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ascended into Heaven. Wherefore beside that grounded upon the Hypostarical Union, beside that glorious Condition upon his Resurrection, there was yer another, and that more proper Ascension: for after he had both those ways ascended, it was still true that he had not yet ascended to his Father.
Now this kind of Afcenfion, by which Christ had not yet ascended when he spake to Mary after his Resurrection, was not after to be performed; for at the same time he said unto Mary, Go to my brethren, and" say unto them, I afcend unto my Father and your Father. And when this Ascension was performed, it appeared manifestly to be a true local Translation of the Son of Man, as Man, from these Parts of the World below into the Heavens above, by which that Body which was before locally present here on Earth, and was not so then present in Heaven; became substantially present in Heaven, and no longer locally present in Earth. For when he had spoken unto the Disciples, and, blesed them, laying his Hands upon them, and so was corporally present with them, even while he blesed them he parted from them, Luke 24.co. and while they bebeld, he was taken up, and a cloud received him out of 51. their light, and so he was carried up into heaven, while they looked sted. Aets 1.9, 10. fastly towards heaven as he went up. This was a visible Departure, as it is described, a real removing of that Body of Christ which was before present with the Apostles; and that Body living after the Resurrection, by Virtue of that Soul which was united to it; and therefore the Son of God according to his Humanity was really and truly translated from these Parts below unto the Heavens above, which is a proper local Ascension.
Thus was Christ's Ascension visibly performed in the Presence and Sight of the Apostles, for the Confirmation of the Reality and the Certainty thereof. *They did not see him when he rose, but they saw him when he af- * Breztóvous sont cended; because an Eye-witness was not necessary unto the Act of his Re- óx ávésn, Basfurrection, but it was necessary unto the Act of his Ascension. It was suffi- .. cient that Christ Jewed himself to the Apostles alive after his Passion, i cibo v bebis for being they knew him before to be dead, and now saw him alive, they more were thereby assured that he rose again : for whatsoever was a Proof of its role in the his Life after Death, was a Demonstration of his Resurrection. But being locidov, the Apostles were not to see our Saviour in Heaven, being the Session was dice
23 dexlu sxénot to be visible to them on Earth, therefore it was necessary they should aýtsas To Bü be Eye-witnesses of the Act, who were not with the fame Eyes to behold apple cidoni
Oια το 5 τέλG- the Effect. .
gS ixtiro to em coxlu ideño, wtf T TA Obsyfomiféo Tup670, rj að uvámco, dragv7cv ött óx é son inc. exace to je što nółw édes Madhv. S. Chryf. Hom. 2. in Act. Apoft.
low unto the Heaves Ascension visibly pihe Reality and the Certahan he af- * BXevórtans
Beside the Eye-witness of the Apostles, there was added the Testimony of the Angels ; those blessed Spirits which ministred before, and saw the Face of God in Heaven, and came down from thence, did know that Christ afcended up from hence unto that place from whence they came : and * be- * 'Erroay xx cause the Eyes of the Apostles could not follow him so far, the Inhabitants of aquốon oi that Place did come to testifie of his Reception, For a behold two men stood by them in white apparel, which also said, Te men of Galilee, why stand ye soudržou gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus which is taken up from you into wóriegums heaven shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. So is dis We mult therefore acknowledge and confess against the wild + Heresies of old, segròn, oog that the Eternal Son of God who died and rose did with the Game Bo- rive. 71 per
d with the lame DO- autós isiv 'Ina dy and Soul, with which he died and rose, ascer Heaven ; which was oős motocer is the second particular considerable in the Article.
av drenél? προς αυτες
(wóppalev gs six cuku idóv7ees gvãy cen) öso j eis À šçavd dvanapláve ), autos dortò ididesxor oi öyleros. S. Chryf. Hom. 2. in Acta Apoft. a Acts 1. 10, ul. † The various Herefics in the Primitive Time concerning the Humanity of Christ
afcended into Heaven are briefly touched by Tertullian; Ut & illi erubescant, qui adfirmant carnem in cælis vacuam sensu ut vaginam exempto Christo sedere, aut qui carnem & animam tantundem, aut tantummodo animam, carnem verò non jam. De carne Christi, c. 24. Of which Gregory Nazianzen, Ei ris dooleleza'y ruw oman Cágra dégoi, uz pokerlu elyau ou grornia Coreano, ásrce pen we on rõ tregonn repica y cireu taj zhv, men idol ma dožav in wooxrias. Epift. 1. ad Cledonium. The Apellitæ taught that Christ left his Body dissolved in the air, and so ascended into Heaven without it : Hunc Apellem dicunt quidam etiam de Chrifto tam falfa senfisse, ut diceret eum non quidem carnem duxifse de ce lo, sed ex elementis mundi accepisse, quæ mundo reddidit cùm fine carne resurgens in cælum ascendit. S. Aug. Heref. 23. This Opinion of Apelles is thus delivered by Epiphanius in his own Words. 'Ev tu asteag din eo in regviwy maI en sis my lew sej Cowaroepto Eco TW teataqwa Cãuic "EDWxey o Xersos autóv tubov cv au tu tu Caspalo, s is awendo αληθεία, και έδωκεν αυτω τ' Cάρκα τους εαυτό μαθηγαίς, και αναλύσας αωτω και ανθρώπησιν εαυτ8 απιμέρισε πάλιν εκάς
sources to idle ando's, to fogueor to Segum, td fuxegi TW Luxem, co Enegin Emz ro otege tu i tamo rj Štas docenécies ür' autã wana te vorenor Cão nece drónin eis t s'egvor, ev saj nxe. Hæref. 44. Of whom Gregory Nazianzen is to be understood in that Epißle before cited, eis Š si ega ixéon xj dietóno, as parñs púors, rj odušs púois, ry disegañs degua sx isautóns. .
Thirdly, Being the Name of Heaven admitteth divers Acceptions in the Sacred Scriptures, it will be necessary to enquire what is the true Notion of it in this Article, and what is the proper Termination of Christ's Afcension. In some Sense it might be truly said Christ was in Heaven before the Cloud took him out of the Apostles Sight ; for the Clouds themselves are called the Clouds of Heaven : but that Heaven is the first ; and our Saviour
certainly ascended at least as far as S. Paul was caught up, that is, into the Heb. 4. 14. third Heaven; For we have a great High-priest that is * paffed through * We read it the heavens. And needs must he pass through the Heavens, because he indeed into the heavens, was a made higher than the heavens; Forb he that descended is the same but the Origi- also that afcended up far above all heavens. When therefore Christ is faid nal imports as much as to have ascended into Heaven, we must take that Word as fignifying as through ; de- much as the Heaven of Heavens; and fo Christ is ascended tl
ad aAnavere, mes bove the Heavens, and yet is still in Heaven : for he is entred into that segud's, Vul. qui penetra- within the veil, there is his Passage through the Heavens : d into the holy vit cælos. place, even into heaven it self to appear in the presence of God, this is * Heb. 7. 26, b Eph. 4. 10. the Heaven of Heavens. For thus said the Lord, the heaven is my throne, Heb. 6. 19. and the earth is my footstool; and as Christ descended unto the Footstool of Heb. 9. 12, his Father in his Humiliation, so he ascended unto the Throne of his Father 26.
in his Exaltation. This was the Place of which our Saviour fpake to his Difciples, What and if you shall see the Son of man afcend up where he was before ? Had he been there before in Body, it had been no such Wonder that he should have afcended thither again : but that his Body should alcend unto that place where the Majesty of God was most resplendent; that the Flesh of our Flesh, and Bone of our Bone should be seated far above all Angels and Archangels, all Principalities and Powers, even at the Right Hand of God; this was that which Christ propounded as worthy of their greatest Admiration. Whatsoever Heaven then is higher than all the rest which are called Heavens; whatsoever Sanctuary is holier than all which are called Holies; whatsoever Place is of greatest Dignity in all those Courts above, into that Place did he ascend, where in the Splendour of his Deity he was before he took upon him our Humanity.
As therefore when we fay Chrift afcended, we understand a literal and local Afcent, not of his Divinity, (which possesseth all Places, and therefore being every where is not subject to the imperfection of removing any whither) but of bis Humanity, which was fo in one Place that it was not in an
other: fo when we fay the Place into which he ascended was Heaven, and 4 The Seleu- from the Expositions of the Apostles must understand thereby the Heaven of ciani and Heavens or the highest Heaven, it followeth that we believe the Body with Heriniani che conl of
have passed far above all thofe Celestial Bodies which the Body of we fee, and to look upon that Opinion as a low Conceit which left his BoChrift afcend- dy in the Sun. ed no farther than the Sun, in which it was deposited; of whom Philaftrius, and out of him S. Austin thus, Negant Salvatorem in carne sedere ad dexteram Patris, fed eâ se exuille perhibent, eamque in Sole posuiffe, accipientes occafionem de Plaimo, In Sole posuii Tabernaculum suum. Herol. 59. The same @pinion Gregory Nazianzen attributeth to the Manicheans,
taught that the Soul of
Iš ,5 có cürece vum e ben petit rõ wego na ov70 ; g 78 din secto's Mævigaia angos TuS jaiw dia 07104) via Topmom dica pe tonices: Epift. i. ad Cledonium. And S. Austin says they taught the Sun to be Chrift, Manichæi Solem iftum oculis carneis vifibilem, expofitum & publicum, non tantùm hominibus, fed etiam pecoribus ad videndum, Chriftum Domi: num esse putârunt. Tract. 34. in Joh. This Opinion is more clearly set down, but without a Name, in the Catena Patrum on the 18th Palm, Ου και προσεκλέον τοίς * Αιρελικών φλωάφοις οι φασιν ότι ε τ ανάσασιν ο Σωτηρ αν τη ηλιακή Coarea dmé9870 o ipógroe Carece, puncérleaf mexer el Boutéeges wagorías. This was the old Heresie of Hermogenes, as is related by Theodoret, oira (6 'Equogfóns) rõ Kveix to Cwzea du Toit jaig Htev doliolãou, * j dié bonor is tos daéponds His müabu ávægitársas. Heref. Fab. lib. 1. cap. 19.
It was necessary to profess this Article of Christ's Ascension. First, For the Confirmation and Augmentation of our Faith. Our Faith is thereby confirmed, in that we believe in him who is received unto the Father, and therefore certainly came from the Father ; his Father sent him, and we have received the Message from him, and are assured that it is the same Message which he was sent to deliver, because he is fo highly rewarded by him that sent him for delivering it. Our Faith is thereby exalted and augmented, as being evidence of things not feer. The farther the Object is removed from us, Hebr the more of * Faith hath that Act which embraceth it, Christ faid unto Tho- * Magnaruin mas, a because thou hast seen me thou hast believed ; blessed are they that hic vigor eit
* mentium, & have not seen, and yet have believed: and that blessedness by this Ascensioni valde fidélihe hath left to the whole Church. That Christ ascended is the ground and um lumen est glory of our Faith; and by virtue of his being in Heaven, our Belief is both in
en, our belief is both incunctanter encouraged and commended; for his Afcent is the Caufe, and his Absence the credere quæ Crown of our Faith: Because he ascended, we the more believe ; and because corporeo non
videntur inwe believe in him who hath ascended, our Faith is the more accepted. . tuitu, & ibi
figere defiderium quò nequeas inferre conspectum. Hæc autem pietas undè in noftris cordibus nafceretur, aut quomodò quifquam justificaretur per fidem, fi in iis tantùm falus noftra confifteret quæ obtutibus subjacerent: Leo in Afcen. Serm. 2.° Fides eorum qui Deum visuri funt, quamdiu percgrinantur corda mundantur, quod non videt credit, nam fi vides non eft fides : credenti colligitur meritum, videnti redditur præmium. Eat ergo Dominus & paret locum; cat ne videatur, lateat ut credatur: tunc enim locus paratur, fi ex fide vivatur : creditus desideretur ut defideratus habeatur, defiderium dilectionis præparatio est manfionis. S. Auguft. Traft. 68. in Foh. a Foh. 20. 29.
TO 6 Job. 14. 3:
Secondly, It is necessary to believe the Ascension of Christ for the corroboration of our Hope. We could neyer expect our Dust and Ashes should ascend the Heavens; but being our Nature hath gone before in him, we can now hope to follow after him. He is our * Head, and where that is, the Christi af Members may expect admission: for in so great and intimate an Union there cenfio noftra is no fear of separation or exclusion. There are many mansions in his Fa- provectio elt,
do & quò præther's house. And when he spake of ascending thither, he said expressly to cehit gloria his Disciples, I go to prepare a place for you, and will come again and re-.capitis, co
fpes vocatur ceive you unto my self, that where I am, there ye may be also. The first corporis.. fruits of our Nature are afcended, and the rest is sanctified. This is the new Leo de Ascen. and living way which he confecrated for us through the veil, that is to serm; i;. ray, bis flesh. And hence we d have our hope as an anchor of the foul to both fure and stedfast, which entreth into that within the veil, whither ogłážeur opes
λου έπαδαν the fore-runner is for us entred. For if Christ in his Ascension be the fore
. Care egy this runner, then are there some to follow after ; and not only so, but they aree xkw 78 which follow are to go on in the same way, and to attain unto the same elece que
Malo, 787650 place: and if this fore-runner be entred for us, then we are they which are o Cégre, as to follow and overtake him there ; as being of the same Nature, Members degvois Xer
: sos avázale. of the fame Body, Branches of the fame Vine, and therefore he went thi-Soc ther before us as the first-fruits before those that follow, and we hope to 1. de Ascens. follow him as coming late to the fame Perfection.
Διό λοιπόν κρησας έχουν
τας ελπίδας samogi's emot rips Teegy áragy cipogwv7es. Ibid. Orat. 2. . c Heb. 10. 20. d Heb. 6. 19, 20.
There is a double Norion of wegdegu@, to this purpose, one of a man fent before to make Preparations for others which follow; in which it is well observed by S. Chryfoftom : 'o ä wegdogu trőv ési wegegne, cię 'lwurms rõ Xesso, w o'x elπεν απλώς ήλθεν· αλλ' όπ8 πρόδρομG- αές ημών ασήλθεν ως και ημών οφειλόνων καλαλαβάν: Ου πολυ ο τε σροδρόκα mo itopelborn o peixer elva po récoyl 'de av en wegdragpw j 8 wegd@gilor sey 785 imobbes cú až w rõ xsri bivan od sa
en een on odotev, oy's zimoxalarankresy. Hom. 11. in Epist. ad Hebræos. Another Notion there is among the Greeks of the Fruit which is ripe and come to perfection before the reft, as Isaiah 28.4. Kai 'ses to avogu to interior a larida va dóIns éx' öxes tš 285 Ws Tegdeguo Cóxx, 77122), tanquam primitiæ, or fructus primogeniti, ficus præcox. Hesychius, legd og ud, ta co tu cori Gúdse, o ta wegaruazorla Coxa. lege negdeguon; for they indeed are properly ta wegarná 2017.00 rūza, præcoces ficus: For fo Theophrastus, Speaking particularly wen Cuxñs, hath chefe Words, ámdeinopfúrs.78 oraciovos Η τοιαύτης Γρότη7%», όταν αης επιγένη) μαλακός και υγρος και θερμός, εξεκαλέσαίο ή βλάστησιν· ότι και το Ciμβαίνει φανερον, ori se ošty rõ néers • xastos dvie, Bey x oc wegdeguoi. De caufis plant. lib. 5. cap. 1. ex paulò pòft, IJáno ä to's
podegue's ci wife psexosv, olov, Śte Acxovexa x Adurovipara xj PTEEGEE Wiers, ai do š pigrow. The First-fruits of the early Fins were called a pádeguon, and the Tree which bare them we97eenxý. Now as this early Fruit doth fore-run the Latter Fruit of the same Tree, and comes to Ripeness and Perfection in its kind before the reft ; fo our Saviour goes before those men of the same Nature with him, and they follow in their time to the Maturity of the same Perfection.
* Ephef.2.6. As therefore a God hath quickned us together with Christ, and hath
• raised us up together by virtue of his Resurrection; so hath he also made
us fit together in heavenly places in Christ Jefus, by virtue of his Ascen* Täsee paääs fion. We are already seated there * in him, and hereafter shall be seated by zobeto ulicos, him ; in him already as in our Head, which is the ground of our Hope ; by momento delle him hereafter, as by the Cause conferring, when Hope shall be swallowed 7870 bahagfu up in Fruition. ώ Χρισώ Ιηrš.
Thirdly, The Profession of Faith in Christ ascended, is necessary for the S. Chry- _ Soft. in locum. Exaltation of our Affections. b For where our treasure is, there will our
Mat. 6.21; hearts be also. If I be lifted up from the earth, I will draw all men cJohn 12. 32.
2. unto me, faith our Saviour; and if those words were true of his Crucifixion, d2 Kings 2. 2. how powerful ought they to be in reference to his Al
Lord would take up Elijah into heaven, Elisha faid unto him; As the
is ascended up on high, we must follow him with the Wings of our MeditaCol.3. 1,2,3. tions, and with the Chariots of our Affections. If we be rifen with Chrift,
we must seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. If we be dead, and our life hid in Christ with God, we must fet our affe&tion on things above, not on things on earth. Christ is ascended into Heaven to teach us that we are Strangers and Pilgrims here, as
all our Fathers were, and that another Countrey belongs unto us : From t'i Pet. 2. 11. Whence we f as strangers and pilgrims should learn to abstain from fleshly 8 Phil. 3. 19, lufts; and not mind earthly things; as knowing that we are & Citizens of Othere. to Heaven, from whence we look for our Saviour, the Lord Jefus, yea h fel
low Citizens with the Saints, and of the houshold of God. We should trample upon our Sins, and subdue the Lusts of the Flesh, that our Conversation may be correspondent to our Saviour's Condition, that where the Eyes of the Apostles were forced to leave him, thither our Thoughts may follow him. :
Fourthly, The Ascension of Christ is á necessary Article of the Creed in respect of those great Effects which immediately were to follow it, and did absolutely depend upon it. The blessed Apostles had never preached the Gospel, had they not been indued with Power from above; but none of that Power had they received, if the Holy Ghost in a miraculous manner had not descended : And the Holy Ghost had not come down, except our Saviour had ascended first. For he himself, when he was to depart from his Disci
ples, grounded the necessity of his Departure upon the certainty of this John 16.7. Truth, saying, If I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you :
but if I depart, I will send him unto you. Now if all the Infallibility of
in Heaven ; therefore in respect of this great work the Son of God mult necessarily ascend, and in reference to that Necessity we may well be obliged to confels thar Ascension.
Upon these Considerations we may easily conclude what every Christian is obliged to confess in those Words of our Creed, He ascended into Heaven: for thereby he is understood to express thus much, I am fülly perfuaded, that the Only-begotten and Eternal Son of God, after he arose from the Dead, did with the fame Soul and Body with which he rose, by a true and local Tranflation convey himself from the Earth on which he lived, through all the Re-gions of the Air, through all the Celestial Orbs, until he came unto the Heaven of Heavens, the most glorious Presence of the Majesty of God. And thus I believe in Jesus Christ who ascended into Heaven.
And ütteth on the Right hand of God the Father
T HE Second part of the Article containeth two Particulars ; the Session
I of the Son, and the Description of the Father : The First Theweth that Christ upor his Ascension is set down at the right hand of God; the Second assureth us that the God, at whose Right Hand Christ is set down, is the Father Almighty.
For the Explication of Christ's Session, Three things will be necessary : First, To prove that the promised Messias was to fit at the Right Hand of God; Secondly, To shew that our Jesus, whom we believe to be the true Mefias, is fer down at the Right Hand of God; Thirdly, To find what is the Importance of that Phrase, and in what Propriety of Expression it belongs to Chrift.
That the promised Messias was to fit at the Right Hand of God, was both pre-typified and foretold Joseph who was betrayed and sold by his Brethren, was an express Type of Christ; and though in many things he represented the Melias, yet in none more than in this, that being taken our of the Prison he was exalted to the Supreme Power of Egypt. For thus Pharaoh spake to Jofeph, Thou Malt be over my house, and according to Gen. 41. 40, thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater 42, 43. than thou.' And Pharaoh took off the ring from his hand, and put it upon
7ofeph's hand, and arrayed him in the vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck; And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had, and they cried before him, Bow the knee ; and he made him ruler over all the land of Egypt. Thus Jofeph had the Execution of all the Regal Power committed unto him, all Edicts and Commands were given out by him, the managing of all Affairs was through his Hands, only the Authority by which he moved, remained in Pharaob still. This was a clear Reprefentation of the Son of Man, who by his fitting on the Right Hand of God, obtained Power to rule and govern all Things both in Heaven and Earth, (especially as the ruler of his house, that is, the Church) with express Command that all Things both in Heaven and Earth, and under the Earth, thould bow down before him : but all this in the Name of the Father ; to whom the Throne is still reserved, in whom the original Authority still remains. And thus the Session of the Mefias was pre-typified.
- The same was also expreflly foretold, not only in the Sense, but in the Phrase. The Lord said unto my Lord, faith the Prophet David, Sit thou pfal. 110. 1. at my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool. The Jews have endeavoured to avoid this Prophecy, but with no Success : fome make the