The JW's teach about the hope we have for living on a paradise earth. IS THAT WHAT JESUS TAUGHT WHEN HE CAME TO THE EARTH ? The last time I checked he was referring to HEAVEN, NOT EARTH. Explain.
PARADISE EARTH OR HEAVEN? OR BOTH?
some theologians say they're one and the same
new heaven = new earth
but "paradise earth" is not explicity taught in the bible as far as i know
does it really matter? important thing is you'll be happy, reunited w/your lost loved ones
Both, dear exjw... and peace to you!
"Thy kingdom COME... Thy will be done ON earth... AS it is IN Heaven."
"I saw New Jerusalem coming OUT of heaven... Look! The tent of God is WITH mankind..."
"We will come and make OUR abode... WITH you..."
"They advanced over the breadth of the EARTH and ENCIRCLED the encampment of the holy ones AND the beloved City..."
"To bring together AGAIN... the things in the heavens AND the things on earth..."
To name just a few "explanations"...
Again, I bid you peace!
A slave of Christ,
Because the earth shall be destroyed, the resurrected, and the Great Crowd, cannot be ruled over by the 144,000 from heaven[Home]
The Greek word basileuo “to reign,” does not only mean to “rule over a people.” It is often used as metaphor, such as to “reign in life” (Rom. 5:17) where ‘shall reign in life’ indicates the activity of life in fellowship with Christ in His sovereign power, reaching its fullness hereafter; 1 Cor. 4:8…” (Vine’s, 52). One can also reign over sin (Rom. 6:12). Grace can also reign (Rom. 5:21). With this in mind it does not automatically or logically follow that there must be someone over whom the 144,000 reign on earth in the same way that contemporary governments rule over a people in today’s world.
As a matter of fact, even though the Jehovah's Witnesses claim that the Bible does not tell us what the 144,000 will do after the thousand year reign is over, Revelation 22:3,4 informs us that God's servants will worship him and "shall reign forever and ever." But reign over who? They claim that at that time no one will stand between God and man, most certainly not Jesus (Insight, 170); the kingdom will have been handed over, death will be no more and man will be forever perfect. But if that is true the word "reign" cannot mean to rule over humans on earth, especially on an earth destined for fire which is made clear by 2 Peter 3:10,11: "But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a mighty roar and the elements will be dissolved by fire and the earth and everything in it will be found out. ... everything is to be dissolved this way," (NAB; "Total destruction is assumed (11)," notes 3,10).
Granted, the Jehovah's Witnesses don't believe the earth will be destroyed and base this teaching in large part on Psalm 37:29 where the psalmist wrote, "The just will possess the land (earth) and live in it forever." However, the earth "wears out like a garment (Isa. 51:6), so the word "forever" is hyperbole, and nothing here indicates that there won't be a hiatus, or break, in the earth's habitation. Psalm 37:29 does not say man will inherit the earth continuously without interruption, and Revelation 21:10,27 suggests that reconstituted, glorified man, without the warts, will come back down out of heaven sometime in the future: "He took me in spirit to a great high mountain and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God." "Only those will enter whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life."
Actually, the earth has experienced significant disruptions evidenced by the annihilation of the dinosaurs and great flood of Noah's day. Remember, we are dealing with geologic time, and cycling through another ice age that would wipe off the post-apocalyptic mess left in the wake of Armageddon is entirely within reason; it is more reasonable than handing the Great Crowd brooms and haz-mat suits and ordering them to restore the earth into a paradise.
More to the point is Peter's comparison of the earth's pending fiery destruction to the great flood which is a real, not metaphorical, example of earth's fate as detailed at 2 Peter 3:5-13: "They deliberately ignore the fact that the heavens existed of old and earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God; through these the world that then existed was destroyed, deluged with water. The present heavens and earth have been reserved by the same word of fire kept for the day of judgment and of destruction of the godless." Jesus likewise made it known that ultimate destruction will be modeled after the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, where Luke 17:29 makes it abundantly clear God destroyed them all. That man's governments are changed in the process goes without saying. Remember, "...he was seated on the throne and said, "Behold, I am making all things new. (Rev. 21:5).
To "reign," then, must mean to reign in life or over sin, and old-world government models such as king David's rule over God's people do not necessarily apply to a new world, a new earth and a new creation. As a point of interest, this is the meaning ascribed to the concept of "reign" by the Catholic church.
Like other numerical values in this book, the thousand years are not to be taken literally; they symbolize the long period of time between the chaining up of Satan (a symbol for Christ's resurrection victory over death and the forces of evil) and the end of the world. During this time God's people share in the glorious reign of God that is present to them by virtue of their baptismal victory over death and sin; cf Rom 6, 1-8; Jn 5, 24-25; 16, 33; 1 Jn 3,14; Eph 2,1. (NAB, note Rev. 20:1-6)
Finally, if the Great Crowd is in heaven and not on earth as the Jehovah's Witnesses claim, the 144,000 cannot rule over them as earthly subjects.
Agonus, thanks for your reply. Yes it does matter what we do and where we go, at least to me it does. That's like saying you're NOT concerned about your future. OF COURSE your concerned about it. Just by saying "the important thing is you'll be happy, reunited w/your lost loved ones" doesn't answer the question , where's your basis for beleiving that? You must have at one point been concerned about life after death, enough to look into it and come up with that statement.
Aguest, thankyou, you provided accurate scriptures from the Bible. I am too, a soldier in Christ Jesus our Lord. God Bless.
Jonathan, thanks for your reply. Good point. I do think Christ and the great crowd will reign (not in the way world governments do) over the Earth. It will be interesting indeed to see what happens, especially regarding the NEW JERUSALEM.
"Peter's comparison of the earth's pending fiery destruction to the great flood which is a real, not metaphorical, example of earth's fate as detailed at 2 Peter 3:5-13: "They deliberately ignore the fact that the heavens existed of old and earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God; through these the world that then existed was destroyed, deluged with water. The present heavens and earth have been reserved by the same word of fire kept for the day of judgment and of destruction of the godless."
Yes, dear JD (peace to you!), but it was the "world" that was destroyed at that time... but not the earth. The literal earth actually suffered minimal harm. And it will be the same when this prophecy is fulfilled by the Most Holy One of Israel, Himself:
"and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them."
Jesus likewise made it known that ultimate destruction will be modeled after the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, where Luke 17:29 makes it abundantly clear God destroyed them all.
Again, this is fulfilled as quoted above. Sodom and Gomorrah may have been destroyed; however, in neither instance is the literal earth destroyed. Only the "godless." Magog (the "heavens"/lawless spirits)... and Gog (the "earth"/lawless flesh).
Christ's co-rulers do not rule "over" the earth, though. They actually rule on/upon it. Because New Jerusalem is ON the earth. Revelation 5:10; 20:9; 21:2
True, the chosen go to the spirit realm but only for a brief time, in order to be given in "marriage" to the Lamb. But once that "ceremony" has taken place, she (New Jerusalem - the "city" and "temple"... made up OF the chosen ones, both the 144,000 "from among the sons of Israel" AND the great crowd "out of EVERY nation, tongue, tribe, and people"... which "city" and "temple" is the "house" Christ is "building" in order for God to "occupy"...) then joins her "husband" for the "marriage FEAST."
That "feast" takes place AFTER New Jerusalem, the Bride of Christ, has "come out of heaven" (i.e., been revealed) ON EARTH. Her "gates" are then "opened" to those who are to INHERIT that kingdom... the "sheep" who are "separated" from the "goats." These, too, are now given "white robes" (spirit bodies) so as to be able to enter and "recline at the table" of the Bridegroom (Christ) and his Bride (New Jerusalem). The "goats" are not permitted to enter but are in fact "cut off."
It is this "separating" that constitutes the "1,000-year reign" of Christ and his co-rulers, all now having kingship and priesthood conferred upon them.
I hope this helps clarify and, again, I bid you peace!
A slave of Christ,
don't mean to imply it doesn't matter what we do. but i'm convinced that if there is an afterlife of some kind (and i tend to believe there is), location/mode isn't as important as fulfillment. all religions have a concept of paradise/nirvana/heaven/olam ha ba that are similar in many respects - a state of contentment where you're in the presence of loved ones who have gone before you. corporeal, non-corporeal, semi-corporeal, another dimension or planet - to me those are just details that only god knows for sure - it's his plan not mine - when i wanted to be w/jesus i felt my home was heaven, now not so sure - to me "home" just means god/christ's presence
Agonus, thanks for that, you're elaboration definetely made things clear to me. Also, what you wrote there "when i wanted to be w/jesus i felt my home was heaven, now not so sure - to me "home" just means god/christ's presence". Im very interested in that one sentence. That's a sign to me that you've been previously blessed and also sealed, with the holy spirit. You might be unsure and doubt different things, but that's the way we're made as humans in general. THAT'S OK. You do know the bible speaks truth, and their is a scripture in the bible where it states "one part of our body is heavenly (our spirit), and the other is earthly (our physical body). Like Paul said in the scriptures, he wished to be away from the body (in spirit) and at home with the Lord. Keep the faith my friend! God Bless!.
Aguest, thanks and good point! The earth wasn't destroyed but the world and the people living in it were. Which is soon to happen again im sure of that. Regarding the NEW JERUSALEM, the bible did give accurate measurements concerning the size. And ill tell you one thing, it's quite too large to fit on the earth. Actually, if it were placed on this earth, the highest point of the NEW JERUSALEM would be in outter space, or even farther. I guess we will have to wait and see. God Bless!