Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online

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Chiliasm/Millenarianism (or Millennialism) refers to a set of ideas and takes its inspiration from Rev 20:1–6, where the saints who had been beheaded for their testimony to Christ reign with him for a 1,000 years (Bietenhard, 1955). During this period Satan is confined so that he would not deceive the nations. What is crucial about this passage is that it looks forward to a messianic reign on earth. This was a widely held view that early Christianity inherited from Jewish eschatology (Scholem, 1971; Saperstein, 1992). Ar…

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Rowland, Christopher, “Chiliasm”, in: Brill Encyclopedia of Early Christianity Online, General Editor David G. Hunter, Paul J.J. van Geest, Bert Jan Lietaert Peerbolte. Consulted online on 25 June 2022 <>
First published online: 2018

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