JOHN iii. 13. “And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but
He that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which
is in heaven.”
THERE are three affirmations here of our Lord with respect
to Himself that will be found full of interest and suggestive-
I. That He had ascended up to heaven. Not merely that
He had been in heaven prior to His appearance in the flesh,
but that having appeared in the flesh He had gone up thither.
He did not begin in a flood of light and certainty. He
can sympathise with us in our questionings and strivings,
our mental revolvings and acquiescings, in our pursuit of
and progress in knowledge.
II. That He came down from heaven. In other words,
He had risen while here to such profound perception of
and intimacy with the heavenly, because He was of heaven,
and had brought so much of the heavenly with Him. His
extraordinary human attainments were due to His extra-
ordinary Divine principle and inspiration.
It speaks also of the height from which He stooped, of
what He gave up and surrendered, of the greatness of His
Divine self-abnegation, and that contributed most surely to
His great and high ascent.
III. He declared that He was then in heaven.
Surrounded by scenes of misery and wretchedness, by
evil in a thousand ugly forms, by pitiable ignorances and
despicable falseness, and grievous disorders, and suffering
more or less continually from the reign of blindness and
sin, He was still always in heaven, most restful and blessed
amid all that He saw to pain Him, and down below all his
burden and woe, he knew that God was in Him, and in
Him for the reconciliation of the world.
S. A. Tipple