The Millennium (Part 4)
The Characteristics of the Millennium
It will be a spiritual time because Satan is bound in “the abyss.” (Revelation 20:1-3). Satan and the demonic forces will no longer be controlling the world system.
Though it is “earthly,” it will also be “spiritual.” Earthly and spiritual are not necessarily mutually exclusive. If so, how could we today be expected to live spiritual lives in earthly bodies? King Jesus will join the spiritual and the earthly in a full display of His glory on earth. His kingdom will manifest the highest standards of spirituality.
- Will reign righteously, and His rule will be just. Indeed, a king will reign righteously,
and rulers will rule justly (Isaiah 32:1).
- Righteousness will be the belt of His loins. Righteousness will be a belt around his hips;
faithfulness will be a belt around his waist (Isaiah 11:5).
- Will judge the poor with righteousness. But he will judge the poor righteously
and execute justice for the oppressed of the land. He will strike the land with a scepter from his mouth, and he will kill the wicked with a command from his lips (Isaiah 11:4).
- Will rule from Zion which shall be called the city of righteousness. I will restore your judges to what they were at first, and your advisers to what they were at the start. Afterward you will be called the Righteous City, a Faithful Town (Isaiah 1:26). Only the righteous shall enter the kingdom at its inauguration (Matthew 25:37), and those who thirst after righteousness shall be filled (Matthew 5:6).
As a result, it will be an era of peace. For the first time in history, the world will experience no war.
- Former enemies will be at peace with each other. On that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. Assyria will go to Egypt, Egypt to Assyria, and Egypt will worship with Assyria. On that day Israel will form a triple alliance with Egypt and Assyria—a blessing within the land. The Lord of Armies will bless them, saying, “Egypt my people, Assyria my handiwork, and Israel my inheritance are blessed” (Isaiah 19:23-25).
- Jerusalem will be at peace. The Lord of Armies says this: “Old men and women will again sit along the streets of Jerusalem, each with a staff in hand because of advanced age. The streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls playing in them.” (Zechariah 8:4-5).
- The whole earth will be at peace. He will settle disputes among the nations and provide arbitration for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plows and their spears into pruning knives. Nation will not take up the sword against nation, and they will never again train for war (Isaiah 2:4).
Beat your plows into swords and your pruning knives into spears. Let even the weakling say, “I am a warrior” (Joel 3:10).
He will settle disputes among many peoples and provide arbitration for strong nations that are far away. They will beat their swords into plows and their spears into pruning knives. Nation will not take up the sword against nation, and they will never again train for war (Micah. 4:3).
- The earth will become very productive as wilderness and desert places become useful. The wilderness and the dry land will be glad; the desert will rejoice and blossom like a wildflower.It will blossom abundantly and will also rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon. They will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God… (Isaiah 35:1-7).
- One harvest will be followed by another. Look, the days are coming—this is the Lord’s declaration—when the plowman will overtake the reaper and the one who treads grapes, the sower of seed. The mountains will drip with sweet wine, and all the hills will flow with it. I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel. They will rebuild and occupy ruined cities, plant vineyards and drink their wine, make gardens and eat their produce (Amos 9:13-14).
- Social needs and injustices will be eliminated. For he will rescue the poor who cry out and the afflicted who have no helper. He will have pity on the poor and helpless and save the lives of the poor (Ps. 72:12-13).
The curse to which the earth was subjected when Adam sinned will be reversed, though not completely lifted.
Health and Well-being
The reversing of the curse will result in:
- Freedom from sickness as it seems to be described in several passages. On that day the deaf will hear the words of a document, and out of a deep darkness the eyes of the blind will see (Isaiah 29:18). And none there will say, “I am sick.” The people who dwell there will be forgiven their iniquity (Isaiah 33:24). Then the eyes of the blind will be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then the lame will leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute will sing for joy, for water will gush in the wilderness, and streams in the desert (Isaiah 35:5-6).
- Greater longevity of life than now, and infants will not die. In her, a nursing infant will no longer live only a few days, or an old man not live out his days. Indeed, the one who dies at a hundred years old will be mourned as a young man, and the one who misses a hundred years will be considered cursed (Isaiah 65:20).
- Full knowledge of the Lord will cover the earth during the millennium. In the last days
the mountain of the Lord’s house will be established at the top of the mountains and will be raised above the hills. All nations will stream to it, and many peoples will come and say, “Come, let’s go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us about his ways so that we may walk in his paths.” For instruction will go out of Zion and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem (Isaiah 2:2-3).
- It appears that sacrifices will again be offered in a temple that will be built during the Millennium (Ezekiel 40-48). The sacrifices will serve as memorials to the death of Christ. Religious holidays will also be observed (Ezekiel 46:1-15; Zechariah 14:16).
Worship in the Millennium Kingdom
King Jesus, the divine Son of God, will sit on the throne of David as King of kings and Lord of Lords. His personal presence on earth and His righteous reign reveal a spiritual climate unlike any previous time. There will be a universal worship of the Lord Jesus, centered in the new temple in Jerusalem.
His glory and divine attributes will be evident. His reign will consummate the Davidic kingdom. The truth of God will be universally proclaimed (Isaiah 2:3; 11:9). Israel will know the Lord (Jeremiah 31:33-34). His kingdom will be characterized by righteousness and peace (Isaiah 2:4; Daniel 7:27).
A major feature will be the temple, which will be the center of worship in Jerusalem (Ezekiel 40:1-46:24). Scripture teaches that there is no further sacrifice for sin, since Jesus Christ provided the final sacrifice (Hebrews 7:29; 9:26, 28). Yet as part of the worship, there will be animal sacrifices. Why? These animal sacrifices will constitute a memorial of Jesus’ death, much like observing the Lord’s Supper serves as a reminder of His death (Luke 22:19; 1 Corinthians 11:26). As the Old Testament sacrifices looked forward symbolically to Christ’s death, so sacrifices in the millennium will look back in remembrance to His sacrifice on the cross.
Though the sacrificial system will be like the Levitical system under the Mosaic Law, there will be some differences: (1) there will be no evening sacrifices; (2) three of Israel’s annual feasts will not be observed (Pentecost, Trumpets, Day of Atonement); (3) the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread will apparently celebrate national cleansing and the Feast of Tabernacles will depict Israel’s special place in God’s kingdom; (4) in the temple there will be no gold lampstand, no table for the bread of the presence, and no ark of the covenant.
Tony Evans writes,
“We have called the Millennium the golden age of man, and that’s what it really is because… everything that’s wrong with this world will be set right.”1
1 Tony Evans, The Best Is Yet to Come: Bible Prophecies Through The Ages, Op. cit., p. 232.
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.
Dr. Miguel J. Gonzalez is the Founder and President of Reasons for Faith International Ministries. He served as a pastor for ten years in Charlotte, NC and has taught in churches and conferences throughout the United States. He currently hosts the Time in the Word and Truth To Live By podcasts and writes at KnowingChristianity.blogspot.com.
Copyright © 2006–2021 by Miguel J. Gonzalez Th.D. and published by Reasons for Faith International Ministries, Inc. by permission. No part may be altered or edited in any way. Permission is granted to use in digital or printed form so long as it is circulated without charge, and in its entirety. This document may not be repackaged in any form for sale or resale. All reproductions must contain the copyright notice (i.e., Copyright © 2006-2021 Miguel J. Gonzalez Th.D.) and this Copyright/Limitations notice.