“The ascended Jesus is the reigning Jesus” by Gerrit Scott Dawson

“The ascended Jesus is the reigning Jesus. Of all the meanings of the ascension, this one is pre-eminent: Jesus has gone up to the right hand of God the Father, exalted above every name and power. He reigns. Jesus is Lord and there is no other. This is the earliest Christian confession, made right in the teeth of the Roman empire. While the boots of the soldiers of the most powerful army in the world resounded in the streets of occupied Jerusalem, an uneducated fisherman from the north of Palestine declared, ‘God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.’

The man Jesus of Nazareth has been taken to heaven in glory, where He is now exalted as the Son of the Most High God. The meaning of a continuing incarnation is revealed in all its splendour: in the person of the eternal Son, the Triune God has taken up humanity into His being for ever. Jesus is God, and God is nothing apart from or contrary to who He is revealed to be in Jesus. The ascension climaxes in enthronement. Jesus, the triumphant Word made flesh, takes His place as the regent at the Father’s right hand.

Now, as Christopher Wordsworth wrote in his hymn, ‘Man with God is on the throne.’ Retaining His humanity, the Divine Son reigns over the world He has created, and whose re-creation He has established in Himself but not yet completed. So the Son ‘must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.’ In the triune economy, the Son will defeat the last enemy, then hand over the kingdom to God the Father so that ‘God may be all in all.’
–Gerrit Scott Dawson, Jesus Ascended: The Meaning of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R Publishing, 2004), pp. 53-54.

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