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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Skip Heitzig » Skip Heitzig - Peace on Earth, At Last

Skip Heitzig - Peace on Earth, At Last

Skip Heitzig - Peace on Earth, At Last
Skip Heitzig - Peace on Earth, At Last
TOPICS: Give Peace a Chance, Christmas, Peace

Well, let's give peace a chance for one more weekend. Then we can go back to our cantankerous selves next week. It's been such a wonderful series to be in. I've enjoyed being able to plow through the scripture to see what the Bible has to say about a very important topic. And I'm going to have you turn in your Bibles today to Isaiah chapter 9. Easy to find Isaiah. It's a pretty big book in your Old Testament. Isaiah chapter 9.

So outside of the United Nations building in New York City is this very, very famous statue. I'm not going to try to pronounce the guy's name. It's a Russian artist of... forget it. Anyway, it's a strong man with a hammer beating a sword into a plow. And that depicts Isaiah chapter 2, which we're going to be looking at in a moment.

And across the street from the United Nations building are the very words that that statue is coming from. It's from Isaiah. They shall beat their swords into plowshares, their spears into pruning hooks. Nation shall not lift up sword against nation. Neither shall they learn war anymore. The United Nations was founded right after World War II. Their stated goal was to end war and to bring in world peace. It's a wonderful goal to have. But, let's be frank, they failed miserably. Since the United Nations was founded, there has not been a single year of peace anywhere on Earth.

Now, I want to give them a break a little bit because it could be a stated goal. But nobody has been able to pull it off. No one. Not the United Nations, not any King, not any kingdom. In any era of history, any time human beings decide we're going to bring peace on Earth, it's just an impossible task. But it will happen. It will happen one day. And Isaiah the prophet happens to be one of those prophets who predicts the coming day of peace. This message is called Peace On Earth At Last. And it will happen when, and only when, the Prince of Peace returns and takes over what he created.

I want you to try to imagine for a moment a world without any war. Try to imagine a world in perfect peace, a pristine utopia. Imagine a world that does not need Homeland Security. Imagine a world that doesn't have any missile testing because there are no missiles to test. Imagine a world where all the politicians are saints. Now, that always gets a laugh, that one, and that's because you are really having to stretch your imagination. Imagine a world in which everything is always fair. There's no need of an army. There's no need of a Navy. There's no need of an Air Force.

Now, imagine a world that is so healthy that, if somebody dies at age 100, they are said to die as an infant. Imagine a world where the curse is removed, the animal kingdom is tamed, the environment is pristine. Imagine a world where toddlers can play in a snake pit and not be harmed, and where the snakes are unharmed by the toddlers as well. Imagine a world that is abundant with food, but also packed full of people. Now, we can only imagine that. It's only in our imagination. But one day, we will not have to imagine it because it's going to come. And it is called the Kingdom, or the Kingdom Age or the Millennial Kingdom or the 1,000 year reign of Christ on the earth. Whatever title, it is the Kingdom Age. Isaiah the prophet is the author of this book, and we're looking at Isaiah chapter 9.

Isaiah chapter 9 is one of the most famous passages in all of the scripture. Unfortunately, people usually only pull it out around Christmas time because it mentions the child being born. And so it finds its way into Christmas cards, and it's preached on at Christmas. When Isaiah wrote this, he wrote it about 100 years before the Babylonian captivity, about 600 years before the birth of Christ. Isaiah, in this passage, and several others by the way in this book, this book is full of kingdom prophecy, Isaiah is looking past his own lifetime, past Bethlehem, though there are overtones of it in verse 6.

He looks past the first coming of the Messiah, past the cross, past the Resurrection, into the future when the Messiah reigns as monarch on the earth. Today, if you mention a King or a kingdom to Americans, that doesn't sit very well. I mean, we're a nation founded in rebellion to the King. We're not going to have a King reign over us. We left the King of England's reign over us.

But, when we talk about there's some very, very patriotic person back there who is just all anti-England, I think, but the idea of a kingdom is it's a monarchy. The monarchy we're talking about is a compassionate, benevolent, all-knowing, all-loving God ruling over his creation. And what I want to give you out of Isaiah 9:6-7 are three reasons why the dominion we're talking about is going to be successful and bring in lasting peace. And it all revolves around the ruler. It's the right person at the right time.

We're going to look at a remarkable King and his royal character, and then his righteous kingdom. Look at verse 6 and 7. Let's read it all together. 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. And I have always loved, in particular, this last little sentence. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this. We would translate that. God's going to get her done.

He's going to make sure that happens. Now, let's go back to verse 6, and notice this King that is predicted. Three things are immediately said of him. His humanity is mentioned unto us a child is born. His deity is alluded to. Unto us a son is given. And his sovereignty is stated. The government will be upon his shoulders. Let's take each one. Unto us a child is born. That's Christmas. That's the nativity. That's when Jesus was born in Bethlehem. That's what we celebrate every Christmas time. But you will notice that Isaiah goes on to further identify this child who is born by calling him the Mighty God.

So the child who is going to be born, according to Isaiah, is also the Mighty God, which begs a question immediately, and that is how does God get born? I mean, if he's God, how is that even possible? How can God fit into a womb? How do you get God in a placenta filled with amniotic fluid? And there's only one answer to that. A virgin birth. It's the only way God could possibly be born. By the way, Isaiah, also in his prophecy, predicts that. Not here, but elsewhere in chapter 7, a virgin birth. The only way to make this happen is if this child is conceived by the Holy Spirit in the womb of a human girl.

So that, biologically, he is related to Mary, but not biologically related to Joseph. But he was then fully human. He was born thus he was he was human. And that means he experienced what you and I experience. He knows what it's like to be tired as a human. He knew what it was like to get hungry as a human. And he knew what it was like to suffer and, ultimately, die as a human. But something else is said of this remarkable King. Not only his humanity, but it says, unto us a son is given. Did you notice the wording there? It does not say, unto us a child is born. Unto us a son is born. But unto us a child is born. Unto us a son is given. There is a suggestion just in the text of pre-existence. In fact, I'll say it this way, pre-existent deity.

In other words, before he was born as a child, he already existed as God, as the second person of the Trinity. But when the child was born, that's when the Son was also given. That's John 3:16. For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son. Now try to get your head around this one. Jesus Christ was the only person who existed before he was born. He's the only person who existed before he was born. No wonder Paul wrote to Timothy and said, great is the mystery of godliness that God was manifested in the flesh. What it means is Jesus never became God. Jesus was God before he was born, and remained God after he was human.

Again, we can thank Isaiah for putting it all together in chapter 7. And he will be called Emmanuel, which means God with us. So unto us a child is born. Unto us a son is given. That's his humanity. That's his deity. Notice a further description is his sovereignty. For it says, and the government will be upon his shoulder. Now, it's in the future tense will be upon his shoulder. He's looking with the prophetic lens into the future beyond Christmas, beyond the cross, into the kingdom when the government of the world will rest upon his shoulder. By the way, the word government, this is a Hebrew text we're dealing with in the Old Testament, not Greek, the Hebrew word for government here is the word Misrah. And it literally means the rule of a monarch. I really like this for this reason. When Jesus comes, he's the monarch.

He rules as one. He's not voted in for four years. We don't really like the Messiah. We want a new one. Tough. This is a monarchy. And you can't impeach him. You can't do that. He's in for good. It's the rule of a monarch. But what's this idea about the government will be on his shoulder? In ancient times, governance was considered a burden to be born on the shoulder of a monarch. They understood the responsibility. If you're going to rule, you have to bear the weight of responsibility for the decisions you make. And they considered it a burden. It's a burden that the King wears or the governor wears.

Now, we live in a day and age when the government wants to put the burden on us. But they saw the burden on them in those days. And it was symbolically represented by the robe that the King wore. They would wear the robe on the shoulders to signify the burden of government resting upon the shoulders of the monarch. Of course, we know that Jesus took off his royal robes in heaven, so-to-speak, came down to the Earth as a child born as the Son given to walk among his people.

I've always loved the story about the King who, twice a year, decided to take off his kingly robes, and dress up like a peasant. I should say dress down like a peasant. He disguised himself, walked around people in the city in the countryside, and this drove his guards and officials nuts. This is a security issue, sir. You can't do that. And he did it anyway twice a year. And his rationale was pretty clear. He said, I cannot rule my people unless I know how they live. So God, in the form of Jesus Christ, became the child born, the Son given. One day the government will be upon his shoulders.

But, because he lived among us, he knows how we live. So, essentially already, we have a virgin born, Son of God, coming into the world that he had made. One day ruling the world with a literal earthly geopolitical kingdom that will encompass all the kingdoms and the governments of the world. And if you think I'm just sort of making this up or adding what isn't really there, you need to read a little more of your Old Testament because even Nebuchadnezzar, a pagan King who ruled the world during his day and age in Babylon, remember the night he had a dream and he called all the wise men in Babylon and said, look, I had a dream last night, and I want you to tell me what it means. And, basically, they said, good. You tell us what you dreamed. We'll make something up. We'll make some interpretation, but tell us what you dreamed.

He goes, no, that's too easy. You tell me what I dreamed, and then you tell me what it means. If you don't do that, you're all dead. So that didn't bode very well because none of them could do that. Daniel stepped in and said, I can do it. And I can't do it because I'm great, but I can do it because there's a God in Heaven who knows everything. And he has revealed it to me. So, King, here's what you saw in your dream. You saw a huge statue made out of gold, then silver, then bronze, then iron, then iron-clay. And that represents successive world dominating kingdoms. You're number one.

You're the head of gold. You control everything on Earth. But after you, another King will arise, Medo Persian Empire. After that another kingdom will arise, the Grecian Empire. After that another kingdom will arise, the Roman Empire. All of it happened. And then there's going to be, in the latter days, a confederation of kings, 10 nations. And, in your dream, oh King, you saw a stone cut out, not with human hands, coming from heaven careening to the earth. It hit the statue, busted it up, destroyed all those kingdoms, and that rock grew into a mountain that covered the earth.

And the King said, yeah. That's, like, exactly what I saw. Dude, what does it mean? And Daniel said, in the days of those kings, God will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed. It's a kingdom on Earth, like Nebuchadnezzar, like Medo Persian, et cetera. He will set up a kingdom which will never be destroyed, and that kingdom shall stand forever. Here is the remarkable King. Child born, Son given, the government will be upon his shoulder. Now, let's keep going in verse 6, and go to the second reason why this dominion will be successful and bring in lasting peace, and that is his royal character. You will notice that in verse 6, Isaiah gives four names to this King.

Some would count five if they keep a comma there. I'll talk about that. But when Isaiah gives these names, it doesn't mean the child will actually be called by those names. It's not like anybody said, hey, wonderful counselor, over here. Or, hey Mighty God. But these are descriptive characteristics of his reign. So look at the first one. His name will be called Wonderful. Then, it says, comma in my Bible, Counselor. So some say his name is wonderful and another name is Counselor. And then other versions, more modern versions, take the comma out. So wonderful becomes the adjective for Counselor. So his name will be called Wonderful Counselor. You know what? It doesn't matter.

It's all true. He's just plain wonderful. And he's a counselor. But he's also a wonderful counselor. And really that's probably the best way to see it. Take the comma out because literally in Hebrew, it's put this way, he will be a wonder of a counselor. He will be a wonder of a counselor. In other words, his wisdom as a counselor transcends all human wisdom. Now, let's be frank here. Anybody can give you counsel. It's not always wonderful. Might be well-meaning, but it might be ungodly council. By the way, everybody has an opinion of how you should live. Everybody does. Everybody thinks you should have a certain value system which is their value system.

Everybody has an opinion how you should live. But Jesus counsel is wonderful. He is the wonderful counselor. There's an old Danish proverb that says, he who builds according to every man's advice will have a crooked house. So if you try to just kind of bow to everybody's opinion, your life will just kind of look wonky. But when Jesus was on Earth, and he came to his hometown of Nazareth, the people marveled. They were all amazed by the gracious words that came from his lips. It's, like, wow. That was good. He's a wonderful counselor.

Now, imagine if Jesus opened a counseling office down by your house. So there's his name out there, Jesus. Counseling hours are given. You go in there to get counsel. You walk in, and he already knows everything about you. Yeah, Jesus, I've had a rough week. My boss, and he goes, you don't even have to keep going. I saw what your boss did to you. And I heard what you said back to your boss. Right? So he so he knows everything. And he would always give the right advice. In John chapter 7, Jesus was in the temple, and he spoke. And the officials said, no man ever spoke like this man. His counsel was and will be always wonderful. And when he rules and reigns, and you'll see why this is important because the law will go forth from where he is presiding in Jerusalem, and it will be a wonderful counsel.

By the way, I need to say that perhaps one of the reasons that there has never been peace on Earth heretofore is because politicians usually don't seek God. They don't. Or they get counsel. They get advice. They have their own analysts around them. They have their ambassadors around them. They get on the phone and usually talk to other leaders. So they're getting counsel from one another. But rarely do you find a leader of a nation who is really intent on finding out what God has to say. Like, hey, bring the guy in with a Bible, and let's pray about this. Very rare do you find that. And when you do, you should make note of it. Abraham Lincoln was a president like that. He was not perfect, but he did say this. "Amid the greatest difficulties of my administration, when I could not see any other resort, I would place my whole reliance on God knowing that all would go well, and that he would decide for the right."

There were times during his administration where it was just too much for him, but he knew he could trust in God. And he brought a measure of peace. He ended the Civil War. He brought in the great proclamations that we know about from history. George Washington said, first president, "It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible." Give me a leader like that. His royal character. He's a wonderful counselor. But then notice the next descriptive title. Not only a wonderful counselor, he's Mighty God.

Now, again, you have to just sort of superimpose all these truths together. The child born is also the Son given is also the wonderful counselor is also the Mighty God, which means his counseling is even more profound because he not only says the right things, he has the power to change things because he's Mighty God. Then, he is called here everlasting Father, or Eternal Father, as some of your translations might say. Literally it is he is Father of eternity. Father, here, meaning probably the originator of, or the source of that which is the eternal.

Now, let's just pause to notice this. Jesus is given the title everlasting Father. Don't misunderstand that or mistake that. He's not saying you are God the Father, because he's not God the Father. He's God the Son, different from God the Father. And the reason I'm bringing that up is because there was, in history, a false belief, a heresy known as modalism. Also known as monarchianism. Also known as sabellianism. It goes under a lot of different titles. And it's the idea that quite unlike what we believe, we believe there's one God in three persons. We call that the Triune God, or the Trinity. That's what the Bible teaches. Three persons, one God. Modalism taught one person, one God. There's only one person.

And sometimes he shows up as God the Father. Sometimes he shows up as God the Son. Sometimes he shows up as God the Holy Spirit. Same person, just sort of puts on a different hat here and there. That's not what the Bible teaches. And when it says Jesus is everlasting Father, it's not saying he is God the Father. No, he's separate from God the Father. It is speaking of his reign. He's going to reign, rule, like a Father would. Not like a despot. Not like a dictator. Not like an elected official. He is going to reign with a paternal reign, a fatherly reign, a caring and compassionate reign. And this is one of the great reasons there will be peace on Earth is because of the character of this ruler.

His counsel is wonderful. His strength is impeccable. His rule is paternal, like a Father. So, his name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, everlasting Father. The fourth really speaks to what we're dealing with here, and really the reason for this series. He will be called the Prince of Peace. You see in Messiah's kingdom, there will be no conflict. It will be a rule and reign, a kingdom of peace. Now, let me take you back to Bethlehem when the child was born. When the child was born in Bethlehem, outside of Bethlehem where there were shepherds, an angel showed up and had something to say to the shepherds, right?

Some people think he maybe got carried away a little bit. The angel said, glory to God in the highest and on Earth. What's the next word? Tell me. Peace. And on Earth peace. Then what? Good will toward men. OK, it's a great saying. Glory to God in the highest and peace on Earth, good will toward men. Really? Because you said that 2000 years ago, Mr. Angel, and just haven't seen that. Have not seen peace on Earth. Have not seen much good will toward men in 2000 years. So, maybe you're reading the cue card wrong. Maybe that's what you're supposed say at the second coming, but hadn't happened yet. We're still waiting for that to happen. So maybe when the angel said, peace on Earth, good will toward men, he is thinking, eschatologically, he's thinking, here the child is born. But, eventually, he's going to bring peace on Earth, good will toward men.

Well, that would work. But I don't think that's what he meant there. Because a better translation is this. Glory to God in the highest. And, on Earth, peace to people on whom God's favor rests. Completely different meaning. Or a better translation even, glory to God in the highest. And, on Earth, peace to people with whom God is well-pleased. So if you think about it, the Prince of Peace, let's just sort of sum up all that we have learned in the last several weeks, because we talked about this early-on, what Jesus did is, and going to do three things, he brought peace with God.

Number one, he brought the peace of God. Number two, and, eventually, he's going to bring peace from God. So, as soon as you give your life to Jesus Christ, the war is over. You have peace with God. There's nothing in between you and heaven any longer.

Romans 5:1, therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. That's number one. That's first and foremost. Whether you feel like it or not, you have peace with God. After that comes the peace of God.

That's where you feel it. That's where it's personal. That's Philippians 4. Be anxious for nothing. In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds.

If you have peace with God followed by the peace of God, the ahh feeling. But, eventually, there's this, peace from God. That's where our prayers are answered. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven. Peace, the peace of heaven comes to Earth, and the whole world experiences peace.

OK, now, I wish we had time to go through all the prophecies in Isaiah, would take a year or so. So let's just go to one other one. Go back to chapter 2 because we mentioned this at the very beginning of this study with the United Nations thing. Isaiah chapter 2, this is where he sort of first introduces the idea of a coming messianic kingdom. This is what got all the Jews, Scribes, and Pharisees amped when Jesus showed up because they thought, this is it, this is it.

Isaiah chapter 2, it's beginning verse 2, now it shall come to pass in the latter days, so a very specific time period as mentioned, that the mountain of the Lord's house, that's the Temple Mount, shall be established on the top of the mountains. It's very, very specific wording. And shall be exalted above the hills. And all the nations shall flow to it. Nations plural indicates the world.

Many people shall come and say, come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the House of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways. We will walk in his paths. For out of Zion, that's Jerusalem and Judea, out of Zion will go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem. He shall judge between the nations, and rebuke many people.

That's the second coming. He comes back to the earth Revelation 19, puts an end to the tribulation, puts an end to the war. And then it says, they, this is the kingdom age now, they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks. Nations shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore. It's a great prophecy.

By the way, it's repeated also in Micah chapter 4. It's the Messianic kingdom. But, get this. I'm going to say, I'm going to describe, again, I wish I had time to go through it all, but we don't. We're ending the series.

So this is a description of the Messianic kingdom after the earthquake. I'm just letting that sink in because you're going, after earth, after what earthquake? I'm glad you asked. Remember when Jesus ascended into heaven? He was on the Mount of Olives.

Remember he floated up, and the disciples went, like, wow, that is awesome. He just, like, he's gone. And they're looking up, and the angel, there's an angel showed up and goes, what do you mean from Galilee doing looking up? Don't you know the same Jesus who left will come back exactly as you saw him leave?

Well, how did he leave? Well, he came from Earth to heaven, and he left from the Mount of Olives. And he's coming back to the Mount of Olives. We know that because Zechariah, the prophet in the Old Testament chapter 14, said that the Messiah will come and put his foot on the Mount of Olives. And when he does, the Mount of Olives will what? What will it do?

It will split. It will split. It'll cleave in two. Incidentally, there happens to be a fault-line in Jerusalem running directly under the Mount of Olives, true story, waiting for a very particular footprint. So when Jesus comes back, he's going to come back to the Mount of Olives.

He's going to touch down. It says it's going to split in two. And Zechariah said, it's going to be raised up. It's going to be elevated because of that seismic activity. If you want more detail on that, not now, but look later on at Ezekiel chapters 40 through 48. You have nine chapters that give you details of the topographical and geographical changes that will occur in Jerusalem.

It'll even give you the exact measurements of the temple that will be built during the kingdom age, all greatly detailed in those chapters. So we have Messiah's rule. It's a geocentric rule. He will rule the world from Jerusalem. By the way, you know what Jerusalem means?

The city of peace. It has never lived up to its name. One day it will. One day the Prince of Peace will sit in the City of Peace and rule, not just Israel, but the world from Jerusalem. Jerusalem will just be HQ for him.

And according to Isaiah chapter 2, all the weapons of war will be turned into farm equipment. It'll become ranch tools. Military conflicts will cease. Military forces will be abolished. So that is, in a nutshell, his royal character.

His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Let's end it with verse 7, and this takes us to the third reason why this dominion will result in everlasting peace. And that is the kind of kingdom that he brings, a righteous kingdom. You'll notice in verse 7 it says, of the increase of his government and peace, there will be no end. Upon the throne of David, again, this is very, very specific covenant, upon the throne of David and over his kingdom to order it and establish it with judgment and justice, from that time forth, or forward, even forever the zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

He describes in one verse an ever-expanding dynastic rule over the world. Let me explain that. Of the increase of his government and peace, there will be no end. No end. This is eternal. This keeps going.

It's not four years, you didn't do a good job. You're out. Eight years, new one. No, it's perpetual. It's eternal. It is forever, and it will keep on expanding.

In other words, it gets better and better and better. More peaceful, more pure. Now, the question you should be asking is, how can anything that is perfect improve? I mean, if it's already, if you got the Prince of Peace, God himself ruling and reigning from Jerusalem, that's pretty perfect. How can it get any better than that? How can a peaceful reign get more peaceful?

Well, I've read commentators say, well, it's one of the mysteries of the kingdom age. I'll push that aside. Just think of it in practical terms. The further that humanity gets away from the conflicts of the past, especially the tribulation period, every day it's just going to seem better and more peaceful and purer and deeper than before. And that peace is going to expand into more hearts because people will be born during the millennial kingdom.

And they'll come to know about Jesus, and they'll come to receive him as their Lord, during that time even, and the peace will be broadened. Keep something else in mind. Jesus will have come to the earth. Satan is bound, according to Revelation, for 1,000 years. So you have an earth with no devil. You got no demons.

You have no rebellion that is tolerated, for Jesus will rule with a rod of iron, the Bible says. Also, after 1,000 years of this earth, he'll destroy this earth and heaven, and make a new heaven, new earth, new city of Jerusalem. So, it's just going to get better and better and better as time goes on. Now, having said that, with the devil gone, what kind of a world is it going to be? Well, it's going to dramatically alter lots of things.

Let me give you a quick rundown. Number one, not only will there be peace on Earth, good will toward men, the animal kingdom will be tamed. If you want to see animals today, you go to where? Go to a zoo. But you have to see them on the other side of the enclosure either through Plexiglas or through a big metal post because you're not going to get into the enclosure and just hug the bear.

You're not going to be like the woman in Berlin who jumped over the enclosure of a polar bear during feeding time, and she became lunch. Literally, the bear went after her. She survived, but barely. And I'm sorry that was a bad, I didn't even intend for that to happen, but it's kind of a cool dad joke, right, barely.

But the animal kingdom will be tamed. According to Isaiah chapter 11, it tells us, the wolf and the lamb will live together. The Leopard and the goat will be at peace. A child will put its hand in a nest of deadly snakes and pull it out unharmed. So the animal kingdom will be tame.

Number two, the environment on the Earth will be lush. There will be a new global ecological system, probably like before the flood. It'll have a whole new hydrological system. Listen to Isaiah chapter 35, even the wilderness will rejoice in those days. The desert, listen up Rio Rancho residents, the desert will blossom with flowers.

Deserts will become as green as the mountains of Lebanon. Springs will gush forth in the wilderness and streams will water the desert. That means Albuquerque and Phoenix and Las Vegas and Barstow are going to look like the English countryside. So think about that. You may want to buy now and get prepared because the rates are good now, but they'll skyrocket perhaps during that time.

So animal kingdom is tamed. Environment will be lush. Something else, human longevity. Human longevity. Isaiah chapter 65 says, never again will there be an infant who will live a few days or an old man that will not live out his years.

He who dies at 100 will be thought a mere youth. Oh, I'm so sorry. Your relative died. He was only 100. Only 100? You say, he made it to 100?

Now, before the flood, according to the Bible, there were long lifespans. For example, Methuselah lived, you remember this from Sunday school, he lived 969 years. I don't take that figuratively. I take that literally. And you can do whatever you want with that, but I, you know, it's funny because, just in case you don't know yet, I take the Bible literally, OK?

So, just if that's a shock to you, I want you to get over the shock or somehow get through it. But, a few years ago, there was a lady and a husband in church. I heard this because somebody was sitting right behind them. And, as I was preaching, she turned to her husband with these big eyes, and she goes, "Oh my goodness, he's taking the Bible literally." Duh. Yeah.

Good, I'm glad you latched on to that one. I take all of these things that Isaiah has to say, not figuratively, but literally. And you can say, well, I don't take it literally. So, then, what does it mean? You can make it mean anything.

It's talking about bunny rabbits. I mean, you can literally impose anything you want once you remove grammatical, historical, literal interpretation. Back to this. Some scientists believe that, before the flood, there was a vapor canopy around the Earth that protected the Earth from harmful radiation that destroyed longevity that, when the flood came, it destroyed the vapor canopy, and that greatly reduced a man's longevity on the Earth. So that's why immediately, even in the Bible, you have people living hundreds of years old.

And then, suddenly, after the flood, they don't live that long. So much so that even Psalms 90 says, the days of our lives are 70 years. If you make it to 80, they're filled with labor and sorrow. It seems that in the millennial kingdom of the future, the longevity of people on the earth will return to pre-flood levels. And then, let's just close this out, he says in verse 7, upon the throne of David and over his kingdom to order and establish with judgment and justice from that time forward even forever.

God made a very specific promise to King David. He said to David, 2 Samuel chapter 7, your house and your kingdom will endure forever. Now, I happen to be one who believes that forever doesn't mean 4 years or 10 years. It's not like modern saying, dude, that was, like, forever. It was only actually five minutes.

Yeah, but it seemed like forever. No, forever is forever. And you might be thinking, yeah, you are reading this way too literally. The whole lion and the lamb lying down together, and the whole on the throne of David literally ruling from Jerusalem, you're taking that way too literally. Really? Tell that to the angel who told Mary that she was pregnant with a baby that they were to call Jesus.

Because the angel said to Mary these words, you will conceive in your womb and preach and, preach, excuse me. You will conceive in your womb, I know Mary preached, and bring forth a Son and 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, that is Israel, forever. And of his kingdom, there will be no end. So we have, then, the Prince of Peace ruling from the City of Peace over an earth that is filled with peace.

And that's what the prophets of the Old Testament knew the world needed. We don't need a better philosophy of government. We don't need a better system of legislation. We just need the right person with the right character at the right time. And there will be peace on Earth, and it will last. I want to close this series by asking you this question. We know the government of this world is going to be on Jesus' shoulders one day. He'll rule it all. Is the government of your life on his shoulders now? Have you turned over your life to Him now?

The Bible says, every need will bow. Every tongue will confess. But you don't have to wait till there's that enforced peace. You can voluntarily say, you know what? I've been trying to carry my burden on my own shoulders for so long, I feel so weighed down, I just can't manage any longer. The quicker you get to that point, the better your life will be, especially if you take the step of, I'm turning my life, I'm surrendering my life to the Lord Jesus Christ. Let's bow in prayer. And, if you've not done that, do that this morning. Say to him, if you've not given your life to Christ, surrender. Just say:

Lord, I give you me. I give you my life. I know that I am a sinner. Forgive me. I believe in Jesus. I believe he died on a cross. I believe he shed his blood for me. I believe he rose again. I turn from my sin. I turn to Jesus as Savior. I want to follow him as my master. Fill me with your Spirit. And help me to walk with you today and every day. In Jesus' name, Amen.

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