Jesus, both Lord and Christ

This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses.   

Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing.

For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says, 

“ ‘The Lord said to my Lord, 

“Sit at my right hand, 

until I make your enemies your footstool.” ’ 

Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.” 

Some events are so significant that they remain etched in our memory so that we can ask the question, where were you: When JFK was shot; when news broke of Princess Diana’s death; or when Queen Elizabeth II died? For the first, though alive at the time I had more important things on my mind like learning to articulate an increasing vocabulary; for the second, I was stuck in snow in the Andes Mountains on my way from Paraguay to Chile; and for the third, I was leaving our last home in London in pouring rain. 

When Queen Elizabeth died on 8 September 2022, her son Charles immediately became king, but it was not until 6 May 2023 that he was officially crowned in Westminster Abbey. This devotional date means it falls between the two feasts of Ascension Day and Pentecost, between 40 and 50 days after Resurrection Sunday. I love the feast of the Ascension of Jesus. When I was living in Paraguay sometimes our post was sent to Ascension Island rather than Asunción, where we actually lived (Assumption does not mean the same thing at all!). 

In the passage above from Acts 2 focusing on the Ascension and the Day of Pentecost I would draw our attention to two points.

At his Ascension the Lord Jesus receives all authority as Lord in heaven and on earth from his Father

Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit,

When Charles III acceded to the throne on the death of his mother, in a sense nothing much changed. With Jesus’ ascension everything has changed: his mission of saving his people by dying on the cross has been completed and he has triumphed over death in his resurrection, he now takes his place at the right hand of the Father and receives his inheritance:  And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me”. His Father proclaims him Lord of all and “he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet”. This is the one we are to proclaim to a needy world that is completely ignorant of the one to whom all will give account.


At Pentecost the Lord Jesus poured out the Holy Spirit as a proof of his Lordship and Kingship.

When Charles III was finally about to be crowned he received from the Moderator of the Church of Scotland a Bible with the words: Sir, to keep you ever mindful of the law and the Gospel of God as the Rule for the whole life and government of Christian Princes, receive this Book, the most valuable thing that this world affords. Here is Wisdom; this is the royal Law; these are the lively Oracles of God. This was along with many other gifts. Jesus at Pentecost gave a gift away: ‘he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing’, the promised Holy Spirit. How was Jesus’ kingship over all to be displayed? The coronation of King Charles made visible what had been invisible since his accession; the giving of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost made visible what had been invisible since his ascension. 

The task of proclaiming the fruits of Jesus’ death to a needy world is done by feeble disciples like you and me in the power of the Holy Spirit:  ”you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

As we approach the Cairo Assembly of the GSFA let us never forget the missional purpose behind why we exist: to proclaim Jesus as Lord and Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit to a desperately needy world which is in rebellion against him.  


Rt Rev Andy Lines

Presiding Bishop
Anglican Network in Europe

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