A Millennium Kingdom? – Rev 20:4

Then I saw thrones, and seated on them were those to whom the authority to judge was committed. Also I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for the testimony of Jesus and for the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. – Revelation 20:4 ESV

The millennium kingdom; Christ’s reign with tribulation martyrs for a thousand years. The major categories of how people understand the end times are identified by how one understands these 6 verses. Is it a literal 1000 year reign of Christ on the earth that happens after his second coming? Is it a spiritual reign on earth leading up to his return? Is it something else all together? Or is it really all that important what we believe it to mean? Personally I tend toward the latter view because the rest of the Bible gives me no help in understanding this passage; and if it was critical, I would expect it to be more clearly taught elsewhere.

What is important? Christ is returning to claim his chosen ones, including those who have physically died while waiting for his return, and we will be with him forever. Those who have not come to Christ in faith will face judgement and eternal destruction. Just how a millennium kingdom might be wedged into that is unknown to me. I tend toward not taking it as a literal 1000 reign on earth because 1) I don’t find it taught elsewhere in Scripture, 2) I don’t understand how to fit it into what I see the rest of Scripture teaching about Christ’s return, and 3) it is hard for me to picture what purpose it would serve. But at the end of the day, it really doesn’t matter what I believe about it. God will do what he has planned. So thankful that he is in charge and not me.

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