We see that the three Persons of the Godhead love and honor one another: Jesus honored the Holy Spirit by warning that blaspheming Him would not be forgiven (Matthew 12:31, 32), both the Father and the Holy Spirit honored Jesus by showing up at His baptism (Matthew 3:16, 17), and Jesus continuously glorified His Father by doing and speaking only what His Father instructed (John 8:28, 29).
As it was Jesus’ greatest pleasure to glorify His Father while here on earth, even so, it is the Father’s greatest pleasure to glorify His Son. Jesus is seated at the right hand of the Father (Hebrews 1:3)– the highest place of honor that is possible in heaven. Hundreds of years before the incarnation (the point in time when Jesus became man), King David prophesied of Him, “The LORD said to my Lord [Jesus], ‘Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool'” (Psalm 110:1).
He is seated there as both fully God and fully man. He has a glorified human body, which still bears the nail and spear scars, the marks of His crucifixion (John 20:24-27) — a forever testimony to His selfless love for mankind. A new thing took place when God the Son walked the earth in human flesh, and now a new thing has also taken place in heaven, where the Son of man retains His humanity while at the same time exercising His full function within the Godhead, which is to rule and reign over the universe. He is the “firstborn among many sons” (Romans 8:29), for He has paved the way so that we will one day also walk heaven’s halls in glorified bodies.
In heaven, God the Son has been honored with all reverence from eternity, but in ways which we cannot fully understand, He now receives still greater honor and glory than the limitless glory which was already His. Philippians 2:8 tells us that this greater glory is due to His humbling of Himself in becoming a man and His obedience to the Father in enduring the cross, “Wherefore God [the Father] also has highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11).
Jesus bears the formal title of KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS (Revelation 19:16), He holds all power in both heaven and earth (Matthew 28:18), and at this time He is preparing for the day when all things will be put in subjection to Him, and even His enemies will acknowledge His Lordship with complete obeisance.
In 1 Corinthians 15:24-28, we are told that in the end of time, a shift in absolute Lordship from the Son to the Father will take place. Christ will hand over the Kingdom to His Father, after He has subdued and abolished all opposing dominions and powers. Before the Kingdom is transferred, He must finish the task of utterly conquering his enemies, including death, the final enemy. In essence, this was already a finished work at the time of His triumph at the cross and His subsequent resurrection. He already holds the keys of death and hell (Revelation 1:18). But here we are talking about the mop-up operation — enforcing His victory by ensuring that all rebellion will cease. “And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject to him [the Father] who put all things under him, that God may be all in all” (1 Corinthians 15:28).
What will Jesus be doing after He has handed over the Kingdom to His Father? We may have a hint, in Revelation 21. This is the era of the Bridegroom fully enjoying His union with His bride, the Church. Verse 4 tells us He will wipe away all her tears. Verse 3 says that “the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, … and God himself shall be with them ….” We will fully know Him as Immanuel, “God with us.”
Excerpted from Before Whom We Stand: The Everyman’s Guide to the Nature of God — available in print from Full Gospel Family Publications and Amazon and in e-book form from many fine ebook sellers.