LD 18: The Heavenly Christ is still with us
by Rev J. Kortering
John 3:13 “And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.”
We should take note, that the position of the historic Reformed faith concerning the ascension of Jesus into heaven is that, “Christ, in sight of His disciples, was taken up from earth into heaven, and that He continues there for our interest, until He comes again to judge the quick (living) and the dead.” The assumption here is that we believe there is a place called heaven and a place called earth, and that in the ascension Jesus traveled from earth to heaven. “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”. Heaven and earth together describe the WHOLE of creation as set forth in Genesis 1. Since there is no mention elsewhere of the creation of the angels, we can include it in the all comprehensive statement. The account of creation and the whole of Scripture is written with view to God’s redemptive plan for man, and the earth is the home for man. Hence the heaven is in the background. Heaven is the created place that manifests God’s glory in the realm of the angels and the glorified church. Both await the final revelation of glory in the destruction of this heaven and earth and the creation of a new one.
Notice in the quotation from John 3 above, Jesus dwelled in that heaven before He was born and after His earthly ministry returned to that heaven and is there now until He will return to judge all men.
Here the catechism distinguishes between the human nature of Christ and His Godhead or divine nature. Because Jesus is both God and man, the Bible teaches that according to His divine nature He does not travel, He makes no changes in location. He is everywhere present as the Second Person of the trinity. He is always with us, even now.
Jesus possessed both divinity and humanity and it was in His humanity that the changes took place.
Though Jesus is in heaven, He is with us as He said to His disciples, Matt. 28:20b “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world,” His ascension into heaven is for our advantage.
Originally posted here.