WHAT IS MILLENNIALISM, WHERE DOES THE TERM COME FROM, and when did this theory originate? One could talk about the 3 major theories, (1) Pre-Millennialism, (2) A-Millennialism, and (3) Post-Millennialism; but this has been done by many other men much more able than we are.
Therefore, we will attempt to help you understand that the Pre-Millennialism theory is really a “Jewish Millennialism.” Most Christians believe the theory is Christian in origin; and they will cite Revelations 20:1-7 and say it is talking about the “millennium” but some say the theory predates the Christian era.
Looking at the Jewish Encyclopaedia it has the following to say about the millennial theory. It states that the Millennium (or Chilliasm) is actually older than the Christian church itself In other words, it isn’t a Christian idea after all. The reign of peace, lasting a thousand years, which will precede the last and final judgment and the future life, is a concept which has achieved a special importance in the Christian church, where it has been termed Chilliasm, designating the domination of Jesus with the glorified and risen saints, will rule for a thousand years.
Chilliasm, or the idea of the thousand years is, nevertheless, older than the Christian church. For the belief of a thousand years, at the end of time, as a preliminary to the resurrection of the dead, was held in Pharisaism. This concept is expressed in Jewish literature in the Book of Enoch and etc.