Eternal State

Concise Bible Dictionary:

A term not found in scripture, but often applied to the future, when the Lord Jesus will deliver up the kingdom to God the Father, and be Himself subject unto Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all (1 Cor. 15:24-2824Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 25For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. 27For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. 28And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. (1 Corinthians 15:24‑28); compare Rev. 21:1-81And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. 2And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 5And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. 6And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 8But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. (Revelation 21:1‑8)).

From Anstey’s Doctrinal Definitions:

This term is not in Scripture, but it conveys a Scriptural thought. Bible teachers use it when referring to a condition of things that God will create in the heavens and the earth after time has run its course—that is, after the Millennium. There are only three places in Scripture where the Eternal State is described: 1 Corinthians 15:24-2824Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. 25For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. 26The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. 27For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him. 28And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. (1 Corinthians 15:24‑28); 2 Peter 3:12-1312Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? 13Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. (2 Peter 3:12‑13), and Revelation 21:1-81And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. 2And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 5And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. 6And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 8But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. (Revelation 21:1‑8).
In the Eternal state, the reconciliation of all things will be complete; everything will be in accord with the mind of God (Col. 1:2020And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. (Colossians 1:20)). Sin and death will exist in the Millennium (Psa. 101:5-85Whoso privily slandereth his neighbor, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer. 6Mine eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me: he that walketh in a perfect way, he shall serve me. 7He that worketh deceit shall not dwell within my house: he that telleth lies shall not tarry in my sight. 8I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the Lord. (Psalm 101:5‑8); Isa. 65:2020There shall be no more thence an infant of days, nor an old man that hath not filled his days: for the child shall die an hundred years old; but the sinner being an hundred years old shall be accursed. (Isaiah 65:20); Zech. 5:1-41Then I turned, and lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and behold a flying roll. 2And he said unto me, What seest thou? And I answered, I see a flying roll; the length thereof is twenty cubits, and the breadth thereof ten cubits. 3Then said he unto me, This is the curse that goeth forth over the face of the whole earth: for every one that stealeth shall be cut off as on this side according to it; and every one that sweareth shall be cut off as on that side according to it. 4I will bring it forth, saith the Lord of hosts, and it shall enter into the house of the thief, and into the house of him that sweareth falsely by my name: and it shall remain in the midst of his house, and shall consume it with the timber thereof and the stones thereof. (Zechariah 5:1‑4); 1 Cor. 15:2525For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. (1 Corinthians 15:25)), but in the Eternal State all trace of them will be gone (John 1:2929The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. (John 1:29); 1 Cor. 15:2626The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death. (1 Corinthians 15:26)). During the Millennium, righteousness will “reign” (Isa. 32:1; 61:111Behold, a king shall reign in righteousness, and princes shall rule in judgment. (Isaiah 32:1)
11For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations. (Isaiah 61:11)
). It will be the rule of life for all on earth; everything that lifts up its head against it will be judged and put down. But in the Eternal State, righteousness “dwells” peacefully (2 Peter 3:1313Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. (2 Peter 3:13)). There will be no need to enforce it, for there will be no adverse power to resist it—all will be of God and He will be “all in all” (1 Cor. 15:2828And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all. (1 Corinthians 15:28)). Scripture says that Christ and the heavenly saints will “reign to the age of ages” (which is the Eternal State), but it does not say that they reign in the age of ages (Rev. 22:55And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. (Revelation 22:5) – J. N. Darby Trans.). Christ will have delivered up the kingdom to the Father then, and there will be no need for government in the earth (1 Cor. 15:2424Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power. (1 Corinthians 15:24)). Thus, the Millennium will be for the vindication of God’s character, but the Eternal State will be for the satisfaction of His heart. The Millennium will be “the day of the Lord (Isa. 1:1212When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts? (Isaiah 1:12), etc.) and “the day of Christ” (Phil. 1:6, 10; 2:166Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: (Philippians 1:6)
10That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; (Philippians 1:10)
16Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither labored in vain. (Philippians 2:16)
, etc.), but the Eternal State will be “the day of God” (2 Peter 3:1212Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? (2 Peter 3:12)) and “the day of eternity” (2 Peter 3:1818But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen. (2 Peter 3:18)). Everything in heaven and earth will reflect the glory of God in that eternal day.
Heaven and earth will abide as distinct places throughout all eternity, but they will be in an entirely new condition, which will be altogether different from what we know today. Revelation 21:11And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. (Revelation 21:1) says that there will be “no more sea.” This, taken symbolically, indicates that there will be no more separation in circumstances as we know them. A “sea” is a separating element in nature and is used in this verse to indicate separation in circumstances, space, age, and nationality, etc. Therefore, time dimensions, geographical boundaries, human limitations and differences will all be gone then. There will be nothing to separate men from happy fellowship with one another and with God. A condition of fixed happiness will pervade everything. Thus, there will be no more “tears,” “death,” “sorrow,” “crying,” and “pain”—things which are the direct result of sin (Rev. 21:55And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. (Revelation 21:5)).
New Jerusalem will come into view as the eternal abode of the Church, which will be “prepared as a bride adorned for her husband(Rev. 21:22And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (Revelation 21:2)). Thus, the Church will exist as a distinct entity from the other groups of redeemed persons as the “bride” of Christ. The Church as “the Lamb’s wife” (which she will be in the Millennium assisting in the government of the earth – Rev. 21:99And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. (Revelation 21:9)) will cease in the Eternal State, but the Church as a “bride” of Christ will continue for eternity. She will be there wholly “for” His enjoyment and for the satisfaction of His heart.
New Jerusalem is said to come “down from God,” but there is no indication that it touches the earth; thus heaven and earth will remain distinct in the Eternal State, but they will be in the closest harmony. In that eternal day, it will be triumphantly declared: The tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them” (Rev. 21:33And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. (Revelation 21:3)). This is a great desire of God—to dwell in fellowship with “the sons of men” (Prov. 8:3131Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men. (Proverbs 8:31)). When this occurs, it will be announced triumphantly—“It is done” (Rev. 21:66And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. (Revelation 21:6)). This marks the fulfillment of God’s purpose with man.