While scholars might acknowledge that Paul assumes Christ’s ascension, it has been all but invisible in Pauline studies. This article looks at 2 Corinthians through the lens of ascension understood in four dimensions. Cosmologically, Christ has ascended into heaven and so is absent, yet accessible on earth. This is seen in 2 Corinthians as being away from and longing for Christ, and in various signals of proleptic participation in Christ’s presence with God. Christologically, Christ’s session as prophet, priest, and king continues his completed work, signaled in 2 Corinthians by Christ speaking in Paul, the Corinthians’ chrismation into Christ’s reign, and our participation in Christ’s priestly “Amen.” Anthropologically, Jesus’s ascension envisions humanity’s goal, signaled in 2 Corinthians in Jesus’s glory as the image of God, his risen life made visible in our mortal bodies, and the enigmatic “building not made with hands.” Eschatologically, Christ’s ascension creates the overlap of ages, visible in 2 Corinthians’ focus on the new, on the now, and on Paul’s apostolic identity, the very ground on which Paul stands and the goal toward which he goes.

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