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Exploring Revelation
“Revelation 20:1-2”
by Art Sadlier   
October 2nd, 2011


In chapter 20 we have a number of events which relate to the millennial reign of Christ on earth. We see the Millennium in relation to Christ, Satan, man, the tribulation saints, the resurrections and the Great White Throne. The Millennium is a period of 1000 years in which Christ rules over the earth from the throne of David in Jerusalem.

The Millennium is referred to in the Lord's prayer in the phrase, "thy kingdom come" and the phrase, "for thine is the kingdom:" Also, in Acts 1:6 we have the question, "Wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?"

A good division of the chapter would be.

1. God's final dealing with Satan. 

2. God's kingdom with Christ and the saints.

3. God's final judgment of all unbelievers.

The chronology of the events is important. Satan is bound before the Millennium and loosed after it is over, then cast into the lake of fire.

God's Dealing with Satan


"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"   (Revelation 20 1-2).

Satan is bound with a great chain and placed in the bottomless pit. This is not hell but rather the habitation of demons; here he will be chained for a thousand years.

When we remember that Satan sought to exalt himself above the stars (angels) of God, we see the significance of his being brought down to the pit. Isaiah 14:12-16, "How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!  For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:  I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.  Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.  They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms."

Satan was created perhaps, the crown of all of God's creation. He was assigned the task of hovering over the throne of God and guarding the holiness of God. From that exalted position he observed the glory of God at close hand. He coveted to be like God and sought to replace God. God allowed an experiment to take place, He allowed Satan to attempt to replace Him. The experiment has gone on for some 6000 years, and now at this point, Satan having failed in his attempt to replace God, is sent to the bottomless pit.

We do not know who the angel in this verse is, but he is empowered to do six things. To lay hold of the dragon, to bind him for a thousand years, to cast him into the bottomless pit, to shut him up, to set a seal upon him to render him unable to deceive the nations, and to loose him after the 1000 years.

The bottomless pit is mentioned in Revelation 9:2, "And he opened the bottomless pit; and there arose a smoke out of the pit, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by reason of the smoke of the pit." We see here the evil angels set loose from the bottomless pit.

Apparently this angel is an ordinary angel who acts in the power of Christ. We are reminded of this in John 14:12, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father." 

And also Philippians 4:13, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

It is through Christ's almighty power that the angel binds Satan and casts him into the bottomless pit.

The total spiritual atmosphere of the Millennium is altered with Satan bound and Christ ruling on the throne of David.

Men have tried for thousands of years to make the world a better place but have failed miserably because of man's sinful nature. As Christ comes to the throne we see the contrast in a world ruled by Christ and a world ruled by Satan. The trial is over, Satan has failed and the whole universe comes to see that sin and Satan are the problem in the world, and that Christ is the answer.

Satan is not referred to again until after the thousand year rule of Christ.

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