So you believe in a literal end to the 70 weeks, that something is going to happen, that it will be the end of the age, [correct me if I'm wrong]--but since you don't believe it will be the 1000 year reign of Christ and his saints, what do you think it will be? And, what will the next age look like?
The next age, I think, is not a Millennium, but a time of judgment
. Paul said to the Corinthians, "Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters?" [1 Corinthians 6:2]
After the 7th trumpet, it is said:
The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God,
Saying, We give thee thanks, O LORD God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.
And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.
And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.
Jesus spoke of a time when all the tribes of the earth will mourn.
And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
This seems to imply masses of people repenting and turning to God. In Zechariah 12:10, "they shall look upon me whom they have pierced" applies to all those who repent, not to Jews of the first century. See Job 42:5. It means "see" in the sense Job uses it here. Jesus said, "Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God." [Matthew 5:8]
Isaiah wrote, "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this." [Isaiah 9:6-7]
Christ's reign is for ever
, not for a thousand years. And it does not end in a general rebellion. Christopher Wordsworth said, about the thousand years of Revelation 20, "It is not said that Christ reigns with His saints, but that they reign with Him." See the reference here
Nowhere in Scripture is the reign of Christ said to be a thousand years. That expression applies to the limited
time that the individual saints reign with Christ, whose reign is said to be forever and ever. That occurs in the present age, as in every generation, Christ's followers, who are figuratively beheaded
reign with him; the thousand years applies to them
, not to Christ's reign.
Jesus gave many indications that when he comes, many people will be unprepared. He compared his coming to the visit of a thief. "But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into." [Luke 12:39]
Jesus encourages us to seek to enter his kingdom in this
age, rather than the next, which he referred to as "winter" and as the "sabbath day" in Matthew 24.
And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:
For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
Why did he mention "pray ye that your flight be not in the winter"? Perhaps this is because "winter" is the season that follows the harvest. In the harvest season the saints who are worthy are rewarded; those who are "left behind" have to go through the judgment, which is referred to as a "great tribulation." They would not be among the "firstfruits," represented by the 144,000 in Revelation 14, who "were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb;" but instead they would be among the "great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues," the second group of Revelation 7, who "came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb." [vs. 9, 14]
Why did he say "pray ye that your flight be not on the sabbath day"? Because the sabbath day is a shadow
and a type
of the eternal rest of the saints. Those who are not accounted worthy will have to flee, and seek God's righteousness, at the time when other saints are enjoying the promised "rest."
In the judgment, Paul indicates that those Jews who "abide not still in unbelief" may be "grafted" back into the olive tree, the promises from which they had been cut off. [Romans 11:23]
It is more tolerable for some, that for others. Jesus said, "And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear you, when ye depart thence, shake off the dust under your feet for a testimony against them. Verily I say unto you, It shall be more tolerable for Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgment, than for that city." [Mark 6:11]