Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I'm convinced that I--we--all-too-often don't think enough about the reign of our Savior, Jesus Christ, upon the earth during the 1,000 year Millennium--to our own detriment. As I've been studying these last few weeks for my Revelation 20 sermon tonight at church, not only is my conviction in the literal, physical, bodily and righteous reign of Jesus Christ on earth stronger, but my confession is that I don't think enough--much less, get excited about--on this wonderful period.

I believe that Satan will be bound for 1,000 years--as the biblical text clearly states (if you interpret it with any normal, plain, consistent hermeneutic) in Rev 20:1ff and that that time on earth will be a period of:

1) Reigning together with Christ (Rev 20:4, 6; 2 Tim 2:12; 1 Cor 6:2; Rev 5:10; Deut 28:1). It baffles me how many an interpreter can overlook these texts and perform extraordinary hermeneutical gymnastics to come up with some other interpretation.

2) Seeing God face to face (1 John 3:3; Jer 24:7; 31:33; 32:38). This is a period when Jesus will reign from Mt. Zion (Ps 2) and we will reign with Him--personally, physically present with Jesus Christ!

3) Complete (and literal!) fulfillment of all the OT prophecies and promises to Israel's restoration and period of Messianic peace (Isa 9:6; Ps 2; Zech 14; Isa 11:1ff; Isa 2:1ff; Luke 1:32-33). If there is no period of peace from Zion on the earth--as any OT Jew would have interpreted the texts--then, to me, it seems that God has failed in keeping his promises!

4) A Righteous and Just Reign by Jesus Christ (Ps 2; Jer 31:31ff; Ps 110; 2 Sam 7:13-16). He will rule with a "rod of iron" (Ps 2) and will rule over the nations (Ps 110).

5) National and Personal Righteousness (Ps 72:7; Isa 32:15-20; Ezek 39:29; Joel 2:28-32). An abundance of peace will rule during this time period! Justice and righteousness will preside as the norm!

Because of these--among a host of others--I am convinced that we must get excited not only for heaven (which we must think about much more than we do), but also for this period of physical righteousness and peace on the earth when our Savior, Jesus Christ, will reign upon the earth. I'm bewildered at some commentators who neglect to see this as a future time of peace on the earth. I just don't see it in the text (assuming a consistent hermeneutic).
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