Chapter 37: The Millennium and the Glorification of the Earth

Doctrines of the Gospel Teacher Manual, (2011), 131–32


Introduction

  1. Read the following quotation, and ask the students if they can guess who said it and when it was said:

    “Have we increased in knowledge or intelligence? Where is there a man that can step forth and alter the destiny of nations and promote the happiness of the world? Or where is there a kingdom or nation that can promote the universal happiness of its own subjects, or even their general well-being? Our nation, which possesses greater resources than any other, is rent, from center to circumference, with party strife, political intrigues, and sectional interest; our counselors are panic stricken, our legislators are astonished, and our senators are confounded, our merchants are paralyzed, our tradesmen are disheartened, our mechanics out of employ, our farmers distressed. …

    “… the world itself presents one great theater of misery, woe, and ‘distress of nations with perplexity.’ All, all, speak with a voice of thunder, that man is not able to govern himself, to legislate for himself, to protect himself, to promote his own good, nor the good of the world.” (Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, pp. 249–50.)

    Tell the students that this quotation is from an editorial written by the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1842. Considering the similarities of world conditions between the time of Joseph Smith and the present, what can we conclude about man-made governments? What conclusion did Joseph Smith reach?

  2. Display a recent newspaper, and pinpoint the articles that would not be published in a millennial newspaper. Discuss what kind of headlines would be typical in a newspaper published during the Millennium.

  3. You may want to sing or read the words of the hymn “Adam-ondi-Ahman” (Hymns, 1985, no. 49).

Ideas for Teaching

  1. A.

    The thousand years of the Millennium will be ushered in when the Savior comes in power and glory.

    1. For six thousand years, God has given people the opportunity of governing themselves righteously. Most people throughout history have failed in this attempt. According to the following scriptures, what responsibility will the Savior assume when he comes the second time?

  2. B.

    The earth will be renewed for the millennial day.

    1. Review with the students the tenth article of faith.

    2. What will be the life expectancy of a mortal person during the Millennium? (see Isaiah 65:20). What might contribute to this longer life?

    3. Ask the students to read Jeremiah 31:31–34 and Doctrine and Covenants 84:98. What great promise is contained in both of these passages? (All righteous Israelites will know the Lord personally.)

  3. C.

    The Millennium will be a time of peace.

    1. Are there some who would choose to live lives of wickedness even in a righteous society under righteous rulers? What happens when the wicked rule? What happens when the wicked influence not only government but also economics, the arts, entertainment, fashion, education, and science? Does this circumstance explain in part why the Savior will destroy the wicked when he comes? (See Mosiah 29:17–23; Alma 46:9.)

    2. Discuss what happens when the righteous rule. What does Isaiah indicate will occur? (see Isaiah 26:9).

      Which evils do the following scriptures indicate will be eliminated in the Millennium?

    3. Indicate that Satan will be bound during the Millennium. Satan often claims to be the prince, or ruler, of this world. Who gives him the power to rule? (The Lord allows Satan to tempt mankind, but it is mankind’s wickedness that gives Satan the power to rule.) If mankind is no longer wicked, Satan can no longer rule. Discuss President George Q. Cannon’s comments in Supporting Statements C on page 104 of the student manual (see Gospel Truth, 1:86, 86–87). How will Satan be bound during the Millennium?

  4. D.

    During the Millennium the Savior will reign personally upon the earth.

    1. Use Doctrinal Outline D on page 103 of the student manual to organize a scripture study session. Select one or two verses from each section, and encourage the students to read the pertinent footnotes and references in the Topical Guide in the Latter-day Saint edition of the King James Version of the Bible.

  5. E.

    The final glorification of the earth will take place sometime after the Millennium.

    1. Was there a period in scriptural history during which near-millennial conditions prevailed? (Among the righteous Nephites and Lamanites after the Savior’s visit.) How long did it last? (Nearly two hundred years.) What brought this condition to an end? Discuss the gradual loosening of Satan as righteousness among the Nephites and Lamanites deteriorated (see 4 Nephi 1:24–42). Will the peace of the Millennium be destroyed in a similar way—that is, because our righteousness deteriorates? What will the reversal of millennial harmony eventually lead to? (see D&C 88:111–15; 29:22). What will be the eventual end of the earth? (see D&C 88:17–20; 130:8–11; 77:1).

Conclusion

The Millennium is the Saints’ day with the Savior. For one thousand years he will tutor us in preparation for celestial life with our Heavenly Father.