Summary: This sermon takes the three promises of Jesus in Acts 1 and focuses on the fact that we can Rely on His Promise to REturn. We can be assured that Jesus will come back Personally, Visibly and Suddenly!
Jesus Promises: I will be Back
A. There are some passages in Scripture that as you read them and study them, you really wish you could have been there personally! I would have loved to been there to witness Jesus’ Baptism when God spoke in an audible voice saying this is my Son, whom I love and am well please with (Mt. 4); or the time that Peter went out to Jesus walking on the Water; or even the Last Supper – WOW. Think about it. What that would have been like – or the time when Doubting Thomas met the Resurrected Jesus personally and saw the places where He was pierced and nailed to the Cross.
B. Well, our passage of Acts 1 is another one that I would love to have been there personally to witness.
1. Setting vs. 1-5; Luke reminds Theophilus about his former book – The Gospel of Luke that was about:
the things Jesus began to do
the things Jesus taught.
Vs. 2 – Until the day Jesus was taken up to Heaven – His Ascension back to the Father as He prayed in John 17.
And He is gave these instructions through the HS.
Vs. 3 – After his suffering (Death on the Cross)
- He showed himself to these men (Apostles) and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. His Rez.
Vs. 4 – On one occasion he told them to wait in Jerusalem for the gift promised by the Father.
Vs. 5 – As John baptized with water – in a few days you will be baptized with the HS.
2. Now, vs. 6-7
- Vs. 6, they ask Jesus, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the Kingdom to Israel?” They still didn’t completely understand, even after all that Jesus did, taught, and after His death and Rez. They thought Jesus came to be a political savior.
- Vs. 7, Jesus responds, “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by His own authority.” I.E. The Kingdom will be established but it is not through Israel and you do not when it is going to happen.
3. Jesus’ final time with the Disciples, vs. 8-11
- Vs. 8; Jesus teaches them further about the Holy Spirit going to be sent to them and that they would be empowered to be Witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria and to the ends of the earth.
- Vs. 9-11; Jesus ascends into heaven.
• After He – Jesus said this
• He was taken up before their very eyes.
• A cloud hid him from their sight
• Vs. 10; They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going
• When suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them (Angels).
• Vs. 11 – the Angels said: “Men of Galilee – 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.
C. Can you imagine what that must have been like? You are there with Jesus – He is teaching you after His Rez. about the coming of the HS and repeating His call to them be Witnesses (sharing who He is and what He has done for all people) to those in Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria and to the entire world.
You are there – it is a beautiful day – you are with the Rez. Lord, Jesus – He is teaching you and then Suddenly…
Jesus begins to Ascend back into Heaven.
You are looking Intently as Jesus is going up.
Two Angels ask you why you are looking up at him.
Why? Because they say, don’t you know that this same Jesus will come back in the same way?
D. WOW – what a Day – what an experience. I bet those disciples never forgot those days. I bet they would tell their kids and grandkids, everyone about that day!
But another important part of that Day that these Disciples held on to and that changed their lives involved the PROMISES that Jesus made to them and us on that day!
WE know the importance of Promises and the disappointments from when Promises are not kept. I am sure the Disciples then as well as all of us today can bank on Jesus’ promises here. I mean, the Disciples knew that Jesus kept His promise that He would be handed over and crucified. He kept His promise that He would rise from the Dead and He did! So, now they can be assured that when Jesus makes a Promise – He will keep it! And so can we!