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I saw an angel come down from heaven, carrying the key to the deep pit and a big chain. He chained the dragon for 1,000 years. It is that old snake, who is also known as the devil and Satan. Then the angel threw the dragon into the pit. He locked and sealed it, so 1,000 years would go by before the dragon could fool the nations again. But after that, it would have to be set free for a little while.
I saw thrones, and sitting on those thrones were the ones who had been given the right to judge. I also saw the souls of the people who had their heads cut off because they had told about Jesus and preached God's message.
They were the same ones who had not worshiped the beast or the idol, and they had refused to let its mark be put on their foreheads or hands. They will come to life and rule with Christ for 1,000 years.
These people are the first to be raised to life, and they are especially blessed and holy. The second death has no power over them. They will be priests for God and Christ and will rule with them for 1,000 years. No other dead people were raised to life until 1,000 years later.
You have seen the pictures of followers of Jesus having their heads cut off because of their unshakeable faith! If someone you know has suffered that fate, then these words in Revelation 20 are especially comforting. There is a special blessing for those who suffer in that way. Losing your life for Jesus will be rewarded!
But the truth is that all followers of Jesus are called to lose their lives for Him. You may not have the “opportunity” to become a martyr and have your head cut off, but you can and must let Jesus be the one who rules your life and your every decision.
Know for sure when you give up your life for Jesus, there is a special blessing for you from your Heavenly Father!
“Lord Jesus, give me the courage to be willing to become a martyr for you! And help me to be willing to let You be my Head even while I am alive on this earth. Praise Your Holy Name forever. Amen.”