“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one!”
Finally we can see. Christ ascends and we are there!
John 20:15-17 (NASB77)
” Jesus said to her, ” Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, “Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” 16 Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him in Hebrew, “Rabboni!” (which means, Teacher). 17 Jesus said to her, “Stop clinging to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brethren, and say to them, ‘I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.'”
Matthew 13:51-52 (NASB)
“Have you understood all these things?” They said to Him, “Yes.” 52 And Jesus said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has become a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is like a head of a household, who brings out of his treasure things new and old.” Yes Lord so be it.
Loved ones, I present you with something “New”, within something “old.” so that we will know and declare the Lord’s faithful Way with those who seek to know Him. The Holy Spirit is guiding us to, showing us “new,” so that the “power” of understanding will be ours (Proverbs 8:14 NASB) and increase our faith!
“Jesus said, ‘I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.'” (John 20:17)
Would you like to see the prophecy of Jesus ascending to stand before our Father God? All prophecy must be fulfilled. Jesus will find His destiny in what He learns from the prophets. He will travel through timelessness, ascend and return the same day to walk through the closed door (John 20:19 NASB) and reveal Himself to His disciples!
From Zechariah chapter 3 we find the prophet speaking of a vision involving Joshua the High Priest. “Joshua” is Hebrew for “Jesus” when translated into English from Greek “Iesous” [ee ay-sous.] ) Also, we know Messiah Jesus is now our High Priest, (Hebrews 4:14-15, 7:26, 8:1 NASB, KJV)
Zechariah 2:13 (NASB77) [For context]
” Be silent, all flesh, before the LORD; for He is aroused from His holy habitation.” This seems ominous but the Father has just seen His Son beaten and worse. We know from scripture God is not in a good mood. Joshua / Jesus has just arrived with an unseemly escort.
Zechariah 3:1-2 (NASB77)
” Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to accuse him. ”And the LORD said to Satan, “The LORD rebuke you, Satan! Indeed, the LORD who has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you! Is this not a brand plucked from the fire?”
Did Jesus not go through hell on earth, in order to stand there before God, a brand picked from the fire?
Zechariah 3:3, (NASB77)
”Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments and standing before the angel. 4 And he spoke and said to those who were standing before him saying, “Remove the filthy garments from him.” Again he said to him, “See, I have taken your iniquity away from you and will clothe you with festal robes.” 5 Then I said, “Let them put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him with garments, while the angel of the LORD was standing by.”
Do you recall the story of the prodigal son? What did the Father do upon the son’s return home? Yes, that’s right, a new robe and a ring of authority. That father said, “my son was dead and is alive again..” Jesus said, “I do nothing on my own initiative, as I hear I judge…” (John 5:30 NASB) I believe Jesus shared the “Prodigal” story because He identified with it when He learned of it from Zechariah. The prodigal son likely returned with the filth of the pigpen still on him.
Wait a minute Mike, Jesus did not go astray or sin! Yes and no. Yes, He was tempted in all things as we are but did not sin. (Hebrews 4:15 NASB) And No, He did “become” sin on our behalf. (2 Corinthians5:21 NASB) Jesus came in the likeness of sinful flesh. (Romans 8:3 NASB) Jesus appealed several times to be excused from the terrible fate He had to endure. (Matt 26:39-44 NASB) Jesus became what He had to become so He could do what He had to do.
Remember the filthy garments? Zech 3:3? Why would Joshua (Jesus) have on filthy garments?
“Supposing Him [Jesus] to be the gardener, she •said to Him…” (John 20)
I have been told the sages have concluded Jesus had on gardeners clothing because they think Joseph of Arimathea’s tomb was located in or near his private garden where he would have kept work clothes. The Garden Tomb.
Rising from the dead, leaving his grave cloths behind, Jesus (naked) needed covering. He uses the available gardening clothes belonging to Joseph of Arimathea. The women rightly and reasonably think Jesus is the (soil covered) gardener.
Through Zechariah we see Joshua (Jesus) has now ascended to the Father in those same filthy garments, and to confirm His personage, Satan is right there to accuse Him. The One who became sin!
The removal and replacement of Joshua’s dirty garments tells us how easily God can and does choose to deal with our sins. Please read Micah 7:18, it is amazing.
Then Joshua (Jesus) is told in verses Zech 3: 6-9, “If you will…” “Then you will…!” IF? Why ask such a question if this represents Jesus, He was totally obedient?
When Jesus in the Garden asked several times to be “relieved of duty,” what were we seeing? We are seeing the human side of Jesus. We know Jesus submitted to the Fathers will. Do we remember that Jesus returns to us as the Son of Man?
Jesus has just returned to heaven in a form different than when He left. Knowing all, it is reasonable for the Lord to ask and for Jesus to make a vow of adherence and obedience to the Father. Satan, the one standing there to accuse Joshua / Jesus, failed in his allegiance to God. This embarrassment, by Jesus, could have steeled Satan in his future efforts to destroy the followers of Jesus.
Zechariah 3:8 (NASB) [A further confirmation of Christ.]
‘Now listen, Joshua the high priest, you and your friends who are sitting in front of you—indeed they are men who are a symbol, for behold, I am going to bring in My servant the Branch.”
DISCIPLES! The BRANCH ! Jesus. (This is why Jesus knows Zechariah is speaking of Him and so teaches from it in anticipation.)
Zechariah 3:9 (NASB)
“For behold, the stone that I have set before Joshua; on one stone are seven eyes. Behold, I will engrave an inscription on it,’ declares the LORD of hosts, “and I will remove the iniquity of that land in one day.”
Jesus is the Rock. The seven eyes are the seven spirits of God in Isaiah 11: 1-2, and Rev 5:6.
In Zechariah 3 we have found a picture of Jesus ascending to the Father, being received, cleansed and being assigned His eternal authority as the Son of Man, in the Fathers kingdom. He is shown the disciples, (for the future) Jesus learns from this prophet and then lives it! Amazing!
We also know later the same day Jesus supernaturally appears to the disciples in hiding. How can that be? There is no time restriction with God. Jesus ascends, Jesus descends. To us it would be instant.
I can only think of one time where God is immersed in the same time limit we are. It was as He waited for His Son to lay down His own life on the cross, so He could take it up again later at the tomb. (John 10: 17-18 KJV)
And the Lord said to me during a prayer walk/jog, “The tomb was opened so I could get in, not so I could get out!” Yes…..Lord. Yes of course.
“If we remain in His grip, how far from His heart can we be!”
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