Preceding generations have witnessed the formation of nations which presently occupy various locations around the globe. Following the return of the Lord in power and glory, the nations will enter the fulness of blessing in their destined place in the program of God.
When the climax of the tribulation and the judgment of the living nations are consummated, only a remnant of the nations will remain on earth to enter the millennium. Although some ancient nations are specified as having a future in millennial blessing, their modern identity is often difficult to determine. We do know, however, that the remnant of nations will comprise those who have believed the gospel preached by the 144,000 witnesses (Rev 7:4). There will be those who will demonstrate their faith in Christ during the tribulation by being favorable to those Jewish believers whom the Lord calls, “My brethren,” (Matt 25:40). The faithful survivors of these peoples on earth, called “the elect ones” (Matt 24:30), will be preserved to enter earthly millennial glory, as will the faithful remnant of the nation of Israel (Isa 11:11,12). The population of earth, drastically depleted by the devastation of the wrath of the Lamb, will quickly develop as multitudes of children are born to populate a world delivered from the bondage of corruption. Infant mortality will be obliterated and longevity will be normal. Initially, all entering the millennium are saved, but millennium-born children must be born again to obtain eternal life (John 3:6, 7).
Since the fall of man, Satanic influence has imposed its mark upon mankind, reaching its climax in the man of sin, whom the Lord shall destroy with the brightness of His coming (2Thess 2:8). All that are unregenerate on earth at the second advent will go into everlasting punishment (Matt 25:46). Satan will be bound for a thousand years in the bottomless pit (Rev 20:2, 3) and the King of Kings and Lord of Lords shall have unhindered dominion. Various interpretations have been given as to the identity of “David the prince.” We concur with Ryrie: “Though some consider him to be the Messiah, this is impossible, since he needs to offer a sin offering (Ezek 45:22) and he has sons (46:16). He is evidently a human representative of Messiah in the government of the kingdom.” Heaven’s rule is thus established on earth through the king of Israel. Regathered, regenerated, and restored to the land, Israel will be the head of the nations (Deut 28:13). The modern nation of Israel has not yet entered upon this. Nationally they have not yet accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as their Messiah, a prerequisite for their cleansing that the Lord may say, “so shall they be My people and I will be their God” (Ezek 37:23).
All opposition to the Lord and His Anointed is quelled and righteous rule is firmly established. For the first time since the fall of man, dominion of earth is restored as God would have it, under His Man (Heb 2:8). The effects of the fall are largely reversed and the nations begin to enjoy the fulness of blessing that God had originally intended for earth and her people. Peace shall reign everywhere as men “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” (Isa 2:4). Instead of being provocative and warlike, the nations shall be pastoral and winsome. Financial security will be enjoyed, in part due to there being no further need for large expenditure for armaments. Attention no doubt will be directed to improving the world in various ways. “And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them … and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands” (Isa 65:21, 22). Good health will be normal and sickness will be a rare thing indeed. This was previewed in miracles when the Lord Jesus was on earth. Barren places shall be fruitful “for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert. 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 … ” (Isa 35:1, 2). Ferocious beasts shall be tame as a result of being liberated from the bondage of corruption (Rom 8:21). “The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid … They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain” (Isa11:6-9).
The future temple in Jerusalem will be a great object lesson to earth’s people of the ways and works of God. The priests of that day will educate the people in the spiritual significance of temple worship. Sacrifices will illustrate what happened at Calvary, when the King of heaven and earth once “offered Himself without spot to God.” The wonder and fragrance of His atoning work will be their joyful meditation. Gladly will the nations congregate to contemplate these wonders and “unto Him shall the gathering of the peoples (pl.) be.” In that day when “the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea,” there will be a fulness of praise from earth to the God of heaven.
When Satan is banished and sin and death no more shall reign, then unmitigated blessing shall flow from the throne of God and of the Lamb. Earth will be administered with heavenly wisdom, and godly fear shall characterize earth’s rulers and her peoples. Joy and gladness, harmony and beauty, will replace all the ugliness that is so widespread on earth today as a result of rampant evil. Pastoral peace and plenty will forever banish famine, warfare, and deprivation. The praise and worship of redeemed spirits shall gladly flow from earth to heaven as the human race bows to own the Sovereign authority of the Blessed and only Potentate, the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords.