I keep wondering of how the world will work in the millennium, politically. Now, obviously Christ will somehow be the ruler of the earth; however I’m curious as how that would work. Will all nations combine into a global nation? Will we keep our current countries, just without any corruption? Will Christ be the President of the United Nations? If we are one nation/kingdom would we be socialist or capitalist,as there are negative aspects of both. Thanks for your input.
I’m afraid you’ve touched on a topic that I could go on at great length about. Indeed the prophets have no shortage of statements on the topic. So, the question is: where can I stop talking about it?
First, let’s start with one of the earliest mentions of the earthly government of God. The Old Testament prophet Daniel interpreted a dream of King Nebuchadnezzar wherein he described a stone cut out of the mountain without hands (Daniel 2).
34 Thou sawest till that a stone was cut out without hands, which smote the image upon his feet that were of iron and clay, and brake them to pieces.
35 Then was the iron, the clay, the brass, the silver, and the gold, broken to pieces together, and became like the chaff of the summer threshing floors; and the wind carried them away, that no place was found for them: and the stone that smote the image became a great mountain, and filled the whole earth.
44 And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever.
This “stone” was not man-made (hence, without hands). And this stone proceeded to break apart all the kingdoms of the earth. And this stone grew to fill the whole earth.
This great kingdom is verily the Church of Jesus Christ, which has been established in the earth for the last time. It is not to be destroyed but is to continue to endure and increase until it shall fill the earth in the due time of the Lord. Joseph Fielding Smith, The Improvement Era, Feb 1967, p 4
During that time we know
…that Zion will be built upon the American Continent, that Christ will reign personally upon the earth, and that the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory. Article of Faith 10
Christ’s reign will be complete.
The Lord will be king over all the earth, and all mankind literally under his sovereignty, and every nation under the heavens will have to acknowledge his authority. John Taylor, The Government of God, p 87
When our Saviour comes to rule in the millennium, all governments will become subject unto his government. When Christ comes… The Lord is going to make an end to all nations… Joseph Fielding Smith, B. H. Roberts, DHC, Vol 7, p 229
But during the Millenium, not all survivors of the Last Days will be Saints.
If the Latter-day Saints think… that all the inhabitants of the earth will join the church… they are egregiously mistaken. I presume there will be as many sects and parties then as now. Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol 11, p 275, Dec 23, 1866.
After Christ comes, all the peoples of the earth will be subject to him… These people will be subject to the political government, even though thy are not members of the ecclesiastical kingdom which is the Church. Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, Vol 1, p 229
Thus there will be a need for some sort of separation of Church and State.
The Kingdom of God is a separate organization from the Church of God. There may be men acting as officers in the Kingdom of God who will not be members of the Church…men might be chosen to officiate as members of the Kingdom of God who had no standing in the Church…
The Kingdom of God when established will not be for the protection of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints alone, but for the protection of all men… Under its rule, no one will be permitted to overstep the proper bounds or interfere with the rights of others. George Q Canon, B. H. Roberts, DHC, Vol 7, p 382
multitudes upon the face of the earth who are not in the Church will have to be governed, and many of their officers, who will be elected, may not be members of the Church. Joseph Fielding Smith, B. H. Roberts, DHC, Vol 7, p 230
This last quote hinting at elections indicates that even in the Theocracy, some democratic elements will be in play. This makes sense when recognizing that a fundamental principle of even heavenly law is free agency.
While the Kingdom of God and the Church of God are separate bodies, they are often used interchangeably in scriptures because there will be a tremendous amount of overlap. The government / kingdom will be both a Theocracy of the true type that the world has not known since the Garden of Eden and a democratic government where elected officials will be appointed by the people. It may be difficult to imagine how these two types can be merged properly. But knowing that a guiding principle of heaven is individual freedom, a Christ-centered Kingdom would also respect such a fundamental principle. Therefore, democracy must be a fundamental principle of earthly government. But how are we to accomplish such?
We have not only been given a document which is inspired by God (the Constitution of the United States) as a model of heavenly democracy for earthly governments, but we have also been told that such would be established forever (D&C 109:54) so long as we are faithful. In addition, we’ve been given the guidelines of the responsibilities of earthly governments as well as the description of what principles by which they should be guided (D&C 134). If earthly democratic governments operate under these conditions, they will enact laws under principles of righteousness and will receive authority from the power of the Almighty. Thus it will truly be a Theocracy as well. (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, Vol 6, pp 346-347).
Finally, you asked about economy during the Millennium. That is a bit of a nuanced question that isn’t a simple one to convey to you. The simple answer is that we will most likely be operating under the Law of Consecration. This is where quotations from apostles are not that certain. Many opinions are given. Speaking of the end of the Millennium:
I also believe… when the thousand years shall be ended, it will be through mankind departing from the practice of those principles which God has revealed, and this Order of Enoch (the Law of Consecration) probably among the rest. George Q Canon, Journal of Discourses, Vol 6, p 120
But if you believe the Law of Consecration automatically means a socialist economy, you’ve not really read the words of latter-day prophets. And if you would read that statement to automatically believe it is a capitalist economy, you’ve not really read the words of latter-day prophets.
The law clarified that consecration did not envision communal ownership of property. Rather, it required the willing to acknowledge that the Lord was the owner of all and that each of the Saints was to be a hardworking “Steward over his own property” and thus accountable to the actual owner, the Lord, who required that the Saints freely offer their surplus to His storehouse to be used to relieve poverty and build Zion. — Paraphrased from the above links and D&C 42
To summarize: Christ will reign as supreme ruler over all the earth. But his method of administering such government will be through some democratic process that will most likely be based on a system similar to the US Constitution currently. The true nature of the ideal heavenly economy comes from an acknowledgement that the Lord owns all things and He will hold us each accountable for how we exercise the stewardship with which we have been entrusted.
The real question to ask now is what are we all doing on an individual basis to prepare for such a heavenly government on earth or a heavenly government in heaven?