The thousand year reign of the Lord Jesus Christ on earth at the close of the ages seems to be the most obvious choice for what can be considered to be the Great Climax of World History. This is because it presents Christ as absolute King and Lord over all Creation. It is a time when all nations and rulerships will have to acknowledge His authority, power, and deity.
The Millennium will be the only time in world history when the entire population of the world will know of and be governed by the Lord Jesus Christ. The events of this final thousand years have never been experienced before and will never be repeated on this present earth again.
There is a need for such a period so that the prophecies regarding Israel and their blessings can be fulfilled. It is not possible for them to be fully blessed as the Scriptures describe until that day when their Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ, reigns from Jerusalem. Such a Millennium is predicted by many of the prophets including Isaiah, Daniel, Micah, and Zechariah:-
Isaiah: “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace” (9:6). Though elements of this prophecy have been somewhat fulfilled for the Church, they have never been completed for Israel (because of their rejection of Christ). God’s promises are sure. Jesus will govern in Israel as Prince of Peace. A description of the actual millennium can be found in 65:19-25, “And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying. There shall be no more thence an infant of days, nor an old man that hath not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed. And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them. They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands. They shall not labour in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the LORD, and their offspring with them. And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD”. Long-life, Health, Safety, and Blessing will be restored to Israel when the Lord returns.
Daniel: “I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought Him near before Him. And there was given Him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve Him: His dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and His kingdom that which shall not be destroyed” (7:13-14). The Kingdom that Daniel speaks of cannot be a spiritual one only since he mentions the fact that all people, nations, and languages will serve the Son of man (Jesus Christ), and that His Kingdom will be the final one.
Micah: “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. 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. 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. 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. For all people will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the LORD our God for ever and ever. In that day, saith the LORD, will I assemble her that halteth, and I will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted; And I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the LORD shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever. And thou, O tower of the flock, the strong hold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem” (4:1-8). Not only will there be peace, but God Himself will reign in Jerusalem. This LORD can only be the Lord Jesus Christ as He sets up His Millennial Reign in Israel.
Zechariah: “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 toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south. And ye shall flee to the valley of the mountains; for the valley of the mountains shall reach unto Azal: yea, ye shall flee, like as ye fled from before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah: and the LORD my God shall come, and all the saints with thee. And it shall come to pass in that day, that the light shall not be clear, nor dark: But it shall be one day which shall be known to the LORD, not day, nor night: but it shall come to pass, that at evening time it shall be light. And it shall be in that day, that living waters shall go out from Jerusalem; half of them toward the former sea, and half of them toward the hinder sea: in summer and in winter shall it be. And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and His name one” (14:3-9). This prophecy has never been fulfilled and cannot until the Lord Jesus comes again as the angels at His ascension said He would, “This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11). He will once again appear on Mount Olivet as Zechariah mentions.
During this thousand year reign of Christ, Satan will be bound in the bottomless pit, “And He laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, and cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled” (Revelation 20:2-3). There will be a complete halt to satanic interference during the Millennium. This means that for 1,000 years all people will be free from spiritual deception. This has never happened before on earth.
The Church of Jesus Christ will reign with Him during this thousand year period. Jesus promised this in the Revelation, “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father … To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in His throne … And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth … And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgement was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years” (2:26-27, 3:21, 5:10, 20:4). It is very likely that this will include the Old Testament saints also, “Then He said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts. Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, and shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD” (Ezekiel 37:11-14). It appears that the Church, the martyred Tribulation saints, and the Old Testament saints will all reign together with Christ. It goes without saying that there cannot be another time on earth when these three groups of people could live together in one location.
The Millennium will be a time of universal peace and prosperity, and righteousness will be seen throughout all the earth, “And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. And He shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Isaiah 2:2-4). This is word for word the same as Micah’s prophecy (Micah 4). Universal peace because the Lord Himself will be there, “For I, saith the LORD, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her” (Zechariah 2:5). During this time the nations of the world will be obliged to serve and obey the Lord Jesus Christ.
It is this Millennial Reign of Christ that should be seen as the great climax of world history. Others may see it as the Rapture, the Final Battle, or the New Heavens and New Earth, but none of these reveal Christ in exactly the same way as during His thousand year reign. Also the peace and prosperity that comes with His rule seems to suggest the restoration of the earth to its former glory as when God walked with man before the intervention of Satan as described in Genesis 3. The events of the Millennium are so special that they can only last on this present earth for 1,000 years, then the Universe is destroyed by fire, therefore the crowning glory of all generations must be Jesus’ earthly reign.