June 23, 2014
Genesis 3:17-19; Romans 8:18-23
(All scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated.)
What Will The Millennium Be Like? As explored in Friday’s blog, it will be a restoration of conditions before sin entered into the world through Adam (see Romans 5:12). As a result of man’s sin, God cursed creation. Jesus Christ is called “…the last Adam…” (I Corinthians 15:45), “…the second Man…” (I Corinthians 15:46), and “…the heavenly Man…” (I Corinthians 15:47 and 48). The Hebrew word ‘adam’ means ‘ruddy’ and so by implication, ‘a human being.’ The word is translated ‘man.’ in the Old Testament far more times than ‘Adam.’
Paul wrote in I Corinthians 15:49, “And as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly man.” When will this happen? I John 3:2 says, “…we know that when He [Jesus] shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is.” We will be restored to God’s original design for human beings – like unto Adam before he fell into sin, and like unto the second Adam, Jesus Christ!
But it is not only human beings which will be restored. All creation was infected and affected by sin. So all creation will be restored! God told Adam in Genesis 3:17 through 19:
Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of
your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall
eat the herb of the field . In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you
return to the ground. For out if it you were taken; for dust you are, and to
dust you shall return.
Creation is still enduring that curse. It was never lifted and will not be until, as John said, “…He shall appear….” This refers to His Second Coming, as it says in Revelation 1:7, “Behold, He is coming with clouds; and every eye will see Him….”
Paul enlarged on that theme in Romans 8:18 through 23 (NIV):
I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory
that will be revealed in us. The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons
of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its
own choice, but by the will of the One who subjected it, in hope that the creation
itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious
freedom of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been
groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so,
but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we
wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.
So if all creation was subjected to the curse, and the curse will be lifted upon Jesus’ second coming, and creation will then be returned to its original state – what was it like before the curse?
• First of all, creation was good! After God finished the six days of creation recorded in Genesis 1, it is stated in verse 31, “Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good.”
• Second, The world will be delivered from Satan’s control! The devil is called “…the prince of this world…” in John 12:31; 14:30 and 16:11. He is called “…the god of this world…” in II Corinthians 4:4. This is because he wrested the dominion of creation from Adam when our first father chose to obey Satan’s leading rather than God’s (see Genesis 1: 26 through 28; 2:16 and 17; and 3:5 and 6). It is written in Luke 4:5 and 6 – the second of three temptations Jesus experienced at the beginning of His ministry:
Then the devil, taking Him up on a high mountain, showed Him all the king-
doms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, “All this
authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and
I give it to whomever I wish.
He could never offer to give that over which he had no control! Otherwise it would not have been a valid temptation that Jesus endured!
But it is also recorded just before the Millennium starts that the devil will be bound for a thousand years – the duration of the Millennium (see Revelation 20:2 and 3), and an angel announced in Revelation 11:15, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign forever and ever!” So worldwide rule – actually creation-wide rule – will be taken from the one whose purpose is “…to steal, and to kill, and to destroy…” (John 10:10), and given to the One who will rule in righteousness and justice (see Psalm 9:7 through 9).
We will continue to explore What Will The Millennium Be Like? in Wednesday’s blog.