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New City Catechism - Question 51
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Posted by Taryl Jasper, Cornerstone elder


New City Catechism - Question 51


Q51: Of what advantage to us is Christ’s ascension?

A: Christ physically ascended on our behalf, just as he came down to earth physically on our account, and he is now advocating for us in the presence of his Father, preparing a place for us, and also sends us his Spirit.

KIDS’ ANSWER: Christ is now advocating for us in the presence of his Father and also sends us his Spirit.



Romans 8:34

Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.



Psalm 109:31; Mark 16:19; John 14:3; John 16:23-27; Acts 7:56; Hebrews 7:25; 9:24; 1 Peter 3:22



Our Christian faith is rooted in true historical events. A future reality also anchors our faith and hope. But these certainties are not experienced directly in our lives today. What holds us firm in faith during this present age? What does it do for us that the resurrected Jesus left the earth while we are still here?


The Scriptures tell us that it is to our benefit that Jesus' present location is sitting at the right hand of the Father. Jesus himself said "Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you" (John 16:7). Without the ascension, the church would have had a visibly geographically located head of the church. Rather, in God's wisdom, we have a worldwide spiritual church where Jesus is present when "two or three are gathered" (Matthew 18:20).


In Matthew 28, Jesus gives his commission to His church to go and proclaim the gospel to all peoples. Two extraordinary statements surround Jesus commission. He says, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to" Him and he says that He will be with us until "the end of the age" (Matthew 28:18-20). Jesus is sovereign and reigns from His ascended position with the Father. Everything is under his power and command and He promises to be present and to move on our behalf (John 16:15).


So in our moment of doubt or season of anxiety, when we are overwhelmed, we can know that Jesus is with us. Jesus is God before us and He can do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. We are not alone. So we should not fear.


The ascension is not a place in the story when Jesus exits stage right. It is not a moment where Jesus goes quiet or inactive. The ascension is a moment when Jesus goes to rule in glory! From that position, Jesus continues to act powerfully and graciously for HIs people.


It is to our benefit that in the throne room of God, we have an advocate who is the Son of God who has a name above all names and who perfectly pleased the Father. From His ascended position of power, the resurrected Jesus is working and appealing on our behalf. This is why we sing the words of the great hymn originally penned by Mary Clare.


Before the throne of God above

I have a strong, a perfect plea

A great High Priest whose name is Love

Who ever lives and pleads for me

My name is grave on His hands

My name is written on His heart

I know that while in heaven he stands

No power can force me to depart.



We believe that Jesus Christ is true God and true Man, having been conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary.  He who knew no sin died on the cross a sacrifice for our sins according to the Scriptures.  Further, He arose bodily from the dead, ascended into Heaven, where at the right hand of the Majesty on High, He now is our High Priest and Advocate.  (Is. 7:14Mt. 1:18-25;  Lk. 1:26-36;  Col. 2:9;  1 Jn. 5:20;  Mk. 10:45;  Heb. 2:9;  Lk. 24:23-40;  1 Cor. 15;  Acts 1:1-111 Pet. 3:221 Jn. 2:2Heb. 4:167:25)


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