As we enter this section, it is important to note that there are three views concerning the millennium in this chapter:
"1. Premillennialists (or premillenarians) understand the 1,000 years to follow the return of Christ. Thus, they believe in a premillennial return of Christ (before the Millennium)."  This view holds that Christ will come back to earth bodily rule on earth for 1,000 years, after which time Satan will be released and ultimately defeated and punished. This is the view that I hold.
"2. Postmillennialists also find in Revelation 20 a consummation of history in the 1000-year reign of the saints, but they believe that Christ will accomplish this through the church’s fulfilling of its gospel mission, prior to His return. The 1,000 years of peace will be accomplished through no other agency than that which is already in the possession of the church, i.e., the Word of God and the Holy Spirit. The world will become christianized, either as the result of worldwide revival and mass conversions, or through the imposition of Christian ideals by converted rulers and Christian governments—or both."  This view sees the 1,000 reign as somewhat figurative: the world will become Christian for 1,000 years through the work of the church. It is not a reign of a literal, bodily Christ, but His reign through His church.
"3. Amillennialism, which means “no millennium,” takes its name from its denial that there will be a special golden age of literally 1,000 years, either before or after the return of Christ. Revelation 20 is understood symbolically or spiritually, so that the reign of the saints depicts either the vindicated martyrs reigning from heaven in the present age, or earthly believers achieving spiritual victory over personal sin during the same period. The time frame is seen to be the whole time between Christ’s first and second advents. Thus the binding of Satan at the beginning of the Millennium is associated with the First Coming of Christ, and the “fire from heaven” at the end of the Millennium is associated with His Second Coming."  This is a wholly figurative view that sees this speaking not of a literal 1,000 years, but as a figurative time that begins when Jesus is crucified and resurrected and ends when the world does.
If you've been reading the posts on Revelation, it should be no surprise to you that I take the premillennial view and it'll probably be clear why: it is the most literal. This seems to be the most natural way to take the passage: the Jesus Himself really reigns for a real 1,000 years. I'm not going to deny that there is symbolism throughout this book, but this seems to be something different. We've taken the times listed (such as 42 months) literally, and I think that this should be as well. I'm also not denying that is is possible through the power of God for the church to evangelize the entire world, but that doesn't seem to be what is spoken of here: Christ comes on a white horse with the heavenly armies to defeat the armies of the antichrist at Armageddon and takes up His reign after doing so. I think it's best to take it that way.
Again, some tough stuff. Questions? Comments?