BSF Study Questions Revelation Lesson 26, Day 2 & Day 3: Revelation 20:11-15

Summary of passage:  Jesus sits on the great white throne in judgment of all according to what they had done on earth.  Those whose names are found in the book of life (believers) are saved.  The rest are thrown into the lake of fire for the second death for all of eternity.

Questions:

3)  Jesus and he is God so he has every right.  Also, God gives him the right.  A more complete answer is the Triune God.  See also (John 5:22-27)

4)  “Earth and sky fled from his presence” as there was no place for them anymore.

5a)  Books that hold the deeds unsaved people have done while on earth which God/Jesus will use to justify His judgment.

b)  Part personal Question.  My answer:  Believers.  Yes.  Because I have accepted Jesus as my Savior.

Context Note:  In Psalm, the they is “foes” from Psalm 69:18 or “enemies” from Psalm 69:19 so David’s foes or enemies who are unrighteous.

c)  Second death is judgment and eternal damnation for unbelievers, which results in a permanent banishment from God’s presence. (Isaiah 65:17; Psalm 88:5).  First death is when we all die physically.  Revelation 21:8 identifies them as “The cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars”.  This also includes the Antichrist, the False Prophet, Satan, the fallen angels, Death, and Hades.

d)  Personal Question.  My answer:  We’ve been asked this so many times it’s ridiculous.  Yes and tell them about Jesus. (Lesson 19 Day 3, Lesson 15 Day 4, Lesson 13 Day 5, Lesson 7 Day 2)

6)  Personal Question.  My answer:  God is just and I don’t need to worry for He has it all.  I am saved. Others need to be saved.

Context Note:  Not sure why we read the Romans passage if the question asks us about the Revelation passage.  It really doesn’t add anything to the context.

Conclusions:  I have nothing positive to say, so I won’t say anything.  Do this passage in one day.  It’s easy enough.  Most of these questions can be answered without looking up the reference passages if you so choose.

End Notes:  Great is “great”, white is purity and holiness, throne is sovereignty.  No one can escape the judgment (why there is no where for the sky and earth to go).  Hebrews 1:10-12 & 2 Peter 3:10 tell us this world will perish and pass away as this world is no longer needed when Jesus comes.

Will believers be at this Great White Throne?  Almost all scholars say no because believers sins are already judged by Jesus’s death at the cross.  This is for the unbelievers.  Believers are judged but right after the first physical death.  This is told to us in 2 Corinthians 5:10 (judgment seat of Christ).

Paul elaborates on this in  1 Corinthians 3:12-15 where our works and motives will be judged.  There will be no punishment, however, only rewards.  This scene is punishment, a sentencing, consequences handed out, not a trial.  This is for the condemned, unbelievers.  There will be no words, no “telling God anything”.  There will only be the righteousness and goodness of God and the unbelievers rejection of Him.  When believers die, they go into the immediate presence of the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:6-8; Philippians 1:23).

There are degrees of punishment meted out here based on the sins unbelievers committed on earth.  Other passages that speak to judgment based on works is:  Psalm 62:12; Jeremiah 17:10; Romans 2:6; 1 Peter 1:17, and many more.

The “sea gave up the dead” is referenced unburied bodies.  Again, emphasis on no escape from God’s judgment.

“Death and Hades” are the final vestiges of sin.  Sin is now completely done away with forever and both are no longer needed.

The Bible uses 3 main words to describe the idea of “hell” or the lake of fire:

1)  Hebrew Sheol means “the grave”

2)  Hades which is a Greek word and where the Ancient Greeks believed all dead went. Remember parts of the Bible were originally written in Ancient Greek.  It means “world beyond.”  In Revelation 9:1 we see the Greek abyssos or Abyss or Bottomless pit.  It is a prison for demons (Luke 8:31; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6).  Paul uses it in Romans 10:6.  It is where the souls of the unsaved go until Judgment Day and is temporary which is why it will be cast into the lake of fire as well.

To make Hades even more complicated:   Once consisting of two compartments as the abode of all departed souls whether saved or unsaved (Luke 16:19-31), when Christ died and His spirit descended into Hades (Ephesians 4:9) proclaiming victory to the evil spirits incarcerated there (1 Peter 3:19), He resurrected with the souls of those who died in faith (Ephesians 4:8; Matthew 27:52-53).

3)  Gehanna, another Greek word, used by Jesus in Mark 9:43-44.  In Hebrew it means “valley of Hinnom” and is where we get our English word “hell” from.  It is a place where child sacrifices to Molech took place.  This is the hell we think of and currently it is unoccupied until the great white throne room and final judgment.  Other uses:  2 Chronicles 28:1-3; Jeremiah 32:35.

Eternal separation from God is the ultimate punishment.  Can you imagine even now living in a world without God?  Imagine a world where Jesus reigns but you are in hell!  Horrible doesn’t even describe it. Saying “tormented day and night for ever and ever”  (Revelation 20:10) is the best description and even that is hard to imagine!