855. And shall reign with Him a thousand years, signifies that they were already in heaven, when the rest, who did not yet live again, that is, receive heavenly life, were in the world of spirits. "To reign with Christ" does not signify to reign with Him, but to be in His kingdom, or in heaven, see above (n. 284, 289). By "a thousand years" is not meant a thousand years, but it signifies some time, as above (n. 842); that "a thousand years" signifies nothing else but that space of time which intervened between the shutting up of the dragon in the abyss and his release, is evident because it is said that he was cast into the abyss, shut up, and a seal set upon him for a thousand years, and then that he was loosed (verses 3, 7). This same space of time is also here signified; therefore, "they shall reign with Christ a thousand years," signifies that they were already in heaven, while the rest of the dead who did not yet live again were in the world of spirits (of whom verse 5). But these things cannot be comprehended by those who do not know that by numbers, in Revelation, are not meant numbers, but things. I can assert that the angels do not understand any number naturally, as men do, but spiritually; yea, that they do not know what a thousand years are, except that it is some interval of time, small or great, which cannot be otherwise expressed than by some time.