It is important to know the heart of God in the post-Armageddon restoration. Not only does all history then climax sharply, but all things worked by God in past millennia will blossom into good fruit for that new age. If one wants to walk more closely with God, it would be advantageous to understand the apple of His eye, the longing of His Spirit, or the cry of His heart. He isn't allowing Satan liberal reign on this planet for no good reason. We should know that reason and walk with God accordingly.
When the lucent angel revolted against God, there were accusations laid against Him which were reasonable enough in the minds of other angels to bring many alongside the rebellion. God's integrity and sincerity was shrouded with some suspicion as a result, and even those which remained faithful to God must have passed thoughts that spawned some doubt. I surmise that, unless God had treated this situation once and for all time to prove His noble intentions, questions would forever crop up in the minds of his faithful with the likelihood of future rebellions throughout eternity. The way in which God has dealt with the attack on His sincerity is called History. We are still in the throws of this crisis, not to be fully dealt with until the New Earth arrives i.e. after the new age that is the Final Millennium.
The same questions asked by the angels would also develop, eventually, in the minds of all created beings (i.e. men/women): How do we truly know if God cares for us as he claims? Or, is he merely using us selfishly? He says that something glorious is in store for us, but can we really trust Him? What if he oppresses us in the end, forces us to serve Him against our wills with the mere "reward" of eternal existence? We can see these same doubts in the Garden when the lizard brought them to Eve's mind, as Satan accused God of withholding power and glory from us. Therefore, God had to show, once and for all, that Satan was the liar and not He, and that He was gladly willing to glorify and empower His faithful with more than they could ever dream of.
In order to expose to all created beings the deepest truths of this conflict, God allowed Satan certain free reign in His arena. If He restricted Satan's activities, the full extent of his wicked nature would not be revealed. But God would act simultaneously in the same arena, to vindicate His own character of love and faithfulness, and while the arena is Earth, the self-sacrificing and torturous Cross is the winning goal scored as His testimony to all.
Scripture plays a significant role in this conflict by keeping a record of events transpiring in the arena, exposing both the heart of God and the activities of Satan. The saints also play a part as they willingly testify to God's faithfulness and righteousness. In the same way, the sons of Satan play a part by revealing the utter emptiness and foolishness of life under a reign of rebellion wherein God is either cast aside altogether (atheism), modified (cults and pluralism), or undermined (paganism). Whenever the saints speak with sons of Satan concerning Spiritual affairs, we see their duplicity and their willingness to be deceived for the sake of a sinful, unrestrained society.
Thus, we more clearly proclaim God to be the Righteous One. And so on Him we stand and swear upon, putting our faith in Him because we believe He is telling us the truth. If we place our faith in Him to our deaths, we proclaim His trustworthiness in a most absolute way, announcing to all that we believe He will faithfully raise us from the grave. Thus, the need for this absolute testimony demands the appointment of some of us to death in His Name, and those appointed give it willingly while having the option not to, Jesus being only one example. But how many people do we see dying in the name of Satan? We see people sinning and killing in his name, but there is not much they can speak up for in his name which is worthy.
After giving Satan six millennia to prove his worthiness, where he has been unable to do so, and where he has not been able to prove God's unworthiness, God is justified in eradicating Satan, his angels, and his sons, with raw power, to leave only the righteous remaining. When He glorifies us at that time, in the Resurrection, we will know him completely, that he has all power over all things and is intent on goodness toward us for all eternity. He permits our foes a liberal rule over us, not to abandon us to them, but to expose His reliability. When God permits us to see what full rebellion leads to, no one will ever ask the questions again, concerning His character, for such questions will no longer linger.
We can understand why it is that faith in God is being built strongly in us within this arena, for we must exercise faith in God for eternity, as he cannot go forward cleanly with his eternal agenda unless we, the main players, trust Him in what He will do with us. While we are now learning of his deliverance from every mile of trial in this life, and of his comfort in each bout of doubt, the approach of Armageddon will make us weaker than ever only for that Event to stand taller as the Grand Deliverance.
Did not Jesus ask whether or not there would be faith in the earth when he returns? He didn't ask because he didn't know the answer, but he thereby proclaimed that faith will be weak in the end times. And no wonder, for it is the dark hour once again, for Satan to rule, when we, too, may weep drops of blood in our greatest hour of trial, that we might endure for Jesus what Jesus endured for us--that we might rise into the glory that he arose in before us.
We will all be able to look back at the record of history to see what occurs when one rebels against God, and no one, neither man nor angel, would then dare to rebel against Him again, for the utter pain, darkness and destruction resulting from rebellion has been made known once and for all time. The deliverance at Armageddon will be the foundation of our eternal faith in Christ, even as it will be the ultimate turning point of natural Israel's attitude toward God. All things which God is working are working to a head upon that Day of the Lord.
If anyone asks why God allows pain and suffering in our world, the answer should be along these lines, where God must permit a sizable fraction of Satan's activities, without His power intervening, to expose the eventual losses and horrors connected to a kingdom under wicked rule. While this situation includes the death of children at times, and other such horrors, remember that God does intervene to save more children from harm than He gives over to disaster. If God manipulated every event so that no harm would come about to anyone, where only goodness would result, how could the true nature of a Satanic world be exposed?
How many times have we heard the ills of the world being blamed on Jews and Christians? Russia attempted to build a glorious world without God, and God allowed Satan, among other harsh persecutions, to jail His saints there. But the end has been misery to all Russian citizens, and no one can blame it on the Russian Christians because they were removed from all political power. Ditto for China and many other nations that will likewise fall. Will Western secularism escape such an exposure? No, for, as we can already see the process at work, God will soon allow secularism/pluralism to remove Biblical Christianity (i.e. "fundamentalism") completely out of its way, so that secularists can attempt to prosper without us, and when the end of the matter is all manner of greed, hatred, arrogance, and perversions of truth and righteousness, bringing about Armageddon, then all angels will know that the saints are not to blame for any of it.
The peoples of the world are turning more deeply to a variety of religious commitments. In the Western world, the secular sons of Satan are working this to their advantage by tolerating cults of all kinds, but only to control them so as to water them all down in unison into what is being called "pluralism." Have atheists/secularists not blamed wars repeatedly on religious fervor? But God forbids His people to engage in earthly warfare in an effort to protect His Kingdom on earth, that we might not partake in the sins of other religions, and not be accused of violence/selfishness in His name. This principle is more important in the great tribulation than ever. We must resist fighting against the authorities with the weapons of the world.
Jesus rebuked a zealous Peter in Gethsemane, not just because the apostle was standing in the way of salvation by the Blood, but because he was thwarting the self-condemnation of those who slaughtered the Lamb. The saints must again scatter and run from the authorities beginning at a future Passover, to thereby be removed forcefully from society--into the "Egyptian" wilderness--that all manner of injustice and wickedness might then come to a quick fulfillment, with the sons of Satan incriminating themselves fully.
When men and women perform sexual acts in front of cameras, and when those depraved pictures are exposed for sale in our milk stores alongside candy for our children, you know the end of the world is at hand. When the President of the United States declares it legal to kill a baby so long as part of its body is still in the womb, you know that Satan has incriminated himself with the grossest possible crimes against humanity. Who would ever hold good this one's accusations against God? It would be a laughing matter if it were not so sickening, but laugh and rejoice and celebrate we will!!
The Bible does not speak personally regarding the specific activities of immortals in the Millennium, though it does define our role in definite terms: we will be rulers of the planet! But this claim will be used against us in the great tribulation, as Hitler used it against Israelites to make all other peoples look upon Jews with disdain. As they mocked Jesus while he hung on the Cross, they will mock us as we bend the knee to death and prison. Amen, let us be passive, as a sheep to the slaughter that does not flee away nor fight back nor cry out!
With an increase in our knowledge of the Millennial mortals--the whys and whats of their existence at that time--we can ascertain the activities of glorified immortals as they live alongside the mortals. One thing made plain by Scripture is the purpose of our ruling with Christ: to bring about the fruits of the Spirit upon the entire globe. But why has God ordained this quasi-immortal thousand-year period of peace and righteousness before bringing on the fully immortal New Earth? In my opinion, God must yet show what the arena will be like when governed by His sons, with Satan completely out of the way, all tied up and no longer able to enter a soul to deceive. A contrast between what Satan has accomplished with his reign through his mortal sons and what God will accomplish through his mortal sons with the government on the shoulders of Christ must be exposed for all to see, once and for all, before putting an end to the arena and moving on into eternity. And the new "principalities of the air" that govern the mortals, if I may put it in those terms, will be the glorified saints who permitted their deaths in the great tribulation (Rev. 20) without bending the knee to Satan's empire.
Therefore, we may adduce another point, that God will not manipulate the Millennium, but will permit His sons to act/choose freely under His influence, as Satan's sons acted under his influence. This is not to say that God will keep aloof from the power structures at that time, for "the Branch" will definitely rule with power, or, as Scripture tells us, Christ will then rule with an "iron rod." Make a wrong decision, and the iron rod of correction will come down hard! Selah. It's what the world has lacked in the baby-boom generation. Worse yet, there will be an iron rod in the coming tribulation (i.e. the False Prophet), but it will be used against the saints when they choose to rebel against the sinful dictates of the wicked. Selah!
The end-result of Christ's iron rod, we trust, will be life, righteousness, and all other good fruits of the Spirit. With this in mind, we see what our priorities should be in this life as we hope for the new age, to prepare to rule in such a way as to glorify (vindicate) God in the Millennium. Paul said:
"To me...was given...to preach the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to bring to light...the mystery hidden from the ages in God...in order that, through the Church, the manifold wisdom of God might be made known to the rulers and to the authorities in the heavenlies..." (Ephesians 3:8-10).
The "rulers and authorities in the heavenlies" include Satan's domain, and we see that the "mystery" of God is associated with an exposure of His wisdom to the entire angelic domain. And just look at whom God will use to expose that wisdom. Let me tell you that there is nothing fundamental about this task; it is a high calling. God wants to make a spectacle of Satan before the righteous angels, and the Millennium will be of prime importance in this task. Can we begin to see the importance, then, of our spotless condition when Christ returns? What good will we be in this task of degrading the current world if we ourselves are degraded up to our necks in worldly pursuits and activities?
Is it any wonder that the apostles stress spotlessness and righteousness, in their epistles, much more than they do evangelism? The essence of righteousness is simply this: to consider the desires and needs of others as much as our own while living in the human community, something that the Western world has spurned in favor of capitalistic combativeness (i.e. dog eat dog). God has ordained that we be a Community, not of rats whose motto is, "money makes the world go round," but of those who put together packages of pleasantries to those in oppressing conditions. This is the Golden Rule, is it not? Yes, and this Rule will diminish oppressing conditions in the next age, meaning that it should be our concern both now and in the tribulation period. For God is righteous in that he cares for what is best for humanity. This fact He must expose to all powers and authorities. Shall we be any different in character, therefore, who are called by his Name?
If men and women can be truly righteous, without hypocrisy, then why not God Himself who is much stronger than we? If God commands his own children to be righteous and then punishes them for their unrighteousness, how can anyone accuse him of not being righteous? Therefore, His iron rod of correction will prove his heart. It is due to our own selfishness that we doubt God's righteousness, for we begin to think that He must be just like us. But when God steers and then freely permits the Millennium to come to an end bathed in righteousness throughout, with glorious immortality given to those faithful to Him, no one will ever question His true motives again.
Understandably, those who exhibit more righteousness now will govern more powerfully in the Millennium, for God is after righteous people to reflect His own character. And such submission to Him will bring you a Millennial office; this is the teaching of the parable of the talents:
"Well done, good and faithful servant. Over a few things you were faithful, over many things I will set you up" (Matthew 25:21).
"Well done, good servant. Because in a little thing you were faithful, take authority over ten cities" (Luke 19:17).
In my opinion, God's primary will for us in this life is not to evangelize, but to become conformed to His character. Indeed, scripture reveals the best evangelists as those who are so conforming. These are made ready for noble purposes. But the one not so conforming should not think to receive anything from Him.
Christ said that God could raise converts from the stones, implying what we already know, that He does not need our help to convert souls. There are many evangelists attempting to convert people any which way they can, but unless a lost soul steadfastly decides to conform to the character of God, their new-found faith will become twisted, choked, and finally useless (i.e. dead). We may as well lay the facts out on the table from the start, that it is not an easy task to serve God unless one welcomes Him, the real Him, and then grows toward him with a deep root in rich soil. All other converts will dissipate (i.e. rot away).
The Bible does not stress evangelism projects. Jesus sent the apostles to go preach the gospel to all nations, of course, for the nations had not heard the message at all and there was absolutely no one to tell of it. But once there were converts among the nations, the emphasis on special missionary projects stopped. You can come to this conclusion by simply reading the New Testament epistles. These were letters written by those who were commissioned to preach the gospel, and yet they did not stress evangelism projects. What they do stress is conforming to the character of God.
I'm not saying that the writers did not concern themselves whatsoever with urging us to share the Word of Life, for they did. What I am saying is that there is no great stress on foreign missions, nor evangelism projects in general, for they knew that God would use certain saints at will at the proper times, to plant the seeds of life or to convert lost sheep. There is no use in banging on the door of a lost sheep for twenty years prior to the time which God has appointed for that one's conversion. God is not worried in the least for that one's salvation, for He will bring it about at the proper time. Therefore, let us not think that anyone will end up in Hell due to our failure to share the message, albeit if God wants you to share but you don't, you will get His rod of correction, not to mention your just "reward."
There are some things that Jesus said to the apostles that he did not intend for all of us, and "Go into all the world and preach the gospel," as in leaving our homeland, is one of them. But all of us are to grow in Godly character, and this is based in righteousness, where righteousness is expressed through kindness, and where the whole affair is motivated by love. It is for this task of love that we are given faith in Christ in the first place, and with the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, we can succeed. As Paul said, the only thing that counts is "faith operating through love" (Galatians 5:5).
Christ did not die on the cross to forgive us our unrighteous acts so that we might merely receive an imputed righteousness that is by proclamation only, but that we might become righteous in our very deeds. Anyone striving to be like Jesus will have the Cross applied to his/her soul, but anyone not so striving will die in their sins. This is not "salvation by works," it is salvation by "faith and works." For if the righteousness is not present in a soul, then neither is the true faith. Yes, we are saved by "faith alone," providing that faith is defined as one filled with righteous works. Will anyone be so dull as to define faith in Christ as one without righteousness?
Repentance itself is the first work that nets us Grace, but it is also the continual work. If you stop repenting, God will stop applying the Grace. So long as you are struggling to repent, the forgiveness will be applied. If we think Grace will be applied without our continual repentance/obedience, we offend Grace.
If we fail to vindicate God by a righteous lifestyle, we will be considered as defectors to the other side, and will then pay the penalty that Satan himself is destined to pay, and that he pays daily (i.e. insanity, burning rage and hatred, hopelessness, stupidity, a false wisdom, self-deception, etc., etc.). To do God's will, remain unstained by the world in three basic ways 1) refrain from sexual immorality, 2) restrain the love of wealth, and, 3) honor no god/fad/utopia/culture/religion/wisdom/nation but the True God and His Jewish Son, Jesus Christ. All else is of the slithering serpent and his festering sons. Then you will prepare the groundwork for righteous living, which in a nutshell is summed up by kindness to those in need.