The Great White Throne Judgment occurs at the end of what is called the “millennium. (described in Revelation 20) The millennium is a literal thousand year period of time when Christ along with the church returns to the earth to rule and reign for one thousand years. Satan will be locked up for those thousand years (Revelation 20:3) and millions of people will have an opportunity to become followers of Christ. It will be an incredible time. (To read the a short teaching on the millennium CLICK HERE)
In this lesson we are talking about key events at the end of the millennium. There are two significant events that happen at the close of the thousand year rule and reign of Christ – 1) The Release of Satan and 2) The Great White Throne Judgment. These events must happen before the new heaven and new earth are established. (which we’ll cover next month)
Release of Satan
After one thousand years of being locked up Satan will be loosed one last time. The Bible says he will go out to deceive the nations. He will go to the 4 corners of the earth to try to tempt, corrupt, and influence as many people as he can to rebel against God and worship him. (Revelation 20:7-8)
There will be billions of people on the earth at this time who will have been born and lived during the millennium. Suddenly for the first time in a thousand years they will be hit with thoughts of wickedness, rebellion, hatred, and all kinds of temptations. They will be faced with a choice to continue to serve and worship the Lord or follow Satan. Unbelievably Satan will successfully influence untold numbers of people to reject God.
Satan Thrown into the Lake of Fire
Satan will lead them in a military attack against the the people of God and Jesus. (Rev. 20:9). There will be no physical battle like the battle of Armageddon. No blood will be spilled in a flash fire will come down from God to destroy them all. Satan will then be thrown into the Lake of Fire and Brimstone where the Antichrist and False Prophet had been thrown in at the beginning of the Millennium where he will be tormented forever (Rev. 20:10). After God completes His judgment upon Satan the Great White Throne Judgment will begin.
Great White Throne Judgment.
The great white throne judgment will determine where all of the unsaved people will spend eternity. Revelation 20:11-14 describes it like this,
“Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:11-14)
This judgment involves unbelievers—those who have chosen not to accept Christ and to live their life independent of the Lord. All of the wicked dead will be resurrected at this time to face this final judgment. They have been held in hades until this moment. (we will cover more about this in a couple of months – final destinations) Believers have no part in this judgment. They were resurrected at the rapture and faced the judgment seat of Christ, which we talked about a few months ago. Believers escape the Great White Throne Judgment because their sin and sins have been paid for by Christ. (Colossians 2:13-14)
The Great White Throne Judgment is final. In the eyes of many it seems God is harsh and unfair. However the opposite is true. This process will highlight the mercy of God and prove to everyone exactly how just and fair God is not only with all people, but with Satan as well.
God is just, God is loving, God is pure, God is holy, God is perfect, and everything He does has a perfect purpose. His judgment of the wicked, and the His rewards for the righteous are just and perfect. God is patient and long suffering He is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). God demonstrated His love for all of mankind by sending His son Jesus to live, die and suffer for us: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved” (John 3:16–17).
We should be motivated to share the hope we have in Christ with those who cross our path. Go into all the world and proclaim the God news to everyone! (Mark 16:15)