By Nathan Jones
What is the purpose of the Millennial Kingdom for Jesus and for the Jews?
On Monday, January 30, 2012, I was interviewed by host Brian Thomas of Blessings to Israel Ministries on his "God First" program. During the 45-minute interview we discussed the prophetic sequence of end time events, placing each event into its proper chronological order.
6) The Millennial Kingdom
Brian Thomas: Often while growing up and I hear this myth even today, that when Jesus Christ comes back He is going to destroy the earth by burning it up and we will go off to Heaven with Him leaving the earth to cease to exist. Is that the case?
Nathan Jones: No, no, no. Gods got a plan. He's not done with the Jews. He didn't do all of the Tribulation just to get the remnant of the Jews saved and then go up to Heaven and that's the end of that. God made certain promises to the Jewish people as a nation. They are especially set apart for a future blessing. Some Christians don't like that idea, though, believing in Replacement Theology. But, the Lord made promises to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, that their descendants would:
- possess the land from the Euphrates River to the Nile River
- have someone ruling on the Throne of David forever
- be a special priestly group of people.
To accomplish this, according to Revelation 20, Jesus has set apart a thousand years for what we call the Millennial Kingdom. The Latin word milla means "thousand," so a millennia is a thousand years when Jesus sets up His kingdom to rule and reign on the earth from Jerusalem. This also fulfills the promises made to the Son of God that He will rule and reign over an earthly kingdom. The saved people who survived the Tribulation will live on into that thousand years, and the Jewish people in particular will be considered a special priestly group of people during that time.
Those of us who were raptured will be there on earth during the Millennial Kingdom living in our glorified bodies. We'll be helping those who are living there in their earthly bodies. The Bible says that we will reign during that time as well. We'll be administrators, officials, and teachers helping those those people over the thousand years.
The Millennial Kingdom is characterized by the curse being partially lifted. That's when the wolf will lie down next to the lamb and the lamb will not fear the predator. The lion will eat straw like an ox, instead of meat. They won't be carnivorous anymore, and I guess neither will we. Kids can play with poisonous snakes without fear of being bitten. In other words, the natural enmity between man and animal-kind will be no more.
The Millennial Kingdom will also be a time when all that decimation of the Tribulation will be erased by Jesus. He will rebuild the planet very quickly and it will be as garden like as it was in Eden.
The curse won't totally be removed because people in their earthly bodies will still want to sin. They're still going to want to act badly because that temptation is there, even if it won't be Satan and the demons tempting the people anymore. Each person will be responsible for their own falling into sin. So, there will be sin during the Millennial Kingdom, but not nearly at the levels at which it is today.
During the Millennial Kingdom Jesus will rule and reign physically right here on earth. People can go up to Jesus and talk right to Him face-to-face. With Jesus present and quite visibly in charge, it will be the most peaceful time in the planet's history.
Brian Thomas: That's going to be a wonderful time!
There's such a difference in looking at Jesus' First Coming versus His Second Coming. At Jesus' First Coming, He came as a suffering lamb. He didn't receive glorification from the world. He was humiliated, ridiculed, mocked, you name it. But, when Jesus comes back the second time, the Bible says He will be as a conquering lion ready to rule the Millennial Kingdom.
Those symbols of Christ's two comings tie directly to the name of your ministry, Lamb and Lion, do they not?
Nathan Jones: You caught onto what the ministry's named after. That's good! People get the order mixed up all the time. I know I did when I first heard it. I kept on calling it Lion and Lamb. The founder, Dr. David Reagan, jokes that over the years people have had some crazy names for our ministry like "Lame and Blind" and" Lemon and Lime." People can remember our ministry's name just like you said if they remember that Jesus first came as a suffering lamb to sacrifice Himself on our behalf, but when He returns He will return as the conquering lion. He will be the king over all the world. That explanation of the order of Christ's comings helps people remember our ministry is named Lamb & Lion Ministries, and our website URL is lamblion.com.
Brian Thomas: Right. Now, during the Millennial reign of Jesus Christ it will be a theocracy. Jesus will reign supreme as the leader over the entire world. He's going to have His government, the only world government. So, that means that any leader of any nation such as a President or Prime Minister will all have to answer to Jesus Christ concerning the rules and laws that He will make, correct?
Nathan Jones: Correct. There's even a Millennial Kingdom example given concerning Syria and Egypt. During that time period there will be a feast each year and everyone will come into Jerusalem and celebrate that feast. The nations that start rebelling by refusing to go, God will hold the water back giving them a drought until they repent of their rebellion.
What's neat to consider is that we read about Syria today where their President al-Assad is slaughtering his own people. There's a rebellion against his rulership. We know that Israel is going to have to deal with Syria prophetically so that Damascus will be destroyed. To think that the oldest city in the world will be destroyed. We also read about Egypt when in 2011 their people toppled their President Mubarak. Egypt is getting rid of their peace treaty with Israel and the Muslim Brotherhood is taking over. These two nations hate Israel with a burning passion. There's a satanic rage that fuels their drive to hate Israel. And yet, we read that during the Millennial Kingdom which will initially be populated by only people who believe in Christ. Syria and Egypt are nations that will be reformed once again with believing people. Egypt will be a Christian nation once more. Syria will be a Christian nation once more. The whole world begins as a Christian nation. The old enemy nations of today will become the future friends of Israel.
Over the time of the millennia, children will be born to the people who entered into it from the Tribulation, and they too will have to make a decision for Christ or not. Over that thousand years we also discover that the life span of people will be considered very long. If a child dies at 100 they are considered just a babe. The enormous life spans people had before the Flood will return once again during the Millennial Kingdom. Those children will have their massively long life spans to choose God or not.
7) The Second Gog-Magog Battle
Nathan Jones: The next prophetic event happens at the end of the Tribulation when God releases Satan from the Abyss he's been held captive in for the last thousand years.
Brian Thomas: When Jesus Christ comes back He will set up His Millennial Kingdom which will last for a thousand years. Just before the beginning of His Kingdom Satan was locked up in the bottomless pit by an angel and will be unable to influence the people on earth. The children who will be born during the thousand year earthly reign of Christ will have to make a decision concerning Christ, and many unfortunately will reject Him. The earth's population will be great due to longer life spans among many other things, so there will be a lot who will refuse to accept Christ. At the end of the millennial reign, Satan will be released from the pit and come to earth to influence the inhabitants of the earth. Then what will happen?
Nathan Jones: Like you said, there will be a huge population on the planet of people still living in their fleshly bodies. They will still want to sin, but they don't have a rallying point to rally around to declare their independence from God. It's amazing to think that they'll live in a paradise, they'll have Jesus personally there loving them, and it's the best the earth has been since the Garden of Eden, and yet so many of the people born in that era will still refuse to accept Jesus as Savior. They'll still want to rebel against them. They'll still want to do their own sinful things that hurt their bodies and hurt other people. Just amazing!
So that these rebellious people can have a rallying point in which to finally face judgment, God releases Satan from the Abyss. Satan immediately goes out across the planet and gathers the nations of peoples who want to rebel against God. Satan then leads a revolt at Jerusalem against Jesus, and just like what happened at Armageddon, with just a few words Jesus totally defeats those armies. They probably won't even have weapons because it says during the Millennial Kingdom that people will have beaten their swords into plowshares and pruning hooks. In other words, there won't be any weapons of war during that time. So, I don't know what Satan plans on attacking with, maybe big sticks with nails in them, or something bizarre like that. I don't know. But, we do know that Satan is going to attack one last time and Jesus puts him and his rebellious hordes down instantly. We can read all about the final rebellion in Revelation 20.
Isn't it amazing that humanity can be so depraved that even in a utopia they will still wish to join Satan and fight against Jesus? They actually think they can overcome the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
This finally rebellion is called the Second Gog-Magog Battle because it has a number of similarities to the first one described in Ezekiel 38-39. The most glaring difference is that this attack is worldwide in scope and not just a few nations raging against Israel as Ezekiel describes.
Brian Thomas: Thank you for pointing that out, because so many are surprised to hear that there will be two Gog-Magog wars in the future — one prior to the Tribulation and one at the close of the Millennial Kingdom.
In the last part of this series on God's order of events, Brian and I will discuss the final judgment — the Great White Throne Judgment — and on into eternity.