Summary: Satan is locked up and yet has freedom in this world. How do we respond?
June 6, 2021 Revelation 20:1–6
1 Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven. He had the key to the abyss and a great chain in his hand. 2 He seized the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, bound him for a thousand years, 3 threw him into the abyss, locked it, and set a seal on it, so that he could no longer deceive the nations until the thousand years come to an end. After this he must be released for a short time. 4 Then I saw thrones, and those who were sitting on them were given the authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the word of God. They had not worshipped the beast and his image, and they did not receive his mark on their forehead and on their hand. They lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 (The rest of the dead did not live until the thousand years came to an end.) This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is the one who has a share in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them. Instead they will be priests of God and of Christ. And they will reign with him for a thousand years.
The Great Chain Locks Up Satan. Trust it! Use It!
Back in World War II, Germany’s main weapon was the Blitzkrieg. A swift and powerful attack in a concentrated area to break through the enemy lines. A popular video game called Mortal Kombat features each fighter with a specific skill set, one main weapon.
Satan’s main weapon is deceit. He takes a truth and he twists it, perverts it, and makes it mean the exact opposite of what it is actually saying. Think of what he did with Eve in the Fall at the Garden of Eden. God said not to eat from ONE tree. But the Devil twisted it and spoke as if God had forbidden from eating ALL trees, when God had only forbidden one tree in a forest of perfect trees. Satan also questioned God’s MOTIVES, making it sound like God was trying to HOLD SOMETHING BACK from them and keep them from reaching their full potential, to be like God. Eve had God’s clear Word on the subject. Yet Satan was able to convince her that God was lying to her within the span of a few minutes. Satan is a smooth talking liar.
His lies abound all the more today, and sometimes they get exposed even by the media. Leslie Stahl recently did a recent interview on 60 Minutes with some people who had tried to change genders. They had been told through social media and television shows that being transgender can make you happy when you can express your true identity. Within the course of three months they contemplated and made their decision, and nobody in the medical world even questioned them. Instead, they encouraged them to go through medical procedures as quickly as possible. So young men and women have had their private parts removed in hopes of transitioning to the other gender. Lo and behold, it didn’t take long for them to realize they had made a huge mistake, and they were upset. What they were especially upset about was that nobody counseled them or even tried to stop them. One woman just said, “being female isn’t working for me.” And that’s all it took. You can’t help but feel bad for them in a sense that they were deceived so badly.
A married man once stood in a friend of mine’s living room. He was in tears. He had been seduced by another woman who made him feel like she would make him happy for the rest of his life if he left his wife. It didn’t take long into the affair for the seductress to change her mind. But that didn’t do any good for the man. His wife refused to take him back. He had lost everything he knew and loved over a deceitful woman’s lies, and there was nothing he could do about it. He blew it, and Satan had to be laughing. This is how Satan works, through lies and deceit.
John writes about this deception in a picturesque way. He said that people would have “the mark of the beast” on their heads and hands. What does that mean? Some have associated it with a social security number. Others now think it’s the vaccine. Again, the mark is symbolic. The head is what you think with. The hand is what you act with. It’s not an actual physical mark. It’s how you think and act in this world. They are all signs of Satan working in people’s thoughts and through people’s actions.