The first resurrection - the best interpretation.

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YXU

Puritan Board Freshman
Quoted from David Steele's Notes on Revelation

5. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
V. 5.—"The rest of the dead" supposes two classes of the dead. These are the witnesses, who died a violent and cruel death, and the wicked, who died a natural death,—there "were no bands in their death." As there are two kinds of death, so are there two kinds of resurrection,—a first and second of each. Those who had been "beheaded for the witness of Jesus," etc., lived in their successors,—sat on thrones, reigned with Christ a thousand years. Of course those who were slain by Christ and his army at the battle of Armageddon, and whose flesh was given to the fowls of heaven, "lived not again" in their successors, "until the thousand years were finished." Consequently, "this is the first resurrection," with which the true disciples of Christ shall be honoured. They must, however, die as all others, and await the second resurrection: but "on them the second death shall have no power."
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.
V. 6.—"Blessed and holy,"—and blessed, because holy; for sin is the procuring cause of misery. This is a summary description of the millennial period. The dragon being bound by the almighty power of Christ, and not permitted to deceive the nations, wars shall cease unto the ends of all the earth: the population of the globe must be rapidly and greatly multiplied beyond all precedent. (Ps. xlvi. 9; lxxii. 16,) the life of man will be prolonged; (Isa. lxv. 20-25,) holiness, righteousness and praise shall spring forth before all the nations, (lxi. 11.)
That condition of our globe, which divines call the millennium,—a state of holiness and happiness, second only to the enjoyment of heavenly felicity, is as clearly and frequently promised to God's people, as the promise of the Messiah was under the former economy. But as many were "in expectation that the kingdom of God should immediately appear," who then entertained unwarrantable and carnal conceptions of the Messiah's person and reign, just such groundless and gross expectations and aspirations are cherished now. A literal resurrection of all the righteous, who shall have died before the millennium is supposed to take place at the personal appearance of Christ; and this, too, before the general judgment. By personal, they mean corporeal: for the Lord Christ promised his gracious personal presence with his people all days, when he was about to disappear from their bodily vision. (Matt. xxviii. 20.) "To them that look for him shall he appear the second time, (not a third,) without sin unto salvation." (Heb. ix. 28; Rev. i. 7.) Besides, is it for a moment supposable that saints who have passed into glory, are to be brought upon earth to conflict once more with enemies, when Gog and Magog shall surround the "camp of the saints?" Such is a specimen of questions suggested by the Millenarian system, which have failed of either scriptural or rational solution by all the learning and ingenuity of its fanciful advocates.
The whole series of the Apocalypse proves that the two witnesses live and prophesy throughout the 1260 years of Antichrist's reign. Their lives and their testimony end together, (ch. xi. 7.) But the beast that slays them is himself with his ally, the false prophet, at the close of the contest, cast alive into the lake of fire, (ch. xix. 20.)
After three and a half prophetical days, the witnesses are raised, and ascend up to heaven, (ch. xi. 12.) and this is the identical fact which is more fully presented here in the 20th chapter. The resurrection of the witnesses in the 11th chapter is a spiritual and mystical resurrection in the persons of their successors; the heaven to which they were exalted is a mystical heaven: and just so of those beheaded and advanced, after their resurrection, to positions of civil and ecclesiastic power as in this 20th chapter. Thus exalted, and ruling in the fear of God, they become a terror to evil doers, and a praise to them that do well. (Rom. xiii. 3.) Then shall be realized the glorious predictions of Isaiah and the Sweet Psalmist of Israel. (Isa. xi. 1-9; Ps. lxxii. 1)
 
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Turtle

Puritan Board Freshman
"They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years." 20:4

They "lived in their successors"?:book2:
 

YXU

Puritan Board Freshman
"They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years." 20:4

They "lived in their successors"?:book2:

Right, and the rest of the dead who were unjust and wicked will resurrect as their evil successor will re-appear after the thousand years are over.

The resurrection here mentioned is neither a physical resurrection, nor does it mean regeneration.
 

DonP

Puritan Board Junior
Wasn't this the 1st resurrection?? Or did they go back into their graves ?

Matt 27:51-53

51 Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, 52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many
NKJV
 

Skyler

Puritan Board Graduate
"They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years." 20:4

They "lived in their successors"?:book2:

Right, and the rest of the dead who were unjust and wicked will resurrect as their evil successor will re-appear after the thousand years are over.

The resurrection here mentioned is neither a physical resurrection, nor does it mean regeneration.

It sounds more like reincarnation. Is that what you're meaning?
 

VictorBravo

Administrator
Staff member
Whatever the best interpretation is, I am very confident Mr. Steele's interpretation is not it.


Frankly, I can't make any sense out of that quote at all. I don't think it is worth the time to try to figure out.
 

Turtle

Puritan Board Freshman
Wasn't this the 1st resurrection?? Or did they go back into their graves ?

Matt 27:51-53

51 Then, behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth quaked, and the rocks were split, 52 and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many
NKJV

I don't doubt they were raised but their description doesn't seem congruent with the description of those who "have part in the first resurrection."

They sat upon thrones, and judgment was given to them. He saw those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark upon their forehead and upon their hand. This is the first resurrection. Rev 20:4-5
 

YXU

Puritan Board Freshman
"They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years." 20:4

They "lived in their successors"?:book2:

Right, and the rest of the dead who were unjust and wicked will resurrect as their evil successor will re-appear after the thousand years are over.

The resurrection here mentioned is neither a physical resurrection, nor does it mean regeneration.

It sounds more like reincarnation. Is that what you're meaning?

It is not reincarnation. John is not Elijah reincarnated, Jezebel and Balam are not reincarnated in the 1st century, but those who have the same evil deeds were so called.
 

Skyler

Puritan Board Graduate
I'm still not sure I follow you. There are those who were called metaphorically after Old Testament figures--usually negative, as you point out--but what do you mean by successors? That they just subscribed to the same false doctrine?

If so, wouldn't that make *us* successors of Calvin, Spurgeon, etc.?
 

YXU

Puritan Board Freshman
I'm still not sure I follow you. There are those who were called metaphorically after Old Testament figures--usually negative, as you point out--but what do you mean by successors? That they just subscribed to the same false doctrine?

If so, wouldn't that make *us* successors of Calvin, Spurgeon, etc.?

Yes, sir. That's what is meant by Mr. Steele. Just as the two witnesses are not two individuals but the succession of witnesses. Same as the Anti-Christ is the succession of many people but not an individual.
 

GTMOPC

Puritan Board Freshman
I think Steele could have been a little more clear. I was quite confused by the quote myself! :scratch:
 
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