1-3. And I saw an angel come down from heaven with a chain, and the key of the abyss. The abyss is named in Revelation 9:1 Revelation 9:11 Revelation 11:7 Revelation 17:8 . It is the present abode of Satan and his evil spirits. The things seen by John are symbolical. They imply that in some way the power of Satan shall be virtually destroyed upon the earth. 2. He laid hold on the dragon . . . and bound him a thousand years. The chain I suppose to be the Word of God. At this period of the triumph of righteousness the gospel takes such hold of the hearts of men that Satan loses his powers over them. We can easily see how this is accomplished by what takes place under our own eyes. A man may be drunken and lawless, but if he repents under the influence of the gospel he ceases to serve Satan. The devil loses his power over that man. When that period shall come for which the saints in all ages have wistfully looked, when the laws of God shall be written upon every heart, then Satan, bound with a chain, the chain of truth, shall be deprived of influence on the earth. 3. And cast him into the abyss. During this millennial period the chained enemy of man is cast into a prison house, but not the lake of fire. Had he gone there he should never more return. He shall go there as his ultimate fate (see verse 10 ), but after the thousand years, he is to return to the earth for a little season, and until the final effort of his long struggle against God he shall be confined in the abyss, from whence there is the possibility of escape, instead of being cast into the lake of fire, which is an eternal doom. In the bottomless pit the great deceiver shall remain till the thousand years are ended, when for a little season he shall regain his power.