Vol. 15 No. 28
Eph 4:6, “One God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all.”
This is an interesting one, as we have only one item of focus, God the Father, but we are given three affects He has towards us.
Our seventh attribute is “One God and Father of all,” HEIS THEOS KAI PATER PAS. In this passage we are first told that God is One, and there is only one God that is made up of the three persons of the Trinity, in “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.” They are three separate persons who share the exact same essence and attributes equally, infinitely, and eternally. It is the sharing of their essence and attributes that make them One God.
In the previous two verses, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit have been mentioned, here we now see the role of God the Father as the basis for our oneness or “unity in the bond of peace,” as members of the Royal Family of God.
“God and Father” uses an anthropomorphism to communicate the role of the first person of the Trinity, as far as His Plan for mankind is concerned. The Father is the author of the Plan called Grace. He is the ultimate authority in the planning stage of His great Plan.
Calling Him “Father” emphasizes the fatherhood of God towards believers. Even though all members of the human race are technically God’s children, due to His creative acts, 1 Cor 8:6, the believer is given a special title as the “Child of God,” and it is to believers that He becomes their Father, Rom 8:16-21; 9:8; John 1:12-13; Eph 5:1; Phil 2:15; 1 John 3:1-2.
Rom 9:8, “That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.”
John 1:12-13, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”
As such, the “of all” statement, in the Genitive Plural of PAS, first relates to all peoples, believers and unbelievers, as God is the creator of all. However, more importantly, in the context of this verse the “Fatherhood” of God is associated with “all” believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, as we are brought near to Him through adoption, as sons of royalty, Rom 8:15, 23 Gal 4:5-7; Eph 1:5.
Rom 8:15, “For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!””
Eph 1:5, “He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will.”
In this relation of nearness and privilege to the Father in the kingdom of His Son, Col 1:13, believers are “sons of God” in a sense true of no others. It is a relation, not of nature, but of grace. Therefore, Fatherhood is now the determinative fact in God’s relation to the believer, as we will also note later in Eph 3:14-21.
The believer’s sonship can only come through Christ. For us to know who God the Father is, we have to: 1) know Jesus Christ, and 2) know His Word, which are the only means for us to know God the Father, John 14:7, “If you know Me you will know the Father too.” As we noted above, this describes God the Father as the One who originated all that vs. 4 and 5 describe.
When we think about the term and position of “father” or “fatherhood,” it brings many analogies to thought that represent our relationship to God the Father and what He does for us. In the three attributes of God as our Father found in Eph 4:6, Sovereignty, Omnipresence, and Indwelling, the Father unites us in the bond of peace. With these three attributes, He enacts His Fatherhood towards us in the following ways, which are great examples of how earthly fathers should operate towards their children. And in fact, children form a great deal of their understanding of God as Heavenly Father by what they see and hear from their earthly fathers. A father’s tasks are numerous and sometimes quite difficult. Fathering requires tremendous attention, discipline, and self-control. Deut 6 is a fundamental chapter for fathers who want to be effective that also tells us of God the Father’s relationship towards us. The eight aspects for effective fathering can be found in this passage:
- Fathers are to Teach.
- Fathers are to Discipline.
- Fathers are to Walk the Walk; lead by example.
- Fathers are to Be Available.
- Fathers are to Be Involved.
- Fathers are to Initiate Action.
- Fathers are to Have High but Realistic Expectations.
- Fathers are to Express Love.
In vs. 6 we also see that the Father has three actions towards the believer to bring about our unity in Christ. These are manifestations of His essence or His qualities that brought about all the planning and production of God’s Plan for our salvation and unity in peace.
- ) Sovereign “over or above all,” EPI PAS; The basic root meaning of EPI is “upon” and implies contact with its object, i.e., the believer in Jesus Christ. The Genitive case here emphasizes contact, either actual or intended. Thus EPI means “upon, on, at, by, or before.” So combined with PAS, “all,” it represents the Sovereignty of God in relation to His Children. He is the sovereign when it comes to His Plan for mankind and our lives, and it was His sovereign Plan and decision to make all believers one body in Christ. As you know, it was His sovereign decision to send His Son to the Cross in order to pay for our sins, so that we could be entered into the Body of Christ, giving us eternal life and security.
2. ) Omnipresent, “through all,” DIA PAS, as the Sustainer who performs His perfect will through us. With the Genitive its primary meaning is “through,” that often expresses secondary agency, causation, and instrumentality and is rendered “by means of” and “by.” This represents the omnipresence of God the Father, which is imminent and transcendent. God is everywhere personally present. The whole of God is in every place. This is not pantheism. Pantheism denies the person of God. It says God is everywhere in the sense of all things. The omnipresence of God is not pantheism. God in the totality of His essence without diffusion, expansion, multiplication, or division, penetrates and fills the universe. This is the principle of imminence and transcendence, Psa139:7-8, 18; Jer 23:23-24; Acts 17:27. However, God is also free to be local, as on the mountain with Moses, in the Holy of holies of the Tabernacle, or on the Mount of Transfiguration. Therefore, God is imminent and transcendent, Prov 15:3; Psa 102:27; 1 Kings 8:27; Job 34:21-22. As such, God is always around us and near to us to perform through us His good will and pleasure. This also means that God has drawn us near to Himself, entering us into His Royal Family.
3. ) Indwelling, “in all,” EN PAS, in the Dative case meaning, “in the sphere of all.” EN is employed here to denote a close personal relationship. God the Father, undiminished and undivided, actually indwells every member of the royal family. This indwelling of God empowers and energizes the believer to learn and live inside the Plan of God; to live the unique spiritual life of the Church Age. His great sovereign Plan has called for His enabling power inside of God’s Power System, (GPS), so that the believer can execute and fulfill His great plan for our lives that brings about our unity, both positionally and experientially, in the bond of peace.
Therefore, God the Father is sovereign over, omnipresent through, and indwelling in every Church Age believer, so that we can fulfill our destiny. He is in every part of the universe in His sovereign omnipresence, and yet He can do all of those things and be local at the same time as He indwells every believer, as illustrated by passages noted above and others too. As such, He is the One who gives the energy for all that happens, as He lives in all believers to shape and utilize them.
1 Cor 15:28, “And when all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, that God may be all in all.”
Psa 30:12, “That my soul may sing praise to Thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks to Thee forever.”
1 Cor 15:57, “Thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Rom 6:17, “Thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed.”
2 Cor 2:14, “Thanks be to God, who always leads us in His triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.”
2 Cor 9:15, “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”
Principles of God the Father.
The last in the ascending scale (though the first in terms of cause) is the Father. As Zerwick (p. 104) points out, “He is not associated with other unities like the one Spirit and the one Lord. He stands alone. The triple note, which is still to be found, merely divides up his modes of action. There is “one God” not many as in pagan culture (1Cor 8:5, 6). He is the “Father of all” with particular reference to his redemptive paternity. Yet his creative fatherhood is not entirely ruled out in view of what follows.”
The titles of the First Person of the Trinity are combinations associated with the word “Father.” He is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the Father of Mercies. He is addressed as “Abba, Father”, Heavenly Father, Father of spirits, Holy Father, Righteous Father, Father of Lights, and Father of Glory.
These titles represent several scriptural concepts.
- It designates the first Person of the Trinity.
- It designates His relationship to Jesus Christ, “Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,” 1 Peter 1:3; 1 Cor 8:6; Eph 1:17.
- It designates His relationship to the believer, “our Father,” Mat 6:9.
- It designates His relationship to the Jewish nation, Deut 32:6; Hosea 11:1; Psa 103:13; 68:5; Mal 1:6.
- It designates His relationship to the universe, “the Father of lights,” James 1:17.
- It designates His relationship to angles, “Sons of God,” Gen 6:2,4; Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7.
- It designates His relationship to man, “the Father of spirits,” Heb 12:9, who are created after His image, Acts 17:26-29; Luke 3:38; cf. Gen 1:27; Mal 2:10.
1 John 3:1, “See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.”
They also relate several manifestations of the Fatherhood of God. The distinctive Fatherhoods’ of God are:
- Fatherhood over creation – Universal Fatherhood.
- Fatherhood over Israel – National Fatherhood.
- The Father of our Lord Jesus Christ – Eternal Fatherhood.
- Fatherhood over all who believe – Relational Fatherhood
The Characteristics of God the Father:
- He is the first person in mode of operation. The First Cause, the Original, the Source, the Beginning, the Commencement, the Fountain-head of all wisdom, the Absolute.
- The Foundation of our Redemption, John 3:16.
- The Covenant Maker and Keeper, and the Covenant Promiser, Gen 6:18.
- The Architect, Designer, and Controller.
- The Provider and Sustainer, Job 24:23, Psa 35:5; 145:14; Gal 3:5.
- The Light, Unapproachable Light, Life and Love, Rom 4:17, 6:23; 1 Tim 6:16, 1 John 4:8, 16.
- Glory, Majesty, Holiness and Fire, Heb 12:29.
- Perfect, Mat 5:48, Invisible, Spiritual, and Eternally the Father.
- The Begetter, John 3:16. God the Father gives and preserves life in man, both body and soul, Mat 6:25-34, likewise, He cares for His creation and their needs (Divine Providence), cf. Psa 8:6-8. The Father provides our Logistical Grace blessings, Rom 8:32.
As Sovereign our Father is wise, cf. 1 John 2:13-21.
God the Father is the planner or designer of salvation for all of mankind, Isa 14:27; John 4:34; 5:17; 12:44; 1 Cor 8:6; Eph 3:11.
God the Father has elected the believer from eternity past into the eternal Family of God, Mat 15:13, 2 Thes 2:13.
Mat 15:13, “But He answered and said, “Every plant which My heavenly Father did not plant shall be uprooted.””
The believer is called to salvation, justified and glorified by God the Father, Rom 8:28-30; 9:22-26; 1 Cor 1:9; Gal 1:15-16; 1 Peter 1:15; 5:10.
The believer is sanctified by God the Father, 1 Cor 1:2; Heb 2:11; Jude 1:1.
God the Father indwells all Church Age believers as part of the Mystery Doctrine for the Church Age, John 14:23; Eph 4:6; 2 John 9. His abiding establishes our eternal relationship with Him.
The Father is fully responsible for our prayers, as all of our prayers are directed to Him, Mat 6:6-9.
- The Father hears (receives) our prayers, Mat 6:6-9; 7:11; Luke 11:2, 13; John 15:16; 16:23; 1 John 1:7-9, when we approach the throne of Grace, Heb 4:16.
- He answers our prayers, Mat 18:19; Luke 11:13; John 15:16; 16:23; 1 John 5:14-15.
Mat 18:19, “Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven.”
- He forgives us of our sins, experientially, when we confess them to Him, Mat 6:14-15; cf. 1 John 1:9.
Mat 6:14-15, “For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.”
God the Father disciplines His Children and judges, Mat 18:35; 1 Cor 11:28-32; Heb 12:4-11; Rev 3:19; Job 5:17; Prov 3:11-12; Psa 119:75; Deut 8:5; 2 Sam 7:14.
Job 5:17, “Behold, how happy is the man whom God reproves, So do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.”
God the Father provides Divine power for the function of His Plan for your life inside of what we call His GPS, (God’s Power System). This power is found in your Portfolio of Invisible Assets based on His indwelling ministry of every believer, 2 Cor 4:7; 6:7; 2 Thes 1:11; 2 Tim 1:7-8.
The greatest power the Father has given to us is His Word, Bible Doctrine, John 15:15; 17:14, 17; cf. Heb 4:12.
2 Tim 3:16-17, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”
The Believer is kept safe by God the Father, which also speaks of our eternal security, 1 Peter 1:5. Christ declared of the Father in John 10:29 that, “No man is able to snatch them out of my Father’s hand.”
God the Father will resurrect all of mankind. It is recorded of both the Father and the Son in, John 5:21.
John 5:21, “For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives life to whom He wishes.”
Rom 8:11, “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”
This describes God our Father as the One who originated all that vs. 4 and 5 describe. The Father is sovereign “above all,” Omnipresent as the sustainer “through all,” and Indwelling as the One who gives the energy for all that happens, “in all.”
2 Peter 1:2-8, “Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the, corruption that is in the world by lust. Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge; and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness; and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
In this discussion of the walk of the believer that is, “worthy of the calling by which he has been called,” vs. 1, Paul speaks first to the individual in vs. 2-3, as the Supergrace believer is to walk, “in humility and gentleness, with patience showing forbearance in love, protecting the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Then in vs. 4-6, he widens it out to the entire Church, which is “one body, with one hope, having one faith, and one baptism.” He then brings this passage to a tremendous climax, which pictures the eminence and transcendence of God; “One Holy Spirit, One Lord Jesus Christ, and One God and Father.” Finally, Paul gives us the epilogue, by describing the essence and attributes of God that unite us in the bond of peace, as the Father is, “above all, and through all, and in you all.” This means that God is imminent and transcendent. He is above His creation. He is not dependent upon His creation. He does not depend upon oxygen to breathe. He does not have to bring up some supplies from the rear or go shopping on Saturday in order to have food for the weekend. He is transcendent. He is not only transcendent, He is also eminent. He is not only above all, but He is through all and in you all. That means He is in this universe in which you and I live. He is motivating it and He is moving it according to His plan and purpose. In addition, He indwells each of us to energize us to live the unique spiritual life of the Church Age. That is what adds meaning to life. That is what makes life worthwhile.
Thus far, we have noted in Ephesian Chapter 4:
- ) The Appeal to Preserve Unity, The walk to be worthy Eph 4:1-3.
- ) The Basis for Unity, The seven unities given to us by God, Eph 4:4-6.
Therefore, we have noted: the believer’s walk of worthiness, Eph 4:1-3, and the believer’s walk as an expression of doctrinal unity, Eph 4:4-6.
In our next section we will note:
3. ) The Means of Unity, The ministry gifts of Christ to His body, Eph 4:7-16.
In this section we have two parts.
- Christ’s death, resurrection, and ascension proclaimed, as well as being the giver of gifts, vs. 8-10.
- The purpose of our gifts; building up of the body of Christ, individually and collectively, vs. 12-16.
So this section will tell us about the believer’s walk as a ministry of gifts, Eph 4:7-16.
As we have noted, all members of the Royal Family have the same Father, just as all members of the Royal Family have the same Saviour. Likewise, all members of the Royal Family have become a living palace for God to dwell by the baptism of the Holy Spirit on the basis of faith in Jesus Christ. And as we noted in vs. 4-6, all members of the Royal Family are unified by the attributes of nobility, (one body, one Holy Spirit, one Lord, one way of salvation (faith), one entrance into the Royal Family (baptism of the Spirit), and one heavenly Father). Yet, all do not have the same function, nor do all achieve the same stage of spiritual growth.
In regards to not having the same function inside the body of Christ, vs. 7- 16 tells us of varying spiritual gifts with various functions being assigned to members of the Royal Family. All believers are members of the same team, therefore members of the same royalty. But as members of the team, they have different functions. We are different members but the same body, and the differences are many, but the things that unite us are permanent and eternal.
Therefore, this section begins with vs. 7, by reminding us of the grace of God in our lives.
Eph 4:7, “But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift.”
“But to each one of us” is the Adversative Conjunction DE for “but, now, moreover, yet in fact, or indeed,” with the Dative Neuter of HEIS, which is HENI that means, “to one” or “to each one,” plus the Dative Adjective HEKASTOS meaning, “each or every,” and the Personal Pronoun HEMEIS in the 1st Person Plural for “us,” meaning members of the body of Christ. This tells us of the individuality we have inside the common essence of the Royal Family in vs. 4-6.
Paul is suddenly moving from discussing the Church as a whole, to the individuals comprising the Church, and that unity does not mean uniformity. We are still individuals inside the body of Christ.
The Church does not come from one cookie cutter. Instead, this tells us that in His work of developing unity among God’s people, the Holy Spirit, nor Jesus Christ, obliterates your individuality. In fact, God uses our differences to make up the full functioning body of Jesus Christ. But yet, there is something about these spiritual “gifts given by Jesus Christ” that bind and unite us.
After emphasizing our individuality inside the body of Christ, we next have the phrase “grace was given,” which is the Noun CHARIS with the Aorist, Passive, and Indicative of DIDOMI. This tells us that the spiritual gifts we received at the moment of our salvation are a “grace gift” from God, and specifically that the communication gifts, noted in this section, vs. 11, were a grace gift from Jesus Christ. So we are talking about all believers who have received God’s grace by giving the Church these unique spiritual gifts by Jesus Christ. In other words, all believers are blessed because Jesus gave these communication gifts to a few men by His grace.
Then we see the giver of the gifts noted later in this chapter, “according to the measure of Christ’s gift,” with the Genitive of KATA HO METRON HO CHRISTOS HO DOREA.
METRON used here for “measure” was used in classical Greek with the broad meaning that includes the standard by which something is measured whether of content, space, length, or weight. The word referred either to the standard of measure, i.e., the vessel or weight, or rule which is used as the tool for measuring. In our passage, it applies to our Lord Jesus Christ and His “standard” for measurement. In other words, it is His Sovereign decision as to whom He would give these gifts too, according to God the Father’s Plan; the rule by which He would give these gifts.
This tells us that the diversity of our spiritual gifts is not a random, adhoc affair. They are given with purpose, design, and control, so that the Plan of God can be fulfilled for every generation. It also tells us that we do not choose our spiritual gifts, but that they are assigned to us by the grace of God in a purposeful manner for our collective benefit and good.
The key word in this passage is “grace,” CHARIS that means, “all that God is able to freely do for and give to the believer.” It is the unmerited favor of God towards us.
As we have seen in this chapter, grace gave us unity inside the body of Christ by means of the Trinity, vs. 4-6. Likewise, grace has given us the opportunity to experience that unity inside the body of Christ through the application of the Royal Family Honor
Code, vs. 1-3. Now we are about to see that grace has given us specific communication spiritual gifts for the empowerment and enablement of the body of Christ, to achieve experientially collective growth and unity, while maintaining our diversity as individuals. Grace is also given to us so that we have joy and delight in our lives that is totally undeserved and many times unexpected.
Finally, we will see that the communication gifts mentioned in vs. 11, are not given to each individual believer, but are given to a select few believing men for the benefit of all believers. This is part of the understanding of the “measure of Christ’s gifts.”
But, before we get to the gifts and their benefits to the Church, we are told of a great correlation to the grace gifts of God; the grace death, burial, descent into the lower parts, and ascension of our Lord in vs. 8-10. This is given to us first in correlation of the grace of God that did all that, to the grace of God that provides us with the communication gifts for the Church.
Eph 4:8-10, “Therefore it says, ” WHEN HE ASCENDED ON HIGH, HE LED CAPTIVE A HOST OF CAPTIVES, AND HE GAVE GIFTS TO MEN.” 9(Now this expression, “He ascended,” what does it mean except that He also had descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10He who descended is Himself also He who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)”
Eph 4:8, “Therefore it says, ” WHEN HE ASCENDED ON HIGH, HE LED CAPTIVE A HOST OF CAPTIVES, AND HE GAVE GIFTS TO MEN.”
In vs. 8 we have a quote from Psa 68:18. Paul paraphrased Psa 68:18 to show the qualifications of Christ to grant these “gifts” or ministries to His disciples. This Psalm gives a description of what probably was a return of King David after a military conquest. Paul’s quotation of this verse reveals that the ascent of the Ark to Zion was a type of Christ’s ascension to heaven after His resurrection. Therefore, at the same time it is a Messianic Psalm of victory, describing the completed work of Christ in accomplishing the Plan of Salvation.
“Ascended on high” is the Aorist, Active, Participle in the Nominative Singular of ANABAINO with the Preposition EIS and the Noun HUPSOS. ANABAINO, ἀναβαίνω is a compound word form ANA that means, “up” and BAINO that means, “I go.” Besides its basic meaning of “going up,” it is specially used here for the Ascension of Jesus Christ into heaven. It refers to the Ascension of Jesus Christ as a part of the strategic victory of the Angelic Conflict. The culminative Aorist tense views the Ascension in its entirety but regards it from the viewpoint of its existing results; glorification of Jesus Christ at the right hand of the Father as the unique person of the universe. The Active voice: Jesus Christ produced the action of Ascension.
It is also a reference to the Third heaven, God’s Throne room where Jesus Christ is seated at the right hand of the Father in His Session. Therefore, when we talk about the Ascension of Jesus Christ, we typically talk about His Session as the King of kings and Lord of lords.
The Doctrine of the Ascension
Ascension is that doctrine of Christology pertaining to the transfer of our Lord’s true humanity from planet earth to the Third heaven, in a resurrection body, cf. Acts 1:9‑11. The Ascension of Jesus Christ is that doctrine of Scripture to describe the Lord moving from planet earth to the Third heaven, God’s Throne room.
In our passage, Eph 4:8-10, the Ascension of Jesus Christ is spoken of as a singular event, but according to Scripture it happened at least twice and possibly many more times. It occurred immediately after His Resurrection, and then occurred in its final instance 40 days after His Resurrection. Both seem to be in view in our passage.
The first Ascension occurred immediately after His Resurrection, John 20:17, to fulfill the typology of the High Priest sprinkling blood on the articles in the Tabernacle and the Mercy Seat, cf. Heb 9:19-24, cf. Prov 30:4; John 3:13; Rom 10:6-10. It was an invisible resurrection as Jesus left earth, ascended to Heaven, and presented Himself to the Father in resurrected humanity as the “better sacrifice” to cover the sins of all mankind.
That resurrection was closest in time to the descent of Jesus noted in vs. 10, where upon His death, and while He was in the grave, His soul went into Hades to proclaim His victory over sin to the deceased O.T. unbelievers and believers who were held there, as well as over imprisoned fallen angels in Tartarus, as we will note later on.
Upon Christ’s Resurrection, He then went to the Third Heaven, led the believers that were in Hades to heaven, and presented Himself as victor to the Father, signified by bringing the captive believers held in Hades to heaven.
After the first Ascension, our Lord returned and interacted with His disciples for a period of 40 days, Acts 1:3.
At the end of the forty days, He led the disciples to Mt. Olivet and ascended in resurrection body for the final time until His Return at the end of the Millennial Reign, Acts 1:9. This was a visible, final departure from earth to heaven and the seating of Christ at the right hand of the Father.
Acts 1:9-11 gives the historical facts related to Christ’s final ascension in simple terms. Before this ascension He indicated the Divinely arranged delay in the realization of Israel’s earthly kingdom and that in no way is it abandoned, Acts 1:6-7, and defined the scope of the responsibility of His disciples in the world in this Age together with the provided power of the enabling Holy Spirit, Acts 1:8.
Acts 1:9, tell us only that He was removed from human sight. That He ascended above all authorities and powers in angelic realms, that He assumed vast authority, and that He is seated upon His Father’s throne is understood from other portions of the N.T.
During the Forty Days before His final Ascension, He demonstrated the capabilities of the resurrection body. The Ascension of Christ was predicated on the capabilities of the resurrection body, which is capable of space travel; the ascension is space travel. As such the resurrection body can:
- Travel horizontally and vertically at unlimited speed, and is capable of unlimited space travel. Our Lord traveled horizontally during his forty days on planet earth, as well as moving through closed doors.
- The Ascension of Christ demonstrates the vertical travel of the resurrection body, moving with ease through the atmosphere of the earth, the galaxies of stellar universe, and the billions and billions of light years in an instant, entering into the third heaven, the abode of God.
In our passage, as elsewhere, an equally great achievement is indicated, namely, Christ’s return or ascension back to His former place and glory. It is written that He prayed as He was about to leave this world: “And now, O Father, glorify me with your own self with the glory which I had with you before the world was,” John 17:5.
Christ’s Ascension completed the resurrection of the First Fruits.
Once arriving in heaven Jesus Christ was seated at the right hand of the Father. This is called the Session of Christ, Psa 110:1; Rom 8:34; Eph 1:20; Col 3:1; Heb 1:3,13; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2; 1 Peter 3:22. The doctrinal importance of Christ’s ascension lies not so much in His departure from the world, as it does in His arrival in heaven.
The Ascension and Session of Christ formed the basis of, and is the key to victory in the Angelic Conflict, Heb 1:3-13. As the strategic victor, the God-Man, Jesus Christ, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the Royal Priest, and our only celebrity distributes the spoils to both dispensations; Israel and the Church.
The Ascension and Session of Christ began a new sphere of the Angelic Conflict, Eph 1:20-22; 4:7-10. Therefore, the believer of the Church Age is involved in the intensified stage of the Angelic Conflict.
The Ascension and Session of Jesus Christ began operation footstool, prophesied in Psa 110:1 and quoted in Luke 20:42,43; Acts 2:33,34; Heb 1:13. The Second Advent of Christ will conclude operation footstool, Dan 7:13-14; Zech 13:2; Col 2:15; Rev 20:1-3.
The Ascension and Session of Christ completes the glorification of Christ in His hypostatic union, Acts 2:33; 5:31; Phil 2:9; 1 Peter 3:22.
The Ascension and Session of Christ explains the uniqueness of the Church Age and the importance of having a Royal Family in this dispensation only, John 7:37-39.
The Ascension and Session of Christ made possible the second High Priestly function of our Lord, namely intercession or praying for all members of the Royal Family on earth, Rom 8:34; Heb 7:25.
Therefore, the Ascension is the Consummation of the Transfiguration. Our Lord went back into His primal glory; but He did not go back simply as Son of God; He went back to God as Son of Man as well as Son of God. As a result, there is now freedom of access for anyone straight to the very throne of God by the Ascension of the Son of Man. As Son of Man, Jesus Christ deliberately limited His omnipotence, omnipresence, and omniscience. Now they are His in absolute full power. As Son of Man Jesus Christ has all power at the throne of God. He is King of kings and Lords of lords from the day of His Ascension until now.
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If you would like more information on this subject, you may watch/listen to lesson #’s:
16-084 through 16-087
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A PERSONAL NOTE FOR YOU
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, I am here to tell you that Jesus loves you. He loves you so much that He gave His life for you. God the Father also loves you. He loves you so much that He gave His only Son for you by sending Him to the Cross. At the Cross Jesus died in your place. Taking upon Himself all of your sins and all of my sins. He was judged for our sins and paid the price for our sins. Therefore, our sins will never be held against us.
Right where you are, you now have the opportunity to make the greatest decision in your life. To accept the free gift of salvation and eternal life by truly believing that Jesus Christ died for your sins and was raised on the third day as the proof of the promise of eternal life.
So right now you can pause and reflect on what Christ has done for you and say to the Father:
“Yes Father, I believe that Your Son, Jesus Christ, died on the cross for the forgiveness of my sins.”
If you have done that, I welcome you to the eternal Family of God!