Are People Being Saved During the Millennium?

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Hi D_____,

Thank you for reading “Rightly Dividing” and for your question.

I reared my children on the principal that if they were mature enough to ask a question then they were probably mature enough to receive the answer. With that in mind, I am going to answer your question as I see it answered in the word of God. I will speak where it speaks, and I will be silent where it is silent.

You are right about the first part of your outline:

1Co 15:48 As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.
1Co 15:49 And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.
1Co 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
1Co 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
1Co 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
1Co 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
1Co 15:54 So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
1Co 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?

It is a common Christian misconception to think that because Christ had to show His nail- scarred body to his doubting disciples that this story equates to the “we shall be like Him.”

1Jn 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

Nothing is further from the Truth. Christ is not in a body of flesh and blood. Rather He is now “born of the spirit.”

Joh 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

Christ is Spirit, not flesh. He appeared to be flesh with holes in His body for the sake of His doubting disciples.

Getting back to our sequence of events, we can go to 1Th 4 and get the exact same scenario as that given in 1Co 15. It is simply reiterated:

1Th 4:15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent [ Gk.- precede] them which are asleep.
1Th 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
1Th 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

As far as time sequence is concerned, the scriptures seem to be very clear about the first part of your outline. That is not the case as far as the second part of your outline is concerned.

For example you state in the number 2 part of your outline: “Some humans will live during this [ millennial] time and on conversion will become immortal without dying.” I can think of no scripture that makes this assertion. To the contrary, ruling and reigning with Christ during the millennium is a ‘prize’ reserved only for those in the first resurrection:

Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment 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.
Rev 20:5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
Rev 20:6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.

This passage says, Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection … THEY shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.

Those who die during the millennium are not in the 1st resurrection. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished, does not exclude those who die during the millennium.

Rulership during the millennium is only for the “overcomers” (Rev chapters 2-3). The ‘overcoming’ mentioned in these two chapters has to do with more than just the flesh. As a matter of fact, Paul tells us that while we certainly appear to be wrestling against the flesh, in reality we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Eph 6:12). In other words, God is using Satan as an instrument of adversity. Hence the name Adversary. Contrary to orthodox Christian doctrine, Satan was no more righteous in the beginning than Adam. Both were created to perform just as they did. Adam was “corruptible flesh,” and “naked” from the Creator’s hand.

Gen 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
Gen 2:25 And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

In spite of all orthodox teaching to the contrary, the same is true of the Adversary.

Joh 8:43 Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.
Joh 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Joh 8:45 And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.
Joh 8:46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
Joh 8:47 He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

Believe whom you choose. Jesus Christ says Satan, the Adversary, “was a murderer from the beginning.” So Satan was created to be an adversary to “wrestle … against flesh and blood” so those who are destined to become ‘overcomers’ could “overcome the wicked one.”

1Jn 2:13 I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father. 1Jn 2:14 I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

So the ‘overcomers’ ‘overcome the wicked one:’

Rev 12:10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren [ Satan] is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
Rev 12:11 And they overcame him, by the blood of the lamb and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
Rev 12:12 Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

The reason I have quoted all these scriptures is to show the scriptural connection between the ‘Adversary,’ ‘the Wicked One,’ and the ‘overcomer.’ Without an adversary there can be no overcomer. What becomes of this connection during the millennium? If ‘overcomers’ are those who “overcome the wicked one,” and “overcome him [‘the Accuser,’ ‘the Devil,’ ‘the Great Dragon’] by the blood of the Lamb,” then the millennium will not produce “overcomers” because Satan will be ‘in prison’ during this time.

Rev 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
Rev 20:2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
Rev 20:3 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: and after that he must be loosed a little season.
Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment 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.

In other words, the whole world during this time will be like Job before his trials; the whole world will have “a hedge about it.”

Job 1:10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.

This is a perfect description of the garden of Eden before the tempter was sent to tempt Eve. Had Eve not known God? Well, yes, Eve knew God just as well as any newborn baby knows its mother. Maybe she even knew God as a toddler knows that his parents will provide for him. But to begin with, neither Adam nor Eve knew God as a loving Father who would tell his chosen children:

Heb 12:5 … My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: Heb 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. Heb 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?

No normal loving parent “chastens and scourges” an infant or even a toddler. “Chastening” is reserved for children who are maturing. Neither of our original parents yet knew any thing of the “chastening [ grace] of the Lord.”

This is not to say that the flesh has to have Satan to be sinful. Nothing is further from the truth. But in the absence of the ‘Tempter,’ those who live during the millennium will do so under the influence of those who will be ‘ruling and reigning with Christ 1000 years.’ Neither the ‘millennium’ nor the ‘lake of fire’ will produce what the scriptures refer to as “overcomers.” The reason for this truth is that an “overcomer” overcomes “the wicked one.” And “the wicked one” will be “in prison” during the millennium, and he will be purified during “the lake of fire.” Consequently neither of these periods will produce “overcomers.”

Isa 30:19 For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem: thou shalt weep no more: he will be very gracious unto thee at the voice of thy cry; when he shall hear it, he will answer thee. [ No trying of your faith here]
Isa 30:20 And though the Lord give you the bread of adversity, and the water of affliction, yet shall not thy teachers be removed into a corner any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers:
Isa 30:21 And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This [ is] the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. [ Not exactly ‘trying times.’]

The trying and the testing and the proving which are essential for the preparation of ‘kings and priests’ will be completely non- existent. The earth will be the ‘paradise’ Christ told the thief about:

Luk 23:43 And Jesus said to him, Verily to you am I saying today, with me shall you be in paradise. (CV)

The thief on the cross is often used by those who do not see the need for the chastening function of grace, to prove that the sacrifice of Christ on the cross excludes the need for us to also ‘lay down our lives’ with Him. What these people fail to realize is that this thief, though indeed as guilty as we all are, was nevertheless repentant and on the cross with our Lord. Grace does not exclude the cross. Our cross IS CHASTENING, SCOURGING GRACE. The thief will one day have to experience this same chastening grace.

Rom 5:20 Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:
Mat 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

“Grace did much more abound” means that God’s “chastening and scourging,” will outlast our stubborn sinning! So what will become of those who live through the Millenium? What is the fruit of such a utopian age? It is the same as the fruit of our original unproven and untried parents:

Rev 20:7 And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Rev 20:8 And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.

What have we been told in these three verses? By themselves it would be hard to say for sure. But with the verses that immediately follow, it becomes clear that what we have just been told is that all flesh has just been brought to an end. Such a thought is the single most repugnant thought possible to the flesh. The very concept of ‘no more flesh’ causes the flesh to recoil in fear and denial. But God has not left us to guess about this truth. This worldwide Satanic deception followed by the destruction of all flesh, could never be accomplished as long as a tempter was free to roam the earth to try and prove a remnant. To bring all flesh to an end requires that there be no faithful remnant because: That be far from thee … to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee (Gen 18:25). This deception will be complete and it will be total worldwide deception. As with Sodom, so will it be with this post- millenial generation. There will not be even a Noah or a Lot to rescue.

Who is “the camp of the saints… and the beloved city?”

Rev 20:9 And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.

These are obviously the rulers of this millenial reign; those bearing the brunt of this Satanic rebellion. Have you never wondered why God put Satan ‘in prison’ at the beginning of the millennium, instead of sending him straight to the lake of fire burning with brimstone? Now you know why. God could not put Satan in the lake of fire because the lake of fire purifies, and the beginning of the millennium is not yet the time for Satan’s purification. God still has one more work for His ever willing adversary before the Adversary himself is to also be cleansed in God’s purifying lake of fire.

So who do the scriptures reveal these rulers to be, who are called ‘the camp of the saints and the beloved city?’ According to the scriptures they are none other than the “blessed and holy,” “few … chosen” of the first resurrection, who have been promised…:

Rev 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment 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.
Rev 2:26 And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
Rev 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron

Why are they called ‘the beloved city?’:

Rev 3:12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

How has God revealed that this end will be accomplished? The answer to this question is revealed in type in the story of Samson. An angel appeared to Samson’s mother and told her that she would conceive a son who would “begin to deliver Israel.”

Jdg 13:5 For, lo, thou shalt conceive, and bear a son; and no razor shall come on his head: for the child shall be a Nazarite unto God from the womb: and he shall begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines.

As little as many want to admit it, salvation is a process. See our letter What are the Seven Steps Toward Salvation? which is posted in our letters section of the web page.

Samson’s relationship with God parallels that of the people of the millennium. In spite of all that the Spirit of God accomplished through Samson, Samson was an extremely carnal man right up to and through his dying moments. Those who live in a time when the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea (Isa 11:9), like Samson, will take that relationship with God for granted. Though the carnal mind will be suppressed for 1000 years, when confronted with the Tempter it will fall victim just as Samson fell for the temptation of Delilah. It is THROUGH THIS PROCESS that salvation will come to all mankind just as it was THROUGH the death of Samson that deliverance was wrought in Israel. In this process we are told this interesting and very revealing story:

Jdg 14:1 And Samson went down to Timnath, and saw a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines.
Jdg 14:2 And he came up, and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines: now therefore get her for me to wife.
Jdg 14:3 Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well.
Jdg 14:4 But his father and his mother knew not that it was of the LORD, that he [ the Lord] sought an occasion against the Philistines: for at that time the Philistines had dominion over Israel.

The Lord sought an occasion against the Philistine just as He will “seek occasion against” all flesh following the Millenial reign. Very few of God’s people are willing to face one of the most obvious truths in the scriptures: To “destroy death” (1Co 15:26), God must destroy the source of death. The leading cause of death is not heart attacks, automobile accidents or cancer. The leading cause of death, the very source of death, is birth into flesh. At the conclusion of the millennium the Lord is “seeking an occasion against” all flesh. The ever willing Adversary, having been held in prison for 1000 years for this very purpose, will now be released to provide the Lord that “occasion.” The ‘Philistines’ in the scriptures are typical of those who are ‘in the land,’ but who have never even ‘come out of Egypt.’ They haven’t had a ‘wilderness’ experience and they see absolutely no need to bother with that messy and embarrassing thing called ‘circumcision.’ The story of Samson typifies the condition of the population of the entire earth at the post millenial rebellion, under the influence of the Adversary. At this juncture in world history the entire population of the earth will be in this very “uncircumcised,” very “Philistine” condition. It is at this very moment when they [ go] up on the breadth of the earth, and compass the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire comes down from God out of heaven, and devoures them (Rev 20:9).

It is in his death that Samson finally achieves his goal of delivering Israel. During the millennium all nations become ‘God’s People,’ ‘God’s Israel’.

Isa 19:24 In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land:
Isa 19:25 Whom the LORD of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance
Col 1:22 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:
Heb 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;

It can only be “through death” that death will be abolished. It will only be THROUGH DEATH that the aions will be consumed and True life will finally come to all men through the vehicle of the “lake of fire.” The “lake of fire” is not what we have been taught in orthodox Christendom. The “lake of fire” is defined by three scriptures. The first is Isa 33:14-15:

Isa 33:14 The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?
Isa 33:15 He that walketh righteously, and speaketh uprightly; he that despiseth the gain of oppressions, that shaketh his hands from holding of bribes, that stoppeth his ears from hearing of blood, and shutteth his eyes from seeing evil;

This plain, straight forward verse of scripture flies in the face of all the false teachings of all of orthodox Christianity. The second scripture which, with this scripture here in Isaiah, defines why the lake of fire is called a ‘lake’ and not a ‘sea’ is:

Rom 8:19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God.
Rom 8:20 For the creature [all men of all time] was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope,
Rom 8:21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
Rom 8:22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.
Rom 8:23 And not only they [ all men of all time], but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. [For what purpose?]

The third scripture defining the ‘lake of fire’ is:

Rom 11:30 For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief:
Rom 11:31 Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy.

The Lake of fire is the single greatest act of grace in the history of mankind. For more on this subject see “The ‘Fire’ of The Lake of Fire” in the article “After The Counsel of His Own Will.”

In conclusion, this is all very depressing to those who are still attached to the flesh. But the wonderful truth is still the same for those who can receive it now, and eventually for all men:

Mat 10:39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.

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