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The Great Controversy, by Ellen G. White, [1858], at



The Earth Desolated


I then beheld the earth.  The wicked were dead, and their bodies were lying upon the face of the earth.  The inhabitants of earth had suffered the wrath of God in the seven last plagues.  They had gnawed their tongues for pain and had cursed God.  The false shepherds were signal objects of Jehovah's wrath.  Their eyes had consumed away in their holes, and their tongues in their mouths, while they stood upon their feet.  After the saints were delivered by the voice of God, the rage of the wicked multitude was turned upon each other.  The earth seemed to be deluged with blood, and dead bodies were from one end of the earth to the other.

The earth was in a most desolate condition.  Cities and villages, shaken down by the earthquake, lay in heaps.  Mountains were moved out of their places, leaving large caverns.  The sea had thrown out ragged rocks upon the earth, and rocks had been torn out of the earth, and were scattered all over its surface.  The earth looked like a desolate wilderness.  Large trees were rooted up, and were strewn over the land.  Here is Satan's home, with his evil angels, through the 1000 years.  Here they will be confined, and wander up and down over the broken surface of the earth, and see the effects of his rebellion against God's law.  The effects of the curse which he has caused, he can enjoy through the 1000 years.  Limited alone to the earth, he will have no privilege of ranging around to other planets, to tempt and annoy those who have not fallen.  Satan suffers in this time extremely.  Since his fall his evil traits have been in constant exercise.  He is then deprived of his power, and left to reflect upon the part he has acted since his fall, and to look forward with trembling and terror to the dreadful future, when he must suffer for all the evil he has done, and be punished for all the sins he has caused to be committed.

Then I heard shouts of triumph from the angels, and from the redeemed saints, which sounded like ten thousand musical instruments, because they were to be no more annoyed and tempted by the Devil, and the inhabitants of other worlds were delivered from his presence and his temptations.

Then I saw thrones, and Jesus and the redeemed saints sat upon them; and the saints reigned as kings and priests unto God, and the wicked dead were judged, and their acts were compared with the statute book, the word of God, and they were judged according to the deeds done in the body.  Jesus, in union with the saints, meted out to the wicked the portion they must suffer, according to their works; and it was written in the book of death, and set off against their names.  Satan and his angels were also judged by Jesus and the saints.  Satan's punishment was to be far greater than that of those whom he had deceived.  It so far exceeded their punishment that it could not be compared with theirs.  After all those whom he had deceived had perished, Satan was to still live and suffer on much longer.

After the judgment of the wicked dead was finished, at the end of the one thousand years, Jesus left the City, and a train of the angelic host followed him.  The saints also went with him.  Jesus descended upon a great and mighty mountain, which, as soon as his feet touched it, parted asunder, and became a mighty plain.  Then we looked up and saw the great and beautiful City, with twelve foundations, twelve gates, three on each side, and an angel at each gate.  We cried out, The City! The great City!  It is coming down from God out of heaven!  And it came down in all its splendor, and dazzling glory, and settled in the mighty plain which Jesus had prepared for it.


See Zechariah 14:4-12; Revelation 20:2-6, 20:12, 21:10-27


Next: Chapter 40. The Second Resurrection