Life-Study of Lukeby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
With this message we begin a series on the Man-Savior’s ascension. First we shall give a description of the Lord’s ascension. Then we shall consider both the objective and the subjective aspects of His ascension.
The Man-Savior’s ascension is His inauguration into His heavenly office through the process of creation, incarnation, human living, crucifixion, and resurrection as God and man, as the Creator and the creature, and as the Redeemer, the Savior, and the life-giving Spirit, to execute God’s administration and to carry out God’s New Testament economy (dispensation).
If we would understand the Man-Savior’s ascension, we need to see that it is His inauguration into His heavenly office. This inauguration required a lengthy process that began with creation and continued with incarnation, human living, crucifixion, and resurrection. This process involved the Man-Savior as God, man, Creator, creature, Redeemer, Savior, and life-giving Spirit. The Lord Jesus was inaugurated to execute God’s administration and to carry out God’s New Testament economy. In the objective aspect, the Lord’s ascension caused Him to be crowned with glory and honor (Heb. 2:9) and to be enthroned for God’s administration (Heb. 12:2) and made Him the Lord to possess all and the Christ to carry out God’s commission.
Have you ever heard that Christ had an inauguration and that His inauguration was His ascension? Some may respond to this question by saying that the word “inauguration” cannot be found in the Bible. It is, of course, correct to say that this word is not in the Scriptures, but the fact of the Man-Savior’s inauguration is there nonetheless. The expression “the Triune God” likewise is not in the Bible, but it is a fact that the Bible reveals the Triune God. For example, Matthew 28:19 speaks of baptizing believers “into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” In like manner, the New Testament reveals the fact of Christ’s inauguration. Consider Acts 2:36: “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified.” In this verse the word “made” can be understood to mean “inaugurated.” Hence, Christ’s inauguration is in Acts 2:36. If we read the preceding verses, we shall see that there the Lord’s ascension is mentioned. In His ascension God inaugurated Jesus Christ into His heavenly ministry. This means that in His ascension, in His inauguration, God made Him Lord and Christ.
As the One inaugurated into His heavenly office through His ascension, the Man-Savior has a wonderful status. He is both God and man, both the Creator and a creature. Some theologians would agree that Christ is God, man, and the Creator, but would deny the fact that He is also a creature. However, Colossians 1:15 says that Christ is the Firstborn of all creation, indicating that with respect to His humanity He is a creature. But due to the heresy of Arius, which was condemned at the Council of Nicea in A.D. 325, many are reluctant to say that, according to Colossians 1:15, Christ is a creature. In this verse we are told that Christ is the image of God, the Firstborn of all creation. If this verse were not in the Bible, we would not presume to say that Christ is both the Creator and a creature. However, this verse is the basis for saying that Christ is a creature as well as the Creator.
If we say that Christ is both God and man, then we must also say that He is both the Creator and a creature, for God is the Creator and man is a creature. However, some theologians say that Christ is both God and man, and then say that He is only the Creator, not a creature. How ridiculous! Is man not a creature? Hebrews 2:14 indicates that the Lord Jesus had blood and flesh. Are blood and flesh not created things? If you deny that Christ is a creature, you are actually denying that He came in the flesh. Denying that Christ has come in the flesh is a heresy condemned in chapter four of 1 John.
Years ago, some in Hong Kong were proclaiming, “Our Christ is the Creator; He is not a creature.” When I heard about this, I told the saints, “It is very wrong to say that Christ is the Creator but not a creature. If you say that Christ is not a creature, then you are also saying that He did not become a man. But since Christ became a man, He also became a creature, because man is a creature.” Our Christ, whom God inaugurated into the heavenly office, is both God and man. He is the creature as well as the Creator. Furthermore, He is the Redeemer, the Savior, and the life-giving Spirit. What a wonderful status He has! What qualifications He possesses!
Many Christians do not realize what kind of status and qualifications Christ has as the ascended One. However, I can testify that whenever I contact the Lord, I realize that He is God, man, the Creator, a creature, the Redeemer, the Savior, and the life-giving Spirit. Because I have this realization concerning the Lord, sometimes I am beside myself with joy when I contact Him. I can even say that I am sometimes “electrified” by the Spirit when I think of what Christ is.
Have you ever considered that Christ is not God in part but the whole God? He is not only God the Son but also God the Father and God the Spirit. Hence, Christ is the whole God, the Triune God. Furthermore, He is a tripartite man. Therefore, as the Triune God and the tripartite man, He is the whole God and a perfect man. Let us all learn to say, “My Savior is the Triune God and a tripartite man. He is the Creator and also a creature. He is the Redeemer and the life-giving Spirit, and this life-giving Spirit is the consummation of the Triune God.” The more we realize this, the more we shall be “electrified” and beside ourselves with joy in the Lord.
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