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“Where there is no vision, the people perish…” Proverbs 29:18
Let’s now turn our focus to the believers, those that believe and have chosen to join themselves to Christ in baptism entering into a special relationship with God as sons and daughters. What will they be doing during this Kingdom of God on Earth?
There will be a lot of work to be done by the believers who at this time will have been given immortality and will share the same nature as Christ and his powers.
Here is a range of jobs for the believers at this time:
· There will be the work of Elijah in re-gathering all of the people of Israel still scattered throughout the world
· There will be the work of cleansing and restoring the land of Israel
· There will be the work of building God’s House of Prayer for all nations, which Christ himself will lead from Jerusalem
· After God’s judgements have been executed upon all men, there will be a serious need for the world now in a mess to be re-organised
· There will be the work of bringing all people and nations into subjection to Christ and his righteous rule over the earth
· Preaching the everlasting gospel to all people as their only means of hope will be critical at this time
· Organising all people left alive into village life, planting and building their own homes
· As the earth will still be populated with a mortal people at this time there will still be issues and problems that need to be resolved
· The believers principle role at this time will be as Priests and Kings of righteousness, this means they will teach and rule over the mortal population, perhaps having responsibility for a number of villages each
THE WORK OF ELIJAH
The work of Elijah is prophesied in Malachi 3:1
“Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me: and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in: behold, he shall come, saith the LORD of hosts.”
In Jeremiah 3:12-17 we have recorded the message that Elijah and the believers who will be assigned to work with him will regather the people of Israel scattered throughout the nations. This is what it says…
“Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, thou backsliding Israel, saith the LORD; and I will not cause mine anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith the LORD, and I will not keep anger forever. 13 Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against the LORD thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed my voice, saith the LORD.14 Turn, O backsliding children, saith the LORD; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion: 15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding. 16 And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith the LORD, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the LORD: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more. 17 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart.”
The actual work of re-gathering the people of Israel is prophesied in Ezekiel 20:33-44 where we read…
“As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury poured out, will I rule over you: 34 And I will bring you out from the people, and will gather you out of the countries wherein ye are scattered, with a mighty hand, and with a stretched out arm, and with fury poured out. 35 And I will bring you into the wilderness of the people, and there will I plead with you face to face. 36 Like as I pleaded with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so will I plead with you, saith the Lord GOD. 37 And I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant: 38 And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the LORD. 39 As for you, O house of Israel, thus saith the Lord GOD; Go ye, serve ye every one his idols, and hereafter also, if ye will not hearken unto me: but pollute ye my holy name no more with your gifts, and with your idols. 40 For in mine holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, there shall all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, serve me: there will I accept them, and there will I require your offerings, and the firstfruits of your oblations, with all your holy things. 41 I will accept you with your sweet savour, when I bring you out from the people, and gather you out of the countries wherein ye have been scattered; and I will be sanctified in you before the heathen. 42 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for the which I lifted up mine hand to give it to your fathers. 43 And there shall ye remember your ways, and all your doings, wherein ye have been defiled; and ye shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for all your evils that ye have committed. 44 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have wrought with you for my name’s sake, not according to your wicked ways, nor according to your corrupt doings, O ye house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD.”
Without the transportation systems that we have in the world today it will be a long and arduous journey for the people of Israel to literally walk their way back to the land of Israel. While they are doing this there will be fierce resistance lead by the Roman Catholic Church who under their false teaching of a latter day ‘anti-christ’ will move large numbers of people (both the adherents to their false teachings and others who are and will be seduced to believe the same things) to the point where Israel will have to fight their way back especially through Europe where Catholicism is dominant.
The up rise of the Anti-christ movement is prophesied in Psalm 2:1-6
“Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing? 2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying, 3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us. 4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision. 5 Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure. 6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. 7I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. 9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”
While the effect of this on the Jews trying to return to the land of Israel is described in Zechariah 9:11-17 where we read a little of how this resistance will play out…
“Turn you to the strong hold, ye prisoners of hope: even to day do I declare that I will render double unto thee; 13 When I have bent Judah for me, filled the bow with Ephraim, and raised up thy sons, O Zion, against thy sons, O Greece, and made thee as the sword of a mighty man. 14 And the LORD shall be seen over them, and his arrow shall go forth as the lightning: and the Lord GOD shall blow the trumpet, and shall go with whirlwinds of the south. 15 The LORD of hosts shall defend them; and they shall devour, and subdue with sling stones; and they shall drink, and make a noise as through wine; and they shall be filled like bowls, and as the corners of the altar. 16 And the LORD their God shall save them in that day as the flock of his people: for they shall be as the stones of a crown, lifted up as an ensign upon his land. 17 For how great is his goodness, and how great is his beauty! corn shall make the young men cheerful, and new wine the maids.”
Here Ephraim which is the political term used in the Bible to describe the scattered people of Israel will be like an arrow fired through Greece (Europe), but it is the believers who will be with them described as “whirlwinds of the south” as this is the term used to speak of all the believers who will go forth with Christ from Sinai to bring judgment on the nations gathered around Jerusalem in the battle of Armageddon.
Just like God was with his people Israel when they came out of Egypt which was a type of this ultimate and final coming out of the nations under Elijah so the believers as the Elohim (God’s mighty angels) will hover over the people of Israel. They “shall be seen over them” much like the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night was seen over the children of Israel in the wilderness as they left Egypt.
This is the great and final deliverance of God’s people from the wilderness of the nations. But as they travel back those among God’s people who are rebellious will be singled out and they will perish so that only a fully repentant and chastened people will enter the land of Israel under Elijah.
This resistance by the nations and the after affect of God’s Judgment on the nations at this time is spoken of in Jeremiah 25:30-33
“Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them, The LORD shall roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he shall mightily roar upon his habitation; he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth. 31 A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for the LORD hath a controversy with the nations, he will plead with all flesh; he will give them that are wicked to the sword, saith the LORD. (note similarity to Psalm 2 as this speaks of the same time)32 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth. 33 And the slain of the LORD shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground.”
From this passage we learn of the fatal mistake all those around the world who follow the Catholic Church will make in believing that the proclamation from Mt Zion that Christ has returned will be the work of anti-christ. Their resistance will be judged and punished by God leaving the dead in that day from one end of the earth to the other. There are at present approximately 1 billion Catholics in the world, but these will be joined by many of the religions who similarly falsely believe in this later day teaching of the coming of an anti-christ (Hal Lindsay in his book ‘The Rapture’ is responsible for leading many countless numbers of people to believing in this false Anti-christ teaching).
THE WORK OF CLEANSING AND RESTORING THE LAND OF ISRAEL
Following the battle of Armageddon fought on the mountains of Israel around Jerusalem, there will be vast destruction and the carnage of warfare to be cleansed from the land.
Firstly we read of the armies that come against Israel as follows:
“Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands, and the people that is with thee: I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured. 5 Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD. 6 And I will send a fire on Magog, and among them that dwell carelessly in the isles: and they shall know that I am the LORD. 7 So will I make my holy name known in the midst of my people Israel; and I will not let them pollute my holy name any more: and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD, the Holy One in Israel.”
Concerning the nation of Israel we read these words in Zechariah 12:3-11
“And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. 4 In that day, saith the LORD, I will smite every horse with astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with blindness…
9And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. 10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. 11 In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.”
And again in Zechariah 13:8-9
“And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the LORD, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein. 9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.”
So a great number, two thirds of the people who live in Israel now will be destroyed, those remaining, one third will finally acknowledge Christ as their Saviour and King. But the land will need to be cleansed and restored.
We read of this work in Ezekiel 39:8-9
“Behold, it is come, and it is done, saith the Lord GOD; this is the day whereof I have spoken. 9 And they that dwell in the cities of Israel shall go forth, and shall set on fire and burn the weapons, both the shields and the bucklers, the bows and the arrows, and the handstaves, and the spears, and they shall burn them with fire seven years:”
So it will take 7 years to cleanse the land of the weapons of warfare destroyed by God of the nations who come against Israel and it will take 7 months to bury the dead.
“And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will give unto Gog a place there of graves in Israel, the valley of the passengers on the east of the sea: and it shall stop the noses of the passengers: and there shall they bury Gog and all his multitude: and they shall call it The valley of Hamongog. 12And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land.”
Seven years to clear the wreckage of war and seven months to bury all the dead. Only when this is completed will the Temple of God described in Ezekiel chs 40-48 begin to be built.
BUILDING OF GOD’S TEMPLE “HOUSE OF PRAYER FOR ALL NATIONS”
In Isaiah 60:9-22 we read of the materials being brought to Israel and the Building of God’s Temple as described in Ezekiel chs 40-45…
“Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the LORD thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee. 10 And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee. 11 Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought. 12 For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted. 13 The glory of Lebanon shall come unto thee, the fir tree, the pine tree, and the box together, to beautify the place of my sanctuary; and I will make the place of my feet glorious. 14 The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.
15Whereas thou hast been forsaken and hated, so that no man went through thee, I will make thee an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations. 16Thou shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings: and thou shalt know that I the LORD am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob. 17 For brass I will bring gold, and for iron I will bring silver, and for wood brass, and for stones iron: I will also make thy officers peace, and thine exactors righteousness. 18 Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise. 19 The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory. 20 Thy sun shall no more go down; neither shall thy moon withdraw itself: for the LORD shall be thine everlasting light, and the days of thy mourning shall be ended. 21 Thy people also shall be all righteous: they shall inherit the land for ever, the branch of my planting, the work of my hands, that I may be glorified. 22 A little one shall become a thousand, and a small one a strong nation: I the LORD will hasten it in his time.”
And in Isaiah 56:7-8…
“…their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people. 8 The Lord GOD which gathereth the outcasts of Israel saith, Yet will I gather others to him, beside those that are gathered unto him.”
BRINGING ALL NATIONS INTO SUBMISSION TO CHRIST
Despite the resistance around the world to Christ’s declared return and rule over all the earth from Mt Zion in Israel all nations will be brought into submission. There will be a period of 40 years during which the work of Elijah, the building of the new Temple God’s House of Prayer for all nations and bringing the nations into submission to Christ’s rule will be completed.
Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:20-28 speaks of the work of bringing the nations into subjection like this…
“But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 23But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming. 24 Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 25 For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. 27 For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is accepted, which did put all things under him. 28 And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”
It is at this time that the “knowledge of the LORD shall cover the earth like the waters cover the sea”
“They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.”
This is the time when all peoples and nations on the earth will be made to come once a year to worship the LORD at Mt Zion.
“And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.”
And so the words of Isaiah and Micah will be fulfilled:
“But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it. 2 And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. 3 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more. 4 But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it.”
What we have covered so far in this article is the work of the saints during the time following Armageddon to the commence of the rule of Christ over a new and reorganized earth. Following this work….
THE SAINTS WILL REIGN WITH CHRIST FOR 1000 years
In Revelation 5:10 we read that the believers in Christ who will be granted immortality following the Judgment of all believers will reign with Christ as “kings and priests”…
“And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; 10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.”
“KINGS AND PRIESTS”
What will be the work of the “kings and priests” at this time. Well firstly the believers are kings or rulers and priests or teachers of God’s righteousness. They will rule of mortal man at this time and initially this will be a massive task as thy go forth in the midst of all the chaos in the world following the battle of Armageddon and the world wide destruction following the earthquake that shall shake all creatures living on the earth to restore law and order. This will be God’s law and order, so this will be a new beginning for all mankind a time where there will be peace and harmony among the peoples of the earth.
The mortal population that has survived at this time will need to be organized into small rural communities who build their own homes and plant their own crops for food.
Several of the parables of Christ talk about the faithful who have followed him in “truth and spirit” will be rulers of villages or cities eg. Luke 19:16-18
“Then came the first, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained ten pounds. 17And he said unto him, Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities. 18 And the second came, saying, Lord, thy pound hath gained five pounds. 19 And he said likewise to him, Be thou also over five cities.”
As rulers of God’s righteousness they shall carry the law of God to the four corners of the earth, and like Christ they shall not judge or rule after their own sight but as it says of Christ in Isaiah 11:2-4
“And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; 3 And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: 4 But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth…”
And as teachers of righteous they shall teach the people of God’s law and righteous saying to them “…this is the way walk ye in it” (Isaiah 30:19-21.
And so the “everlasting gospel will be preached to the four corners of the earth in this day by the immortal saints of Christ.
“…having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, 7 Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.”
How will the immortal saints doing this work travel around?
This an interesting question. Well let’s look to the Bible and see if we can find an answer. In Acts 8:26-40 we have an incident with Philip that holds the answer. Here Philip was with the“eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians”and he explained to the eunuch what he was reading from Isaiah. When he had finished and the eunuch asked to be baptized, Philip baptized him. Then we read this…
“39And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing. 40But Philip was found at Azotus: and passing through he preached in all the cities, till he came to Caesarea.”
Now this is remarkable for it shows us that God can transport people instantaneously from one place to another as Philip was transported from being with the eunuch to Azotus approximately 25-30 kilometres away.
So the Saints ruling as Kings and Priest will have the power to travel instantaneously from one place to another, even from one side of the Earth to the other. They could be doing their work by day in some part of the Earth and then at night be in the other side of the world eg. Back in Israel with Christ.
THE WORK OF BRINGING ALL NATIONS AND PEOPLE INTO SUBJECTION TO GOD WILL CONTINUE FOR 1,000 YEARS
We read of this in 1 Corinthians 15:22-28… (Taken from the NIV)
“24 Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. 25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death. 27 For he (God) “has put everything under his feet.” s Now when it says that “everything” has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. 28 When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him (God) who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all.”
The work of the saints as Kings / Rulers and Priests / Teachers of righteousness shall continue for the 1,000 year reign of Christ on earth before the final resurrection and judgment of those who have lived and died during this 1,000 year period.
This time shall be a time of true and lasting peace all over the earth with the inhabitants enjoying feast of fat things and wine on the lees as we read in Isaiah 25:6
“6And in this mountain shall the LORD of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined.”
This time is also spoken of in Revelations chapters 20 and 21 where man’s ability to do as he pleases shall be curtailed during the 1,000 years, there will be no opposition or opposing forces (“satan will be bound” Greek sig. adversary or those who would oppose Christ will be bound), at the end of this time mankind is given one final opportunity to choose to live according to God’s law or to rebel and be destroyed once and for all time.
After this final conflict with man, God himself shall dwell with man and there will be no more death or mortal people upon the earth. Revelation 21:3-4
“And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.”
This is the time the Apostle Paul had a vision of describing it as “paradise” as he was caught up in a vision to the “third heaven” ie. This will be the third political order of rule upon the earth. Man is now ruling which is the first heaven if you like, Christ 1,000 year reign on the earth will be the second heaven and the third heaven is this time briefly described in Revelation 21.
Concerning this time the Apostle Paul was brought to say….
“…no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no human mind has conceived the things God has prepared for those who love him” NIV
Your opportunity to be a part of this Great Hope of God’s Kingdom on Earth is right before you NOW!
But you must decide and you must take the steps necessary to be a part of this Great Hope.