Ascended and Exalted
Ascended Lord, this is Your world. I am reminded today that You ascended as King over this world. I worship You.
Read LUKE 24:50-53
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father” (John 16:26).
My wife works for an airline and I frequently travel, so I am regularly around airports. For me, it is a common occurrence to see farewells: tears, hugging, last lingering looks, sadness. Being parted from someone you love can be tough. Yet when Jesus departed from his disciples, they were joyful (52-53). Such a surprising reaction may have occurred because they were beginning to comprehend how things were falling into place.
Ascension Day highlights Jesus’ bodily departure to heaven. The Risen Lord had “presented Himself alive” to many eyewitnesses “during forty days” (Acts 1:3). At the end of that period he appeared for the last time. In Jerusalem, on the Mount of Olives, he lifted up His hands, blessed them (50-53) and was taken from them. This clearly ended his earthly ministry. The post-resurrection appearances had been intermittent but this departure was decisive. Now they were to wait and prepare for the coming of the promised Holy Spirit. (John 16:5-16). The Spirit would indwell and empower them for witness.
The Ascension exalted Christ to the right hand of the Father where he now reigns as Lord of the Cosmos. As R.C. Sproul says, “…Jesus ascended not so much to a place as to an office…the cosmic King of the universe…the ascension catapulted Jesus to the right hand of God where he was enthroned as King of kings and Lord of lords” (see Eph. 1:20-25). He’s now our great High Priest interceding on our behalf (Heb. 7:24, 8:2).
As we co-operate with the same Holy Spirit who indwells us, he guides, transforms, and equips as we endeavor to be God’s servants in the world. And we are encouraged by the hope that the same Jesus who ascended to heaven will one day return “in the same way” (Acts 1:11).
What does it mean to you that Jesus intercedes for you? That the Holy Spirit now indwells you?
Mighty Father, You exalted Your Son to Your right hand in heaven. Thank You that I am not left alone and that You will never leave me or forsake me.
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