Devil Abyss
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77. Devil Abyss
Revelation 20.1-4

"And I saw an angel coming down from heaven with the Abyss key and holding a great chain in his hand. He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent the Devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. Heaven's angel threw Satan into the Abyss, locked and sealed it over him to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years ended. After that, God must release him temporarily. I saw thrones on which were seated those authorized to judge. And I saw the souls of those beheaded for their testimony about Jesus and God's word. They had not worshipped the beast's image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years." (Revelation 20.1-4) ✞

An Abyss

AbyssMany scholars believe the "Devil Abyss" to be a "subterranean cavern," a "bottomless pit," or a "desolate place" beneath the earth. The word "abyss" dates back to the 14th century from the middle English "abissus," the Latin "abyssus," and the Greek "abyssos," meaning "bottomless." It is equivalent to "byssos," meaning the "bottom of the sea." The word "abyss" has also found its way into the country name for "Abyssinia," Ethiopia. The Queen of Sheba originated there, according to the historian Josephus (BC 37-c100) in (Antiquities 2.5-2.10). In more recent times, King Halle Selassie (1892-1975) ruled Ethiopia. In June 2020, his statue in Cannizaaro Perk, London, was destroyed by protesters. A bottomless gorge or chasm enters the Abyss. The angel locks this with a key to keep the Devil in this prison.

Gerasene Demoniac

Gerasene DemoniacThe devils fear the Abyss most of all. In the New Testament story of Legion, the Gerasene demoniac, the devils possessing him, begged Jesus not to command them to go out into the Abyss but to cast them into a group of pigs feeding on the hillside. Technically "The Old Farmer's Almanac" calls many pigs a "drift or drove" and of young pigs "a litter." Luke 8.31-33 reads, "And they begged Jesus repeatedly not to order them to go into the Abyss. A large herd of pigs was feeding there on the hillside. The demons begged Jesus to let them go into the pigs, and he permitted them. When the demons came out, they went into them, and the herd rushed down the bank into the lake and drowned."

Abyss Key

Scroll SealThe angel seals the Abyss for the safe-keeping of its prisoners. The Romans also lock Jesus' tomb in Matthew 27.66, which reads, "So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard." The Abyss is closed, and Satan is bound for a thousand years. In the first resurrection, God raises from the dead those who have died in the Faith. The general resurrection will take place after Christ's reign upon the earth. There are special rewards for those who show outstanding loyalty to Christ.

Bridge-Builder

Wooden BridgeAs the bridge-builder, Jesus connects God and human beings by his death on the cross. The Latin for "priest" is "pontifex," which means "a bridge-builder." The priest should be the builder of a bridge between God and human beings. The great bridge-builder and High Priest was the only one who could bring God and human beings together. The human priest is a pale shadow in this respect, not capable of bringing God and humankind together but only to introduce Jesus, the only one capable of completing this task. For Christians, Jesus utterly defeats death. The second death has no power over Christians. The end for us is not a feared thing, for it is the gateway to life everlasting. We are to be God and Christ's priests. In Christ, every ordinary Christian becomes a priest and a bridge builder with Christ.

Judge Jesus

JudgeJudge Jesus rules all the earth, the Devil, and the Abyss's vastness and reigns for a thousand years. At the end of the thousand years, God releases the Devil's bonds, but he has not learned his lesson, for he continues where he left off. Revelation 20.3 explains, "I saw thrones on which were seated those authorized to judge. He assembles the nations for one final attack on God. The last attack on Jerusalem by hostile nations is one of the Jewish end times' standard pictures. Then comes the final judgment. Judge Jesus is on his great white throne, which symbolizes his purity. Jesus says in John 5.22, "Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son." In the parable of the sheep and goats in Matthew 25.31-33, Judge Jesus receives the glory. "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, Jesus will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will gather before him, and he will separate people from one another as a shepherd separates sheep and goats. He will pen the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. A farmer "with a sharp scythe" in his hand separates faithful and unfaithful people like wheat and tares. Saint Paul's speech at Athens in Acts 17.31 says that God has appointed a specific time at which Jesus Christ would judge the world. "For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising Him from the dead." Saint Paul writes in 2 Timothy 4.1, "In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and because of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge." Jesus is the one who is to judge the living and the dead! ✞

"The Devil Abyss"
by Ron Meacock © 2021

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