Dual Location: Heaven And Earth
Jesus was present on both the Earth and the heavenly realms. The Holy Bible holds two particular examples of dual-located existence that demonstrate the reality that Jesus and the early church lived in.
In Matthew 8:29 we see that when Jesus entered a region, immediately the spirits that dwelt in that area recognised him. The spirits recognised Jesus because they saw the spiritual reality of Jesus, the son of God. The reality of his identity was obvious to them for it was a spiritual reality and not one that was obvious in the physical appearance of Jesus.
In Acts 16:16-18 we see that Paul addresses a spirit. The spirit had first seen Paul and recognised him but when Paul identifies the spirit and speaks directly with it, the spirit has to submit to the authority of Jesus Christ that is embedded into Paul.
In both these examples we see a conflict between the Kingdom of God and spirits that oppose God but both examples show us the reality of the dual existence we have. In body on Earth and in spirit in heavenly places, or in spiritual realms in which other spirits recognise us and see Christ in us as if in plain sight.
Jesus longs for us to comprehend the mystery of dual location, dwelling simultaneously on Earth and in heavenly places. It is a new way of life in which we have entered when we received the Holy Spirit in our hearts.
Way Of Life
When Jesus described himself as ‘the way’, he was alluding to a deeper truth than ‘the way to enter eternal life.’ Hebraic understanding is that a ‘way of life’ is akin to a philosophy, precepts, principles, spiritual and ethical morals that dictate our code of life by which we live every day. So when Jesus said he is ‘the way’, he was telling us that he is the measuring line and standard by which we live and govern our lives. Jesus is our guide along the pathway we take in life, especially for our spirit.
As we live in ‘the way’, or alternatively, as we allow our eternality in Christ to determine our decisions and allow his love to affect the way we live, our spiritual potency increases. As Jesus said, with the measure we use (the principles that govern our life), we are measured. So if we decide to live our lives, making decisions in response of Jesus Christ’s love toward us, so spiritual authority and potency is measured toward us with increasing measure.
For example, mindful of Jesus Christ, we choose to forgive those who hurt us, so our hearts expand in the love of God. Our spirit’s capacity to follow the will of God (to love our neighbour) increases and we increase our capacity for Holy Spirit in our life. By choosing to live in alignment with the will of God, our natural potency of soul and flesh like desires are “crucified” (we take up our cross) and yield to the Holy Spirit, allowing his governance and influence to flow through us (the Kingdom, or reign and influence of God increases through us).
Our practical everyday living has great influence on our spiritual dwelling. As we choose to align to soul or spirit, so our spiritual essence will be of a mixture of either soul or spirit in relative measure. By choosing to live by the Holy Spirit we reap the benefits of the Holy Spirit, which all pertain to eternal life and the reward that is Jesus Christ. Among these benefits is a quietened mind, heart and increased sharpness in our spiritual senses (Romans 8:6, Isaiah 32:17, Hebrews 5:14).
Realities Of Our Heavenly Location
In the natural order of things, we are born into this world and are governed by its principles of nature. Astray from God’s design, rule, governance and authority, our world has been set in motion along a trajectory of decay. Jesus Christ, however, saved us from the powers of this world by his blood. By his ascension he has made a way for us to be with him, where he is and he has translocated us into heavenly places when we receive the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 2:6).
We have been drawn into the glorious light of Jesus Christ by the power and decision of our Father in heaven. So while we are present here on Earth, we are anchored into the heavenly realms with Jesus Christ. We have an existence that is rooted in the spirit realm. The mechanism by which we perceive the spiritual realm is faith, in spirit, for it is our spiritual dwelling.
We can learn how to attune our spirit senses to perceive our spiritual reality through spirit senses, for the dwelling of our spirit in the heavenly realms is our current state of being. We have been translated by the spirit of God into our heavenly reality.
Our identity and reality has shifted the moment we believed in Jesus Christ. In him we have been given the right, by God, to become children of God through faith in Jesus Christ (John 1:12) and we are a people who live in heavenly places (Philippians 3:20).
As citizens of heaven we have several heavenly rights, a few examples are:
Our lives are governed by the principles and power of heaven.
Personal angels commanded by God to minister to us.
The power to live as citizens of heaven, governed by faith, hope and love.
Freedom to live as children of our Father in heaven, joined to him, in spirit.
Free access to the mysteries of God.
We belong to a new reality, one that was once strange to us. We are heaven’s people. Our citizenship in eternity started the moment we believed in Jesus Christ and is preserved, protected by his power (1 Peter 1:4).
Since the moment we believed in Jesus Christ, we started to walk with one foot on Earth and one foot in heaven. With our body on Earth and our spirit clothed in Christ and enfolded in the light of God.
Realities Of Heaven
We are able to access the realities of heaven through faith in Jesus Christ. He has freely given us the ability to understand the mysteries of heaven and the Kingdom of God. With the Holy Spirit in us, we have a constant connection into the life of God, moment by moment our spirit is receiving revelation and we have an invitation to dwell with God and enter into an awakening toward his mysteries.
God wants us to understand his realities, mysteries of his glory, love, nature and character. At first these ways will be mysterious to us for they are not of this world and we can not understand them through ways taught us as children. Just as Jesus said, his Kingdom is not of this world (John 18:36) and the Spirit of God will be our teacher (Isaiah 54:13). The Spirit of God is our primary source of understanding, wisdom and revelation.
Accessing the mysteries and knowledge of God’s Kingdom is through his spirit, because faith is a substance of heaven. It is granted to us from our Father in heaven as a gift and allows us to access his mysteries.
What might we imagine these mysteries to be?
As we are born again and as 1 John 12-14 outlines, the journey of faith into maturity is a gradual one with clear stages. As we mature and go deeper into the things of God, we are able to grasp God’s mysteries with greater clarity. When we first begin to grapple with the mysteries of the Kingdom of God, they may seem strange or fascinating, or even both strange and fascinating!
Through maturity we gain a deeper understanding of God and his mysteries, so we can expect our understanding of his mysteries to mature and change over time. Our first perceptions may not be entirely clear, accurate or even entirely correct. In his glory, God has concealed his matters, in hope that we would seek him out. Through our journey of seeking God to understand him and his ways, we deepen our relationship with him, growing in admiration and awe of God as we uncover his truths.
God’s mysteries are revealed in spirit, their nature is of spirit. Sometimes his mysteries may be the presence of angels or other spiritual beings that reside within his realms. Other revelation of mysteries may be a deeper understanding of scriptural truths and the nature of God. In the heavenly realms there are many places to visit and many spiritual beings present, all wrapped up in the mystery of the Kingdom of heaven and hidden from natural perception.