I heard an interesting question which caused me to reflect for a while. The question, “Did Jesus regain His omnipresence when He went back to heaven?
In one of my other articles, “An Aussie vs. Dwight Nelson: “Trinity Under Fire” I shared how our Aussie friend’s website promotes the a theory “…that Christ at some point in ages past originated from God, that Christ at some point had an origin.” I’ve also pointed out in “Our Mediator and the Holy Spirit” that the group also promotes that the Holy Spirit can be either Christ’s spirit, God’s spirit, or a combination of both. For the record, I don’t agree with either.
The question posed at the very beginning must be taken into consideration when dealing with such a theory. It would then make sense that Christ would have had to have taken on omnipresence after the resurrection; or perhaps even maintained His omnipresence and omnipotence during His earthly ministry in order for His own Spirit to be the Holy Spirit.
Now, I must pause here and issue a warning to myself to be careful here when dealing with anything God; be it God the Father, God the Son, or the Holy Spirit. I believe that many in our church trying to do a good thing in defending their belief of a Triune God, they have stepped over the boundaries and made too many assumptions. I also believe that because of them, site’s like that of our Aussie friend have come to life rebutting where our church has overstepped thus creating one big chain of over reaction reacting to over reaction, which then causes others to respond by over reacting to the over reaction…did you follow that logic?
In dealing with this subject, I must tread softly and be open to God’s leading and only deal with what He has chosen to reveal to us, otherwise I find myself in the same boat, and the only outcome every time is damaging to God. This is holy ground, and none of us, not I, nor Whidden, Moon1, our Aussie friend, or anyone are worthy to enter this territory. Too many times when we enter and bring God down to our level, we sully God’s word and as a result lives are eternally lost because of it. Our own self-righteous attitude(s) many times deny the humility we should take in dealing with such a topic. John Harvey Kellogg2 and the likes of him have done untold damage to God’s character as a result. As I undertake this, please understand, like the other mentioned, this is but my personal interpretation and is only theory. God will some day, reveal His truth to us; until that time, I offer but a humble interpretation praying along the way that none of you will lose your faith or relationship with God over it.
A slight caution now; when you see someone who is forceful, unrelentingly pushing a theory of God not shown in scripture, it’s at that point that you must not only move away, but run away as fast as possible to guard your mind from being led astray.
Did Jesus regain omnipresence after returning to heaven? Is He omnipresent today?
Simple answer…I don’t know, period…we are not given an answer.
If I were to guess, and it’s totally a guess, I would propose that He is not. In thinking about how to deal with this, I ran across a presentation by Doug Batchelor3 which more or less sums up my thoughts on the subject. I must commend Pastor Doug in his careful, softly treading approach, and as a result, I wholeheartedly present more-so than any other so far, his comments on the subject. His humble approach is a model all our pastors, theologians, and leaders should strive to emulate.
Doug Batchelor shared this at a meeting he held earlier in 20124 and he said:
“Did Jesus lose His omnipresence when He came to this world? When we say omnipresence…when Jesus was on earth…we have God the Son on earth, He wasn’t all places at one time was He? He was…confined to one place.”
“When He ascended to Heaven, Is He now omnipresent? I believe Jesus is definitely omnipresent mentally in that through His divine powers He can see everybody. He said I will be with you through the Spirit in the Gospel of John.”
I must pause here and interject something because I know that many will take what I just said and twist it to suit or fill their agenda. I will point out that Pastor Doug did not say, nor did Jesus that, “I will be with you through my spirit.”
“But physically it seems like He has to some extent sacrificed a dimension of His divinity. Because when He appeared after the resurrection He never appears more than one place at a time, does He? I mean even after he appears with the two in Emmaus; then at the upper room they get up there and he appears again. But he didn’t appear in the upper room and at Emmaus at the same time. He appears at the tomb to Mary, later to Peter, then in the upper room, a week later. And He said it’s expedient for you that I go home because I can only be with you, I’m paraphrasing, here now. But the Holy Spirit can be with you where ever you go. He said I can be with you where ever you go through the Spirit.”
“So Jesus has forever married Himself to the Human family in the incarnation. That’s the way I understand it. But again I’m on Holy ground and I may be wrong, but that’s what I see in the word.”
- Jerry Moon, John W. Reeve, and Woodrow Whidden are Adventist theologians who co-wrote wrote a book, “The Trinity” (see my comments in “An Aussie vs. Dwight Nelson: “Trinity Under Fire“) in defense of the Adventist triune God theory. [↩]
- John Harvey Kellogg was an Adventist holistic medical doctor who developed a non-biblical theory of God. See John Harvey Kellogg for further information. [↩]
- Doug Batchelor is an Adventist pastor, evangelist, and author. He is speaker director of Amazing Facts see http://www.dougbatchelor.com/ and http://amazingfacts.org for more information. [↩]
- Doug Batchelor’s comments were transcribed by me from a presentation listed at the GYC Southeast’s website. It was accessed April 8, 2012. [↩]