The story of Christianity does not end with the crucifixion of Christ. When I was taking a course on Jewish Mysticism at San Jose State University, a student with me mocked me for taking a stance for holiness saying that I might end up like Christ. She meant that I might end up crucified by the people I was being holy around. But I couldn’t understand her insult because I could only think of Jesus being high and lifted up, resurrected and King over all creation. It eventually occurred to me that she didn’t believe and so she wrongly thought that the crucifixion of Christ was the end of the story. But the story moves on to the Resurrection of Christ which is the most important fact of history. The resurrection of Christ is one of the most important aspects of the exaltation of Christ, but for us today the resurrection is one of the most important facts we could know because it is the foundation of all that we hope for in Christ. When my mother-in-law professed that she was a Christian who did not believe in the resurrection, not only did I share with her the Scripture but I offered to share with her that great book “Who Moved the Stone” because the resurrection of Christ is the best authenticated fact of history.
After the Resurrection, Jesus Ascended into Heaven to provide for us the intercession on behalf of God that we need and to provide for us the Comforter, the Holy Spirit that He might indwell us. In heaven Jesus is seated at the right hand of the father. When that skeptic in my class insulted me all I could think of was Jesus exalted and sitting at the right hand of God the Father in power and I couldn’t relate to her criticism at all. Moreover, in heaven Christ is there to prepare a place for us. Now while many mockers and scoffers like to ask, “Where is the promise of His coming?” I like to look at the seeming delay of Christ with hope: because as amazing as this universe is it took God only 6 days to make this place, but Christ has been spending thousands of years preparing a place for me and for all who believe in heaven. What a marvelous place it is going to be!
In heaven, Jesus is exalted even if we curse in His name here on earth. But Jesus is not going to put up with us maligning His ways forever. There is a great and a terrible day approaching in which Jesus is going to return to this world. And when the return of the King occurs there is going to be the culmination of the exaltation of Christ. Jesus will be exalted by all of us who love Him on that day. But Jesus is also going to be exalted by Buddha, and Muhammad, and Joseph Smith, and Hitler, and Osama Bin Ladin and by all who have killed Christians. And on that great day when all of the wicked men of history will bring glory to God in Hell because they refused to bring Him glory on earth, we who believe will be with God forever in Heaven as they will be forever in Hell.