Your Christian Hope: A Wondrous Future
By Dr. David R. Reagan
What will we resurrected believers be doing during the Millennial reign of Christ? And, where is the eternal state located?
3) Activities — During the Millennial reign of Jesus, the Redeemed are going to be doing anything but floating around on clouds playing harps. We are going to reign with Jesus over those who are allowed to enter the Millennium in the flesh (which will be those believers who are alive at the end of the Tribulation). Jesus will reign over all the earth from Jerusalem (Isaiah 2:1-4) as King of kings and Lord of lords (Revelation 19:16). David in his glorified body will reign as the king of Israel (Ezekiel 37:24). The Saints will be scattered across the earth to assist with Jesus' reign (2 Timothy 2:12).
Every person on earth who is in a position of governing authority will be a glorified Saint. Some of us will be in administrative positions, sharing in Jesus' reign as presidents, governors, or mayors (Luke 19:11-27). Others will serve as judges (I Corinthians 6:3). Most of us will serve as "shepherds," or teachers, trying to bring those who are born during the Millennium to faith in Jesus (Isaiah 66:18-21 and Jeremiah 3:15).
In the process, we are going to be given the blessing of seeing this old sin-sick world flooded with peace, righteousness and justice as the waters cover the seas. I can hardly wait!
When the Millennium ends and we move into the Eternal State, the Bible does not go into detail as to what our activities will be. It simply says that we will "serve" God (Revelation 22:3). Whatever that means, I'm sure it will be a meaningful and fulfilling service. I would imagine that, for one thing, our gifts and talents will be magnified and that we will use them to glorify the Lord. Thus, a singer will be able to sing with a perfection never before achieved, and a painter will be able to paint with a glory never imagined.
4) Location — What will be the location of this Eternal State? Will it be in an ethereal, spirit world called Heaven?
Most Christians are amazed to discover that the Bible never promises that the Redeemed will spend eternity in Heaven. Instead, the Bible says that the eternal abode of the Redeemed will be in a new Jerusalem located on a new earth (Revelation 21).
Since the Bible says that the current earth is eternal (Psalms 78:69 and 148:6), I have concluded that the "new earth" will be the current earth renovated by fire (2 Peter 3:12-13).
Instead of our going up to Heaven to live eternally with God, the Bible says He will come to earth to live with us (Revelation 21:3). Since Heaven is located wherever God resides, Heaven will come to earth, and in that sense only will we reside forever in Heaven.
God loves His creation, and He intends to redeem it all of it and not destroy it with some mythical "big bang." He is going to restore it to its original perfection when He created it.
Jesus died on the Cross not only to redeem Mankind but also to redeem the creation. That's the reason the High Priest in Old Testament times sprinkled the blood not only on the mercy seat but also on the ground (Leviticus 16:15).
The blood on the mercy seat of the ark was a symbolic prophecy pointing to the fact that the blood of the Messiah would cover the law of God (the tablets inside the ark) with the mercy and grace of God. The blood on the ground was a reminder that the sacrifice of the Messiah would make it possible for the Curse to be lifted and for the animal and plant kingdoms to be returned to their original perfection (Isaiah 11:6-9 and Romans 8:18-23).
In the last part of this series on your Christian hope, I'll tell you why it's so important to have an eternal perspective so you can live with hope.