not to the righteous arising at a different time from the wicked? (Please note that the word 'prevent' in verse 15 has the older English meaning of 'to go before.' Its meaning here is that the saints who are alive on earth at the last day shall not 'go before' the saints who shall arise from the dead. Together, both shall ascend to be with the Lord forever .)
"3. Can you explain why Revelation 20:4-6 is referring to the spiritual resurrection of souls, not to the physical resurrection of the righteous at a different time from that of the wicked?"
Can you answer the three questions asked by Mark's teacher? Can you list several verses which clearly teach that the righteous and wicked shall physically arise together on the Resurrection Day?
A young soldier was impressed with the following comparison, as he relates it: "I observed how the barracks were perfectly still in the early morning hours. Everyone was deathly quiet, for all were sound asleep. But suddenly, the piercing call of the trumpet rent the silence and all the 'dead' soldiers sprang to life. The barracks were suddenly a hive of activity."
"This example spake to me of the 'great trumpet call.' When the angel's piercing call shall sound, the dead shall hear and be raised. The silent graveyards shall spring to life and be full of activity. What an awakening this shall be!"
God's saints shall experience two "resurrection miracles." Can you describe both?
Scripture pictures the great resurrection scene as taking place "in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible" (I Corinthians 15:52). When Jesus shall return on the clouds of heaven, when the final day and moment of life on this present earth has arrived, when time shall be no more, then all the dead shall be raised and the living shall be changed from their mortal into their immortal bodies.
But some man will say, How are the dead raised up?
and with what body do they come?
Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die:
And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body that shall be, but bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other grain:
But God giveth it a body as it hath pleased Him, and to every seed his own body.
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?