(The 1000 Year Reign of Christ —
Immediately after the tribulation and immediately preceding the setting up of Christ’s Kingdom on earth, God shall manifest His mighty ruling power through signs in the heavens and signs on the earth.
Both “The heavens, and the earth” and even “the sea” shall be shaken by “A great earthquake” (Haggai 2:6-7, Hebrews 12:25-29, Revelation 6:12 and Zechariah 14:4). All the heavenly lights shall be turned out and the whole world shall be left in total darkness (Matthew 24:29), and then “they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30).
The Earthly Reign of Christ
is introduced in Revelation 20:1-4: “And I saw an angel come down from Heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him A THOUSAND YEARS, and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the THOUSAND YEARS should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them which were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the Word of God and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ A THOUSAND YEARS.”
During, this ONE THOUSAND YEARS the “Hope of Israel” for which Paul was bound in chains will be realized. From Genesis 12:1 to Acts 28:28 God spoke through holy men of old to His chosen people Israel concerning the earthly blessings of the Kingdom of Heaven. This long period of time is covered by the inspired statement found in Romans 10:21: “But to Israel He said, All day long have I stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.” Israel’s day of opportunity to receive the kingdom, according to the promises made unto the fathers, closed with Paul’s last message to the dispersed Jews in Acts 28:17-28. Nightfall and darkness came to the chosen people with the proclamation of the Holy Spirit as recorded in Acts 28:28. They shall not see the light of day again until “the Sun of Righteousness arises with healing in his wings” (Malachi 4:2), mounts the throne of David and begins His reign on earth for a day of ONE THOUSAND YEARS.
At the very beginning of this thousand year period, Satan shall be bound and cast into the bottomless pit where he is to remain throughout the millennium. The “tares” which He shall scatter among wheat of the Kingdom shall be gathered out by the angels and cast into “a furnace of fire” (Matthew 13:40-43). As I understand the Word, the gathering of these tares will be in fulfillment of Luke 17:34-37 where “one shall be taken and the other left.” The furnace of fire is undoubtedly that terrible battle of Armageddon where the eagles shall gather to feed upon “the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great” (Luke 17:37 with Revelation 19:17-19).
During this future dispensation of one thousand years, the righteous king, Jesus Christ, shall “judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and He shall smite the earth with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips shall he slay the wicked. And righteousness shall be the girdle of His loins, and faithfulness the girdle of His reins. The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the suckling child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’s den. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:4-9).
During these days “many people shall go and say, come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem. And He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Isaiah 2:34).
At the beginning of this thousand years of peace and quietness among the nations the Lord will lift the curse from the earth and for the first time since the judgment of Genesis 3:17-19 “the mountains and the hills shall break forth into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the fir tree, and instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree: And it shall be to the Lord for a name, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off” (Isaiah 55:12-13). In that day, “the wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the Lord, and the excellency of our God” (Isaiah 35:1-2).
Zechariah refers to this age of glory, saying, “And it shall come to pass, that everyone that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. … In that day shall there be upon the bells of the horses, HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD; and the pots in the Lord’s house shall be like the bowls before the altar. Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be holiness unto the Lord of hosts: and all they that sacrifice shall come and take of them, and seethe therein: and in that day there shall be no more the Canaanite in the house of the Lord of hosts” (Zechariah 14:16-21).
This THOUSAND YEARS will be an age of glory for Israel and for the nations. The body and the bride of Christ, having previously received their glorified bodies, will participate in the administration of righteousness. They will both have special duties to perform according to the direction of Christ, their “head” and “bridegroom.” “We know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now,” but then “The creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God” (Romans 8:20-21).
Satan’s Final Rebellion
“And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever” (Revelation 20:7-10). We call attention to the fact that before Christ began His millennium of peace, the beast and the false prophet were “cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone” (Revelation 19:20), and at the end of the thousand years Satan was cast into the same lake of fire and brimstone “where the beast and the false prophet” were still alive (Revelation 20:10). This will put an end to the work of Satan among men.
The White Throne Judgment
is pictured in Revelation 20:11-15. This throne shall be set up in space for at that time the earth and the heaven shall flee away (Revelation 20:11) because of the fiery judgment described in 2 Peter 3:10-12: “Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth wherein dwelleth righteousness” (2 Peter 3:13). As I understand the Scriptures, the wicked dead of all ages will stand before the great white throne of judgment to be judged “according to their works” and will be justly sentenced to eternal separation from God in the lake of fire and brimstone “prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matthew 25:41). This judgment will take place while the earth and the heaven are being purged by fire. After the white throne judgment and after the fiery judgment upon the earth and the heaven, the wicked will be in their place with the devil and his angels and the righteous will be in the place prepared for them according to the promise of the one who “loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood.”
The New Heaven and the New Earth
are described in Revelation, chapters 21 and 22. The key verse of the two chapters is 21:5: “And he that sat upon the throne said, behold I make all things new.” The prophet. Isaiah speaks concerning this new creation, saying, “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.”