“What does it mean that Jesus sat down at the right hand of God in heaven? It seems the New Testament mentions that several times.”
* * *
The imagery comes from Psalm 110:1, which says: “The LORD said to my Lord: ‘Sit at My right hand, until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.'” New Testament writers quote this Psalm more often than any other text in the Jewish Scriptures (in Matthew, Mark, Luke, Acts, 1 Corinthians, Ephesians, Colossians and Hebrews). Even in the Psalms, this imagery of Jesus seated at God’s right hand suggests intimacy with God (Psalm 16:8, 11) as well as our Lord’s power and prestige (Psalm 80:17).
The seating of Jesus at God’s right hand in heaven emphasizes God’s unwavering faithfulness to those who put their trust in him. Jesus is the only man who has trusted God perfectly, and Jesus trusted God all the way to death. God met the challenge, so to speak, and vindicated Jesus’ faith and his own faithfulness by raising Jesus from the dead and exalting him to a position of glory in heaven.
The author of Hebrews challenges us to follow Jesus in trusting God throughout our own course on earth. “Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus . . . who . . . endured the cross . . . and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God” (12:1-2).