Why do the Nations Rage?

© 2007 Tony Garland

I.             Psalm2 – Introduction

A.    For the next two Sundays we'll explore this powerful declaration of man's continued opposition to God, as given by King David.

B.    Focus on three primary themes of the passage:

1.             Unity of the Lord and the Son – the Son is placed on a par with the Lord and the treatment of the nations depends upon their response, not to the father, but to the Son.

2.             Rage against Restraint – the innate opposition deep within the heart of man to God's rule.

3.             Coming Earthly rule of the Son – the scenario under which this Psalm finds its ultimate fulfillment: the thousand-year reign of Christ on earth.

II.          Unity of God the Father and the Son

A.    v2 - “The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord [YHWH] and against His Anointed [mashicho]...”

1.             Identity of His Anointed

a)             The meaning of “anointed”

(1)          [mashiach] – from which we derive “Messiah.”

(2)          Used of the king of Israel, the high priest, Cyrus, and the patriarchs.

(3)          Rendered by the equivalent Greek form [Christos] in the LXX[1], from which we derive “Christ.”

(4)          Passage can be read, “against the Lord and His Christ.”

b)            Rabbinic views of this Anointed One

(1)          Babylonian Talmud identifies Him as Messiah (not David, but the son of David).

(2)          Early Jewish biblical commentaries on Psalm 2 understand the Anointed One to be the future Messiah, the son of David.[2]

(3)          Other clues

(a)          Called “My King” (v6) and “My Son” (vv. 7,12)

(b)          Near-term application to David, but never fulfilled in the life of David.

(c)          Acts 4:25 – interprets “His Anointed” as Jesus – the offspring of David in Whom the passage finds ultimate fulfillment.

2.             The significance of the anointing

a)             The ceremonial induction of a person into a leadership position involved the pouring of oil upon the person as they were set apart for God's service, usually with a special enabling of God's Spirit. Applied to:

b)            Kings such as Saul and David (1S. 16:13).

c)             David—in anticipation of the role of his Son, the Anointed One—was anointed twice (1S. 16:13; 2S. 5:3).

d)            Priests (Ex. 30:30).

e)             Prophets (1K. 19:16; Isa. 61:1).

f)              Jesus the Messiah, the Christ, combines all these roles as Prophet-Priest-King.

(1)          Like David, Jesus anointed with oil twice.[3]

g)            Oil is representative of the Holy Spirit[4]

(1)          Isa 61:1 - The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD has anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; (KJ2000)

(2)          Isa. 11:1-2 - And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; (KJ2000)

(3)          The ceremonial induction of Jesus for service occurred at His baptism by John when the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in the form of a dove. This marked the beginning of His ministry where he was anointed by the Holy Spirit.

B.    Unity of the Father and Son seen in the equity which the passage gives the Son with the Father.

1.             v2 - Opposition is to both God and His Son[5]

2.             v3 - “their bonds . . . their cords” - the restraint which is so opposed is said to be both from the Father and the Son.

a)             The Father will “speak to them in His wrath” (v.5) yet is is the Son who will  “break them with a rod of iron . . . dash them to pieces like a potter's vessel” (v.9).

b)            It is the wrath of both the Father and the Son which they are to fear.

c)             In response to the opening of the sixth seal in the Book of Revelation.

(1)           Re 6:15-16 - And the kings of the earth, the great men, the rich men, the commanders, the mighty men, every slave and every free man, hid themselves in the caves and in the rocks of the mountains, and said to the mountains and rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb!"

d)            They are to “serve the Lord with fear” (v. 11) which is manifested by “kiss[ing] the Son” (v. 12).

(1)          “kiss” is [nashequ, (piel imperative)] – a plural imperative command: 'you all kiss!'

(a)          to do homage, or touch

(b)          piel stem denotes an intensity of action = kiss

3.             The Son cannot be bypassed in an attempt to approach the Father

a)             This is a form of 'raging' very evident today. The attempt by the ungodly to define God in terms which try to side-step dealing with Jesus, the Son.  People want to “kiss” the Father (or whatever their definition of “God” is) while at the same time they “spit” on the Son.

b)            This passage, as well as numerous others, does not leave this option open.

(1)          Dt 18:18-19 - I will raise up for them a Prophet like you from among their brethren, and will put My words in His mouth, and He shall speak to them all that I command Him. And it shall be that whoever will not hear My words, which He speaks in My name, I will require it of him.

(2)          Jn 3:35-36 - The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand. He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

(3)          Jn 5:22-23 - For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son, that all should honor the Son just as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.

(4)          Jn 14:6 - Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

(5)          Jn 15:23 - He who hates Me hates My Father also.

III.       Rage against Restraint

A.    v1 - “Why [for what reason] do the nations [goyim] rage [ragshu], And the people [le'om] plot a vain thing?”[6]

1.             “rage” is a term which speaks of “restlessness” or “making a tumult” and can include the idea of “conspiring” which is made explicit by “plotting” in this verse and “taking counsel together”.

2.             “taking counsel together” is a phrase which emphasizes the unity of their opposition, they are “counseling together as one.”

3.             This restless tumultuous raging is ongoing and the complete opposite of true peace.

a)             Question: if the world so longs for peace, why does it continuously resist submitting to the “Prince of Peace”?

b)            Answer: because true peace involves obedience and submission to authority. Authority  established by God.

c)             Since the Fall, man's heart is sewn with the seeds of lawlessness. The heart of man bristles against law.

(1)          v3 - “break Their bonds . . . cast away Their cords” - rejection of all restraint

(2)          Ro 7:7-11 - What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.” But sin, taking opportunity by the commandment, produced in me all manner of evil desire. For apart from the law sin was dead. I was alive once without the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died. And the commandment, which was to bring life, I found to bring death. For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me.

(3)          History is largely an exhausting chain of man's refusal to obey God:

(a)          Cain's refused to provide the requested sacrifice.

(b)          Mankind refused to follow God  resulting in the global flood.

(c)          Mankind refused to populate the earth leading to the curse of languages.

(d)          Israel rebelled against God at Sinai and subsequently refused to enter the promised land.

(e)          Israel refused God's precepts during the period of the judges.

(f)           Saul, Israel's first king, refused to obey God's instructions.

(g)          The Northern Kingdom refused to obey God leading to the Assyrian overthrow.

(h)          The Southern Kingdom refused to obey God leading to the Babylonian captivity.

(i)            Israel refused Messiah Jesus at His first coming.

(j)            The church today refuses to follow clear biblical teachings.

(k)          Mankind continues to refuse Jesus as the sole remedy for sin.

(l)            In the millennium to come, the nations will refuse the perfect righteous rule of Jesus Christ and His government.

(4)          As history clearly demonstrates, mankind has a “Sin Problem.” This truth is repulsive to the ungodly who consistently and actively rage against it:

(a)          Rom. 1:30-32 - . . . haters of God, . . . who, knowing the righteous judgment of God, that those who practice such things are deserving of death, not only do the same but also approve of those who practice them.

(b)          God's law is furiously opposed because it is the law of God which exposes the reality of sin.

(c)          Rom. 3:19-20 - Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

(d)          Illustration: bumper sticker in reaction to pro-life movement: “Keep your laws off of my body.”

B.    Raging against God is Vanity

1.             “the people plot a vain thing [riyq]”

a)             [riyq] – emptiness, worthlessness, for no purpose.

(1)          Passage listing curses on disobedience: used to describe the fruitless results of laboring apart from God's blessings.

(a)          Lev 26:16 - I, in turn, will do this to you: I will appoint over you a sudden terror, consumption and fever that will waste away the eyes and cause the soul to pine away; also, you will sow your seed uselessly, for your enemies will eat it up.

(b)          Lev 26:20 - Your strength will be spent uselessly, for your land will not yield its produce and the trees of the land will not yield their fruit.

(2)          Vanity speaks of exerting effort without accomplishment. It is about energy that is misdirected into a dead end. Striving to bring about the impossible – a chasing after the wind.

b)            Illustrations – note the twisted mental aspect, the outworking of sin leading to dementia.

(1)          Raking the beach at low tide. The force and duration of the rake vs. the force and duration of the tide.

(2)          Asking the Creator to worship the creature.

2.             Vanity is intimated in God's response: laughter

a)             The vanity of opposing God is illustrated in His response: laughter and derision.

(1)          laughter = [sachaq]

(a)          expressing amusement, to mock or scoff, implying lack of concern – that the object of consideration is far-fetched or incredible

(b)          related to the name of Isaac (Itzak)

i)              Ge 18:11-15 - Now Abraham and Sarah were old, well advanced in age; and Sarah had passed the age of childbearing. Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, “After I have grown old, shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?” And the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh, saying, ‘Shall I surely bear a child, since I am old?’ Is anything too hard for the Lord? At the appointed time I will return to you, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son.” But Sarah denied it, saying, “I did not laugh,” for she was afraid. And He said, “No, but you did laugh!”

(2)          derision = [yilag-lamo]

(a)          “stammering laughter at them”

(b)          a mocking imitation or taunt (e.g., 'Nah-na-na-nah-nah!”)

(c)          used when the mocker has no concern over the response of those being mocked because of superiority of strength or position

(d)          “He who sits in the heavens” -- He is beyond the reach of those who rage.

3.             What is the vain thing they are plotting?  The passage suggests it involves a conspiracy of nations to throw off the restraint imposed by God and His Anointed.

a)             Most frequently taken as applying to ongoing opposition to God.

b)            But aspects of the passage point to three specific fulfillments. Each of the fulfillments illustrates the pattern of dementia which afflicts those who continue in their rejection of God.[7]

(1)          1 - The crucifixion of Jesus (death of God).

(a)          Acts 4:27-28 – The disciples apply Psalm 2 verses 1 and 2 as an explanation of the opposition of Herod, Pontius Pilate, the Gentiles, and the people of Israel which led to the crucifixion of Jesus.

(b)          Vanity – death could not hold Him

i)              Acts 2:22 - Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know— Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death; whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.

ii)             Peter cites Psalm 16:8 which states that God would not allow His Holy One to see corruption.

(2)          2 - Waging war against God at the Second Coming of of Jesus.

(a)          Seven seals, seven trumpets, seven bowels. At the last bowel, the campaign of Armageddon which is essentially a military battle against God!

i)              Re 16:12b-16b - And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs coming out of the mouth of the dragon, out of the mouth of the beast, and out of the mouth of the false prophet. For they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty. . . . And they gathered them together to the place called in Hebrew, Armageddon.

ii)             The result is predictable, God provides a sacrifice of men for animals:

a)             Re 19:19-21 - And I saw the beast, the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against Him who sat on the horse and against His army. Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of Him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh.

(3)          3 - Rebellion of unsaved humanity at the close of the millennial kingdom, the thousand year reign of Christ.

(a)          Re 20:7-9 - Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them.

(b)          Notes in the Babylonian Talmud associate Psalm 2 with the attack of Gog and Magog (from Eze. 38-39).[8]

(c)          More on this aspect next week when we discuss the coming earthly rule of the Son.

IV.         Psalm2 – Part 2 - Coming Earthly Rule of the Son

A.    This morning we'll continue or exploration which we began last week concerning this powerful declaration of man's continued opposition to God, as given by King David.

B.    Focusing on three primary themes of the passage:

1.             Last week:

a)             Unity of the Lord and the Son – the Son is placed on a par with the Lord and the treatment of the nations depends upon their response, not to the father, but to the Son.

b)            Rage against Restraint – the innate opposition deep within the heart of man to God's rule.

2.             This week:

a)             Coming Earthly rule of the Son – the scenario under which this Psalm finds its ultimate fulfillment: the vain rebellion at the close of the thousand-year reign of Christ on earth.

b)            Rudyard Kipling's Honest Men

(1)          “I keep six honest serving men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who”[9]

(2)          Questions Concerning His Rule

(a)          Where Will He Rule?

(b)          When Will He Rule?

(c)          Whom Will He Rule?

(d)          Why Will He Rule?

V.            Where Will He Rule?

A.    Location – v.6 - “on My holy hill of Zion”

1.             What and where is Zion?

a)             This is the root word behind “zionism” - the modern day belief that the Jews have a divine claim to Jerusalem and the land of Israel.

b)            The first mention of Zion in the Bible is in 2 Samuel 5:7: “David took the stronghold of Zion (that is, the City of David).” Zion, therefore, was the name of the ancient Jebusite fortress situated on the southeast hill of Jerusalem . . . . The name came to stand not only for the fortress but also for the hill on which the fortress stood.[10]

c)             Later, it was used to describe the entire city of Jerusalem (Isa. 40:9; Zec. 9:9).

d)            In the NT it is used in association with the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of God.

(1)          Heb 12:22 - But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, . . .

e)             This is not an option here because the heavenly Jerusalem will not be stained with sin and thus will not require judgment with a rod of iron. Thus, it must refer to the earthly Jerusalem, but when?

f)              Here in Psalm 2, it is connected with “My holy hill” [har qadshiy] – the word for “hill” is frequently translated by mountain. It is [har] as in [har meggido] which we recognized as “armageddon.”

(1)          Here, the passage refers to the “mountain of the Lord's house” -- the geographically elevated location where the temple will stand and where law will be dispensed during Christ's earthly rule from Jerusalem.

(a)          Isaiah saw this.
Is 2:2-4 - Now it shall come to pass in the latter days That the mountain of the Lord’s house [har beyt YHWH] Shall be established on the top of the mountains, And shall be exalted above the hills; And all nations shall flow to it. Many people shall come and say, “Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, To the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, And we shall walk in His paths.” For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. 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.[11]

(b)          the U.N. Building displays these words concerning worldwide peace, but neglects to mention the ruler or His rule of law from Jerusalem which makes it possible.

(c)          Here we see the typical 'signature' of OT passages describing the thousand-year kingdom or 'millennium' as it is known from Revelation 20 in the NT.

i)              Passages which sound like the heavenly state.

ii)             Containing elements which are incompatible with the eternal state: sin, death, aging, sea, temple (the Lord's house).

(d)          In this passage:

i)              The Lord's house.

ii)             Law will go forth (implied lawlessness).

iii)           Rebuke many people – sin.

iv)           This cannot be the New Jerusalem.

g)            Ezekiel was also shown the Lord's holy mountain:

(1)          Eze 40:2 -  In the visions of God He took me into the land of Israel and set me on a very high mountain; on it toward the south was something like the structure of a city.

(2)          An angel gives Ezekiel a tour of a unique temple which has never yet existed, but will one day stand in Jerusalem and from which Messiah will rule over the earth.

VI.         When Will He Rule?

A.    Clue #1 - Reign requires the Throne of David

1.             Isa. 9:6-7 - For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

2.             Notice that His rule is to be “upon the throne of David” -- this is an earthly throne and not God the Father's throne in heaven

a)             Date of Isaiah in relation to Psalm 2

(1)          Psalm 2 written by David circa 1,000.

(2)          Isaiah: 739-686 B.C.

(3)          Clearly Isaiah is not describing David who was already dead for hundreds of years.

b)            Lk 1:31-33 - And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”

B.    Clue #2 - Rule follows upon period of being seated while waiting

1.             Psalm 110:1-6 - A Psalm of David. The Lord said to my Lord,“Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” The Lord shall send the rod of Your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of Your enemies! Your people shall be volunteers In the day of Your power; . . . The Lord is at Your right hand; He shall execute kings in the day of His wrath. He shall judge among the nations, He shall fill the places with dead bodies, He shall execute the heads of many countries.

a)             He sits until His enemies are made His footstool – until they are 'under his feet' in submission.

b)            His rod shall extend out of Zion – both elements mentioned in Psalm 2.

c)             He shall judge among the nations, execute the heads of many countries.

d)            Author of Hebrews tells us he is presently seated at God's right hand waiting.

(1)          Heb 10:12-13 - But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool.

C.    Cluke #3 – Jesus is not presently on the Throne of David

1.             Jesus Himself makes it clear He is not presently on the throne of David, but seated with the Father on His throne.

a)             Promise to the overcomer in the Church of Laodicea

(1)          Re 3:21 - To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.

(a)          Two thrones (the Father's throne, and Jesus' throne)

(b)          Jesus is sitting with the Father on the Father's throne

(c)          Jesus will (future tense) sit on His own throne

b)            The rule did not begin at Jesus' ascension because in approximately 95 A.D., when the book of Revelation was written, He makes the following promise to the overcomer at the Church of Thyatira

(1)          Re 2:26-27 - And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations— ‘He shall rule them with a rod of iron; They shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’— as I also have received from My Father;

(a)          What does 'the end' mean? At the very least, it speaks of the believer persevering until the end of his life.

(b)          There is a sequence: (1) keeping My works; (2) I will give. He cannot give the power until the precondition is met: keeping until the end. Otherwise, there is nothing conditional about the promise.

(c)          What can we conclude: the promised power over the nations and rule is not granted to the believer in this life.

D.   Clue #4 - The rule takes place in the “regeneration” [palingenesis], the “again genesis.”

1.             Mt 19:27-28 - Then Peter answered and said to Him, “See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?” So Jesus said to them, “Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. (See also Lk 22:28-30.)

2.             A time of restoration, the Tribulation having resulted in a “scorched earth.”

3.             It is “in the regeneration” “when” He sits on His own throne.

E.    Clue #5 - The rule takes place upon His return.

1.             Mt 25:31-32 - “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats.

a)             Notice the “when” . . . “then” sequence in this verse.

(1)          When he comes in glory with the angels

(2)          Then He will sit on His throne

F.    Clue #6 = After the destruction of Antichrist

1.             Da 7:21-22 - “I was watching; and the same horn was making war against the saints, and prevailing against them, until the Ancient of Days came, and a judgment was made in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came for the saints to possess the kingdom.

2.             This is one reason why the Bible Answer Man and others want to make Nero or another historic figure fulfill the predicted Antichrist. If this can be done, then it opens the door to Dominion Theology – the idea that the Church is now ruling with (or even is) the rod of iron.

VII.      Whom Will He Rule?

A.    Over disobedient people.

1.             v.9 -  Character of the rule - “You shall break them with a rod of iron . . . dash them to pieces”

a)             This is not the gradual conversion of the world to Christ – it is the forceful and aggressive intervention of God to bring the nations into obedience to the Son.

b)            “rod of iron” is [shebet barzel]

(1)          Associated with the mouth of Messiah (the anointed one)

(a)          Is 11:1-4 - There shall come forth a Rod from the stem of Jesse, And a Branch shall grow out of his roots. The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him, The Spirit of wisdom and understanding, The Spirit of counsel and might, The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the Lord. His delight is in the fear of the Lord, And He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes, Nor decide by the hearing of His ears; But with righteousness He shall judge the poor, And decide with equity for the meek of the earth; He shall strike the earth with the rod of His mouth, And with the breath of His lips He shall slay the wicked.

(b)          The association of the rod with His mouth points to the Word of God as embodied in the law – which is the basis by which the world is to be judged.

(2)          The spoken judgment of the nations by Messiah and his rod is initially applied at His Second Coming

(a)          Re 19:13b-15 - . . . His name is called The Word of God. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. 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 winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

(3)          Opposition to His rule does not end at the Second Coming.

(a)          Zec 14:16-19 - And it shall come to pass that everyone who is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. 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. If the family of Egypt will not come up and enter in, they shall have no rain; they shall receive the plague with which the Lord strikes the nations who do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles. This shall be the punishment of Egypt and the punishment of all the nations that do not come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles.

(b)          Re 20:7-9 - Now when the thousand years have expired, Satan will be released from his prison and will go out to deceive the nations which are in the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle, whose number is as the sand of the sea. They went up on the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven and devoured them.

2.             Over believers and their unbelieving offspring.

a)             All unbelievers are killed at the second coming, either in the events leading to His coming, the war at his arrival, or in the sheep-and-goat judgment of the living nations which follows.

(1)          Believers who remain:

(a)          Resurrected believers who are glorified, sinless, and participate in the government (1 Co 15:51-52;1 Th 4:16-17; Rev. 20:4).

(b)          Sheep – who demonstrate their faith during the Tribulation and enter the kingdom. Note that they are not resurrected or glorified, but believers who enter the kingdom in their natural bodies.

(2)          Surprising to many: Offspring in the millennial kingdom.

(a)          Is 65:18-23
“But be glad and rejoice forever in what I create; For behold, I create Jerusalem as a rejoicing, And her people a joy. 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.”

i)              So far, sounds like the New Jerusalem

ii)             “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. They shall build houses and inhabit them; They shall plant vineyards and eat their fruit. 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. 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.”

(b)          Notice millennial indicators: great blessing, but still death, sin, offspring.

(c)          These are the children of the sheep who enter the kingdom.

(d)          Although their parents were initially believers, during the thousand year period many unbelievers will be born.

(e)          Although submitted under the righteous rule of Christ and His perfect government, there will be  a simmering discontent, a feigned obedience, which eventually flowers in the rebellion following the thousand years.

VIII.   Why Will He Rule – Why a Millennial Kingdom?

A.    To return dominion usurped by Satan back to a representative of mankind.

B.    To demonstrate righteous rule over creation--what mankind's dominion should have and could have been.

C.    To fulfill many promises which God made which include material blessings and earthly elements and which have not yet come to pass.

D.   To demonstrate the depth of man's sin problem as evidenced by man's ongoing rejection of God even under ideal conditions – all man's excuses have now been removed by God.

1.             Satan is bound for the thousand years.

2.             Only believers initially populate the kingdom.

3.             Jesus rules personally in the midst of the nations from Jerusalem.

4.             The earthly environment is ideal, restored with fruitfulness and longevity.

5.             A perfect government consisting of glorified saints who no longer sin.

6.             Yet mankind still harbors rebellion.

7.             The Millennial Rule of Christ will sound the death knell to the tenets of humanism:

a)             Mankind is NOT basically good.

b)            Given ideal education and environment, man will NOT achieve a peaceful eutopia without God.

c)             Mankind is descending, not ascending.

d)            Man is the NOT measure of all things – God is!

IX.         For Additional Information on the Millennial Kingdom

A.    Walvoord, John F. The Millennial Kingdom. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House. 1959

B.    West, Nathanial. The Thousand Years in both Testaments. Fincastle, VA: Scripture Truth Book Co.. n.d.

X.            Addendum - Begotten [yalad] – the Son is born of the Father

A.    His coming forth is directly from the Father

1.             Like Adam, the “Son of God” - created directly by God.

2.             Like the Angels – created directly by God.

3.             Like born-again believers – not by the will of man, but begotten of God.

4.             In all cases: directly created by God, not through independent human agency.

5.             In the incarnation, Jesus conceived by the direct intervention of the Holy Spirit.

B.    NT passages use two primary words

1.             proto'tokos – firstborn

a)             preeminence pertaining to the inheritance rights given the first child

b)            preeminence, position, and standing

2.             monogen_'s – only begotten

a)             the unique, one and only

b)            [monogen_'s] can be used in a way analogous to [proto'tokos][12]

3.             of what is the only one of its kind of class unique; . . . as a child born in a unique way [13]

a)             Heb. 11:17 – used of Isaac. Emphasis is on uniqueness from God's perspective. There was another son (Ishmael) but he was not the son according to God's promise. (Moreover the offering of Isaac by Abraham is an intentional type pointing to the offering of another “only begotten” Son by another Father.)

b)            Less about generation and more about one of a kind

C.    two aspects to the “begetting” of the Son – incarnation and resurrection

1.             incarnation – virgin birth of Jesus

a)             Psalm 2 - This is not David, but the promised son of David – One born in the lineage of David.

(1)          His “begetting” is associated with his entry into the world as a revelation of God.

(2)          John 1:14,18 – “and the Word, flesh he became, and dwelt among us” . . . “as the only begotten [monogen_s] of the father”

(3)          John 1:18 - No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he has declared him.

(4)          1 Jn 4:9 - In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.

(5)          John 3:16 - God gave His only begotten [monogen_s]  – the giving involved the incarnation and subsequent death on the cross.

(6)          Hebrews 1:6-7 - And again, when he brings the firstbegotten [prototok_s] into the world, he says, And let all the angels of God worship him. And of the angels he says, Who makes his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire.

(7)          Heb. 5:5 – cites Psalm 2 and associates the begetting of the Son with “the days of His flesh”

2.             resurrection – firstborn [prototokos] from the dead

a)             Col. 1:18 – firstborn from the dead

(1)          the beginning of those resurrected to eternal life with a glorified body

(2)          first in time and also first in position – the Preeminent One

b)            Acts 13:33 - God has fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he has raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, You are my Son, this day have I begotten you. (KJ2000)

c)             Rom. 1:4 – declared as Son by resurrection from the dead.



[1]The Septuagint, a Greek translation of the Old Testament in use at the first advent of Christ.

[2]The Kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against His anointed. . . . And when the kings of the heathen see how great is their affliction, they will come and bow down to the lord Messiah, as is said They shall bow down to thee with their face to the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet (Isa. 49:23). Midrash on Psalms, Book One, Psalm 2, 3. Tom Huckel, The Rabbinic Messiah, Ps 2:4 (Philadelphia: Hananeel House, 1998).

[3](1) Feet anointed by a sinful woman at Simon the Pharisee's house (Luke 7:37-38). (2) At Simon the Leper's house in Bethany, Mary, sister of Lazarus, anoints both his head and his feet for burial (Mtt. 26:7; Mark 14:3; John 11:2; 12:2-3).

[4]Ps 45:7; Isa 61:1; Zec 4:12-14; Mt 25:1-13.

[5]“The relationship between God and the king is very close; the attack against the Lord is equated with that against His anointed, suggesting that the (Davidic) king was viewed by some as God's earthly representative. . . This idea is picked up in many depictions of the ideal future Davidic king, called Messiah in postbiblical texts.” Adele Berlin and Marc Zvi Brettler, The Jewish Study Bible (Oxford, NY: The Jewish Publication Society, 2004), 1285.

[6]The application of this verse in Acts 4:25 seems to interpret [goyim] as describing the Gentile nations whereas [le'om] denotes the people of Israel. In any event, all people are encompassed by the combination.

[7]The ultimate example is perhaps the request by Satan to receive worship by Jesus (Luke 4:5-7). This is asking the Creator to worship the creature and goes beyond all logic.

[8]“… A certain Min said to R. Abbabu: It is written: A Psalm of David when he fled from Absalom his son … Why is the chapter of Absalom juxtaposed to the chapter of Gog and Magog?” [Babylonian Talmud, Berakoth 10a.]  . . .  “R. Jose says, In time to come idol-worshippers will come and offer themselves as proselytes. But will such be accepted? Has it not been taught that in the days of the Messiah proselytes will not be received; likewise were none received in the days of David or of Solomon?—Well, they will be self-made proselytes, and will place phylacteries on their foreheads and on their arms, fringes in their garments, and a Mezuzah on their doorposts, but when the battle of Gog-Magog will come about they will be asked, ‘For what purpose have you come?’ and they will reply: ’Against God and His Messiah ’ as it is said, Why are the nations in an uproar, and why do the peoples mutter in vain, etc.”. [Babylonian Talmud, ’Abodah Zarah 3b.] Cited in Tom Huckel, The Rabbinic Messiah, Ps 2:1 (Philadelphia: Hananeel House, 1998).

[9]Rudyard Kipling, “The Elephant's Child” cited in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, p. 876.

[10]Ronald F. Youngblood, F. F. Bruce, R. K. Harrison and Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nelson's New Illustrated Bible Dictionary, Rev. ed. of: Nelson's illustrated Bible dictionary.; Includes index. (Nashville: T. Nelson, 1995).

[11]See also Micah 4:1-3.

[12]William Arndt, F. Wilbur Gingrich, Frederick W. Danker and Walter Bauer, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature : A Translation and Adaption of the Fourth Revised and Augmented Edition of Walter Bauer's Griechisch-Deutsches Worterbuch Zu Den Schrift En Des Neuen Testaments Und Der Ubrigen Urchristlichen Literatur, 527 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996, c1979).

[13]Timothy Friberg, Barbara Friberg and Neva F. Miller, vol. 4, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament, Baker's Greek New Testament library, 266 (Grand Rapids, Mich.: Baker Books, 2000).