… Jesus Christ ascended.
The Church remembered Jesus’ Ascension on Thursday and many worshiped around this theme on Sunday. I want to think about why this is such a good thing for the Church and this is me doing that thinking – - out loud, if you will…
Jesus sat down at the ‘right hand’ of God upon his ascension. This is a position of a priest before God; in this case our High Priest, who is anointed by God for the work of intercession. The right side of the body is where work gets done, biblically speaking. In Ex. 29 and Lev. 8 the priest was anointed for service by the placing of blood on the right-hand side of his body.
Leviticus 8:22 Then he presented the other ram, the ram of ordination, and Aaron and his sons laid their hands on the head of the ram. 23 And he killed it, and Moses took some of its blood and put it on the lobe of Aaron’s right ear and on the thumb of his right hand and on the big toe of his right foot.
So, Jesus is at God’s right hand making intercession for us (his head, hands and feet bloodied for service). Always the right hand. See the book Hebrews for Jesus’ place at the right hand of God as Priest.
In Leviticus chapter 14, God gives the priest direction for cleansing a leper for worship.
14 The priest shall take some of the blood of the trespass offering, and the priest shall put it on the tip of the right ear of him who is to be cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot. 15 And the priest shall take some of the log of oil, and pour it into the palm of his own left hand. 16 Then the priest shall dip his right finger in the oil that is in his left hand, and shall sprinkle some of the oil with his finger seven times before the Lord. 17 And of the rest of the oil in his hand, the priest shall put some on the tip of the right ear of him who is to be cleansed, on the thumb of his right hand, and on the big toe of his right foot, on the blood of the trespass offering. 18 The rest of the oil that is in the priest’s hand he shall put on the head of him who is to be cleansed. So the priest shall make atonement for him before the Lord.
Notice the importance of the right hand. In that service the Priest puts blood and oil on the right ear, thumb and toe of one who is to be cleansed. A mini-priestly ordination, fitting the man for service. The cleansed one is then forgiven of his sins by God, he is new and is to go out clean. The priest takes his right hand and anoints the right side of the penitent sinner/leper.
Why is that important for us? Well, Jesus now holds the Church in His right hand. (Rev. 1 and 2) and He gives His message to the Church through His angels. It appears that the Church, specifically her Angels (messengers, pastors), is in some way an intercessory body before the Triune God.
Jesus is at the right hand of God, praying for the Church. The Church is at Jesus’ right hand we pray for the world, her governments and people. We are intercessors bringing the world before the Lord. The Angels (messengers) of the Church apply the “blood of the Lamb” and the glad oil of the Word to those who are guilty and those members of the household of faith walk out clean…
What do you think?