After the destruction of the wicked and the binding of Satan, the earth finally rests during the Lord’s thousand-year reign. But after the Millennium and before the final end, Satan is “loosed out of his prison” (Revelation 20:7) and is allowed once more to “deceive the nations” (v. 8). John sees the destruction of one last demonic army and the final judgment for all of God’s children (see Revelation 20:9–13). He hears Christ deliver a message echoing the ones delivered to the seven churches in Asia: “He that overcometh shall inherit all things” (Revelation 21:7). Finally he sees the faithful Saints who did overcome and are dwelling on the earth in celestial splendor (see Revelation 22).
Prayerfully study Revelation 20–22and consider the following principles before preparing your lessons.
Some Important Gospel Principles to Look For
The Life and Teachings of Jesus and His Apostles, 468–72.
Suggestions for Teaching
Choose from the following ideas, or use some of your own, as you prepare lessons for Revelation 20–22.
Revelation 20–22. The events that occur during and following the Millennium are a part of Heavenly Father’s plan of salvation.
John is one of the few prophets to see the end of the earth whose writings the Lord has allowed to go forth to the world (see 1 Nephi 14:24–27). To teach these events, consider giving students copies of the chart on page 264 as a handout and discussing it as a class. Or create a similar chart using just the scripture references, and have the students work through it individually or in groups. Correct it as a class, using the version of the chart given on page 264 as a guide. You will likely find that the events of Revelation 20–22 create their own interest. If desired, you can have an enjoyable discussion just reviewing and talking about the Millennium and the end of the world, without using the handouts or other aids.
Have a student read the following statement by President Ezra Taft Benson:
“I testify that not many years hence the earth will be cleansed. … Jesus the Christ will come again, this time in power and great glory to vanquish His foes [destroy His enemies] and to rule and reign on the earth” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1988, 104; or Ensign, Nov. 1988, 87).
Invite students to read Revelation 22:20. Ask: Keeping in mind President Benson’s statement, why do you think John’s prayer at the end of his book of Revelation was “Come, Lord Jesus”?
Revelation 20:1–3. During the Millennium, Satan will be bound and will not have power to tempt or deceive people.
Bring a rope to class. Ask for a volunteer and tie that person up. Ask:
How does being bound affect this person’s freedom?
Under what conditions would it be appropriate to bind someone?
Have students read Revelation 20:1–3and look for a similar situation described by John. Ask:
Who is “bound” in these verses?
How long will Satan be bound?
What will he no longer be allowed to do?
Do you think this means that Satan will be bound with earthly ropes? If not, how will he be bound?
Invite students to read 1 Nephi 22:26and look for one way Satan will be bound. To help students see this principle, discuss the following points:
Have a student read the following statement by Elder Spencer W. Kimball, then a member of the Quorum of the Twelve:
“When Satan is bound in a single home—when Satan is bound in a single life—the Millennium has already begun in that home, in that life” (The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 172).
Ask: How can we bind Satan in our lives?
Revelation 20:12–13(Scripture Mastery). In the Final Judgment, all will be judged according to their works.
Display a judge’s gavel or draw one on the board. Invite students to read Revelation 20:12–13looking for what these verses have to do with the drawing. Ask:
What will this day be like for those who lived wickedly?
What about for those who lived righteously?
Divide the class into three groups and assign each to read one of the following scripture blocks: John 5:22, 25–29; Alma 5:15–16; 11:43–44; Doctrine and Covenants 128:6–7. Have them share what they learn about the Judgment, and discuss it as a class.
Invite students to reflect on what they can do so that the Day of Judgment will be a happy one for them.
Revelation 22:12–17. Only those who keep the commandments and come unto Jesus Christ will be able to dwell in celestial glory.
Tell students that John closed his book of Revelation with a message that can help us prepare for the coming of Christ and enjoy the blessings God reserves for all His faithful children.
Write the following quotation on the board, but leave a blank in place of the word obedience:
“Obedience is the first law of heaven” (Joseph F. Smith, in Journal of Discourses, 16:247–48).
Invite students to recommend a word that would make the sentence true. Have them give evidence from the scriptures to support the statement. Read Revelation 22:12–14to see if they can identify the first law of heaven from these verses. Write Obedience in the blank and ask: Why would obedience be considered the first law of heaven? (see D&C 130:20–21).
Have a student read the following story told by Elder Russell M. Nelson:
“Early in our married life when Sister Nelson and I lived in Minneapolis, we decided to enjoy a free afternoon with our two-year-old daughter. We went to one of Minnesota’s many beautiful lakes and rented a small boat. After rowing far from shore, we stopped to relax and enjoy the tranquil scene. Suddenly, our little toddler lifted one leg out of the boat and started to go overboard, exclaiming, ‘Time to get out, Daddy!’
”Quickly we caught her and explained, ‘No, dear, it’s not time to get out; we must stay in the boat until it brings us safely back to land.’ Only with considerable persuasion did we succeed in convincing her that leaving the boat early would have led to disaster. …
“Similarly, we as children of our Heavenly Father may foolishly want to get ‘out of the boat’ before we arrive at destinations He would like us to reach. …
“Blessings bestowed by God are always predicated upon obedience to law [see D&C 130:20–21]. Applied to my analogy, we are first to get ‘on the boat’ with Him. Then we are to stay with Him. And if we don’t get ‘out of the boat’ before we should, we shall reach His kingdom, where we will be lifted up to eternal life” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1997, 96; or Ensign, May 1997, 70).
Ask some of the following questions:
What is the destination that Heavenly Father wants us to reach?
What is the “boat” that God has provided to help carry us there?
In what ways are people tempted to get out of the boat?
How can obedience help us reach our destination safely?
Read Revelation 22:17looking for the Savior’s invitation to each of us. Encourage students to come unto Christ. Conclude by inviting them to share what they learned this year in seminary that will help them be obedient and “stay in the boat.”