What is the Millennium / Millennial Kingdom?
After the rapture of the church, after the seven-year long tribulation, after the war of Armageddon and the resurrection of the saints, Jesus will rule on the earth for one thousand years (Revelation 20:4-6). The purpose of the millennial kingdom is to establish Christ as King in Jerusalem, sitting on the throne of David (Luke 1:32-33) and to fulfill the promises God has made to Israel. They will bless the other nations, fulfilling the Abrahamic covenant (Genesis 12:1-3). They will take control of the promised geographical borders, fulfilling the Palestinian covenant (Deuteronomy 30:1-10). And they will experience forgiveness and a renewed relationship with God, fulfilling the Davidic covenant (2 Samuel 7:10-13).
The millennial kingdom will give us a taste of what life would have been if Adam and Eve had not sinned. Jesus will be the King and Judge (Isaiah 2:4; 11:3-4). Animals will live in peace with each other and with humans (Isaiah 11:6-9), and believers will worship God at the new Temple (Isaiah 2:2-3; Ezekiel 40:1-46:24).
Under Jesus' leadership, the world will still be divided into nations. Jews will be drawn back to Israel, which will finally have its promised borders (Genesis 17:7-8; Isaiah 11:10-13). The Gentiles will be divided into nations with Jesus as their benevolent king (Psalm 2:8; Isaiah 42:1; Daniel 7:14, 27). The disciples (Matthew 19:28) and the martyrs of the Tribulation (Revelation 20:4) will rule over the nations. And they will all live in peace (Isaiah 2:4).
In the beginning of the millennium, the kingdom will be inhabited only by those who follow Christ. Those who have died will be given glorified bodies and sealed against sin. But those who survived the tribulation will enter the kingdom as mortals—long-lived, but able to marry and have children (Isaiah 33:24, 35:5-6, 61:1-2).
The end of the millennium will be the setting for the final judgment over the earth. Despite the examples of those around them, the peace in the kingdom, and the presence of Christ, not all of the people will choose to follow Christ. At the end of the thousand years, Satan will be released from the Abyss. He will deceive the unbelievers and gather an army to march against Jesus and Israel. The ensuing battle will be short-lived. Satan will be thrown into the lake of fire and his human army killed (Revelation 20:7-10). All unbelievers will stand before the Great White Throne of judgment and be thrown into the lake of fire for eternity (Revelation 20:11-15; John 5:22, 26-29). Finally, the heavens and earth will be destroyed (2 Peter 3:10; Matthew 24:35; Revelation 20:11) and remade (Revelation 21-22; 1 Corinthians 15:35-58), and the believers will live on the New Earth for eternity.
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