? (God told His angel to assure us this was all true.)


    8. Read Revelation 22:7. What does it mean to "keep" the words of this prophecy? (I think this goes back to the issue of being a coward and an unbeliever. God asks us to place our confidence and our hope in Him and His promise.)


    9. Friend, this glorious future can be yours. Why not, right now, confess your sins, by faith accept Jesus as your Savior, and live a life lead by the Holy Spirit in which you can put your fears behind you.


  4. Next week: We start a new study on the book of Matthew!

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Lessons on Rebellion and Redemption

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