Thursday, May 25, 2017

What the Ascension is (and isn’t)

From The Living Church-

Among the easiest and most difficult topics in Christian theology is the ascension of Jesus Christ. The description given in Scripture and in most hymns is quite simple: “As they were watching, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight” (Acts 1:9) or “God has gone up with a triumphant shout” (Ps 47:5). Any close consideration of this idea, however, raises a number of difficulties. After all, where is this place to which he goes up? Where is heaven? Are we to imagine that Christ shot up into the upper atmosphere and kept on “climbing” the heavens until he reached some unknown location? Is heaven one stop beyond the galaxy? More disturbing, we have to wonder about what happened to Jesus’ material body.

It’s partly due to these absurdities that the idea of Jesus’ ascension is puzzling to many. It’s not made easier by the fact that Jesus speaks of a “departure” to go to the Father and send the Spirit, along with a constant “abiding” with us forever. Similarly, we have to realize that, even in his descent to us in the Incarnation, Christ did not depart from his place with the Father: “No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven, the son of man who is in heaven” (John 3:13). He remained where he was and what he was, even in stooping down to our level, and he did not cease to be among us and be what we are, even in ascending on high. He was ever our God in the heavens and he is ever a human being, remaining with us. The crux remains, though: where is the human body of Jesus?
More here-

1 comment:

Richard C. Lambert said...

I read that Post and got it fine and informative. Please share more like that...
Ascension update