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Revelation Answer to Question #13


13. Who are the "Rest of the Dead"?
      (Revelation 20:4, 5)

The text as it stands does not make sense: "...They lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection."

The "rest of the dead" do not experience the "first resurrection." The "first resurrection" is for those who live and reign with Christ.

The italicized words above were added after the fifth century. The words are not found in the oldest and most reliable Greek MSS, the Sinaitic, Vatican Nos. 1209 and 1160, nor the Syriac MS. 

The whole purpose of those who are raised to the "first resurrection"—the "firstfruits of them that slept"— is to rule over and bless the rest of mankind during the 1,000-year kingdom of Christ (Revelation 20:5,6; 1 Corinthians 15:20).

Then Satan will be bound to "deceive the nations no more" and people will be able to learn about Christ. There would be no point for the rest of mankind not living till the end of the 1,000 years when the whole kingdom was expressly for their benefit!


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