Revelation 20:5

The rest of the dead (oi loipoi twn nekrwn). "All except the martyrs, both the righteous and the unrighteous" (Beckwith). But some take this to mean only the wicked. Lived not until the thousand years should be finished (ouk ezhsan acri telesqh ta cilia eth). See verse Revelation 4 for the items here. "To infer from this statement, as many expositors have done, that the ezhsan of v. Revelation 4 must be understood of bodily resuscitation, is to interpret apocalyptic prophecy by methods of exegesis which are proper to ordinary narrative" (Swete). I sympathize wholly with that comment and confess my own ignorance therefore as to the meaning of the symbolism without any predilections for post-millennialism or premillennialism. This is the first resurrection (auth h anastasi h prwth). Scholars differ as to the genuineness of this phrase. Accepting it as genuine, Swete applies it to "the return of the martyrs and confessors to life at the beginning of the Thousand Years." According to this view the first resurrection is a special incident in the present life before the Parousia. It has no parallel with 1 Thessalonians 4:16 , where the dead in Christ are raised before those living are changed. Some think that John here pictures the "Regeneration" (palingenesia) of Matthew 19:28 and the "Restoration" (apokatastasi) of Acts 3:21 . No effort is here made to solve this problem, save to call attention to the general judgment out of the books in Acts 20:12 and to the general resurrection in John 5:29 ; Acts 24:15 .