Could someone please explain to me the resurrections at Rev20. I've read many of Don Preston's books, and this question keeps cropping up in my mind. Are the disciples part of the first resurrection or the second resurrection?
[See also: /node/146]
Nowhere does the Scripture ever use the term "The Second Resurrection."
Rev 20 refers to "The First Resurrection" and to that of "The Rest of the Dead," Rev 20:4-6
Jesus taught about "The Resurrection of Life" and of "The Resurrection of Damnation," John 5:28-29.
Paul predicted "The Resurrection of the Dead, of both the Just and the Unjust," Acts 24:15.
So, there is definitely Bible agreement of two, distinct resurrections:
The Resurrection of the Just Dead, (The First Resurrection, The Resurrection of Life)
The Resurrection of the Unjust Dead (Resurrection of the Rest of the Dead, Resurrection of Damnation).
Acts 24:15 ~ Paul, around 58AD, after being arrested in Jerusalem
15 And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall [future to 58AD] be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust.
John 5:28-29 ~ spoken around 28AD by Jesus Himself
28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
Revelation 20:4-6 ~ penned around 63AD, foreseen in the predictive vision by John
I saw THE SOULS of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. 5 (But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished). This is the first resurrection: 6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection, on such the second death hath no power, but they shall [future to 63AD] be priests of God and of Christ, and shall [future to 63AD] reign with him a thousand years.
[Around 63AD, John foresaw two upcoming resurrections. He is careful to declare that "blessed and holy" are the ones to inherit the first of these two resurrections. By saying in verse 5 above, "the rest of the dead," John indicates that the souls he just described previously in verse 4 were of people who also were dead, the dead in Christ, 1 Thess 4:16. And by saying that the rest of the dead "lived not again until..." John adds details to the resurrections foreseen in this vision: both groups of souls "lived again" both groups of souls experienced "resurrection." By labeling one of these "The first Resurrection," John distinguishes between these two resurrrections. By stressing that the partakers of the first Resurrection were "blessed and holy" and that they had refused the Beast & his mark, John indicates that the Rest of the Dead were NOT blessed and holy, for they HAD received the Beast & his mark. /node/132 If the resurrection of the first group of souls was their "coming to covenant life" then the resurrection of the Rest of the Dead was their "coming to covenant life again," but that would be Universalism - everybody eventually comes to covenant life again. Since Universalism is false, then neither of these resurrections are describing people coming to covenant life. Resurrection in this context here can only be the souls of physically dead people coming to animate bodies again.]
So, to which of these two Resurrections was Paul striving to attain?
A) the blessed & holy First Resurrection
B) that of "The Rest of the Dead"
Philippians 3:10-13 ~ penned around 62AD by Paul in prison
10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;
11 If by any means I might attain unto THE RESURRECTION OF THE DEAD.
12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.
13 Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:
2 Timothy 2:17-19 ~penned around 63AD
17 Their teaching will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, 18 who have wandered away from the truth. They say that THE RESURRECTION has [prior to 63AD] already taken place, and they destroy the faith of some. NIV
Was it not the Resurrection to Life, the First Resurrection Christians were concerned about?
44 "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at THE LAST DAY.
WHO DID JESUS PROMISE TO RAISE UP AT THE LAST DAY? WHEN?
54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up AT THE LAST DAY.
So, WHEN does Preterism calculate the Last Day to have arrived? 70AD, right? Still within THAT GENERATION, right?
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17 ~penned around 51AD
16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and THE DEAD IN CHRIST will [future to 51AD] RISE FIRST.
Revelation 20:5-6 ~penned around 63AD
This is the FIRST RESURRECTION. 6 Blessed and holy are those who have part in the FIRST RESURRECTION. The second death has no power over them, but they will [future to 63AD] be priests of God and of Christ and will [future to 63AD] reign with Him for a thousand years.