Satan’s 7,000 Year Lease?

Q. I have heard and read many times that God gave Adam the earth on a ‘lease’ for only 7,000 years. For this reason, when Adam fell and forfeited the earth to Satan, Satan only has 7,000 years to have dominion on this earth. After that Jesus Christ arrives in His Second Advent to reclaim the earth, etc. Where is the express scripture that says that the earth is on a ‘lease’ of 7,000 years. If there is no express scripture, how can this be inferred?

A. What you’ve heard and read many times is an unsupported man made opinion, probably based on Peter’s comment that with the Lord a day is like 1,000 years and 1,000 years are like a day (2 Peter 3:8).

Peter’s statement did not mean we could use one day and 1,000 years interchangeably when interpreting prophecy, especially not as a general principle. He was just saying that with the Lord, time is much more elastic than it is with us.

Sometimes the passage of a single day to mankind could seem like 1,000 years to God and other times what seems like a single day to Him could be like 1,000 years to mankind. He was explaining that God is not slow in keeping His promises, his timing is always perfect.

As for a 7,000 year lease, I know of no such “agreement” between God and Adam from which Satan could benefit. Adam was told to rule over the earth and subdue it (Genesis 1:28) but I’ve never seen anything in the Bible that established a time frame.

If you’ve been taught that, it’s likely been inferred by someone who has put various thoughts together and drawn an incorrect conclusion from them. I say that because if the 7,000 year period is accurate, then Satan will spend the last 1,000 years of it in prison while the Lord rules on Earth (Zechariah 14:9 & Rev. 20:1-2).

This is why Paul said we should accept each message we hear with all readiness of mind, but to search the Scriptures daily to see if what we’re being told is true (Acts 17:11).

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