Can you imagine a world with no fear? No disease? No pain? No worry? That is what the Millennial Kingdom will be like. For a thousand years, there will be peace—we will live in a perfect world with Christ as our ruler. It is something we can look forward to when our lives are difficult and when our world is filled with chaos, immorality, and despair. As we go through hard times, we must remember our future with Christ. Here is a brief look at what the Millennial Kingdom will be like.
What Is the Millennium?
The word mille means “a thousand” so the millennium is “a thousand years.” That term is mentioned six times in Revelation 20. The Millennium will be Christ’s one-thousand-year reign as King, following the Tribulation. David will be His vice president and will sit on the throne with Him. They will rule the world in righteousness and godliness. There will still be sin in the Millennium, but it will be dealt with immediately.
By studying the Millennium, we discover that lifetimes will be extended, there will be peace in the animal kingdom—the lion will lay down with the lamb, and there will be peace among mankind—all the hostilities that have been a part of our world will be gone. The Millennium will be incredible. Dwight Pentecost stated there is more information in the Bible about the Millennium than any other period in Scripture. Many of these references are tucked away in the Old Testament where you wouldn’t expect. When you start to search for it, there is something about that period everywhere you look in the Bible.
Will Believers Today Be on Earth for the Millennium?
At the moment of the Rapture, every believer who is alive or deceased will be taken up into heaven. We will remain there for about seven years while the Tribulation is happening on earth. The Marriage Supper of the Lamb and Judgment Seat of Christ will take place during this time. Once the Tribulation is over, Christ will return to earth.
When Christ returns to defeat the armies of the world that have formed against Him, we will return with Him. After the battle is over, the Bible says that all Christians are going to be part of the government. “And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years” (Revelation 20:4). We will stay on earth with Him, and we will rule and reign with Him throughout the whole world.
What will we do in Christ’s government? I don’t know. In the Scripture, there seems to be a relationship between one’s faithfulness here in this time and what administration they are going to be given in that time. It is like the parable of the talents in Matthew 25:14-30. Jesus will reward us with responsibilities based on our faithfulness to Him.
Will There Be Conflict in the Millennium?
War has been a consistent part of human history from the very beginning. Growing up in Toledo, Ohio, during the end of World War II, we had blackouts. There would be a siren, and it would help prepare people for the on-going conflict at that time. War has always been part of our conversation, but there will be no war when we get to the Millennium.
Micah 4:4 says, “But everyone shall sit under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid.” Can you image not being afraid? Not having to lock your doors?
Consider these words from Isaiah 19:23-25: “In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian will come into Egypt and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians will serve with the Assyrians. In that day Israel will be one of three with Egypt and Assyria—a blessing in the midst of the land, whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, ‘Blessed is Egypt My people, and Assyria the work of My hands, and Israel My inheritance.’”
How peaceful is it going to be in the Millennium? Egypt and the Assyrians and the Jews are all going to be allies. They will work together in cooperation. Isaiah 2:4 tells us that they will “beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.”
In the Millennium, there will be no war.
Will There Be Death During the Millennium?
Isaiah 35:5-6 says, “Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the dumb sing. For waters shall burst forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert.”
Because of the universe’s pristine conditions during the thousand-year reign of Christ, people will live for a long time. It appears that life spans will revert to those of the era before the Flood, when humans lived to be more than nine hundred years old. Isaiah 65:20 says, “No more shall an infant from there live but a few days, nor an old man who has not fulfilled his days.” Someone who is a hundred years old will be like a child.
Disease will be abolished. The crisis of death will be experienced only by those incorrigible individuals who rebel against the law of the kingdom. The ordinary hazards of physical life will be under the direct control of the One whose voice even the winds and waves obey.
Will There Be Sin During the Millennium?
Some people find it surprising to think of rebellion during the Millennium, but here is how it will happen. Everybody who goes into the Millennium will be righteous—they all will be saved. But during that one-thousand-year period, there will be marriages. Children will be born and some of those children will rebel the things of God. Just like today, each person born during the Millennial Age will make a personal decision for or against Christ.
We can be assured of this: Rebellion won’t last long. The One who is in charge will know the intent of every heart, and there will be swift justice for every wrong. The Bible says our Lord will rule with a rod of iron. That means there won’t be any long delays in justice—no long waits for trials, no long waits for sentences to be carried out. There will be immediate justice based upon the holy reign of King Jesus.
What Is the Purpose of the Millennium?
There are several reasons that a literal Millennium must occur.
To reward the people of God:
There are scores of promises scattered throughout the Bible, both in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, guaranteeing God’s people that they will receive rewards for faithful service (Matthew 16:27; Matthew 25:34; Revelation 22:12). And part of our heavenly reward will be to reign and rule with Christ upon this earth during the Millennium. Each of us will have opportunities to serve the Lord based upon our faithfulness in serving Him right now.
To respond to the prophets’ predictions:
The prophets of the Old Testament predicted such a time (Psalm 72:11; Isaiah 9:7; Luke 1:32-33). And without the Millennium, none of those prophecies could be fulfilled.
To receive an answer to the disciples’ prayer (Matthew 6:8-13):
One day, when Jesus returns, His kingdom will come, and His will shall be done on this earth.
To reemphasize man’s depravity and the necessity of Christ’s death:
During the Millennium, those faithful servants who survive the Tribulation will bear children, in whom the sin nature will reside, because the fallen human nature of man will not be eliminated until eternity begins at the end of the millennial kingdom. At the end of the thousand years, Satan will be released, and he will stir up a final rebellion against God just as he did in the Garden of Eden (Revelation 20:1-3, 7-8). That’s right—even though Christ is ruling and reigning on the earth during the Millennium, some will yet be deceived. This demonstrates just how deeply man needs a Savior. Man can never achieve righteousness apart from God.
What Is the Purpose of the Book of Revelation?
This book is a purposeful book. Revelation is a book that is written on purpose. It’s written to tell us about two things: the return of the King and the reign of the King.
First, it says Jesus Christ is coming back. There is going to be a King on this earth one day who rules over every nation. Revelation 1:7 says, “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.”
Daniel’s Old Testament prophecy foretold Christ’s return. “I was watching in the night visions, and behold, One like the Son of Man, coming with the clouds of heaven!” (Daniel 7:13)
In His Olivet Discourse, Jesus spoke of His coming in similar terms. He said, “Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30).
John expanded upon Jesus’ words. He said when Christ returns “every eye will see Him” (Revelation 1:7). It’s going to happen. The King is coming back. And when He comes back, He is going to set up His kingdom and rule. “ ‘I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End,’ says the Lord, ‘who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty’ ” (Revelation 1:8).
When Jesus returns with His saints, He’s going to set up His kingdom on this earth, and for a thousand years there will be a rule of righteousness on planet earth. And the Bible says those who are His followers will reign with Him. We will rule with Him on this earth.
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To learn more about biblical prophecies for the future, request David Jeremiah’s masterwork on the subject, The Book of Signs—31 Undeniable Prophecies of the Apocalypse