Jesus’ death and resurrection was not and is not the end of His work or His ministry. His work is ongoing! After Jesus’ resurrection, He spent time with His disciples. For 40 days Jesus remained on earth, and then, He was gone. He did not simply vanish. He did not die. Jesus ascended into heaven and was seated at the right hand of God (Hebrews 12:2).
In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach 2until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. 3After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. 4On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. 5For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”
6Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. 8But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.
10They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. 11“Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:1-11)
On Sunday, April 4, 2021, we celebrated the Holy holiday of Easter. Easter, the day when Jesus Christ rose from death and returned to the earth. While He had truly returned, He had not come to stay. Instead, Jesus would only remain, physically, on earth, for another 40 days. On Thursday, May 13, 2021, 40 days after Easter, we celebrate Ascension Day.
Ascension Day is not nearly as widely celebrated as Easter, however it is still an important day and an important part of growing your relationship with the Lord. Jesus is not dead!! Jesus defeated death when He rose from the grave. He did not die again. He ascended into heaven to be with His Father, and to prepare a place for all those who follow Him. While Jesus is no longer physically with us on earth, He remains with us in spirit. We can still seek out His wisdom and help through prayer.
Since Jesus remains alive, He can return again. Jesus’ second coming is well-prophesied throughout the Bible, and Jesus Himself spoke of it to His disciples. It will happen! Jesus will return the same way that He left. This can be a sobering thought. Are you prepared for His return? Is the world?
Ascension Day is a chance to reflect on our lives and the way we live them. Are we prepared for His return? Are you prepared for His return? Jesus completed His earthly work, providing salvation for all who chose to accept it. The disciples were called to carry on His ministry, sharing the Gospel with the entire world! Today, the disciples are us! We are to carry to share the Gospel with all nations!
This Ascension Day, spend some time meditating on the importance of Jesus’ ascension into Heaven. What importance does it hold for you? Reflect upon what Jesus’ ascension means for the future. Are you prepared?
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