Today’s reading is Revelation 20.
Honestly, it blows my mind how an entire complex doctrine can be built around a single verse like Revelation 20:4. In fact, not only one, but several. Of course, they can’t all be right. The passage only means what it means and can’t mean competing and mutually exclusive ideas. But what does it mean in context? It means the exact same thing the rest of the book means: Jesus Always Wins!!!! The purpose of this verse is not to say that some time in real-time history the disciple martyrs of Jesus will reign on earth for a thousand years. It’s a contrast with the reign of the kings of this earth who oppressed them. I asked you to remember Revelation 17:12 and the one-hour reign of the enemy kings and the authority they received from the beast. Here is where it becomes important as a contrast. Our Hero’s servants receive authority and reign, not for an hour, but for a thousand years. Neither of these refer to literal periods of time in earth history. They merely point out what the entire book points out. The enemy looks like he is going to win, but hang on, his time is short. The Hero will win and His victory will be complete. You want to be on the Hero’s side. No matter what, hang on! Jesus always wins! You can give up on Him, side with the enemy and get your heyday for an hour. Or you can hang on and have real victory. The choice is yours.
Tomorrow’s reading is Revelation 21.
A Word for Our Kids
Hey kids, what I shared with your parents is important in understanding how to read Revelation. I’m sure you will read it again and I want you to remember this. It is a series of images. The pictures are making broad sweeping points. They are not providing one-to-one relationships between symbols and specific events in history. They are giving us sweeping pictures of overarching principles to motivate us to hang on to Jesus. We are not looking forward to some period in earth’s history where saints will reign on earth. Rather, we are looking forward to whenever enemies rise up against Christ’s kingdom and church, they may look like they are going to win, but they will lose. They will have a brief period to enjoy their own power, authority, will, and ways. It won’t literally be an hour, but it will be a brief period. When you hang on to Jesus through the enemy’s time on top, you will have a tremendous victory. No, it won’t be only for a thousand years. It will be complete, eternal, forever. Hang on through the “hour” of the enemy’s reign. Wouldn’t you hate to give up “a thousand years” of victory for a mere “hour” of power? Hang on! Jesus always wins!