Previously a question was asked, "According to Hebrews 9:12, did the Lord Jesus Christ offered his blood in heaven?"

In John 20: 16-17 we read:

Jesus said to her, “Mary.” She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means “Teacher”). Jesus said, “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God’” (my emphasis).

Eight days later, however, Jesus said to Thomas,

. . . “Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing” (John 20:27 NASB, my emphasis).

Did the Lord Jesus Christ go to offer his blood in heaven after speaking to Mary at the tomb? If so, is that why, eight days later, Jesus permitted Thomas to touch his side and the scars on his hands and feet but previously had not allowed Mary to hold on to him?

In other words, do the words Jesus spoke to Thomas indicate that Jesus had in fact already offered his blood in heaven, since Mary was not allowed to hold on to Jesus on resurrection morning but Thomas was allowed to touch him eight days later?

  • 1
    Shouldn't this be a comment on the previous question rather than a new question? Please delete this question and add your comment to the Hebrews 9:12 question. Thanks.
    – Ruminator
    Apr 29 '18 at 12:18
  • Welcome to BH. I think you would need to clearly state your question in a way which distinguishes it from the question you mention. It seems to me that you do have a separate question to ask but it is not clarified sufficiently to make it distinctive.
    – Nigel J
    Apr 29 '18 at 14:12
  • I've rewritten your question for better clarity. If I have not clarified it, feel free to revert to your previous version or rewrite it yourself. Don May 1 '18 at 11:16
  • The question starts with "since Jesus offered..." but does not show that he did. This is a "have you stopped beating your wife" question, especially since every answer on the referenced link said that he didn't.
    – Ruminator
    May 1 '18 at 19:59

The assumptions behind your question are based on two false premises.

First, the meaning of the words Jesus spoke to Mary and to Thomas eight days later is not the same. Jesus said to Mary,

Do not hold on to me,

whereas the words he spoke to Thomas were

Reach here with your finger . . . and your hand . . . [and touch the wounds in my hands and side]

There is a big difference between the words hold on to and touch (or technically, "put your hand in my side").

Quite naturally, I suggest, upon seeing Jesus that resurrection morning, Mary in her exuberant joy wanted Jesus to stay on earth forever, hence her "holding on to" Jesus. As for his ascending to the Father, Jesus could very well have been referring prophetically to the ascension documented in Acts Chapter 1:

And after He had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And as they were gazing intently into [h]the sky while He was going, behold, two men in white clothing stood beside them. They also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into [i]the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven” (verses 9-11, NASB).

Thomas, on the other hand, unlike Mary, did not really believe Jesus had risen from the dead. He, unlike Mary, had not seen Jesus in a post-resurrection appearance.

That is why Jesus sought to dispel his doubts by encouraging Thomas to touch him. Mary did not need such encouragement, however, since Jesus met her face to face. Her desire to hold on to Jesus prompted his cautionary words to her.

Second, as for when Jesus offered his blood upon the mercy seat in heaven, I suggest we exercise caution in taking that highly symbolic act too literally, which you seem to be doing, hence the second false premise.

After all, earlier in his earthly teaching ministry, when Jesus talked to his followers and others about the necessity for his disciples to eat his flesh and drink his blood, he was not speaking literally, but spiritually.

It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life (John 6:63 NASB).

What I am suggesting is that rather than attempting to attach a literal time frame to Jesus' offering of his blood at the mercy seat of God, perhaps a better tack would be to think of that offering as more symbolic than literal. After all, regarding the offering up of his blood to his Father, must we believe that Jesus took some of the literal blood he shed at Calvary and sprinkled it on the mercy seat? That belief does not, in my opinion, reflect a consistent and accurate hermeneutic, in light of the passage in John Chapter 6.

  • I agree with your caution as to trying to 'time' the matter of the offering. Very wise.
    – Nigel J
    May 1 '18 at 13:05

Dear clever people here. I am just a simple housewife from Austria and my English not perfect. I actually did try and answer the previous question but didn't understand how to solve all the complicated "brownie point" conditions to be able to participate in these glorious previous question and this is the only way that I succeeded in participating ie. by posing this question. Anyway, we had a bible study around Easter time and we were just wondering if Jesus said to Mary that she shouldn't touch him, because he would be going to the Father. We were thinking in terms of him being the high priest who went into the Holy of Holies in heaven to apply the blood of Jesus on the mercy seat, only once. If this question poses an irritation then not to worry, I will keep it to our humble little bible study group.

  • The Bible Hermeneutics site has guidelines which are compatible with the Stack Exchange model and program conditions. The site is not a religious gathering, as such, and has to be run within the framework provided by the whole Stack Exchange community. That said, I have personally found this site very useful indeed as a study tool for my own appreciation of the scripture.
    – Nigel J
    May 1 '18 at 13:03

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