Sunday, May 04, 2008

Sitting in the Most Holy Place

In the Ascension we celebrate the fact that our King has sat down at the right hand of God the Father. This is enthronement and rule, but this is also a radical statement about the peace we have with God. There is a son of man, a son of Adam sitting in the presence of God. Remember in the tabernacle, only a few people could drawn near and even then they were always on their feet. The missing piece of furniture in the tabernacle is a chair, a bed, something to sit down and rest on. Of course the ark was sort of a throne for God, but Aaron and his sons were not welcome to rest in the presence of God. They only fought, they only sprinkled blood, they only worked, and then left. But Jesus, the great Moses and the greater Aaron has gone into the Holy of Holies and sat down with God. This is like Moses going into the Most Holy Place and taking a seat above the cherubim. And yet this is precisely what God the Father invited his faithful Son to do. For Aaron and his sons and certainly the rest of Israel getting too close to the presence of God meant certain death. Drawing near was frightening and uncertain. But we now have a High Priest sitting in the presence of God. We can draw near because he is there for us. And even more than that, he invites us to come in and sit down with him. Paul says that he has seated us in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. He has made us Kings and Priests to our God. And therefore as we come to this meal, we do so reclining, sitting, at peace and at rest with God and one another. We sit as the royalty, the nobility of God, the brothers and sisters, sons and daughters of the King. Here you eat as nobility. You are crowned with glory and honor. You are his staff, his armies, his closest associates, his bodyguards, his advisors, his friends. So come eat and drink and rejoice with the King. Your sins are forgiven, Jesus is King, and you are most welcome.

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