Q. 1 What does millenarianism mean?
A. 1 Millenarianism, millennium, millennium, postmillenniaslism and premillennialism are words associated with the non-Catholic belief that Christ will return (Second Coming) to physically reign on earth for a period of 1,000 years.
Q. 2 What does the Catholic Church have to say about this belief?
A. 2 The Catholic Church refers to it as the "Antichrist's deception." The following is stated under # 675-6 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
# 675 "Before Christ's second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. [Lk. 18:; Mt. 24:12] The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth [Lk. 21:12; Jn. 15:19-20] will unveil the "mystery of iniquity" in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh." [2 Thess. 2:4-12; 1 Thess. 5:2-3; 2 Jn. 7; 1 Jn. 2:18, 22]
# 676 "The Antichrist's deception already begins to take shape in the world every time the claim is made to realize within history that messianic hope which can only be realized beyond history through the eschatological judgement. The Church has rejected even modified forms of this falsification of the kingdom to come under the name of millenarianism, [DS 3839] especially the "intrinsically perverse" political form of a secular messianism. [Pius XI, Divini Redemptoris, condemning the "false mysticism" of this "counterfeit of the redemption of the lowly"; cf. GS 20-21.]
Q. 3 How come I have never heard of these terms before?
A. 3As a general rule, these terms are not part of the Catholic vocabulary.
Q. 4 Why are they not part of the Catholic vocabulary?
A. 4 These terms are embraced by non- Catholics who are waiting for the coming of the physical reign of Jesus on earth for a thousand years.
The Catholic Church teaches that Jesus is presently reigning on earth in His invisible Kingdom. Jesus is presently reigning among us in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist and in the Sacred Tabernacles.
To believe in the millenarianism is to deny the presence of Jesus in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist and the Sacred Tabernacles. Because we believe in the presence of Jesus in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist and in the Sacred Tabernacles, there is no need for us to refer to millenarianism that opposes what our faith teaches us.
Q. 5 Are there any Bible passages that affirm that the Kingdom of God is presently here and that it is spiritual?
A. 5 Yes! When the Pharisees inquired about the Kingdom of God, Jesus said that the Kingdom of God is not something that can be observed; nor will they say, "Look here it is!" or "There it is!" For in fact, the Kingdom of God is among you. [Lk. 17:20-1] [Note: Some Bible translations say "within you."
When questioned by Pilate as to where His Kingdom was, Jesus said, "My Kingdom is not from this world. If My Kingdom were from this world, My followers would be fighting to keep Me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, My Kingdom is not from here." [Jn. 18:36]
It is very important for Christians to realize from the two previous passages that the Kingdom of God is not physical in nature. It is an invisible and spiritual Kingdom that is among [within] the people.
Anyone who teaches otherwise, he is proclaiming teachings that contradict the teachings of Jesus.