The Biblical Overview of The Plan of God – Part 9


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The Biblical Overview of The Plan of God – Part 9

The Destruction of Death

“And Fire Came Down From God Out of Heaven, and Devoured Them.”

Introduction

We are continuing our studies on the Biblical overview of the plan of God. Last week we said that in our next study we will compare the two different teachings concerning the fate of all flesh, and we will see whether the scriptures we were given to prove that ‘only believers are alive at the beginning of the millennium’ really say that, and whether those who believe in the doctrine of “eternal spiritual flesh” have any Biblical basis for that doctrine. After we demonstrate the fallacy of the doctrine that only believers are alive at the beginning of the millennium, we will go back to the scriptures that deal with the time when “the kingdoms of this world become the kingdoms of our Lord and His Christ” to discover what the scriptures reveal about how the rulers of this world will be made by God to give the rulership of this world over to God’s elect. We will not get to it today, but in time we will also see these supposedly converted people, in fact it will be all flesh, who will rebel against Christ and our rulership over them, and we will see how that rebellion will provide God with the occasion He is seeking against all flesh to destroy all flesh and thereby to destroy death. In demonstrating all of this, we will again see that everything God is doing will be found to be done “through Christ… by the church”. “By the church” is speaking specifically of those who are “the firstfruits unto God and the Lamb”, and not of anyone in the Old Testament, and not of anyone who is living during the thousand years when God’s elect will be ruling the nations with a rod of iron. “By the church” is speaking only of those who are honored to be part of that “blessed and holy… first resurrection” to judge this world and to judge angels in the lake of fire. Here is what the scriptures actually teach:

1Co 6:2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?
1Co 6:3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life?

Eph 1:9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
Eph 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in [the] Christ [the first firstfruit and His firstfruits], both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:
Eph 1:11 In whom also we [His firstfruits] have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose [the plan] of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will [His own plan]:
Eph 1:12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

Eph 3:9 And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:
Eph 3:10 To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the church the manifold wisdom of God,
Eph 3:11 According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:

Rev 11:15 And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

Rev 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. [“Judge the world” – 1Co 6:2]
Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Rev 20:8 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.
Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
Rev 20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
Rev 20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
Rev 20:13 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. [“Judge angels”, 1Co 6:3]
Rev 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. [‘The destruction of death’, 1Co 15:26]
Rev 20:15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

But we ended our last study reviewing what is generally taught about the millennium and the last great day in the churches of Babylon. Here again is that doctrine as presented by gotquestions.org:

“At the beginning of the Millennium, only believers will be alive (Revelation 19:17-21), some who live through the Tribulation Period, and some who come back with the Lord at His second coming. It will be a time of peace unparalleled in history (Isaiah 2:4; Joel 3:10; Micah 4:3). Jesus will be ruling on the throne of David, imposing a benevolent theocracy on all of His creation. Jesus will ensure that everyone has every need fulfilled, while not tolerating the sin so prevalent in today’s society (Psalm 2:7-12; Revelation 2:26-29; 12:5; 19:11-16). We can only imagine such a time of “heaven on earth.”

“The believers who live through the Tribulation will be mortal. They will live and repopulate the earth during the Millennial Kingdom. Without the devastation of sin taking its toll, we can imagine the population increase during the Millennium will be enormous, almost incomprehensible. All those who are born during the Millennium will enjoy the benefits and blessings of Christ’s reign on the earth, but they will still be born with a sin nature, and they will still have to freely repent and believe the Gospel, personally choosing Christ as Savior and Lord.

“Yet, at the end of the Millennial Reign, Satan is loosed and is able to deceive a vast multitude to follow him in one final rebellion against the Lord of glory and His saints! It seems that the further humanity gets from the end of the Tribulation and the start of the Millennium, the more they will “take for granted” how good they have it, and some may even harbor doubts about the goodness of God. Even though the number who rebel with Satan are said to be “as the sand of the sea” (Revelation 20:7), they may still be a minority compared to the number who do not rebel. It will still be a large number of souls who join Satan. Undoubtedly, one of the primary reasons God gives us this picture of what will happen in time is to demonstrate the deep-seated sin nature inherent in all of humanity (Jeremiah 17:9).

“Additionally, God is trying to tell us something about His nature as displayed during the Millennium. His grace and goodness will be on display continually. But at the end of the 1000 years, He will have zero tolerance for rebellion. When it happens, He will show no mercy and offer no “second chances.” At that time He will be quick to judge, and the final rebellion of Satan and sinful man will be over in a flash of fire. After this, the final judgment of the dead takes place (the Great White Throne Judgment, Revelation 20:11-15). Eternity can thus begin with every aspect of sin gone for all time.

“Finally, God is trying to reinforce some very important lessons concerning Satan himself, especially for believers. First, that he has been and always will be the enemy of humanity. As God has fixed His love on us, Satan has for us a special hatred. Ever since Satan’s fall (Isaiah 14, Ezekiel 28), he has been the adversary of believers, and he is aptly described as the ultimate deceiver of mankind (John 8:44; 1 John 2:22). All he can give or promise man is death and destruction (John 10:10a). Satan is also shown here to be a truly defeated foe, and his ultimate doom is certain, along with the doom of all who follow him. God is trying to remind us that Satan is a created being who is powerless before Him (2 Corinthians 12:7). All this should encourage believers today to take God at His Word concerning our position in Christ with respect to the devil (Matthew 4:1-11; Luke 4:1-13; 1 Corinthians 10:13; 2 Corinthians 4:1-7; James 4:6-8; 1 John 2:15-29; 1 John 4:1-3), especially as we remember this grand truth: “…greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world” (1 John 4:4).” [Cut and pasted from this link: http://www.gotquestions.org/release-Satan.html#ixzz3Kr4TUNoo]

Here are the verses that were given to prove this statement: “At the beginning of the Millennium, only believers will be alive (Revelation 19:17-21), some who live through the Tribulation Period, and some who come back with the Lord at His second coming.”:

Rev 19:17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;
Rev 19:18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.
Rev 19:19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.
Rev 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
Rev 19:21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

Here are all the other verses given to establish all the statements that were made in this summary of why God releases Satan after the thousand year reign. Let’s look very closely at them and see if we can find anything that says that the thousand years are a time of God’s grace being poured out on those who live at that time, or that most people will not rebel against the rule of God’s elect at the end of the millennium:

Isa 2:2 And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the LORD’S house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.
Isa 2:3 And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
Isa 2:4 And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

Joe 3:9 Proclaim ye this among the Gentiles; Prepare war, wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near; let them come up:
Joe 3:10 Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong.

Mic 4:1 But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.
Mic 4:2 And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
Mic 4:3 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

Psa 2:7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
Psa 2:8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
Psa 2:9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.
Psa 2:10 Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
Psa 2:11 Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
Psa 2:12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.

Rev 2:26 And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
Rev 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.
Rev 2:28 And I will give him the morning star.
Rev 2:29 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

Rev 12:5 And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

Rev 19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
Rev 19:12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
Rev 19:13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
Rev 19:14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.
Rev 19:15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
Rev 19:16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

Joe 3:1 For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem,
Joe 3:2 I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.

“In those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem…” When are we told that God will do this? This is when we are told God will bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem:

Eze 16:53 When I shall bring again their captivity, the captivity of Sodom and her daughters, and the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, then will I bring again the captivity of thy captives in the midst of them:
Eze 16:54 That thou mayest bear thine own shame, and mayest be confounded in all that thou hast done, in that thou art a comfort unto them.
Eze 16:55 When thy sisters, Sodom and her daughters, shall return to their former estate, and Samaria and her daughters shall return to their former estate, then thou and thy daughters shall return to your former estate.

So there it is. We have been shown what the Bible says about the last two steps of the plan of God for all men of all time, and we have reviewed what the churches of this world teach about that subject. I do not generally waste my time with the doctrines of Babylon, but because I am painfully aware of how repulsed the natural man is with the thought of the annihilation of all flesh, even within you and me as God’s elect, I am taking the time to review what men say about the purpose God has for the millennium, and compare that to what God really says. In that process, we will see why mankind will rebel against our rulership, and we will see that God has ordained that rebellion, and we will see how God will deal with that rebellion, and why He deals with it as He will.

Anyone who understands the ‘is, was and will be’ nature of the Word of God has no doubt that, yes, there will be plenty of flesh to be eaten by the fowls at the beginning of the millennium, just as there always has been since Adam:

Gen 3:14 And the LORD God said unto the serpent [Satan Rev 12:9]:, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life: [‘dust’ is a Biblical symbol for all flesh, and Satan is also symbolized by the fowls of heaven]

Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

Mat 13:4 And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up:

Mat 13:19 When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.

But where in these verses in Revelation 19 is “the beginning of the millennium” mentioned? Where is it stated in these verses that “only believers will be alive… at the beginning of the millennium”? Of course, it says nothing of the kind, and that thought has to be read into those verses based upon false church doctrines which generally place the battle of Armageddon and everything said about Gog and Magog at the beginning of the millennium, while ignoring the clear instructions we are given to the contrary.

Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Rev 20:8 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.
Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
Rev 20:10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.

This writer speaks for many Christians when he writes:

“All those who are born during the Millennium will enjoy the benefits and blessings of Christ’s reign on the earth, but they will still be born with a sin nature, and they will still have to freely repent and believe the Gospel, personally choosing Christ as Savior and Lord.”

But where are we ever told such a thing? Where do we find people being converted during this thousand-year reign of Christ and His Christ? The fact is that there are no verses which speak of people being converted during that period of time. While it is true that “There is one event to all” (Ecc 9:2) that ‘one event’ occurs in a different fashion for every person who has ever lived or who will ever live. “There is one event to all” does not mean that the people who are alive during the millennium will be caused to “overcome the wicked one” during that time, because we are specifically told that Satan, “the wicked one”, will be taken out of the picture during that entire age:

1Jn 2:13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.
1Jn 2:14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

Rev 15:2 And I saw as it were a sea of glass mingled with fire: and them that had gotten the victory over [“had overcome the wicked one”] the beast, and over his image, and over his mark, and over the number of his name, stand on the sea of glass, having the harps of God.

Rev 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
Rev 20:2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
Rev 20:3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.

That is very clear language. The “wicked one” will be “shut up [in] the bottomless pit”, (Greek: abussos, the sea, the flesh of mankind] that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled“, and as we have just seen, ‘overcoming the wicked one’ is a prerequisite for conversion and for becoming an ‘overcomer’ who is granted to rule the kingdoms of this world with Christ:

Rev 2:11 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

So in an outward, dispensational application of our Biblical overview of God’s plan for all of mankind, this “bottomless pit” is Satan’s prison only during the thousand-year reign of God’s elect over the kingdoms of this world. He certainly is not in a prison in any outward way at this time. Where have we read of this ‘bottomless pit’ before? We read of the ‘bottomless pit’ in the description of the judgment of the great harlot.

Rev 16:17 And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done.
Rev 16:18 And there were voices, and thunders, and lightnings; and there was a great earthquake, such as was not since men were upon the earth, so mighty an earthquake, and so great.
Rev 16:19 And the great city was divided into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell: and great Babylon came in remembrance before God, to give unto her the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath.

Chapter 16 is the seven last plagues, and it concludes by informing us that Babylon is yet to experience “the cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath”. So the outward judgment of “great Babylon” will also conclude in the pouring out of the seven last plagues, which are the seventh trump, which concludes God’s wrath upon all flesh of all time, including the always present, inward, spiritual application for God’s elect.

Rev 17:7 And the angel said unto me, Wherefore didst thou marvel? I will tell thee the mystery of the woman, and of the beast that carrieth her, which hath the seven heads and ten horns.
Rev 17:8 The beast that thou sawest was, and is not; and shall ascend out of the bottomless pit, and go into perdition: and they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world, when they behold the beast that was, and is not, and yet is.

Yes, we know these words all have a primary, present application. But they also have a dispensational, outward, final application “when the thousand years are expired”, and Satan is released from his prison and is granted to go out and deceive the nations one last time:

Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Rev 20:8 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.

What this tells us is that the function of Satan is the same “when the thousand years are expired” as it is at this time. In both cases he is given “to deceive the nations in the four quarters of the earth”. The only difference is what happens at the conclusion of each of these time periods. At the conclusion of this age of grace, he will be placed under a chain and imprisoned for a thousand years. But that is not what happens at the conclusion of the “little season… when the thousand years are expired”. When the “little season… the last great day” is concluded, fire comes down from God out of heaven and destroys “the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth”. There is not so much as a hint of “they may still be a minority compared to the number who do not rebel. It will still be a large number of souls who join Satan.”

There is no intermediate class of resurrected people. All of mankind are in one of these two resurrections:

Dan 12:2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life [“the firstfruits… unto the Lamb], and some to shame and everlasting contempt [all others in the lake of fire”].

We will have to stop at this point for today’s study, but we will pick back up at this point and continue to demonstrate, with the scriptures, that there are only two resurrections, and that all men of all time are in one or the other of those two resurrections. We will also see that the reason why mankind does not see the purpose for the millennium and the little season that follows the thousand years is that the beast with us all, recoils at the concept of the annihilation of all physical flesh. It is for this reason that the great benefit to being in the first resurrection is hidden from all the ministers of “great Babylon” (Rev 16:19). God has not given them eyes that see that the second resurrection follows the destruction of all flesh.

I will also be sharing with you a wonderful revelation of what exactly is the spiritual application of the law of the inheritance of the firstborn, and what is the spiritual meaning of the “double portion” of the inheritance which is given only to the firstborn as his right. I want to thank our brother Larry Groenewald for that revelation, and I look forward to sharing that with all of you as we continue our studies in the overview of the plan of God.

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