SINCE the days of the apostles, God has been choosing from among mankind a limited number of faithful Christians, adopting them as sons. The change that these adopted sons experience is so complete that God’s Word describes it as a new birth. The purpose of the new birth is to prepare such born-again servants of God to become rulers in heaven. (2 Timothy 2:12)
To become rulers, they are raised out of death to heavenly life. (Romans 6:3-5) In heaven, “they are to rule as kings over the earth” along with Christ.—Revelation 5:10; 11:15.
However, God’s Word also states that others besides those who are born again will receive everlasting salvation. In the Bible (in the Hebrew Scriptures as well as in the Christian Greek Scriptures), mention is made of the fact that God purposed to save two groups of people—a comparatively small group of rulers living in heaven and a large group of subjects living on earth.
Note, for example, what the apostle John wrote to fellow believers who had experienced the new birth. He stated regarding Jesus: “He is a propitiatory sacrifice for our sins, yet not for ours [the small group] only but also for the whole world’s [the large group].”—1 John 2:2.
Similarly, the apostle Paul wrote: “The eager expectation of the creation [the large group] is waiting for the revealing of the sons of God [the small group].” (Romans 8:19-21) How should these words of the apostles John and Paul be understood? In this way: Those who are born again will become part of a government in heaven. For what purpose?
To bring everlasting benefits to untold millions of people, subjects of God’s government who will be living on earth. Therefore, Jesus taught his disciples to pray: “Let your kingdom come. Let your will take place, as in heaven, also upon earth.”—Matthew 6:10.
This same truth regarding salvation being extended to two groups is also found in the Hebrew Scriptures. Note, for instance, what Jehovah told Jesus’ forefather Abraham: “By means of your seed [the small group] all nations of the earth [the large group] will certainly bless themselves.” (Genesis 22:18) Yes, blessings were to be made available to all nations through Abraham’s “seed.”
Who is that “seed”? Jesus Christ, joined by those who experienced the new birth, the adopted sons of God. The apostle Paul explains: “If you belong to Christ, you are really Abraham’s seed.” (Galatians 3:16, 29) And what are the blessings that come to people of all nations through the “seed”?
The privilege of being restored to God’s favor and enjoying life without end on a paradise earth. The psalmist David prophesied: “The righteous themselves will possess the earth, and they will reside forever upon it.”—Psalm 37:29; Isaiah 45:18; Revelation 21:1-5.
Indeed, rulership in heaven is set aside for some, but the benefits of heavenly rulership—everlasting life on earth and all its accompanying blessings—are extended to many. May you and your family be among those who will reap the everlasting benefits that God’s Kingdom will bring.