A Question I Was Asked:

Does Jesus Now Sit in Heaven as Human?

The Question:

Some say that Jesus is still human as He now sits in Heaven and I want to understand, as I believe He only "became" flesh in essence to experience what man is. God is a spirit, and He made Jesus, to make the invisible, visible. Jesus and God are one, and how can a spirit, be flesh? How in the world, can Jesus be human now, if He is in heaven?? When He ascended to heaven, didn't that change him back to the spirit of God? Some are lowering Jesus, and exalting his earthly traits. I find that rather distressing. They take away and reduce his divinity. To me, it's a skimmed milk gospel.

UK Apologetics Reply:

Okay, let us clarify this thing. Jesus, as the Second Person of the Godhead, both was and is God. Nothing there alters. It would not be correct to say that Jesus was as a 'human' while upon this earth. He was both Man and God. He took on Himself the outward form of a man but He was always much more than that. He had to live as a man and to experience what we experience:

Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death - that is, the devil - and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death. For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham's descendants. For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted. (Hebrews 2:14-18).

A man - a son of Adam - had to finally break the hold of Satan; of course, if Jesus had not been God as well, that would not have got us too far! His death was of such inestimable value that it paid the price of the sins of all mankind. Humankind could never have been restored to God any other way. This is the Great Redemption. Our Saviour laid down His life for the sins of all - not just for a tiny group, as hyper-Calvinists so mistakenly teach.

Christ is 'The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world' (John 1:29), 'God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved' (though many teach exactly the opposite) (John 3:17), Jesus Himself said that He gave His flesh, 'for the life of the world' (John 6:51) (though many say that Christ's sacrifice means that the world is now condemned), moreover, Jesus said that when He is 'lifted up from the earth', He would 'draw all peoples ' to Himself (John 12:32). Of course, this is not to say that all will finally be saved but to state that the scope of Christ's sacrifice is limitless.

Another vital point is this: Jesus' life was not taken from Him; He freely laid it down of Himself. This was His claim:

"For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father." (John 10:17-18).

When upon this earth, Jesus was not just flesh "in essence" - He was fully flesh. Would our God do things in part? Would He deceive? No, Jesus was indeed human but He was also far more than that. He became a man in every way, yet remained God (except in appearance). Also, Jesus now does not now sit in Heaven as a human because there would be no reason for that. He is again fully glorified, as He was before He came to this earth. It would be incorrect to state that Jesus has now returned to being "a spirit." He was never merely "a spirit." He is God! When He returned to Heaven, He was again fully glorified.

I agree that some now prefer a 'skimmed milk' gospel in which Jesus is pretty much like us, except that He could fly! That is to sadly misunderstand everything which the Gospel teaches - it is about human sin and about our restoration to God. It is not about helping us to live "happy, fulfilled lives." It is not about us walking around in a trumphant, swaggering manner "becase we know the Lord." It is about the reality of sin which has separated people from a Holy God.

Robin A. Brace. September 14th, 2012.