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June 29, 2022 4:00 am
Literal kingdom of 1000 years after Christ's return and before the new heavens and new earth is the subject of the strap and any other viewpoint just gets so unfounded that you can't find your way through without that in 1999 wound to a close, many people were caught up in a craze that became known as Y2K repairing for everything from computer software glitches to, as some people seem to believe the end of the world.
Now the year 2000, came and went without much real change, but a millennium is coming that will change everything and will lead to the end of the world I'm talking about the thousand year reign of Christ. The question is when will it begin and will you be around for it. John MacArthur helps you sort out those issues in his study titled when Jesus comes on grace to you and here's John now with today's lesson.
Well, now it's our joy to turn to the word of God, and most particularly to the book of Revelation we come now to chapter 20 in Revelation the coming earthly kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ.
All of God's redemptive purpose since the fall of man culminates in the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ, as it has been called Paradise regained a paradise paradise lost paradise regained this glorious paradise regained this kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ. This 1000 year millennial reign of the Savior over the earth is the fulfillment and the climax of all redemptive promise, and the realization of the hope of all the saints of all the ages because at that particular time. God will bring salvation and righteousness and peace to the very center of the universe is at that time the Jesus Christ will reign fully as King of Kings and Lord of lords over all creation.
This thousand year kingdom is the end of human history the end of the present universe as we know it now. It is this thousand year kingdom known as the millennial kingdom that is the theme of the chapter that we look at chapter 20 in the book of Revelation. The final reign of the Lord Jesus Christ. During that thousand years is in the city of Jerusalem on the throne of David over Israel as a nation and over the whole world so we can say safely, then that everything everything up to chapter 20 is pre-millennial tribulation day of the Lord, the return of Christ. It's all been pre-millennial now. Chapter 20 is millennial in chapter 21 is post millennial the new heaven and the new earth. Not this point. Let me see if I can help you to understand the three views that exist about the millennium. The first one is I just mentioned is the pre-millennial view and it just means Christ will come before preceding the kingdom. Christ comes in person visibly publicly at the end of God's wrath and judgment on the world to set up the kingdom.
At that time, Satan is bound for a literal thousand year kingdom kingdom is set up on earth, and city of Jerusalem and the throne of David.
All of that is based. Here's the key on a literal interpretation of Scripture. All that comes out of a literal interpretation of Scripture. If you just take what it says. Obviously, interpreting the normal manner of interpreting you'll come up with the premillennial view astern the second view is called post of millennialism. This view flourishes some generally historically it flourishes in America and it flourishes in America when it's been a long time since we had a big war machine looks a little facetious, but is pretty much true. It sorta dies out when we enter into a world war because then the post millennial's have a problem because post millennialism says this pre-millennium premillennialism since things are getting worse. The post mill say things are going to get better and these are good, better and better and better and better and was going to go Walton into the kingdom and Christ is not to come to the end of the king till the kingdoms over he's going to come at the end say who's gonna set it up. We are at the post mill view we the church will bring about on the world a period of righteousness. Christ will not be here literally only spiritually working through his church, and by his power in his church.
He will triumph over the world of man. He will triumph over the world of demons and he will bring about through his church really a kingdom and his personal return will occur at the end of that. And they wouldn't be literal enough to say it's an actual thousand years necessarily but it's a period of time you say is, is that based on literal interpretation. No, it's based on a combination of literal and nonliteral interpretations and it utterly and totally ignores the chronology of the book of Revelation. Your I know are familiar with this, even though you may not know it post millennialism today is taken on the form of kingdom theology. Sometimes it shows up in a in spiritual warfare mode. That is to say I working to conquer the demons and working to conquer Satan working to bind Satan were to bind the demons and and by this exercise of the church's power were going to take the authority of Satan and all of his demons and working to push them down and working to stand on their necks and are working to bring the work of Satan to a halt and working to take all these demon powers captive and working to bring the kingdom. That's the kingdom theology concept that's espoused by the people of the signs and wonders movement, who believe that they are going to enter spiritual warfare with Satan and all of his demons and conquer them by virtue of the power in the church and that's going to bring the kingdom form of post millennialism and it has a lot of different nuances.
According to whoever you might be talking to so it's it's hard sometimes to define this as a single thing because it can take many forms, so the premillennialist says things are going get worse. The post mill says things are going to get better. That's why only flourishes when we're a long way from major war just seems to me that in my reading. As soon as a major war world war hit the post mill people sort of disappeared because obviously things weren't getting better and even today, though they are vocal and they are writing and speaking very rapidly and all their fronts. It doesn't seem to be flying. If you look at the trends in our contemporary world. Now the third view and the one that's probably more worthy of our attention on the post mill view is what's called millennialism that means those the folks who don't believe in any millennium they don't by the way the post mill would be both literal and nonliteral in the sense that they literally believe there will be a kingdom of day. They literally believe there will be a time of peace and righteousness, and all that but it is also figurative because they don't think it's Israel they think it's the church and that it's that it's not with Christ on the earth, but only on the earth mediating through his church is not a literal Jerusalem is not a literal throne of David, but it is a an actual time of righteousness and peace was kind of a combination of the literal and nonliteral. They come to the millennialist and the millennialist basically says there is no kingdom or better and more fair. All the king and there is is what we got.
Now things are things are going to stay the same pre-mill says going get worse.
The cosmos is going to get better. The mill says it's going to stay the same. It's how it is and it's just the way it is and it's just going to be this way it'll keep being this way and Jesus will come because they say the kingdom is now the kingdom is the church age. The kingdom is now Christ is ruling now Christ is here and at the end of this period of time. It's not a thousand years. They would completely reject the literal interpretation of Revelation with regard to prophecy. Neither would try to put it into history or make it all figured they would either take the book of Revelation to make it describe the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D., or they would just make it figurative non-literal interpretation of kingdom passages, they would say all the promises looking for example to Israel in the Old Testament all the promises of the kingdom to Israel will be fulfilled in the church in the church age. Right now we are the Israel of God is no future for Israel. God will never revive Israel than ever be redeemed as a nation that never go back into a kingdom never will be a real throne in Jerusalem.
That's all figurative stuff. Everything is fulfilled in the church so is my mentor, Dr. Feinberg said one time when we were together in Jerusalem at the prophecy conference right next to the Knesset and Teddy Collett, the mayor of Jerusalem was David Ben-Gurion prime minister was there and Dr. Feinberg got up after speech of been given by a well-known millennialist and he said I regret to to stand on this platform and have to acknowledge that that we have come all the way from America to announce to you Jewish people that all of the curses were given to you, but all of the blessings will be given to us.
It seems like a long trip to make that announcement, but that is the millennial view.
Things are going to stay the same because this is the kingdom.
This is all the resentment the reign of Jesus Christ is figurative price this year. Ruling and he'll just keep ruling in a spiritual sense, and so finally comes and takes us to heaven, and will all end in one moment tends to be the view of most reformed theologians.
Some of them are what we would call historic pre-mill in my coming on in the moment, but traditionally reformed theology which is great theology, great. So to rheology great new mythology sometimes not so great ecclesiology and usually not so great eschatology, but that is the tendency to be the view of the reformed and also the Puritan era and part of the reason for that is that by the time or at the time that they refined and defined their theology. The eschatological debate had not really engaged itself is a progress of dog might want to lose you on this, but that the doctrines of the Scripture have defined themselves through history, church councils and writers and scholars and authors have dealt with doctrinal issues and they've moved through the various doctrines until coming out ultimately to a study of eschatology which is really been in the last couple hundred years so the Reformation and the Puritan era kinda came before the crystallizing of eschatology as the church hammered out its Dr. remember now the church is in the dark ages till about 1500. And so, from 1500 to the current time, there was the development and understanding of all the great doctrines of Scripture and the last to come along with the doctrines of last things in the in the time of the Puritans and the reformers they were nearly as is fine-tuned as they are today.
So when you read Puritan literature read reformed theology very often you find to be millennial you want to ask this question because this is what the millennial's would say has the kingdom already come visit here, this is it. Are we in it right now is this as good as it gets. Is this paradise regained is this the rule of God is this eating, or should we join the post Mills and say just going to get better and better and better and better. Frankly, either one of those two views is untenable. If you interpret Scripture literally frankly post millennialism has nothing in the Scripture to commend it nothing. I remember when Dr. Feinberg wrote his book called premillennialism or millennialism, and the few post millennialist were insulted because he didn't even deal with it.
It's very hard to deal with in the Bible since it doesn't really have any Scripture to commend it in some of the mishmash of a literal and nonliteral approach millennialism spiritualize is the text to make its case and spiritualizing the text opens Pandora's box because once you deny the literal, if you say a thousand years doesn't mean a thousand years than what is it mean and will you sent me this and you say it means that you say it means this is somebody else as a means the other. We have actually no way to tell. Once you escape the literal. There is no way to confine it. Covenant theologians who espouse millennialism have one major problem that is introduced in our text and just so we can say we did. Let's read the first three verses Revelation 20 verses 1 to 3 I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hand.
He laid hold of the Dragon, the serpent of old who is the devil and Satan bound him for thousand years and threw them into the abyss, and shut it and sealed it over him so that he should not deceive the nations any longer, until the thousand years were completed after these things he must be released for a short time limit me ask you something very plain and very straightforward. Where is Satan.
During the kingdom. In one word bound out of the picture. Now the millennialist say we are in the kingdom. If we are in the kingdom. Satan is what bound.
That doesn't make sense in the post millennialist says we might be in the kingdom and things are getting better and better.
But the clear word of Scripture is that during the time of the kingdom. Satan is bound verse three says he is bound until the thousand years are completed and then is released. Satan is bound during the kingdom that poses a rather significant problem because Amcor still use Matthew 1220, 22 to 29 actually 29 says about finding a strongman and here's what they'll say they'll say what the cross is an millennialist at the cross, Satan was bound. The true the first place that they're immediately cast into a figurative role because the cross is more than a thousand years ago. So that ignores the 1000 year. And furthermore, how in the world can Satan be bound when asked 53 says Satan entered the heart of Ananias is fire made him lie and how can Satan be bound one second Corinthians 44 says that he is blinding the minds of those who do not believe in.
Hey, how can Satan be bound when Peter says he goes about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. In first Peter 58, and how can he be bound in first Thessalonians 218 says that the devil hinders the ministers of God and how can he be bound when he says he goes around disguise as an angel of light, along with all the rest of his ministers and if he's bound in the binding is useless.
Revelation 20 could never describe the present age, the God of this world is alive and moving. He's everywhere.
Chapter 20 has to be future millennialist to tell us this is the kingdom have a difficult time explaining Satan being bound.
If he is bound. Why are these folks going around finding them again in the post millennialist in the post millennialist to Laura say we probably are in the kingdom. It sure feels good. You know we won the election and some city or you know, we knocked up some demons on the night in our warfare session would say we might be in the kingdom.
If that's true, than Satan really bound or all of his demons bound just another question that comes to my mind it's basic to interpret numbers the way we would normally interpret them if you go into the book of Revelation.
For example, here's a little exercise everywhere in the book of Revelation numbers are used literally. It talks about seven churches having seven ministers seven literal churches. Revelation refers to 12 tribes as a mean 12 yes and 12 apostles as me. 12 yes, and it refers to 10 lamps five months, one third of mankind. Two witnesses 42 months, 1260 days. 12 stars 10 horns, 1600 stadia three demons five fallen kings know what we can do those numbers say 77 five's and 5000 and thousand 12 isn't what what what then what are they, and who do we turn to to tell us all those numbers are used in the normal sense John says I saw this many kings in the vision and I saw that many horns and I saw that many crowns and I saw that many churches and that many letters in this many months and that many days in this many years and this many people in the fourth and the third and two thirds only symbolic numbers in the whole book of Revelation chapter 1 verse four were talked about seven spirits in it refers to the sevenfold work of the Spirit of God or the number 666 and 1318 but apart from that, all other numbers are used in the normal sense that doesn't prove that the 1000 years is literal but it forces those who say it isn't to prove it is certainly nothing in this text. By the way that the term 1000 appears six times and what is there in the text that would make us make it symbolic. Never in the Scripture is the word year used with a number that is not literal. Number 1000 is not used in Scripture ever as a symbol from the earliest post-apostolic era. The church understood the millennium of Revelation 20 is a literal one thousand years. Pappy is Barnabas Justin Martyr, Irenaeus, Tertullian, all give evidence of this fact in the writings of the church taught nothing else till the fourth century and then Augustine popularized even more literal kingdom of 1000 years after Christ's return and before the new heavens and new earth is the subject of this chapter and any other viewpoint just gets so con founded that you can't find your way through here without some magic now another note, some pre-Mills emphasized the so teary illogical character of the millennium that is the political aspect of it, or that the at the Israel part of it. The prominence of Israel are subordinated in there called historical premillennialists. They want to emphasize this that that there is a kingdom that Christ comes their pre-mill but they see that kingdom not in reference to Israel and not in reference to two to necessarily the rule of Christ. The political aspect of it. They see it more as a period of of the expression of God's great saving power, they would be called historic pre-mill, but the more accurate view of premillennialism is that the kingdom is not so much a suit so teary illogical.
It is now, but that then it is a theocratic rule is the fulfillment of the promise of God to David and Israel. Christ will literally rain in Jerusalem, Israel will be prominent in all the nations ruled by Christ and bless the bottom line in all this discussion is to take a literal interpretation of Scripture and simply follow the chronology of Revelation in your to come up with a premillennial view. John Wahlberg is correct when he suggests the only reason for denying such a conclusion would be to avoid being a premillennialist so as we come to this passage, the Golden age arrives.
I just had to get all that out of the way because I know some of you would be sitting there and wondering whether you even accepted this kingdom.
So I wanted to clarify that for you. We come in the chronology and with a literal interpretation and we take Scripture at face value, because I'm sure not to tell you some secret meaning. This is it is the kingdom, opens the temple has been built nations of the earth are coming there to worship the true God and Christ prosperity reigns from pole to pole in a paradise regained the garden of Eden is worldwide its back. Poverty is unknown. So is injustice.
Everyone has his heart's desire.
It's incredible incredible time. We don't know exactly what it'll be like it could be a time with no prisons, no hospitals, no mental institutions no barracks, no saloons, no houses of ill repute, no gambling dens no homes for the aged, the infirm, the bloom of youth is on everyone's cheek.
Cemeteries are crumbling relics of the past and tears are infrequent the wolf and the lamb the calf and the lion the cow and the bear the child and the scorpion are all at peace. Jesus is come Golden age as Don. The earth is filled with the knowledge of God. Jesus is Lord. He rules the nation with a rod of iron is rain is righteous and the nations obey.
Sin is visited was swift and certain judgment. It's everything that you could never even imagined beyond your wildest dreams that kind of life. This is the kingdom. This is what we live for. This is what we wait for this is what we hope for and beloved. This is what is really coming and this is in it where not it and believe me, Satan is not bound, waiting for him to be bound, but he can't be bound until Jesus comes. Father would say with John. Even so, Lord Jesus, thank you for that great but we to live in the regeneration and the restitution in the glories of the king and then on the new heaven. What a blessed waterproof which would give you all the glory for us. You're listening to Grace to you and the verse by verse Bible teaching of John MacArthur, Chancellor of the Masters University in seminary. Today's lesson looked forward to the glorious return of Jesus Christ part of John study titled when Jesus comes.
John you were using some technical theological terms. Today, for example, post-millennialism and millennialism.
Why is it crucial for all believers and not just pastors and Bible scholars but everyone in the church to understand what those words mean well at the end of the story means anything, you need to understand those words mean the end of the biblical story. I like we all would that we would all line up and say we believe in the Genesis account who we believe in Genesis 1 and two and three being a literal declaration from those the creator himself a divine revelation of the reality of creation, then we would take our stand on that we would fight for that. It's it's amazing how many people do that was Genesis but just to throw the dirt near when they get to the end of the story as if God was very confused at the end it couldn't make himself clear he was pretty clear when he was talking about six days and then seven they rested, but he really got muddy in the book of Revelation, and that's why so much confusion but I think God was clear about the end of the story. I think you would assume that he would intend to be because his glory is all bound up in that and the single greatest element of the end of human history is the reign of Jesus Christ on earth.
Unfortunately, if you believe in millennialism you're saying there is no millennium so there is no earthly kingdom. If you believe in post-millennialism you're saying, well this could be the millennium because he's coming after we bring the millennium will buy by any measure.
If this is the millennium it doesn't work with everything the Old Testament says about the millennium and everything the New Testament says about the millennium and anybody who is going to try to claim that Jesus Christ is raining in the earth today. It is going to collide with Scripture all over the place so that leaves you with millennialism that is that there is coming a millennium, a reign of Christ, but he comes before that millennium and sets it up. Millennium's Latin word for a thousand so there is an earthly kingdom. Christ comes to set it up we don't set it up and handed to him, and you can't just dismiss it. I think the specificity of the book of Revelation is remarkable I think. And I've said this before that I think Revelation is probably the easiest book in the New Testament to interpret chronologically bit because it the flow is so obviously chronological know exactly what's going on and I try to put that in a book called because the time is near. The book was kind of an afterthought. You probably remember that as we had written the commentaries on Revelation, volume 1 of volume 2, I thought we need to condense all this I did of a single message you remember to tour through revelation and show people how you could interpret that way so that the book because the time is near will cover all 22 chapters of Revelation. Verse by verse. It'll show you how. Clearly, Revelation reveals the end time. The end. The plan of the Lord you can understand it. 350 pages affordably priced available from Grace to you. That's right, and friend.
This book can take the intimidation out of the Bible's final 22 chapters and help you truly comprehend the book of Revelation. So if you or perhaps someone you know assumes Revelation is too difficult to understand. I would encourage you to pick up a copy of because the time is near.
Place your order today to order by phone, dial toll-free anytime 855 Grace or purchase because the time is email@example.com. Like many of John's books because the time is near is also available in Spanish again to order a copy in English or Spanish. Call 855 Grace or go online to TTY.org when you go to our website. Remember, there are thousands of resources available there free of charge, TTY.org when you want to listen to radio broadcasts you may have missed or if you have questions about marriage and parenting work, how to honor Christ at your job or how you can minister to a loved one suffering. You can search thousands of John MacArthur's sermons daily devotionals blog articles Q&A's, and you'll find a resource that can help meet your spiritual needs.
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TTY.org now for John MacArthur. I'm Phil Johnson.
Keep in mind Grace to you television airs this Sunday on DirecTV channel 378 or you can watch it firstname.lastname@example.org and then join us tomorrow when John continues his look at what life will be like when Jesus comes here for another half hour of unleashing God's truth one verse at a time on race