The heavens opened

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For us it’s a description of rain (cf Genesis 7:11).  For Ezekiel it allowed him to see “visions of God” (Ezekiel 1:1).  In the Gospels, the heavens open for Jesus in order that He sees the Spirit descend:

“Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:  And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”  (Matthew 3:16-17)

As Jesus unites Himself to our life in baptism, He is affirmed as the Christ, the Son of God.  Entering our humanity has not cost Him His divinity.  Joining our estranged predicament has not distanced Him from the Father.  No – the Gift and love of the Father continues to pour down on Him.  And that veil that separates us from God is torn down in Jesus’ case.  He walks under an open heaven.

In fact, the bible never says that the heavens were closed again for Jesus.  Perhaps we are to infer that, from then on, Jesus always walked under an open heaven.  Certainly He always had the Father’s love and the Spirit’s anointing.  But then on Good Friday, He cried out to a black and silent heaven “My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me.”  (Matthew 27:45-46).  And yet at that very moment, “the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom” (Matthew 27:51).  The heavens were shut for Him, yet opened for us!

Now, with Christ risen again – vindicated by the Spirit and ascended into heaven – He invites us to be baptised into His life.  In Christ we too have the Father’s love and the Spirit’s anointing.  This day we too walk under an open heaven.

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