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Have you ever wondered where Jesus is now? The answer to that is complicated. As finite human beings, we will never understand entirely how some of these things work. In order to completely understand God, we would have to be as great or greater than God. [Despite what some cults teach, that is never going to happen!] However, let us look at what we can understand and know.
We know that Jesus was fully God and fully man. As the Son, before He came to earth, He always existed. In fact, He is the Creator of all that is.
In the beginning was the Word [Jesus], and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. John 1:1-3, NIV
We know that about 5 BC God the Son was born as a genuine human being in Bethlehem in Israel. He chose to set aside all the wonders of His existence as God to live the life of a poor, despised Jew. He did this because He loved you and me. It was the only way to save us from the dark destiny we were facing. We were absolutely helpless. Only through His love and sacrifice do we have the opportunity of entering true life.
Jesus lived a completely human life for about 33 1/2 years. He spent His time in and around Galilee and Judea. We know where he was when he lived here.
After Jesus rose from the dead, He ascended bodily into Heaven.
After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. Acts 1:9
So Jesus was in Heaven before He became Jesus. As Jesus, He lived in the land of Israel. When He left the earth, He disappeared into the sky.
The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. Heb. 1:3, NIV
…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Heb. 12:2
The mission of the Son, Jesus, was to live a perfect life and then offer that life as the perfect sacrifice to pay the price for our sins so that He could offer us Salvation. When Jesus cried out on the cross, “It is finished!” he was declaring that the mission had been accomplished. When Father God rose Jesus from the dead, He was declaring that the sacrifice of Jesus had been accepted in the courts of Heaven. The war had been won. Salvation was now freely available to all who would accept it.
In the above verses, we see that Jesus sat down at the right hand of God the Father in Heaven. Sitting down is a symbolic way of saying that He has completed His work. Jesus doesn’t need to be standing or moving around to finish His work. It is finished, so He can sit down.
There is only one time, after Jesus went to Heaven, that He is spoken of as standing.
But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. Acts 7:55, NIV
Jesus stood to welcome the first martyr of the Christian Church into Heaven.
So where is Jesus now? In His physical body - which went up into Heaven and will one day return to earth - He is in Heaven.
But what about the millions of people who have Jesus as a Friend and talk to Him daily? What about when we are in a church service and we feel the presence of Jesus?
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. John 14:26, NIV
Jesus said that when He went to Heaven, the Holy Spirit would come to be with His people and in them. The Holy Spirit has come to earth to implement the victory that Christ won on the cross into every area of life. Until we see this world operating in submission to the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit will not have completed His mission.
Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. 1 Cor. 15:24-26, NIV
In one sense, we can say God the Father sent God the Son, Jesus, into the world to earn salvation for His people, and then He sent God the Holy Spirit into the world until that salvation/victory is completely manifest.
However, there are not three Gods only One God and yet there are three distinct Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Each Person is unique and totally God, yet together they form only one God. This is not the place to try to explain the unexplainable. I mention this to say that, although Jesus is in Heaven, it is still perfectly correct for Christians to say that Jesus lives within them, that Jesus is working in the world, that Jesus manifested His presence in a church service, etc.
Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. John 14:23, NIV
Jesus said that He, and the Father, would live within each Christian. This is part of the wonder and mystery of Christianity. Where is Jesus now? Jesus is in Heaven, Jesus is in the world, Jesus is in my heart [as a Christian], Jesus is everywhere. God is God. He does not fit into any of the neat compartments we humans love so much.