1. The 1000 years is the church age begun by Jesus, especially through his death and resurrection, in which the gospel of Jesus is being preached to the ends of the world to “undeceive” the nations from their ignorance of God (cf. Acts 17:30-31) and to draw all people to Christ (John 12:31-32).
2. The first resurrection (spiritual and not ultimate) is contrasted with the second or final resurrection (bodily and ultimate) just like the first death (bodily and not ultimate) is contrasted with the second or final death (spiritual and ultimate).
3. The first resurrection refers either to being with the Lord at the time of bodily death (Rev 6:9-10; 2Cor 5:8) or with spiritual new birth (John 5:23-25) where Paul also said that those who believe in Jesus are now seated with Christ in heaven, reigning with him (Eph 2:6).
4. There will be a Final Judgment for everyone after the 1000 years.
5. On the day when my books will be opened and I stand before God for judgment, I am saved not by anything written in those books, but only by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ.
6. Jesus looks at those books and even though he knows my every sinful and shameful thought and deed, every occasion I was selfish or greedy, Jesus says, “I have already died for each and every one of your sins” and then he shows me his book of his perfect moral records. He places it in front of me and says, “take, these are now yours and I have written your name in the book of life.”
1. Do you believe that the gospel of Jesus now goes forth powerfully to “undeceive” the nations from their ignorance of God and to draw all people to Christ? What would you do during this Christmas season to tell your friends about Jesus?
2. How does your position in Christ (that you are seated with Christ in heaven, reigning with him) impact how you respond to Satan when he accuses you of guilt or when he tempts you to sin and to despair?
3. If you are investigating the Christian faith with us, have you ever thought seriously about death and your eternal destiny? What if what the Scriptures say about death and resurrection is true? Would it change how you approach life and your attitude towards Christianity?
4. Is the feeling of guilt just our natural response to upsetting social norms? How do you explain why we feel guilty even if nobody knows about what we have done? How does guilt point us to the Final Judgment?
5. Have you ever experienced mercy or magmanimity in your life? How does that point us to the magmanimity of Jesus? Has any other God loved us like Jesus? Won’t you want to go to Jesus to receive his forgiveness and be freed from any guilt? Won’t you want to thank and love and honor him all the days of your life?
|« The Triumph of Christ||All Things New »|