Jesus Christ came to the earth around 2,000 years ago to bear the sins of many, "and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him" (Hebrews 9:28, NIV). At that time His reign over all nations will commence with the awesome announcement, "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever" (Revelation 11:15, NASB).
The future coming of the Messiah, the Christ, as King of Kings and Lord of Lords is a truth frequently attested to in the Bible. It is promised in the Old Testament (Isaiah 40:10; Daniel 2:44; Micah 1:3) and reaffirmed in the New Testament (Matthew 24:30; John 14:3; Acts 1:11; Revelation 1:7; 19:16).
Trusting in Scripture as God's Word, then, we fully believe in the personal, visible, premillennial return of the Lord Jesus Christ (that is, immediately preceding or at the commencement of His prophesied 1,000-year reign).
His return will not happen in secret, for everyone alive will see Him (Matthew 24:30; Revelation 1:7). Great supernatural sounds will accompany that event: "For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God" (1 Thessalonians 4:16). Kings of the earth will attempt to make war against Him, but He will swiftly overcome them (Revelation 17:14) to at last bring peace.
Leading up to this event will be the worst period of calamity ever. Jesus said there would be "great tribulation, such as has not been seen since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be" (Matthew 24:21). Jeremiah 30:7 says it will fall hard on the descendants of Jacob or Israel: "Alas! For that day is great, so that none is like it; and it is the time of Jacob's trouble, but he shall be saved out of it"—that is, after enduring it.
The earth itself will then be rocked with cataclysmic upheaval during the period of God's judgment on all mankind referred to in many scriptural passages as "the day of the Lord." It will culminate with Christ's return and reign.
The prophet Zechariah proclaims God's message in this regard: "Behold, the day of the Lord is coming . . . For I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem . . . Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east . . . Thus the Lord my God will come, and all the saints with You . . . And the Lord shall be King over all the earth" (Zechariah 14:1-5, 9).
Jesus Christ, the One the Israelites knew as God in the Old Testament (see John 8:58; 1 Corinthians 10:4), will fulfill this prophecy. (See the chapter titled God the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.)
In submission to the will of God the Father, Jesus will sit on the throne of His human ancestor King David in ruling from Jerusalem over Israel and the gentile nations (Isaiah 9:7; Jeremiah 3:17; 23:5; Luke 1:32; Romans 15:12), establishing the Kingdom of God as a literal global government—"a kingdom which shall never be destroyed . . . and it shall stand forever" (Daniel 2:44).
During the first 1,000 years of this reign, Christ will inaugurate "times of refreshing . . . the times of restoration of all things" (Acts 3:19, 21). This age to come, the wonderful world tomorrow, will be a time of peace, righteousness, justice and abundance (Amos 9:13-14; Isaiah 2:2-4; 11:1-9; Micah 4:1-5). The enemy of God and mankind, Satan the devil, will be banished during that time (Revelation 20:1-3). (See the chapter titled Satan the Devil.)
Jesus will be assisted in His reign by the saints—His faithful followers from all of human history—who will be resurrected as He returns. They will then become immortal children of God (1 Corinthians 15:50-53), rise to meet Christ in the air (1 Thessalonians 4:17) and join Him in conquering the earth's rebellious nations and in establishing the Kingdom of God (Psalm 149:5-9; Revelation 5:10; 20:6). We are assured that under Christ "the saints of the Most High shall receive the kingdom, and possess the kingdom forever, even forever and ever" (Daniel 7:18).
The Millennium will be followed by a brief release of Satan, as an important lesson to mankind, and then by his permanent removal (Revelation 20:7-10). On the heels of that will come another resurrection through which all who have ever lived will be given the opportunity to be saved and receive eternal life (verses 5, 11-12). And after this will come the permanent destruction of the incorrigibly wicked, those who ultimately refuse to repent, in the lake of fire (verses 13-15; 21:8). (See the chapter titled The Resurrections and Eternal Judgment.)
Finally, the earthly environment will be transformed into "a new heaven and a new earth" (Revelation 21:1) and the glorious city of New Jerusalem will descend from heaven to the earth along with God the Father, who will at last dwell in the midst of His children, now immortal (verses 2-3). "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things [will] have passed away" (verse 4).
This is the culmination of God's plan of salvation, when Christ "delivers the kingdom to God the Father . . . For He must reign till He has put all enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be destroyed is death" (1 Corinthians 15:24-26). The immortal children of God, submitted to Christ and the Father, will then inherit "all things" (Revelation 21:7)—the entire universe. (See the chapter titled God's Purpose for Mankind.) And "of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end" (Isaiah 9:7).
This is the awesome salvation for which we wait—to commence at the glorious return of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. "For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry" (Hebrews 10:37). As He declares in the Bible's last chapter: "And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work" (Revelation 22:12). Yes, Jesus Christ is returning. The King is coming—soon! So in the words of Hebrews 10:23, "let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful."