21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him” (I Peter 3:21-22).
The Apostle Peter describes the Ascension of Jesus Christ as follows: “who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God.” The phrase “gone into heaven” is respectively from the Greek words πορεύομαι (poreuomai) and οὐρανός (ouranos). The word “gone” or “go” means to travel or go away. In the context, the place Jesus traveled to was the dwelling place of God: heaven.
However, Jesus’ ascension was not an act which He actively brought about, but rather was an event in which He was a passive recipient of the actions of God the Father. The Father exalted His only-begotten Son as a reward for His faithfulness. Jesus is now at the right hand of God (Psalm 110:1; Hebrews 1:13; 8:1; 10:12; 12:1-2) where He reigns as Lord of heaven and earth (Colossians 1:15-16; 2:14-15).
Who is subject (ὑποτάσσω; hypostasso) or subordinate to Jesus’ authority as King and Sovereign? Peter mentions three categories of beings: angels, authorities and powers. Angels (ἄγγελος; angelos) are God created supernatural messengers who dwell with Him in heaven. Authorities (ἐξουσία; exousia) are those angelic powers God has given authority to rule over nations. See Ephesians 1:21-23. Powers (δύναμις; dynamis) is another word for those who possess supernatural power. This may refer to fallen angels or demons. Peter is saying that even evil powers are under Jesus’ authority.
The application is simple: Jesus is in total control of everything and everyone: in heaven and on earth. We do not need to fear anything that happens to us. God has it firmly under His sovereign authority. What an awesome truth.
Thank God today that He is in charge and that He is trustworthy.
Soli deo Gloria!