The government in the millennium will be a theocracy—a government ruled by God. But as with all things on the earth, God the Father delegates His rulership to God the Son. Daniel 7:13-14 shows us this delegation.
“I kept looking in the night visions, And behold, with the clouds of heaven One like a Son of Man was coming, And He came up to the Ancient of Days And was presented before Him. 14 “And to Him was given dominion, Glory and a kingdom, That all the peoples, nations, and men of every language Might serve Him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion Which will not pass away; And His kingdom is one Which will not be destroyed.
Whether Jesus Christ will actually occupy a throne on the earth in Palestine, some believe that, though Christ will reign over the earth as our King, the resurrected and glorified David will take up the throne in Palestine. The following passages indicate this:
“Then I will set over them one shepherd, My servant David, and he will feed them; he will feed them himself and be their shepherd. 24 “And I, the Lord, will be their God, and My servant David will be prince among them; I, the Lord, have spoken.
“And My servant David will be king over them, and they will all have one shepherd; and they will walk in My ordinances, and keep My statutes, and observe them. 25 “And they shall live on the land that I gave to Jacob My servant, in which your fathers lived; and they will live on it, they, and their sons, and their sons’ sons, forever; and David My servant shall be their prince forever.
(Here are a few more passages on this: Isa. 55:3-4; Jer. 23:5; 30:9; 33:15, 17, 20-21; Hos. 3:5; Amos 9:11.)
William Newell writes, “We must believe the plain words of God…Christ, as son of David, will be king; and David, His father after the flesh, will be prince, during the Millennium.”
Dwight Pentecost seems to agree with Newell. He says,
There are several considerations which support this interpretation. (1) It is most consistent with the literal principle of interpretation. (2) David alone could sit as regent in the millennium without violating the prophecies concerning David’s reign. (3) Resurrected saints are to have positions of responsibility in the millennium as a reward (Matthew 19:28; Luke 19:12-27). David might well be appointed to this responsibility since he was “a man after God’s own heart.” It would be concluded that in the government of the millennium David will be appointed a regent over Palestine and will rule over that land as prince, ministering under the authority of Jesus Christ, the King. The prince thus might lead in worship, offer memorial sacrifices, divide the land allotted to him among his faithful seed without violating his position by resurrection.
After all that, I am undecided how I stand on this. Pentecost has some good points, but most scholars go the other way, “[That David] refers to the greater One in David’s dynasty (cf. 2 Sam. 7:12-16), the Messiah, who will be Israel’s ultimate king over the millennial kingdom.”
Matthew 19:28 seems to be good evidence on the other side—that Christ will actually sit on a throne in Israel, and then under Christ’s rule the resurrected twelve disciples will rule and have authority over the twelve tribes of Israel.
And Jesus said to them, “Truly I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne, you also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Under the twelve disciples who will rule under Christ, lesser authorities will rule as governors over cities (Lu. 19:12-28). And then also, others will have leadership responsibilities under them.
Now when the millennial kingdom begins everyone will be saved. As you remember, all the unsaved were judged and killed. And though there will be Gentile believers in the millennium, Jews during this time will be exalted over Gentiles (Isa. 14:1-2; 49:22-23; 60:14-17; 61:6-7). Thus the Jews will have all the top leadership positions and the Gentiles will be their servants. I believe this is the way it will be, not only in Israel, but everywhere on the earth; for all Israel (all the Jews) will at this time be wonderfully converted, made holy, and will bring glory to God. Though Gentiles will be saved too, the Jews will be especially close to God; thus Gentiles will see this and will gladly follow them and come under their leadership. In Zechariah 8:23 it says,
Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘In those days ten men from all the nations will grasp the garment of a Jew saying,” Let us go with you, for we have heard that God is with you. “‘
Copyright © 2014 by Stephen Nielsen