X-Sender: benschop@nic.cc.ruu.nl (Unverified)
X-Mailer: Windows Eudora Version 1.4.4
Mime-Version: 1.0
Date:         Thu, 13 Jul 1995 09:43:40 +0200
Reply-To: Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel 
Sender: Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel 
From: Teus Benschop 
Subject:      Catechism, 25
To: Multiple recipients of list CHR-EXP 

Q. Where is Christ now, as to his human nature?
A.  He  is ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of  God  the
Father;  that is, exalted in the highest glory, far above all creatures.
Eph. 1:20, 21.

After  Christ stood up from the death, he appeared several times to  his
disciples  and many other believers. "So then after the Lord had  spoken
unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand  of
God."  (Mark 16:19) He ascended as a complete Person, with His body  and
soul,  into  heaven. There He sits at the right hand of God the  Father.
The  right  hand, that is the place of honour. Christ, being God's  Son,
received  the  most honourable place in heaven, namely  at  God's  right
hand. King Solomon, when his mother went unto him, placed a seat for her
on  his  right hand, to honour her. "Bathsheba therefore went unto  king
Solomon,  to speak unto him for Adonijah. And the king rose up  to  meet
her,  and bowed himself unto her, and sat down on his throne, and caused
a  seat to be set for the king's mother; and she sat on his right hand."
(1 Kings 2:19)
     Christ  is raised from the dead, and God set Him at His  own  right
hand  in  the  heavenly places. He is there far above all  principality,
above all power and might, above all dominion, and above every name that
is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come.

Q. To what end is he there so highly exalted?
A.  Particularly that he might from thence govern His Church, and  there
be our intercessor with the Father.

The  question  might arise: What is Christ doing there, in  heaven?  The
answer  is  then,  that He is mainly doing two things.  He  governs  His
Church, and He prays for us.
     He  governs the Church, for He is its Head. The Church,  not  those
buildings  of  stone or wood, but the living Church, consisting  of  the
righteous, is governed by Christ. He protects it against all attacks  of
the great Enemy, namely Satan. He rules the Church, giving it ministers,
elders  and  deacons, as written in the Scriptures.  He  builds  up  the
Church,  using the preaching of the Word, and uses it to the  conversion
of His people. Now is the Church little in number, then it is large. Now
is  the  Church  persecuted, then it has freedom. Now is the  Church  in
darkness, then it shines publicly. But Christ is its Ruler, and He knows
how  to govern things as He wills. It might be that the mockers ridicule
the  members of the Church, but Christ is their Strength. The Church  is
attacked  from  both  inside through the hypocrites,  and  from  outside
through  the declared enemies, but Christ governs all things. God  "hath
put  all  things under his feet, and gave him to be the  head  over  all
things to the church". (Ephesians 1:22)
     Christ is also making intercession for us with the Father. When  we
sin, Christ prays for us, that the sins may be forgiven us. He shows His
Father His accomplished work at the cross, and says: "Father, these  are
Mine, I have payed for them, forgive their sins". Christ is doing so for
us  continually. When Christ is making intercession for us,  nobody  can
lay  any  thing to our charge. For, whatever they say, Christ prays  for
us,  and  their accusation is in vain. "Who shall lay any thing  to  the
charge  of  God's  elect?  It is God that justifieth.  Who  is  he  that
condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who
is  even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us."
(Romans  8:33,34)  Isaiah already had prophesied it, that  the  Messiah,
that is Jesus Christ, would make intercession for us. He says of Christ:
"He  bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors."
(Isaiah 53:12)
     It is sure, that Christ has much work in heaven, when governing His
church,  for  the enemies never cease from attacking. He also  has  much
work in praying for us, for we never stop sinning.

Q.  Is  he  not with us then even unto the end of the world, as  he  has
promised us? Matt. 28:20.
A.  With respect to his Godhead, majesty, grace and spirit, he is  never
absent  from  us; but with respect to his human nature,  he  remains  in
heaven, until he shall come again to judge the quick and the dead.

He  promised us that He would be with us even unto the end of the world.
After Jesus had commanded His disciples to teach all the nations, and to
let  them observe all things whatsoever He had commanded them, He  said:
"Lo,  I  am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world."  (Matthew
28:20)  And  after He had said this, He ascended into  heaven.  So,  the
question arises, when He ascended, is He then not with us unto  the  end
of  the world? The answer is, that He, though absent with the body, yet,
with His Godhead, He is with us always. With respect to His Godhead,  He
fills  the  universe, and is always with us. He sent also His Spirit  to
dwell  in us, and He shows His grace to be with us. But with respect  to
His human nature, He remains in heaven, until He comes back to judge the
quick  and the dead. It is now the time of grace, but when Christ  comes
back, the time of grace will be ended. Then He will judge the quick  and
the  dead,  giving  everybody according to his  work.  The  unbelievers,
having  done much sins, will perish. But the believers, whose  sins  are
forgiven, and who have done good works, will be saved. Christ  is  then,
according  to the body, in heaven, and not everywhere, as the  Lutherans
     "And  then  shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven:  and
then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son
of  man  coming  in  the clouds of heaven with power and  great  glory."
(Matthew 24:30)

Teus Benschop  |  t.benschop@pobox.ruu.nl  |  editor of the list Chr-Exp

           "A Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel"

More info? Send mail containing:     review chr-exp
Subscribe? Send mail containing:     subscribe chr-exp 
Send that mail to:                   listserv@nic.surfnet.nl

Institute Practical Bible-education
Web:  http://www.iclnet.org/pub/resources/text/ipb-e/ipbe-home.html

file: /pub/resources/text/ipb-e/cate: cat-025.txt