Try to imagine a world that’s always at peace, a world where things are always fair, a world that’s ruled by one perfect mind—a utopia. It’s hard, isn’t it? Especially in a world that’s full of pain, confusion, and unanswered questions. But one day, you won’t have to imagine it, because that world is coming. Over and over again, the Bible speaks of the coming millennium, a time of righteousness when Jesus Himself will rule the earth for a thousand years.

Why do we need a millennium? Why bother with a thousand years on earth instead of just going directly to the eternal state of the new heaven and new earth? One reason is that the millennium is needed to fulfill the promises God made to Israel about an earthly kingdom (see 2 Samuel 7:16Psalm 89:3-4).

Another reason is that the millennium will reveal the depths of man’s sinful, rebellious nature. Revelation 20 tells us that Satan will be removed during this time, bound in a temporary place of incarceration (see Rev. 20:1-3). But even though he’ll be out of the picture, some people will still choose to rebel against the Messiah and His reign. And when Satan is released, he will gather all those people for one final rebellion. It will all go to show that man has a corrupt nature.

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Skip Heitzig is an author, the host of the nationwide radio program “Connect with Skip Heitzig,” the senior pastor of Calvary Church in Albuquerque, and serves on several boards, including Samaritan’s Purse.

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