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In Chapter 20, some of the important points made in this chapter are based on the metaphysical meaning of the three zeroes, thousand. In Bible numerology, thousand, three symbols, stands for unlimited or unspecified, so the term “a thousand years” simply means an unspecified period of time. And we have these significant references.
“And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years and cast him into the bottomless pit and shut him up and set a seal upon him that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years be fulfilled and after that, he must be loosed a little season. And, when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison.”
The author is referring, through this symbolism, to the fact that in our human life, we seem to have alternating and contrasting cycles and phases of things which happen. The actual length of time of any cycle of activity is unspecified, thousand, and may vary widely, but a cycle of activity of any sort is referred to as lasting a thousand years, which does not mean 1,000 years of literal time, but simply as an unspecified period of time.
Satan, bound a thousand years, stands for those periods in our life when we are not being tormented and deceived by our own negative thinking. When we enjoy the blessed freedom to learn and grow in consciousness through prayer, meditation, and truth thinking, these periods of spiritual freedom can last a thousand years, that is, for an unlimited, unspecified time, as long as Satan, negative thinking, is subdued in us. But haven’t you noticed that it seems after each of these good cycles, the old beast of negative thinking is let out again for a little season?
This is merely a description of the type of fluctuation between positive and negative, which is such a common experience in the unfolding consciousness and lives of most human beings, especially those who are seriously on their way in the living of the truth of Jesus Christ. Remember there is nothing alarming or abnormal about this experience. It happens to all, fluctuation between positive and negative, good, bad, and indifferent.
But we know what will prevail in the long run. The eventual outcome of all this fluctuation is coming and going of positive and negative experience, the eventual outcome of all this is the same as has been described symbolically in numerous other places throughout the Bible, and also in previous sections of Revelation itself. And here it is in chapter 20 of Revelation.
“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 forever and ever, and death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death and whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”
Now these visions describe the workings, which go on within the soul of a person who has learned to control the lower, the negative, or Satanic factors in his consciousness, and who has learned to accept and obey the true positive and Christ-like factors in his consciousness. This is called, by the author, “he that hath part in the first resurrection” and this is when the uncertain fluctuations between good and evil cease in us. This begins that phase of our development wherein we, as individuals, really learn how to use our 12 spiritual powers, our whole consciousness, in a perfect way. Then there will be a definite and permanent distinction made in our judgment between truth and error. All error will be rejected by us and consigned to a dissolving and purifying process carried on in the spiritual judgment, lake of fire, the dissolving and purifying of error. Lake of fire.
Notice the first two errors to go into this dissolving process. I read from our text, “Death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. Death first, then hell.” Hell means useless, unnecessary suffering. Cast into, dissolving, and purifying, lake of fire. Who can ask for a greater blessing than this? The doing away with hell, the dissolving of all useless, unnecessary suffering. The concept of death, also held now in race consciousness, shall also be done away with, dissolved. It, too, is cast into this lake of fire. Blessed be this lake of fire.
And then comes the next great blessing. “And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” This means that there will be a doing away with and a dissolving of anything that is not a real, legitimate, and useful part of your life. This means anything that is erroneous, harmful, and useless to your well-being. Such things as sickness, unhappiness, anxiety, fear, loneliness, boredom, hopelessness, hatred, hurt feelings, and so forth. These are not things written into our book of life by the Christ mind. These are errors, so they shall be dissolved out of our book of life by the purifying fire of God, and who will miss them? Who will long for their return? Certainly not you nor I, so we forgive them and loose them and let them go.