He said to Jesus, “Lord, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.”
I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them.
Jesus said to him, “Assuredly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”
I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus, and for the word of God, and such as didn’t worship the beast nor his image, and didn’t receive the mark on their forehead and on their hand. They lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour. The sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was torn in two. Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” Having said this, he breathed his last.
The rest of the dead didn’t live until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
When the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, “Certainly this was a righteous man.”
Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over these, the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ, and will reign with him one thousand years.
All the multitudes that came together to see this, when they saw the things that were done, returned home beating their breasts.
And after the thousand years, Satan will be released from his prison, and he will come out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to the war; the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
All his acquaintances and the women who followed with him from Galilee stood at a distance, watching these things.
They went up over the width of the earth, and surrounded the camp of the saints, and the beloved city. Fire came down out of heaven from God and devoured them. The devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet are also. They will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
I saw a great white throne, and him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. There was found no place for them.
Millennial Reign: Come to Life
Millennial Reign: Come to Life
A key verse in the book of Revelations reads, “They came to life and reigned with Christ for 1,000 years.”
I believe God the Father gave the book of Revelation to Jesus as his reward for the cross. If that’s the case, nothing is more important to understand, including this particular verse.
The problem is, there’s never been a clear and somewhat indisputable way of understanding this mystical book. That’s where Strings come in.
I’ve found the passages of the bible to have an underlying design. Properly aligned, two or more passages will connect in powerful ways. They’ll work together to reveal a deeper story that any single passage does not.
Let’s compare the death of Christ beginning in Luke 23:42 with the millennial resurrection of Revelation 20:4.
The thief asks, “Lord, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.” The revelation says, “I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them.” Look at the symbolism. A Kingdom asked for. Thrones given.
These two passages connect through the idea of the authority of Christ. Jesus receives a Kingdom which he shares with us.
Come to Life
Jesus promises, “Assuredly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” The Revelation says, the souls of those beheaded for their testimony, live (or come to life) and reign with Christ.
The connection is simple: With. Jesus isn’t dead yet, but he will be in about three hours. That very day, his Spirit will go into heaven. He brings the repentant thief with him.
Darkness covers the land for three hours. The temple is torn in two as a doorway is opened. Jesus cries out with a loud voice, and breathes his last. Jesus dies. The Revelation speaks of the rest of the dead. They do not yet come to life.
Death connects these two passages.
The centurion guarding Jesus glorifies God saying, “certainly (truly), this was a righteous man.” The revelation promises, “Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection, over these the second death has no power.”
Perhaps the centurion is a symbol of the power of hell (the second death). That power is shattered, the moment Jesus died, by his righteousness.
The multitudes who came together to watch the spectacle begin to return home. They begin to disappear. The Revelation says Satan comes out to deceive the nations, whose number is as the sand of the sea. Like multitudes.
You can almost see the souls disappearing, one by one, as Satan deceives them.
The acquaintances (friends and followers) of Christ do not disappear. They stand. They watch. Their souls are being delivered from the power of Satan.
The scene in Luke doesn’t describe what’s happening in heaven, but the revelation does. Satan has lost his power. He’s thrown out. In fact, he’s thrown into a lake of fire, the place prepared for him. How fitting.
A New Kingdom
The connection may not be as obvious, but you can find it in the meaning of the name Arimathea. It means “High Place.” Like a great white throne, a new Kingdom.
Before the Throne
At the moment of Jesus death, these two passages speak of a place, a time and a state. A high place with a great white throne. A time, the day of Jesus’ death. And a state, blessed, holy and righteous.
One story is playing out on earth, another in heaven. One is literal, one is spiritual. One takes place in 6 hours. The other in a day of eternity.
The parallels do not end here. In fact, they get even stronger. Let’s scroll both forward and look at what comes next in Luke 23:42, and in Revelations 20:11.
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