I can't find any passages that prove the Premillennialist viewpoint that Christ lives here on earth during the Millennial Reign. I'm a Protestant, and have been taught that he reigns during the millennia, but couldn't that be done from Heaven? I also realize in Revelation that he sets foot down on Mt. Olive, but it doesn't say he stays here. I know he lives on earth when Heaven is established here on earth after the Millennial Reign, so I know he lives here after the Millennia.

What is the biblical basis for the belief that Jesus will physically live on earth during the Millennial Reign?

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    To clarify, the main goal of my edit (just completed) is to prevent a debate in the answers between people who say "yes there is!" and "no there isn't!" By asking for one perspective, we can get objective answers. Hope this makes sense! – Nathaniel Feb 23 at 17:03
  • @Nathaniel Looks great to me. By the way, based on the wiki you provided and the fact that people are divided on this I'm assuming there is no specific scripture that describes Christ living here during the Millennial Reign and that it's being inferred by some. Unlike the description of Christ living on earth after the Millennia that is clearly defined and nobody is debating that. – Helzgate Feb 23 at 17:03
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    Potentially, yeah. But people have different opinions of what is "clear" and what is "inferred." For example, check out what full preterists have to say about Christ living on earth after the millennium =). Very little isn't debated in Christianity! – Nathaniel Feb 23 at 17:09

The Bible contains many prophecies about the future, with the New Testament speaking about the return of Jesus to earth. Matthew 24, much of the book of Revelation, and 1 Thessalonians 4:16–18 are the more salient references to the second coming.

Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. Then will appear in heaven the sign of the Son of Man, and then tall the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. (Matthew 24:29-31).

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. (1 Thessalonians 4:16).

Historic premillennialism was held by a large majority of Christians during the first three centuries of the Christian era. Many of the church fathers such as Ireneaus, Papias, Justin Martyr, Tertullian, Hippolytus, and others taught that there would be a visible kingdom of God upon the earth after the return of Christ. Historic premillennialism taught that the Antichrist would appear on earth and the seven-year tribulation would begin. Next would be the rapture, and then Jesus and His church would return to earth to rule for a thousand years. The faithful spend eternity in the New Jerusalem.

When Christianity became the official religion of Rome in the fourth century, many things began to change, including acceptance of historic premillennialism. Amillennialism soon became the prevailing doctrine of the Roman Catholic Church.

One of the most influential historic premillennialists was George Eldon Ladd, an evangelical New Testament scholar and professor of New Testament exegesis and theology at Fuller Theological Seminary. It was through Ladd’s work that historic premillennialism gained scholarly respect and popularity among evangelical and Reformed theologians of the twentieth century. Other well-known historic premillennialists include Walter Martin; John Warwick Montgomery; J. Barton Payne; Henry Alford, a noted Greek scholar; and Theodor Zahn, a German New Testament scholar.

Historic premillennialism is one system of eschatology that has support in the Protestant community. Generally, all of the premillennialist beliefs teach that the tribulation is followed by 1,000 years of peace when all live under the authority of Christ. Afterwards, in a brief, final battle, Satan is permanently conquered. The placement of the rapture in relation to the other events is one of the main differences between historic premillennialism and premillennial dispensationalism.

  • Christ comes yes, but does he stay? We still have the sun shinning and still have day and night during the first millennial reign. So somehow Christ doesn't show his full glory I guess during the first 1000 years? This doesn't make sense. Also, after Satan is release for a time which could be thousands of more years, many nations come to battle against Israel so apparently there is sin in those days as well. How could all of this occur while Christ is physically on Earth? Also Ezekial 45:17 talks of the Prince giving burn offerings and peace offerings, so there is no way this is Christ. – Helzgate Mar 11 at 15:25
  • @ Helzgate: Yes, sin will still exist during the millennium. Animal sacrifice never removed the sin that spiritually separates people from God. The main purpose of Jesus’ 1,000-year reign is to fulfil the prophecies given to Israel and the promises made to Jesus, the nations, and the whole earth. The fulfilment of many of God’s covenants and promises rests on a literal, physical, future kingdom. At the end of the thousand years, Satan and all who follow him will be gathered for the final battle. Then comes the new heavens and the new earth and God will dwell with men (Revelation 21:1-4). – Lesley Mar 12 at 15:48
  • @ Helzgate: Ezekiel 45:17 says that the special gift was for the use of “the prince” who had a duty to provide the burn offerings, the grain offerings and the drink offerings at the various festivals. I have no idea how this is supposed to be applied to Christ Jesus during his millennial reign on earth. The resurrected and glorified Christ Jesus is the great High Priest “in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron” (Hebrews 7:11). – Lesley Mar 12 at 15:49

Adela Yarbro Collins, leading Catholic scholar on Revelation, in her commentary in The New Jerome Biblical Commentary (1989), makes an amazingly succinct case for an earthly millenial rule in three sentences. She writes:

The nature of this rule has been debated in Christian tradition. . . It is likely that this rule shoule should be understood as an earthly messianic reign. [Revelation 20:9] presupposes that the saints, at the end of the 1,000 years will be living on earth, in the beloved city (presumably Jerusalem).

This is revolutionary coming from a Catholic writer because amillennialism since the time of Augustine has been the view of the 1,000 year period in the Roman Catholic Church, and can be found in The New Jerusalem Bible (1985) and The New American Bible, Revised Edition (2011).

According to The Sign, by Robert Van Kampen, the holy city in Revelation will come to earth, stopping at the rebuilt Mt. Zion temple. Thus, Jesus will rule from Mt. Zion as the scriptures teach, as well as above, in the heavens.

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