There are many events of the Bible that I would have loved to have witnessed.  The Ascension of Christ is one of those events. Part of me would like to see what it looked like from the disciples view point, but a larger part of me would like to have simply watched the disciples.  I would like to have witnessed the expression of surprise as Jesus ascended into the clouds and was gone. I know they would have been surprised, even after all they had seen Jesus do, they would have been surprised.   To watch them staring into space would have been “classic disciple behavior” even though he had explained it all to them they would not understand.

Slide3Can you imagine the expression on Peter’s face when the two men in white showed up and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand here looking into the sky?”  I can just see Peter quickly looking around as if to say, “I wasn’t staring into the sky, I was just enjoying the day and taking it all in.” The men continue, “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.”

How many of them took another peek into the sky, thinking “Then maybe we should keep an eye out for Him?” In my mind I imagine most of them looking at their feet and one another mumbling to themselves about what they should do next.  Someone had to break the mumbling to suggest they go back to town and wait like Jesus told them to do.

Lets look at a few things that Jesus left for them until his return.  UNTIL THAT DAY, Jesus left them…

an UNFINISHED task.

But 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.”
Acts 1:8 (NIV)

Their work was not over. In fact, the work of the church continues to this day as we take up the call to witness to Christ in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. The most powerful tool we have to share Christ to the world is not our eloquent words, but a life lived as witness to who He is, what He has done, what He is doing, and what He will do in our life.

an UNQUESTIONABLE love.

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8 (NIV)

There is nothing that demonstrates God’s love for us more then His sacrificial death and resurrection. His disciples witnessed that first hand. As I looked at the Ascension account in Acts, I found again the unquestionable love Jesus had for his Disciples and for us.  We talk in confirmation about the humiliation and exultation of Christ as we study the Apostles Creed.  His humiliation is found in his virgin birth, servant life, suffering and death.  His exultation is seen as he descends into hell as a victorious King , and as he rises from the dead, ascends into Heaven at God’s right hand.

After his suffering, he showed himself to these men 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.
Acts 1:3 (NIV)

Did you catch what Christ did after he rose from the dead?  He spent 40 days with His disciples appearing to them and to hundreds of others before ascending into Heaven.  40 more days, after 30 years “away from home” I don’t think I could have held out for 40 more days.  Just one more way that Jesus shows his love for us.  He didn’t want the disciples left with any doubt. He wanted them equipped to change the world.

So what are your plans Until That Day… when Christ returns? join us for part 2 of Until That Day to as we look at what else Christ left them…

<>< Craig

Life is to short to waste ponders on stuff that does not matter, so why not have a GodPonder.

Something to Ponder: How has God shown His unquestionable love to you in your life? Take a moment and share your thoughts with us in the comment section.  We would be blessed to hear from you.