Church of God, New World Ministries

Bible Q & A

Q. Would you please explain what is meant by God’s 7,000 year plan?
A. Up until now God has allowed approximately 6,000 years for humanity to write the painful lesson of “doing its own thing” – going its own way without the revealed knowledge of its Creator.

A study of biblical chronology indicates that Adam and Eve (our first parents) were created about 4,000 years before Christ (Gen. 5, 10; I Chron. 1-9; Matt. 1; Luke 3). And almost another 2,000 years have elapsed since the time of Christ’s birth – totaling nearly 6,000 years of human civilization to date.

And the Bible tells us that shortly after the appearance of Christ on this earth again, a peaceful, utopian, 1,000-year reign begins on this planet (Rev. 20:1-10; Isa. 11)

These two general spans of time (approximately 6,000 years of man’s rule; approximately 1,000 years of God’s rule) add up to a period of about 7,000 years.

Further, the 7,000-year concept comes from an analogy between the perfect weekly cycle (seven days) and the apparent 6,000 years allotted to mankind prior to the millennium.

We must realize that even though the saints will live and reign with Christ for 1,000 years (Rev. 20:4), there is still an undetermined period of time allowed after the millennium during which Satan will be loosed and the Great White Throne judgment will take place (Rev. 20:11-12). This span of time is in addition to the 1,000 year period.

The main biblical indication of a 7,000-year plan is the evidence provided by the millennium as a type of God’s rest of Sabbath (compare Revelation 20 and Hebrews 4). If the millennium represents a “Sabbath” then it would be logically preceded by six similar 1,000-year “days.”

II Peter 3:8 provides a basis for setting the length of each millennial day: “...One day is with the Lord as [Greek: hos] a thousand years, and a thousand years as [hos] one day.” But we need to realize that even if we understand this as a literal statement regarding a 7, ooo-year plan, it is not giving us a precise, measured duration.

Why not? Because hos before numerals denotes “nearly,” “about,” “approximately.” Compare its usage in Mark 5:13, “about two thousand”; Mark 8:9 “about four thousand; John 6:19, “about five and twenty or thirty”; John 21:8, “as it were two hundred cubits”; Acts 13:18, 20; “about the time of forty years . . .about the space of four hundred and fifty years.”
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