Summary: This sermon challenges individuals to not be satisfied with their current spiritual status, but to go beyond Bethany to their own personal Pentecost.
“From The Blessing Of Bethany, to The Promise Of Pentecost"
44 And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.
45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,
46 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
48 And ye are witnesses of these things.
49 And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.
50 And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.
51 And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.
52 And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy:
53 And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.
At the time of our text, the disciples had been on quite an emotional roller coaster ride.
They had within the past few weeks witnessed their leader Jesus Christ open the blind eyes, and perform other miracles.
They were then with Him when He went to the garden of Gethsemane to pray with a fervency and heaviness.
They were there when the soldiers came to take Him away.
They were watching in the distance as the angry crowd cried “crucify Him.”
They were near as He was beaten, and eventually placed upon a cross to die.
No doubt they were dealing with mixed emotions and even somewhat confused by all the events that were taking place at such a hectic pace.
Jesus had died, and was resurrected and now he revealed Himself to the disciples.
Let’s look at the emotional contrasts of the scripture.
Luke 24:38-41 NIV
38 He said to them, "Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds?
39 Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have."
40 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and feet.
41 And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, "Do you have anything here to eat?"
Notice the disciples went from being troubled and doubtful to having joy and amazement!
Luke 24:44-49 NIV
44 He said to them, "This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms."
45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.
46 He told them, "This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day,
47 and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
48 You are witnesses of these things.
49 I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high."
Jesus opened their understanding to the scriptures concerning His purpose for coming.
He had performed many miracles, and healed many sicknesses and diseases.
But that was not His purpose for coming.
He said this about His true purpose for coming…
"This is what is written: The Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance and forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.”
His mission was to “seek and save” lost mankind.
This is what the disciples saw him do during His 3 ½ years of ministry…
But His purpose was the fulfilling the promise…and the promise was Pentecost!
“And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.”
“And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.”
What an awesome experience!
Jesus blessed the disciples.
eulogeo (yoo-log-eh’-o); from Greek eulogia praise to speak well of, i.e. (religiously) to bless (to thank or invoke a benediction upon, prosper):
This blessing was important because it was here that Jesus imparted unto His disciples the instruction to go beyond the current blessing at Bethany, to the PROMISE that awaited them at Jerusalem!