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The Kingdom of Heaven

The kingdom of heaven is actually divided into three parts. Currently when a forgiven person dies that person goes to heaven and receives his new spiritual body. The second part of heaven will be when Jesus and all His saints in heaven come down to rule and reign with Christ on earth for a thousand years. The third part of heaven will be after the thousand year reign of Christ and the Bible says there will be a new heaven and a new earth where Christ will reign forever.

I would like to pick up this study first examining the current kingdom of heaven.  The Bible tells us that when Jesus ascended to heaven He was going to the Father.

 John 14:12

 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.

The Bible says that the purpose of Jesus going to the Father was to prepare a place for us and to receive us to Himself.  Before Jesus died on the cross, when a righteous person died, the Bible says that the righteous person went to paradise and stayed there until Jesus was to free them and take them to heaven which occurred in the three days after Jesus died on the cross.

John 14:3
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.

John 14:2
In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

By these verses we know that the Father is in heaven with Jesus preparing a place for us. I believe this is referring to our new spiritual bodies “made in the heavens, not with hands”. We also know by reading the scriptures that the saints who have died are currently in heaven. We also know that Jesus is coming for His people known as the “rapture of the church.” Once the rapture of God’s people takes place we will be in heaven with all the saints for a period of seven years. After the seven year period expires God and all the saints in heaven will descend upon the earth and rule and reign with Jesus forever.

According to the Bible heaven will be on earth and Jesus will rule and reign on the earth forever. The people who claim the world is coming to an end are mistaken. The Bible never states that the world is coming to an end in fact the Bible states that Jesus is to rule and reign on the earth forever.

Psalm 145:13

Your kingdom is a kingdom that will last forever. Your rule will continue for all time to come. The Lord is faithful and will keep all of his promises. He is loving toward everything he has made.

Revelation 1115

 Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!”

We couldn’t have asked for a better leader than Jesus. The world today is being ruled by short sighted, greedy, dishonest, perverted and unloving politicians. The whole system is corrupt and we are left without any hope for this present system.  It reminds me of what the religious leaders said to Pilot as Jesus stood before them. They said “we will not have this man reign over us.” What a huge mistake that was. If you turn your back on God, He will turn his back on you!

We have established that Jesus is going to rule and reign on the earth forever. We also know that Jesus’ reign will be divided into two segments. The first segment of his reign will last one thousand years which is referred to as the millennium during which time we will rule with Christ on the earth as kings and priests over the people who survived the great tribulation. After the thousand years Christ will judge the unrighteous dead after which time Christ will then cast Satin into the lake of fire and death will finally be a thing of the past. The second portion of Christ’s reign on earth will then last for eternity with a new heaven and a new earth.

Revelation 20:4

[ The Saints Reign with Christ 1,000 Years ] And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years

Revelation 20:3

and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while

What will we be doing during the thousand year reign of Christ? The Bible says during the thousand year reign of Christ we will be kings and priests ruling over the cities of the earth with Jesus.

Luke 19:17

And he said to him, ‘Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities

Revelation 5:10

And have made us kings and priests to our God; And we shall reign on the earth.

Revelation 20:6

Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.

  

Jesus says in the New Testament we will be ruling over the cities of the earth. However I believe that it is not going to be the way the cities are currently governed. We are going to give a new meaning to the phrase “public servant”. Jesus’ disciples once asked Jesus how to be the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?

Luke 22:25-26

And He said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those who exercise authority over them are called ‘benefactors.’  But not so among you; on the contrary, he who is greatest among you let him be as the younger, and he who governs as he who serves.

Mark: 9:35

And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.”

We will be ruling the cities of the earth with compassion and love. Serving man with super human powers and not dependent on the things of the earth for our own needs. No longer will the earth be ruled by human beings who only care about their own selfish needs without any regard for anybody else. We will be in tune with God’s perfect will and ruling this earth with foresight and perfect judgment.

Next I want to take a look at heaven on earth and try to get as much of a picture of heaven as we can from the Bible Scriptures. Keep in mind the first part of heaven we want to look at is heaven during the thousand year reign of Christ which is referred to as the “millennium” after the millennium the New Jerusalem which is a fifteen hundred mile cube will come down from heaven and reside where Jerusalem currently sits.

Zechariah 14:17
And it shall be that whichever of the families of the earth do not come up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the LORD of hosts, on them there will be no rain.

The fact that the above verse states “on them there will be no rain” tells us first of all that in heaven there will still be rain. We will still have weather pretty much the same as we do now and secondly this verse implies that the people who survived the tribulation will be dependent on rain for their crops.

Isaiah 2:4

He shall judge between the nations, and rebuke many people; they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.

They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. That statement definitely implies that many of the human beings during the millennium will be farmers. We know that all human beings can’t be farmers because the New Testament says we are to rule over the cities.

Neither shall they learn war anymore.  If we could have just done this today think of the billions of dollars yearly we could apply to everybody’s standard of living. We could eliminate the middle class as well as the lower class of people. Everybody would be wealthy living the way God originally intended.    It’s has been said that if the world’s wealth was divided equally among every inhabitant on the planet earth there would be enough wealth for everybody on the planet to be wealthy. It has been said that three percent of the population controls all the worlds’ wealth. God gave man enough wealth on this earth for everyone to live a rich life but because of a greedy few this planet currently suffers needlessly.

  

We can now take the information that we have just learned and start a list titled “Heavenly Attributes” and we will begin with the following attributes:

·        Heaven will be on earth

·        We will reign with Christ as kings and priests

·        There will still be rain in heaven

·        No more wars

·        No more military

·        Farms and farmers will play an important role in heaven

Isaiah 65:19-20

 I will rejoice in Jerusalem,
And joy in My people;
The voice of weeping shall no longer be heard in her,
Nor the voice of crying.

 “No more shall an infant from there live but a few days,
Nor an old man who has not fulfilled his days;
For the child shall die one hundred years old,
But the sinner being one hundred years old shall be accursed.

“I will rejoice in Jerusalem and joy in My people: This shows that Jesus will reside in Jerusalem. I also know by reading Micah 4:1 that the Lord’s house will be established on the mountain tops of Jerusalem above the hills and many peoples of all nations will all flow to it. The elevation of the Mount of Olives is 2,683 ft. I believe the elevation will be greatly increased when Jesus returns and His feet touch down at the Mount of Olives.

The Mount of Olives has been used as a Jewish cemetery for thousands of years entombing such greats as Zechariah and Absalom. Currently there are over 150,000 Jews buried or entombed there. Many Jews today want to be buried or entombed in the Mount of Olives because they believe that man’s first resurrection will occur there when the Messiah touches down.       

Micah 4:1

[The LORD’s Reign in Zion] Now it shall come to pass in the latter days that the mountain of the LORD’s house shall be established on the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and peoples shall flow to it.

Zechariah 14:4

And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, Which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south.

The voice of weeping and crying shall no longer be heard in her. The “her” is referring to Jerusalem currently one of the most violent cities in the world today.

Verse 20 is saying a person who dies at the age of one hundred will still be considered a “child” so it appears that human beings will live throughout the millennium. “But the sinner being one hundred years old shall be accursed.” This verse is telling us two things. The first thing that catches my eye is sinners will still be living during the millennium and the second is that death will still be present during the millennium. Let’s take what we have just learn and add to our list of heavenly attributes.

·        Jesus will rule from Jerusalem

·        Jerusalem and all cities will be at peace

·        No more weeping or crying

·        Sinners will still be living in the millennium

·        The death penalty will be present for human beings who commit crimes

·        The life expectancy for people will greatly increase

Isaiah 65:21-23

21 They shall build houses and inhabit them;
They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit.
22 They shall not build and another inhabit;
They shall not plant and another eat;
For as the days of a tree, so shall be the days of My people,
And My elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands.
23 They shall not labor in vain,
Nor bring forth children for trouble;
For they shall be the descendants of the blessed of the Lord,
And their offspring with them.

“They shall build houses and inhabit them.” Finally everyone on planet earth will have a house to live in. No more homeless people, no more bank mortgages, no more bad upside down loans that are sold to foreign countries. Everybody will have a piece of property of their own and they will have a thousand years to make it nice. I could never understand the reasoning behind the people who scrape their way to the top and amass a huge fortune and then die in eighty or so years just to leave their fortunes to a bunch of ungrateful children.  When I was growing up I was told that “you can’t take it with you when you go” so I said, If I can’t take it with me when I go then I don’t want it! That’s like playing Monopoly knowing that it is all fake money and when the game is finished you’ll have to give it all back. Why do people cheat and kill to get their way only to give it all back in the end. God isn’t concerned with who won the game as much as He is concerned with how the game was played. 

When these wealthy people die and stand before God, God will say to them “I blessed you with enormous wealth to help mankind, what did you do with all the wealth that I entrusted to you?” and they will reply “I own one of the biggest companies in the world, I bought three houses, I have two Rolls Royce’s, a Lear jet, I traveled the world extensively and I still died with 30 billion leftover. Do you think God will be impressed? What a waste! All the education they had and all the planning for their future. How shortsighted! Now they have no future! It obviously wasn’t a very good plan was it?

“They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit.” This verse indicates that all the people will be prosperous. This world’s current system will be a thing of the past. No longer will the people have to fight over the crumbs that are left over. Finally there will be enough of everything for everyone on the planet. No longer will there be “the wealthy few” all men will have plenty.

“For as the days of a tree are the days of my people,” I know redwood trees live for thousands of years and I believe the people living in the millennium will live throughout the whole 1000 years unless they commit a crime worthy of the death penalty.

Psalm 2:9

You shall break them with a rod of iron; You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.

Revelation 19:15

Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the wine press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

Jesus will rule the nations with a rod of iron which implies that judgment will be swift. When a person commits a crime deserving of the death penalty he won’t have to wait ten years for the trial to start costing the tax payers millions of dollars. Criminals trying to lie won’t work get away with it because we as kings and priests will already know the whole truth. Lawyers will be a thing of the past. Justice and sentencing will be instantaneous.

“And my elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands. They shall not labor in vain.” No longer will man struggle to make ends meet. He will prosper by the work of his hands. Today most of us work to make other people wealthy in the millennium we will work to our own good.

“Nor bring forth children for trouble: For they shall be descendants of the blessed of the Lord, and their offspring with them.” This verse shows us that children will be born throughout the millennium. Let’s go back and see what attributes we can now add to our list.

·        Everybody will own their own house and property

·        All people will be prosperous and considered wealthy

·        There will be a new world system

·        Justice will be swift

·        Children will be born during the millennium

·        People will work to their own good

·        People will enjoy the fruit of their labor

Isaiah 65:24

“It shall come to pass that before they call, I will answer; and while they are still speaking, I will hear.

This verse proves that prayer is still going to be the preferred mode of communication in the millennium. However it appears the service will greatly improve. Instead of waiting for an answer we will have the answer before we pray and while we are still in prayer. How’s that for service! As it happens now when we pray the prayers with the answer of “yes” we find out most of the time immediately, however when we have a request with a response of “no” we will end up waiting for months and sometimes years before we get smart enough to figure out that the answer was no.

Isaiah 65:25

25 The wolf and the lamb shall feed together,
The lion shall eat straw like the ox,
And dust shall be the serpent’s food.
They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain,”
Says the Lord.

“The wolf and the lamb shall feed together; the lion shall eat straw like the ox.” I think most people have heard this verse. It does paint a beautiful picture of heaven. I believe heaven will be inhabited by all vegetarians from the animals to the human beings. That would be the only way that every person and every animal could peacefully co-exist. This verse shows us that no longer will animals hunt other animals for food.

“And dust shall be the serpent’s food.” What can I say; it looks like the serpent drew the short straw again. The curse of the serpent is alive and well in the kingdom of heaven. One thing I did observed is the serpent’s food is now dust instead of rodents. It appears that the snake is also going meatless, not by choice but because his fangs no longer exist.

“They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain,” Says the LORD. To get a better idea of what Isaiah the prophet is saying we need to look at the verses in Isaiah 11:6-9

Isaiah 11:6-9
“The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, The leopard shall lie down with the young goat, The calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little child shall lead them.
The cow and the bear shall graze; their young ones shall lie down together; and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

The nursing child shall play by the cobra’s hole, and the weaned child shall put his hand in the viper’s den.

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.

Currently there is segregation in the animal kingdom. All animals prefer to stay with their own kind. You don’t see lions living with zebras or elephants living with hippos. In heaven that will all change. You will see mixtures and assortments of all different types of animals mixing together, feeding together, migrating together and sleeping together. In Isaiah 11:6 says “and a little child shall lead them”. If you are like me you have probably heard this verse misquoted quite a few times. We can now see that this verse is referring to a child leading various types of animals all living in peace.

  

Let’s now take what we have learned from the preceding verses and add them to our list of “heavenly attributes”

·        Heaven will be on earth

·        We will rule and reign with Christ as kings and priests for 1000 years

·        There will still be weather in heaven

·        No more war

·        No more military

·        Farms and farmers will play an important role in heaven

·        Jesus will rule and reign from Jerusalem

·        Jerusalem and all cities will be at peace

·        No more weeping or crying

·        Sinners will still be living in the millennium

·        The death penalty will exist for people who commit crimes

·        People will live much longer in the millennium

·        Everybody will own their own house and property

·        All people will be prosperous and wealthy

·        Justice will be swift

·        Children will be born during the millennium

·        People will work to their own good

·        People will enjoy the fruit of their labor

·        We will still pray in heaven

·        Prayers will be answered before we pray or during our prayers

·        Animals will be vegetarians

·        Animals will mix together with different types of animals

·        Animals will no longer be afraid of people

·        Animals and people will co-exist together  

This concludes our study of the kingdom of heaven. I hope by me listing everything in one place like this that it will help you to have a more complete understanding of what heaven will be like.

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