The Millennium

The millennium begins at the second coming of Jesus, when the righteous dead will be resurrected. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-16. The living wicked will then be destroyed. 2 Thessalonians 1:7, 8; Isaiah 11:4; Jeremiah 25:31-33. The righteous will be taken to heaven. John 14:1-3. And Satan will be bound.

 

During the millennium, the earth will remain in a state of desolation, devoid of human inhabitants, and Satan will therefore be "bound" by a chain of circumstances for one thousand years. Isaiah 24:22; Jeremiah 4:23-26; Revelation 20:2, 3.

 

While the saints will be reigning with Christ in heaven, for one thousand years, they will judge the wicked. 1 Corinthians 6: 2, 3; Revelation 20:4.

 

At the end of the millennium, our Lord returns to the earth with the redeemed and a retinue of angels. The wicked dead will be resurrected and arise with the same spirit of rebellion with which they went down to the grave. The New Jerusalem descends from heaven, and Christ, with the redeemed and the angels, enters the holy city. Zechariah 14:4. Satan being loosed from his prison, still claiming to be the rightful owner of this world, proposes to his followers to take possession of the city. Then fire comes down from God upon His enemies and consumes them leaving neither root nor branch. Revelation 21:1-5; 20:5, 7-9, 14; Malachi 4:1; 2 Peter 3:7-10; Ezekiel 28:18, 19.

 

Desolation of Earth

"Now the event takes place foreshadowed in the last solemn service of the Day of Atonement. When the ministration in the holy of holies had been completed, and the sins of Israel had been removed from the sanctuary by virtue of the blood of the sin offering, then the scapegoat was presented alive before the Lord; and in the presence of the congregation the high priest confessed over him 'all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them upon the head of the goat.' Leviticus 16:21. In like manner, when the work of atonement in the heavenly sanctuary has been completed, then in the presence of God and heavenly angels and the hosts of the redeemed the sins of God's people will be placed upon Satan; he will be declared guilty of all the evil which he has caused them to commit. And as the scapegoat was sent away into a land not inhabited, so Satan will be banished to the desolate earth, an uninhabited and dreary wilderness."—The Great Controversy, pp. 657-658.

 

"The earth looked like a desolate wilderness. Cities and villages, shaken down by the earthquake, lay in heaps. Mountains had been moved out of their places, leaving large caverns. Ragged rocks, thrown out by the sea, or torn out of the earth itself, were scattered all over its surface. Large trees had been uprooted and were strewn over the land. Here is to be the home of Satan with his evil angels for a thousand years. Here he will be confined, to wander up and down over the broken surface of the earth and see the effects of his rebellion against God's law. For a thousand years he can enjoy the fruit of the curse which he has caused. Limited alone to the earth, he will not have the privilege of ranging to other planets, to tempt and annoy those who have not fallen. During this time, Satan suffers extremely. Since his fall his evil traits have been in constant exercise. But he is then to be deprived of his power, and left to reflect upon the part which he has acted since his fall, and to look forward with trembling and terror to the dreadful future, when he must suffer for all the evil that he has done and be punished for all the sins that he has caused to be committed."—Early Writings, p. 290.

 

Judgment of the Wicked

"During the thousand years between the first and the second resurrection the judgment of the wicked takes place. The apostle Paul points to this judgment as an event that follows the second advent. . . . It is at this time that, as foretold by Paul, 'the saints shall judge the world.' 1 Corinthians 6:2. In union with Christ they judge the wicked, comparing their acts with the statute book, the Bible, and deciding every case according to the deeds done in the body. Then the portion which the wicked must suffer is meted out, according to their works; and it is recorded against their names in the book of death."—The Great Controversy, pp. 660-661.

 

Second Resurrection 

"At the close of the 1000 years, Christ again returns to the earth. He is accompanied by the host of the redeemed and attended by a retinue of angels. As He descends in terrific majesty He bids the wicked dead arise to receive their doom. They come forth, a mighty host, numberless as the sands of the sea. What a contrast to those who were raised at the first resurrection! The righteous were clothed with immortal youth and beauty. The wicked bear the traces of disease and death."—The Great Controversy, p. 662.

 

"Christ descends upon the Mount of Olives, whence, after His resurrection, He ascended, and where angels repeated the promise of His return. Says the prophet: 'The Lord my God shall come, and all the saints with Thee.' 'And His feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the Mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof, . . . and there shall be a very great valley.' 'And the Lord shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one Lord, and His name one.' Zechariah 14:5, 4, 9. As the New Jerusalem, in its dazzling splendor, comes down out of heaven, it rests upon the place purified and made ready to receive it, and Christ, with His people and the angels, enters the Holy City."—The Great Controversy, pp. 662-663.

 

"Satan consults with his angels, and then with those kings and conquerors and mighty men. Then he looks over the vast army, and tells them that the company in the city is small and feeble, and that they can go up and take it, and cast out its inhabitants, and possess its riches and glory themselves. Satan succeeds in deceiving them, and all immediately begin to prepare themselves for battle." —Early Writings, p. 293.

 

Destruction of the Wicked

"Then the wicked saw what they had lost; and fire was breathed from God upon them and consumed them. This was the execution of the judgment. The wicked then received according as the saints, in unison with Jesus, had meted out to them during the one thousand years."—Early Writings, p. 54.

 

"Said the angel, 'Satan is the root, his children are the branches. They are now consumed root and branch. They have died an everlasting death. They are never to have a resurrection, and God will have a clean universe.'"—Early Writings, pp. 294-295.