Vol.XVII No.X Pg.5
December 1980

Of Christ's Reign In Heaven

Robert F. Turner

(continued from previous page) resurrected, and that he now reigns as King upon David's throne. Resurrection and exaltation must be proven.

The outpouring of the Holy Spirit had caused them to marvel, and Peter explained this as that prophesied in Joel, signaling the new era. So much for introduction. Then he launched into his main subject by calling attention to God's approval of the man they had crucified. He says God did "mighty works and wonders" by him before his death; and would not allow His Holy One to see corruption, as promised in a Psalm of David. "We are witnesses" of his resurrection, he confidently affirms. The Jews accepted the Psalm (16:8-f) as referring to Messiah, who would sit on David's throne; and the apostles could bear witness to the resurrection, for it took place here on earth. But what could be produced as proof that Jesus occupied the throne of David? Peter offered something that used the eyes and ears of his audience as witnesses.

During the Lord's personal ministry he had spoken of a time when "rivers of living water" would flow from his followers (Jn. 7:38), and John explained that this referred to the Spirit "which they that believed on him were to receive;" and added, "for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified" (v. 39). There was to be an outpouring of the Spirit that could not take place until Jesus had finished His earthly humiliation, and was seated upon His throne in Heaven.

When Jesus promised the Spirit to his disciples he not only stressed the necessity for his going away in order that the Spirit might come (in. 16:7); he also explained that a new and different heavenly office would be established. "Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive..." (v. 24).

The Spirit would bring "power" and "authority" that qualified special ambas- sadors to carry forth the message of the King (Acts 1:8, 2 Cor. 10: 8); but this promise could not be fulfilled until a greater and more basic promise had been realized, viz., the promise of the Father to seat His Son upon the throne as King.

Was this a "promise of the Holy Spirit"? David was a prophet (Acts 2: 30) who spake by the Spirit (2 Pet. 1: 21). In Matt. 22:41-f. Jesus assigns Psalm 110:1 to the Spirit, and argues His exaltation. And now, following the text we are considering, Peter quotes that same Psalm and concludes that Jesus is both Lord and Christ.

Considering "the promise of the Holy Spirit" to be something the Spirit promised is within the bounds of the Greek genitive case. It seems to me Peter offers the Apostles as witnesses for the resurrection; and then says, You, yourselves, see and hear something that could only take place following the glorification and enthronement of the Messiah. Having received of the Father sovereign authority, glorious Kingship (the promise the Holy Spirit delivered) the ruling Messiah has "poured forth this, which ye see and hear." That demonstration of power from on high is undeniable proof that Jesus now reigns as King.