(Historicist) Revelation 20 Commentary by Knollys

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Puritan Board Doctor
Hanserd Knollys:

Rev. 20.1-3:

John had seen the dragon, the old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, and his angels, cast out of the Roman papal kingdom and dominion. Re 12:7-10 And here John had revealed unto him how the dragon (as a conquered enemy, and wretched captive) is bound, and made a close prisoner for a thousand years, after the destruction of the Roman papal kingdom and dominion.

and bound him a thousand years; that is, a certain definite time, Re 20:4 these thousand years. (so Re 20:3-7) They are not any mystical or prophetical number, but literal, and so Pareus, and other expositors number them literally. Re 20:3

And shut him up, and set a seal upon him; that is, secured him in his prison, from tempting and deceiving the nations by himself, or by his instruments; pagan, papal, or Mahometan false teachers, (as 2Pe 2:1-3)

Re 20.7-10: And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, 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. 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. 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.

I saw a great white throne; which signifies the glory and majesty of our Lord Jesus Christ at his second coming, (Heb 9:28) which will be with power and great glory, (Mt 24:30) then we shall all stand before the judgment Seat of Christ, (Ro 14:10-12 2Co 5:10) whom John saw sit upon the white Throne

And the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. (2Co 5:10) whereby is revealed the just and righteous proceedings of Jesus Christ in judgment; for the wicked shall receive their reward, according to their evil deeds; and the righteous shall receive their reward of grace, as God hath promised them, according to their good deeds, (Mt 25:34-40) but not for them.

Rev. 20.21:

no more sea.

The glory and happiness of the church of God on earth prophesied by Isa 60:1-22 I the LORD will hasten it in his time; (in Christ’s time) is here revealed to John in this vision of the new heaven and the new earth, which he saw, whereby is signified the world to come, {Heb 2:5} in contradistinction to this world. {Mt 12:32 Eph 1:21} God promised the primitive saints, that he would create new heavens, and a new earth, {Isa 65:17-18 66:22} and therefore the latter day saints do, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness, {2Pe 3:13}

For the first heavens and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

So the apostle St. Peter testified, (2Pe 3:13) Nevertheless we according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. By the sea, we are to understand the gathering together of the multitude of many waters, as Ge 1:10. And by the waters, upon which the whore satteth, we may understand, people, and multitudes, and nations, and tongues, (Re 17:15) called the See of Rome; so the See of Canterbury, and the See of York: Whereby is figured the rage, troubles and persecutions, stirred up by the wind of unsound and popish doctrine of the church of Rome, as Isa 57:20.
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