Jesus and the Kingdom (Millennial)
In undertaking this Subject, we wish to emphasise that it is a study which may be close to actual events later, but does not claim to be the only true interpretation! Also, at the time of fulfilment, conditions may make interpretation clearer. It is the writers' conviction that although intended primarily for the Jews, Almighty God’s intention is for Christians and others to study this subject with the prayerful help of the Holy Spirit, and the Blessing promised confirms that view (Rev. 1:3). This promise of blessing by the Holy Spirit of God for those so moved to read and study Revelation, removes the much vaunted comment of those that criticise such endeavour; and who have to be viewed with suspicion, as the information contained in the pages of Revelation reveal much of the purpose of God! Every reader should check and compare for themselves comments made, by reading and study from the Bible, which is the only absolute Source of Truth with the prayerful help of the Holy Spirit. This principle is stated in our Opening Page of www.revelationsmessage.co.uk
What is the purpose of the Millennial? When the writers first became aware of it at the beginning of the serious search for reasons and truth, it was presented as a future time on Earth when evil was destroyed, peace was a constant, strife was none existent, all in all a very desirable and idyllic state which was to be the lot of all people who believed in the Risen Christ! Over time this concept was challenged in the mind by study of the Holy Bible, Scripture.
As time passed it became apparent from hearing, reading and study, that different ‘Churches’ and Sects had different interpretations which conflicted with our reference Group at that time (Open Brethren), some of which were very strange by comparison. A chance acquaintance in business, a Jehovah’s Witness, gave the opportunity to discuss their beliefs, which with further enquiry allowed a considerable amount of data to be discovered regarding Rev. 7, and the ‘sealed’ 144,000, which in the late 1800s was “the number to be saved”! That JW teaching, together with “the end of the world” arriving in the early twentieth century clearly discredited the JWs, so they did a quick revision to their teaching!
The outstanding principle for any near accurate interpretation is correct understanding as far as possible of what the Bible says, which cannot be obtained unless Jesus the Christ, and Jehovah God are given their proper place in the teachings and minds and hearts of people and Church Groups! As so many Groups, if not most are in relative turmoil regarding many basic Bible understandings and teachings from their leaders; getting these two basics right can be daunting!
A quick reminder is needed here as to the position of Jehovah God and Christ Jesus.
Jehovah God is the First Person of the Godhead, and His title “Jehovah” means “Elohim Creator of all things, in Covenant relationship to those He has created”, (App. 4 Companion Bible). As He is only in Covenant Relationship with His “firstborn son” Israel (Ex. 4:22), the Title Jehovah, applies to them alone! See: "Israel; My Firstborn son".
Christ Jesus is the Saviour of the World by virtue of His death on the Calvary cross approx. 2000 years ago. Because of His final rejection by the Jewish Sanhedrin at Acts 28:25-28, He in Heaven, is currently sitting at the right hand of the Father, awaiting the subjection of His enemies (Psm.110:1, Matt. 22:44, Act 2:34 and Heb.1:13). He will appear on Earth the second time in Power and great Glory, to rescue the “remnant” of His people Israel, prior to which He will collect His Body. They are the people (Christians) that took/take Him to their hearts in truth since Acts 28:28, when Paul made his declaration towards the Gentiles, at the instigation of The Risen Lord (The Apostle Paul)! Christ Jesus is the Second Person of the Godhead! Jesus Christ's Deity.
With these two Biblical definitions of the first two Persons of the Godhead, the first principles for better understanding of Revelation are in place.
It should be further noted here, that true understanding of Revelation cannot be obtained by a person who tries to apply it to the “Church” of this present Dispensation, or by people that substitute Israel for the present “Church” see: Replacement Theology, or who think and teach that we are now in the Age and events of Revelation, or who do not believe that Jesus the Christ is Divine! These teachings are quite widespread, and do great harm to both the adherents and to the reputation of Bible teaching worldwide, as they cause strife and impede true study of Scripture.
Why do some Churches teach that the Millennial is a perfect state of existence? Most Churches don’t teach on the Millennial in any case in any formal way. It is true that some College courses do cover this most important subject, but as the reference to it is in Revelation 20:2-3, many ‘official lines’ are that “Revelation is history”, (a Church of England Bishop’s comment on British Television recently, who also teaches at Oxford University); the apathy and confusion in many parts of the world is noticeable. So much information in Scripture points to the opposite of a perfect state of rest and peace, although there is undoubtedly a more settled existence then than now, especially for the Jewish Nation, which will be in its Promised Land borders for the first time, and will be one of the Promises fulfilled from God to Abraham (Gen.15:18).
One commentator and writer states that another ‘Age’ or Dispensation is prior to the Millennial, of approx. 500 years duration, “when there is no Curse”, and Satan’s actions on mankind are rampant; to be dealt with by God at that time, so that the world is a fit place for Christ to return to in the Millennial Age!
These ideas with differences are also being used by the Ecumenical Movement under the Auspices of Rome, to the same end; i.e. to make the world fit for the return of Christ by the joining together of the ‘Churches’, concentrating on the Doctrines that do not conflict. There is special emphasis on “not rocking the boat of ideal Ecumenicalism” by not preaching and teaching “one way to God” in this Age; i.e. Christ Jesus (Acts 4:12); which teaching is repulsive to many religious people and Groups! These ideas and teachings most certainly do not in our view correspond with Scripture, and deny and negate the unique Work of our Lord on the cross of Calvary! See: Salvation.
Another Evangelist (USA), has made the point that he thinks that “the Curse” does not exist in the Millennial! It is hard to see why such eminent Scholars should say such, as the Bible clearly states in Rev. 22:3 that the curse is no longer in existence at the stage of the “new Heaven and new Earth”. It is hardly likely that God would remove and re-impose the Curse, which He so clearly imposed at Eden, and which is linked to the death sentence imposed by God (Gen. 2:17), but instigated by Satan through Eve and Adam. Also, the “tree of life” is linked by God to the same event, and is not mentioned again (except in promise in Ezk. 47 & Rev. 2:7) until Rev. 22:2 and 14, which is de-facto “the new Heaven and Earth”!
There is clearly a link between this existing Earth, and the Curse and death imposed at Eden which will not be cleared by God until events and processes have been enacted which negate the cause and reasons for the Curse and death’s imposition by God. He and only He controls those events as regards timing (not Satan, as is so often supposed). This point was emphasised by our Lord when He was questioned by His Disciples regarding the Kingdom (Acts 1:7). It is noticeable that the question from them to the Lord, was regarding the “restoration of the Kingdom to Israel”, as that event and those leading to the new Heaven and Earth are clearly linked! When these have been worked through, the new Heaven and Earth will be brought about by God the Father! In the meantime, Jesus has given the Disciples and all who understand it, “The Lord’s Prayer”; which is primarily Jewish, but has also the Christian and Jewish desire for “the Millennial Kingdom to come”!
As we noted above, the Eden event is linked to those of the Millennial. As is well known Satan in Eden approached Eve and that approach resulted in the fall of Adam. For details of what probably/ possibly took place see: Eve and Adam
Leaving aside the many arguments as to what exactly took place in Eden; we are given sufficient information to know that Satan was triumphant in the Fall of Eve and Adam in coercing them to disobey God, and that in consequence death entered the world by the instruction of God (Gen. 2:17 and 3:22). The reason that human life was then not to be more than a span determined by God, was to stop the devastation that would have ensued with the knowledge they then held, and which is now held by all humans; “the knowledge of good and evil”; which Satan would have used (and is still attempting to) which would have/will have consequences not just on Earth, but in the whole sphere of God’s Creation! That is the reason we are told in Eph. 3:10-11 that the Powers and Rulers in Heavenly places are witness to the Wisdom of God in Christ Jesus, and His Body (Church AV), in the “eternal purpose”, which is the defeat of Satan and evil in this mammoth contest between God and the rebellious Satan. See: Satan's Motivation:
So there was an apparent success for Satan and an apparent failure for God and His first humans of this present Creation, see: (Age of the Earth Controversy)! It must be noted that Satan, Eve, and Adam all had free will and exercised it to their shame and failure, and that same free will, will be in play in the Millennial!
Satan went on to greater interference and domination of Earth by the use of fallen angels, see: Nephilim who produced progeny who threatened to take complete control of the world, and to thwart the Promise of God embodied in the statement of Gen. 3:15, which refers to Christ Jesus! That Promise is the solution to all the actions and whiles of Satan, which point to the Cross of Calvary and beyond, to the finished work of Messiah Jesus; Who will hand that finished work back to the Father at the end of Millennial (1Cor. 15:24-25). That particular low point in human history was dealt with by God with the Flood of Gen. 7; where only Noah and his family escaped Nephilim infiltration (Gen. 6:9), and therefore carried the Messiah Line (Gen. 3:15), and survived the Flood by the design of God. See: Ark of Noah.
After the Flood event, the world was repopulated by the family of Noah, the Messiah line was preserved, and God moved eventually to prove His Love for the world in the initiation of a new group of people for special blessing, eventually known as Israel (God’s “firstborn son” Ex. 4:22). As is well known these were descendants of “the friend of God” Abram (Isa. 41:8, 2Chron. 20:7 and Jas. 2:23), later called Abraham. Abram was a special man, as he rejected the pagan gods of his fathers, was spoken to by God, who requested he leave his home country, and travel in faith to where God would guide him, which he did.
God promised Abram a son in the new land which he had travelled to, and through much distrust by both Abram and his wife Sarah, as both were nearing 100 years of age, God granted them a son Isaac in their old age, and changed the name of Abram to Abraham (father of many Nations, Gen. 17, and 21). From this small beginning came the Jewish Nation, which was chosen by Almighty God to witness for Him in the world, and is stated as such in (Isa. 41:8-9 and 43:10).
All the Jews that descended from Abraham through the miracle son Isaac are much loved by Jehovah, and He requested of them that they should honour Him in thought, word and deed, as they were to be His witnesses throughout the world (Isa. 43:10). In that much honoured role they failed. They did not honour the Almighty in thought, word and deed, so Jehovah God made a way out for them in the sacrifice of animals whose blood and various offerings became the propitiation and atonement between them and their God Jehovah. This blood propitiation was to be fulfilled (filled full) by Jesus at the Calvary Cross, and this example pointed towards that event, and the fulfilment of the prophecy in Gen. 22:8-12. Because their failure was continual (by their own will), under coercion by Satan from many directions, the sacrificial system with the priesthood in the Temple in Jerusalem was also continual. Even in that they failed, in that they did not keep up the required sacrifices, and even went as far as to deny the existence of their God, and at one stage closed and sealed the Temple, 2Chron. 28:24, eventually God's Shekinah (glorious presence) departed from the Temple, and the midst of His people; (Ezk.11:23), which led to the Babylonian exile.
The Almighty had promised the Jews great blessing if they honoured Him in the ways mentioned but had already foreseen their failure and had promised them a second chance to draw close to Him in righteousness, (Jer. 31:31). He also in v 32 and Isa. 54:5 showed that He had been a husband to them, and that they were betrothed to Him!
The failure of the Jews to keep their promises to God as recorded in Deuteronomy onwards, was due to the gods of the pagan tribes in the ‘promised land’, which they on many occasions consorted with. These gods and people were servants of Satan, and part of the many tools in Satan’s armoury; with his knowledge of fallen human condition; and it is conjectured that Nephilim influence was still prevalent as witnessed in Goliath as one example.
After the Babylonian exile, Israel under Nehemiah and Ezra were brought to a stage of spiritual recovery, and renewed their vows to Jehovah. However, by the time of the first Advent of Jesus, they were in an even worse state than earlier, due to the false teaching and leadership of the Pharisees! This Sect had changed the teachings from those given at Sinai to Moses, known as Biblical Torah, to those of the Wisdom Writings which are incorporated into ‘Torah’ and Mishnah, and which hold sway today with Orthodox Jewry! These are the reason for the anger and condemnation of Jesus, John the Baptist and Apostle Paul against the Pharisees (now known as Orthodox Jews)! See: Jewish Scriptures
Jesus was openly rejected by the Jewish populous when He and Barabbas were presented to them by Pontius Pilate, and they chose Barabbas. This was just prior to the Jewish Passover, and when He had been crucified He was laid in a rock hewn tomb on the very day of the ‘Passover Lamb preparation’ (Jewish custom), which signalled His status as “The Lamb of God” (John 1:29 and 1:36)! The ever gracious God extended His offer of Christ, Salvation, (and therefore the Kingdom) till the final Synagogue had been visited by Paul in Rome (Acts 28:28). That was approx. 31 years later, and during that time period the Kingdom was presented many times, always to the Jews first: (Acts 2:17-20, 3:19-21, 8:12, 14:22, 20:25 and 28:23-31).
The fact that the great Gift that (up to now) the Jews have rejected, has been on offer to the Gentiles since Acts 28:28 as a special and distinct group, (now Gentile first), shows the Love of Almighty God for His Creation. The responders to this great Salvation Love are now numerous, and they are “sealed in Heaven” (2Cor. 1:22 and Eph. 1:13) when they become Christ’s, and await the great Call of Resurrection in Christ as His Body, (Eph. 1:23). There are many places in Paul’s writings describing the Body of believers in Christ Jesus.
The Millennial Period.
There is as said clearly a reason or more correctly many reasons for this special period of time (1000 years, Rev. 20:1-5). It is inescapable to the notice that the statement is linked to Satan and his binding; and therefore an inextricable link to God’s eventual purposes and love for human kind, (Jn. 3:16). It also cannot escape notice that God’s power is shown in the imprisonment of Satan for this future period, whereas he had been free to act to his advantage in Eden! By virtue of Satan’s inability to act as he did with Eve in Eden, a great force for untruth and therefore action in untruth is removed from people’s behaviour, and therefore Satan cannot be blamed in the Millennial for human behaviour, as was the case in Eden and in many cases now! See: Eve and Adam. However, sin (the fallen state) is still in human nature, which will still generate the desire to sin, and resist the Will and holiness of God; and is still linked to the knowledge of good and evil! The major differences of that period and now, are that nobody will be in any doubt as to the existence of God and His Christ (Messiah); Satan has no influence on human behaviour; so that rebellion against the Godhead, sinning by the person, will all be attributable to the person and their knowledge of good and evil! Justice against the sinner will be swift and decisive, from the Godhead in Jerusalem. There are clearly reasons for this 1000 year period.
There are two groups of people being dealt with by God and His Christ at that time; Jews and Gentiles (the Nations), with the Jews first again.
The question arises, what is sin? Here again much wrong teaching over thousands of years have left many interpretations. The fact is that sin is rebellion against God with the consequences of the many wrong doings that mankind is heir to since Eden! See: Sin (understanding of);
This was clearly defined after the Jews departed Egypt, (Deut. 9:7), and is unfortunately marked in many places in their history; and now in the rejection of Christ Jesus Messiah; until that future day when they “will look on Him whom they pierced” (Zech. 12:10)! That event will be just prior to the Millennial, and just after they as “the remnant”, have been rescued from annihilation. See: Satan's Motivation:
During the Millennial, wrong doing will be dealt with very quickly and fairly as mentioned above, without the lengthy and often unfairness of present day systems, and will emanate from Jerusalem (Psm. 2:7-9, Heb. 1:8 and Rev. 2:27). Kings of all the world’s Nations will be called to Jerusalem every year to keep the Feast of Tabernacles, and to pay homage every year to Jehovah Zebaoth and His Christ, on pain of national punishment, such as rain being withheld; (Zech. 14:16-19).
Many people now in this present Age time, with its erroneous teachings, will consider these changes and actions unfair and undemocratic, and against free will; as “free will” has taken on new meanings in the corruptions of this present Age; that is so, and intended as such. Satan has at the present time, as “Prince of this World” (Jn. 12:31, 14:30 and16:11), freedom together with fallen mankind to do his worst/best to convince all Creation that he is a superior supernatural being than Almighty God! He has won over many angels as well as humans in his freedom of action, but he is still a created being, albeit magnificent. See: Satan's Origins;
His deadly error has been to attempt to usurp God Himself! Instead of crushing Satan, God in His Love has devised a plan which allows Satan free rein up to the point where he attempts to force God Himself to break His Covenant Promise to the Jewish Patriarchs (that Israel will always exist); at which point God is fully justified in binding Satan (still not destroying him at that stage), to demonstrate to all Creation that He is Love, and that His Love is the Salvation of Created beings, including mankind, in total anti-thesis to Eden! See: Love (Ultimate);
However at that stage God is not only showing that He is; but is also dealing with Israel in their own Land (the promised of Gen. 15:18), details of which dealings are the subject of prophecy, particularly in Jeremiah, Isaiah, Ezekiel, and Zechariah. Israel are being formed into the “Jeshuran” (upright) of OT prophecy, Isa. 44:2 , Deut. 32:15, 33:5, 33:26 and Jer. 31; and a worthy and faithful “Bride”, which she had not been in the Old Testament, and which was the cause of much anger and pain to Jehovah. The O.T. 10 Commandments are observed for the first time in truth, and the teachings of Jesus to His people become realistically relevant; as per the “Sermon on the Mount”.
This process is underway for 1000 years, which when considered seriously, is breath-taking in scope, and underlines the serious nature of what God's allowing in His patience with His created humankind; and His demonstration of love to all His created beings in Heaven and on Earth.
To recap, Satan is bound, the Nations who go through to the Millennial are under strict discipline and control from Jerusalem. Israel has acknowledged Jesus as Christ (Messiah), they are being formed into “Jeshuran”, and sin nature (the knowledge of good and evil) is still in place. The curse of God has not been removed (Rev. 22:3), and is not removed until 1Cor. 15:24-28, and the “new Heaven and Earth”. Mankind lives much longer than before, and will die “a child at 100 years” (Isa. 65:20).
In this described scene, nobody can claim that God does not exist! They can still rebel and sin, but will receive swift punishment. However, as said earlier Satan cannot be blamed, as he is imprisoned, and ineffective on Earth at that time!
The question arises, what is happening at that time, and what is its purpose? It has been stated that Israel are being formed into “Jeshuran”, and that started after they “looked on Him who they pierced” (Zech. 12:10). Israel are performing duties they neglected in the OT, which they promised they would perform as a kingdom of Priests unto God (Ex.19:6 and Rev.1:6), both in Jerusalem, and worldwide with their then witness to the Truth of God and Messiah (Zech. 8:23).
At the same time the “Nation’s” peoples are still given the freedom to acknowledge or otherwise God and His Christ, and it is safe to say many will be worshippers of the Lord. As life times are so much longer, probably quite similar to Genesis, and a baby will die at 100 years (see above), memory of pre-Millennial times and conditions will still be recalled. The world population will be very much smaller than now having been reduced by at least ⅔: See: www.revelationsmessage.co.uk, so that the world's resources will be able to easily cope with the then population; but in any case the world will have been renewed and cleaned for the Millennial purpose.
At the end of the Millennial period, a remarkable event is allowed by God. He releases Satan into the world for a short period of time (Rev. 20:7)! The stated purpose is to “again deceive the Nations”, which clearly is to remind all Creation both Earthly and Heavenly of the effect of Satan’s actions and motives on God’s Creation (Rev. 20:7-9)! The fact that Satan has always deceived Creation is explicit in Rev. 20:3, but has to be spelled out for the ultimate purpose of God.
It is notable that as soon as Satan is released he generates anti-Semitic forces against the Jewish Nation, which is now Jeshuran, and collects those willing Nations to attempt to annihilate Israel and Jerusalem! He again challenges God and His Promises to the Patriarchs, in a last attempt to force God’s Word broken! This last desperate attempt of Satan brings his final destruction (Rev. 20:9-10); and all Creation sees the Justice and Love of Almighty God in Truth, as God cannot break His Word to Israel!
There then follows the Judgement of all who ever lived, who are not of the special Groups of “The Body of Christ”, or Jeshuran. The criterion for that judgement is Rev. 20:11-12.
This is the stage of the fulfilment of the work of Jesus the Christ. The Biblical statement of 1Cor. 15:22 “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” does apply to all human kind, but many of the resurrected to the Judgement of Rev. 20 will not be in the “Book of Life”. This judgement does not apply to Christians (Christ-Ones), as they are Raptured (collected by Christ Jesus) prior to the events of the “end of the Age”, which lead up to the Millennial. Many Churches teach that Christ Jesus' work was finished at the Calvary Cross; that is not so; 1Cor. 15:24, gives the precise point of the finished work "when He shall have delivered up the Kingdom to God, even the Father", and V28 gives the conclusion. He (Jesus) succeeded where Adam failed, as "the seed of the woman", Gen. 3:15!
It should be noted that “death and the grave” (not “death and Hell” as is incorrectly translated in many Bibles) are also destroyed in the “Lake of Fire” at this time, together with all who are “not found in the Book of Life” (Rev. 20:14-15)!
The fact that death has been destroyed, removes for the first time the effect of its imposition in Eden, when Satan successfully persuaded Eve, followed by Adam to disobey God in their free will; with the result of death’s introduction to the human race. This fact of its removal means that humans will then live for eternity, as the tree of life becomes available (Rev. 22:2), in the opposite of Gen. 3:24. The “Tree of Life”, is for the "healing of the Nations”, which is necessary due to the ravages of “Mystery Babylon”, under the auspices of Satan; for thousands of years! See: Babylon & Rev Chapter 17 & Rev Chapter 18.
Eternal life for the survivors is then made possible by God in Rev. 21:1, by His generation of "a new Heaven and a new Earth"; the "Curse" is removed (Rev. 22:3).
The whole matter is beautifully summed up by the words of Dr. E.W. Bullinger: “The whole subject is one of sovereignty. This is the whole matter which has been in question”.
Rev. 11:15: (correct translation);
“The sovereignty of the world is become the sovereignty of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever”.
Exodus 15:18, Psalm 10:16 and Daniel 2:44 & 7:14.