THE ASCENDED CHRIST
But the Lord Jesus not only asked a question. He went on to quote Psalm 110, verse 1, where God is recorded as saying to Christ, "Sit thou on my right hand, till I put thine enemies underneath thy feet." It is abundantly clear that this refers to the ascension of Christ. Don’t care for any religion, don’t be concerned that much with politics, don’t labor so much over the so-called Christian faith, and don’t pay so much attention to scriptural interpretation. We must all concentrate upon Christ as the exalted and ascended One. The ascension of the Lord Jesus is the climax of all that He is, of all that He has done, and of all that He will do. Consider the chart on the next page. Christ in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was God. Then He was incarnated; He passed through human life on this earth; He was put into death, buried, and resurrected. He passed through all these things and ascended to the peak of the universe. After His ascension, He came down in another way with another form. He descended not only as the Spirit of life, but also as the Spirit of power. As such a One He is building the church and preparing it as His Bride for His second coming, at which time He will usher in the millennium, the kingdom. And one day He with all He has accomplished and gained will be in eternity as God and the Lamb with the New Jerusalem. The Lord in Matthew 22:41-45 is referring not only to Himself as a person, but as a person in ascension. He is the ascended One. In this passage He is at the climax, the peak. As the ascended One, He includes everything from eternity past to His ascension and everything from His ascension to eternity in the future. Hallelujah for such an ascended Christ!
Today’s Christians talk much about being saved. Then they are always complaining how poor or how weak they are. A few, on the other hand, say that by God’s mercy they are not so weak, but indeed rather spiritual. But my burden is that we must be rescued from all these things. Forget about all these religious problems, politics, the so-called faith, and even the interpretation of the Bible. You talk so much regarding how to interpret and understand the Bible, but Jesus would ask, "What think ye of Christ?" There is a proper answer to all problems, but the main problem is, What think ye of Christ? Have you ever turned yourself from the Bible to the living, ascended Christ? Christians today pay so much attention to all other things, but nearly all neglect a continual living relationship with the living person of Christ. It is not principally, for example, a matter of whether you as a sister should wear a short or a long skirt. The vital point is what you think of Christ. It is absolutely a matter of Christ. Don’t measure your skirt by the length, but by Christ. It must be a skirt of Christ. Whenever you speak about clothing, do not judge it by measurement, color, or style, but by Christ.
The best way to interpret the Bible is by Christ. The best way to care for the faith is by Christ. If you have Christ, surely you will have the proper faith. If you lack the living Christ, regardless of the creed you have, that is not the faith, that is a pity. We must care for nothing but Christ. We must even forget our Bible if we take it as a Bible without Christ. We need to forget our kind of faith—the sound, fundamental, scriptural faith—if it is a faith without a living touch with the living Christ. The Lord’s intention is that we care only for Christ and the church. The Lord Jesus in answering all these ridiculous and foolish questions did not forget the church. We have already seen how He referred to the building of God, that is, the church. In His answer to all these questions He brings the questioners back to the matter of Himself and His church.
(Christ versus Religion, Chapter 5, by Witness Lee)