The 1,000 years
1 Then I saw an angel who was coming down from heaven. He was holding the key to the deep hole. He also held a great chain in his hand. 2 He took hold of the dragon. That dragon is the Devil and Satan. He is the snake who has lived since long ago. The angel tied up the dragon with the chain for 1,000 years. 3 Then he threw the dragon into the deep hole. He closed the door to the deep hole, and he locked it with the key. He put a seal on the door. During that time, Satan could no longer deceive the people of all nations. But after the 1,000 years have finished, he must go free for a short time.
4 Then I saw some thrones, and I saw people who were sitting on them. These people had received authority to judge other people. I also saw the souls of people who had died because they served Jesus. People had cut off their heads because they had told the truth about Jesus, and they had spoken God's message. These believers had not worshipped the wild animal or his image. They had not received the wild animal's mark on their heads or on their hands. Now they became alive again. They ruled as kings together with Christ for 1,000 years. 5 (But all the other dead people did not become alive again until the 1,000 years had finished.) This is the first time that God raises up dead people to become alive again. 6 God has blessed those people that he raises up that first time. They belong to God as his holy people. The second death has no power over them. Instead, they will be priests who serve God and Christ. They will rule as kings with him for 1,000 years.
God sends Satan into the lake of fire
7 When the 1,000 years have finished, God will let Satan go free out of his prison. 8 Satan will then go and deceive people in nations everywhere in the world. He will make them believe him. Those nations are God's enemies, Gog and Magog. Satan will bring them together to fight a war against God's people. Satan's army has many people, as much as the sand on the shore of the sea. 9 I saw them as they marched over the whole earth. They arrived at the city which God loves. That is where God's people had made their camp. Satan's army made their camp all around the city. Then fire came down from heaven and it destroyed them completely. 10 The Devil had deceived those people. I saw God throw him into the lake of fire that burns with sulphur. That is the lake where he had already thrown the wild animal and the false prophet. They will have a lot of pain in that place, all day and all night for ever.
20:8The prophet Ezekiel spoke about Gog, the leader, and Magog, his people, as great enemies of God's people Israel. He spoke about them many years before Jesus was born. See Ezekiel 38-39. Ezekiel said that God would destroy these enemies with fire from heaven. God himself would destroy them because they were such great enemies of his people. So John uses the same names when he describes the last war between God's people and Satan's people.
20:8There is so much sand on the shore of the sea that nobody could ever count the bits of sand.
God judges all the dead people
11 Then I saw a great white throne. I saw that God was sitting on it. The earth and the sky rushed away from the place where he sat. There was no longer any place for them. 12 I also saw the people who had died, important people and ordinary people. They were standing in front of the great throne. Then someone opened books to see what was in them. God had written in them all the things that the people had done. Then someone opened another book which is God's book of life. God judged the people who had died. He looked in the books to see what they had done, and he decided what was right.
13 The sea brought up all the dead people who were in it. Death and Hades, the place for dead people, brought up all the dead people who were there too. God judged each person. God saw what they had done, and he decided what was right. 14 Then God threw Death and Hades into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death for people. 15 If anyone's name was not written in the book of life, God threw that person into the lake of fire.