Saturday, June 2, 2007

Ascension to the Right Hand of God

This post be a place for you to discuss Jesus Christ's ascension to the right hand of God in Rev. chapters 4 and 5 as discussed in the E.R. model.

I've not done an exhaustive study on every vision of the Bible to see if any included historical information. Neither have I done any study on non-canonical apocalyptic writings (Revelation was written in "apocalyptic" style), like the Gospel of Barnabas, Books of Enoch, etc. to see if any of their visions included things of the past.

But, several come to mind in the Bible, including a couple in Revelation:
1. Daniel's vision in Dan. 2 included the Babylonian empire and king Nebuchadnezzar as the head of gold which already had come into power in the past, and would therefore be historical.

2. Ezekiel in chapter 9 was taken and shown things in the spirit that had been going on and were going on in Israel.

3. In Rev. 17, the angel took John in the spirit and showed him the beast with seven heads. Five of the heads were kings which had fallen, and one of them was. This means six of them were past...historical.

4. In Rev. 12, John was shown a vision of Jesus' birth. The woman is said to represent Israel, who gave birth to Jesus, and the dragon tried to kill him when he was born. Verse 5 even refers to Jesus being caught up to God and his throne. This is the ascension in the first century. So, this vision goes back even further than 33 goes back to 4-6 BC and Jesus' birth. This vision clearly included historical data.
So, it follows that John could have been first asked to "Come up here", here being the heavenly throne room, to be shown things that would take place in the future. First, John was shown a vision of the ascension from a heavenly perspective in Rev. 4-5 (remember that he was one of the few who saw the ascension from an earthly perspective at the mount of Olives in Luke 24 and Acts 1). Then he was shown what would happen hereafter, from the first century to the present and until the resurrection of the dead in Christ.

The vision of Rev. 12 is strong evidence that John could see a vision of a past event even though he was writing in the future with respect to that event. In both the vision of Rev. 4-5 and Rev. 12, it was essential that John be shown how the birth of Christ, the ascension, and Christ place at the right hand of God fit into the overall prophetic picture.

It's like giving us essential background to a story before telling us how it ended.

In Christ,

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