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The Apostles’ Creed (Part 17)

It’s quite fascinating how people try to get to sit next to important people. Some have to pay to do this … the article read … “If you want a seat next to President Cyril Ramaphosa at the ANC’s gala dinner in Polokwane, you will have to cough up a whopping R1.2 million to have that privilege” (https://www.iol.co.za/). This was for Friday night, 7 January.

Do you like to be noticed with important people? Are you concerned about where you sit at a dinner or function? I am certain you are concerned about where our Lord sits! The Apostles Creed goes onto to say … “and is seated at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.” We have already said that our Lord is seated on the Power Seat in glory. There are many things one could point out regarding Jesus seated at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty … for our purposes there are three in particular to note …

1) Jesus’ Reign. There are two parts to our Lord’s reign.

(1) He reigns on earth as Lord of all. We are dealing with Jesus seated at the right hand of God the Father, but Lordship started on earth for the Godman. This does not discredit or remove Lordship before Incarnation. Consider these two passages …

Ac 10:36 You know the message God sent to the people of Israel, telling the good news of peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all.

Ron 10:11 As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” 12 For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, 13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

The thrust of Lordship here is Lordship over all God’s people, be they Jew or Gentile. Another way of looking at this is Lordship over the Kingdom of God; Kingdom of Jesus … Family of God).

(2) His reign in heaven as Lord and King. Once again we need to remember that God is Triune and within the Godhead the three persons have distinct functions and duties without any conflict in the fact that God is One and rules and reigns. Observe the following Scriptures …

1 Pet 3:21 It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.

Eph 1:19 That power is like the working of his mighty strength, 20 which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.

Rev 17:14 “They will make war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will overcome them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers.”

Three dimensions arise in these verses.

(i) In Heaven … Jesus is Lord over all “angels, authorities and powers”.

(ii) On Earth Jesus is Lord over “all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given” … head over everything for the church.

(iii) Defending Victorious Lord. As such, Jesus ensures eternal victory (through His salvific work on the Cross) and as the Lamb will (has – past tense) overcome them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings. Before the Incarnation, Jesus as God the Son was seated at the Right Hand of God the Father, Almighty. Through a victorious mission to planet earth He gains the additional Lordship over the Church (Kingdom), and now that He has returned to Glory He has the same position before the Incarnation.

2) Jesus as High Priest. This is often known as Jesus’ High Priestly Office. Think of Israel … they had a high priest, a prophet and a king. Each of these positions were fulfilled in Jesus Christ who is now the last High Priest, Prophet and King … and rightly so because the Kingdom is His.

Heb 8:1 The point of what we are saying is this: We do have such a high priest, who sat down at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven, 2 and who serves in the sanctuary, the true tabernacle set up by the Lord, not by man.

(1) The Book of Hebrews is a great commentary on the Book of Leviticus.

(2) Although the Levitical Priesthood and high priestly office has ended

Heb 8:13 By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear

The Holy Spirit was showing here that soon the sacrificial system would find its natural end. This happened in AD 70 when the temple was destroy with Jerusalem. Jesus is our High Priest in heaven and fulfills the main function of the priesthood, not sacrifice because the Cross is done … but intercession. Most believers do not grasp the significance of this.

1Jn 2:1 My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. 2 He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world. The one who speaks is our Advocate, speaking to Father in our defense.

As Church fathers have said … Jesus takes our prayers, perfects them and presents them to Father. He also speaks of matters and sins we are unaware of!

3) The glory and blessing of these things must result in motivating us as His people.

Heb 12:1 let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Our motivation to pursue Gospel holiness and preparation for glory is Jesus and what He did for us. Lord Jesus, thank You for what You have done and do, do for us. Help us to be filled with continual gratitude, love and commitment to You as we fix our eyes upon You, so that we do not fall to any offerings of this world. Amen.

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