Summary: The question is, “Are you a missionary or a mission field?” Acts 1:9NLT After saying this, he was taken up into a cloud while they were watching, and they could no longer see him. Gravity lose its hold on Jesus.
Until Then- Wake Up! Acts 1:9-11, 2:1-8NKJ
J. B. Phillips writes in the preface to The Young Church in Action, that one cannot spend several months in close study of this book, “without being profoundly stirred and, to be honest, disturbed. The reader is stirred,” he says, “because he is seeing Christianity, the real thing, in action for the first time in human history…Here we are seeing the Church in its first youth, valiant and unspoiled…a body of ordinary men and women joined in an unconquerable fellowship never before seen on earth.” But the reader is also disturbed, “for surely,” he adds, this “is the Church as it was meant to be. It is vigorous and flexible, for these are the days before it ever became fat and short of breath through prosperity, or muscle-bound by over organization. These men did not make acts of faith, they believed; they did not say their prayers, they prayed. They did not hold conferences on psychosomatic medicine, they simply healed the sick. By modern standards they may have been naïve, but perhaps because of their very simplicity, perhaps because of their readiness simply to believe, to obey, to give, to suffer, and, if necessary, to die, the Spirit of God found that he could work in them and through them, and so they turned the world upside down! (1)
Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, 11 who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”
(Judas’ demise, and the choosing of another disciple)
1. When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
5 And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven. 6 And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language. 7 Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? 8 And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born?
A young salesman was disappointed about losing a big sale. As he talked with his sales manager he lamented, "I guess it just proves you can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink." The manager replied, "Son, take my advice: your job is not to make him drink. Your job is to make him thirsty."
So it is with evangelism. Our lives should be so filled with Christ that the lost create a thirst for the Gospel.
About Acts 1: 9-11, Doctor Luke was a careful historian who verified his evidence. He and the other gospel writers recorded the bodily appearances of the risen Lord to men for 40 days between His resurrection and His ascension. These are based on solid historical evidence. These bodily appearances of Jesus came to an end when Christ ascended into heaven and resumed His position.
Hebrews 8:1NLT Here is the main point: We have a High Priest who sat down in the place of honor beside the throne of the majestic God in heaven.
The Ascension is Christ's exaltation and glory after His saving work on earth had been accomplished. It is the proof of His victory!
Ephesians 4:8NLT That is why the Scriptures say,
“When he ascended to the heights, he led a crowd of captives and gave gifts to his people. He is now in the position of honor in heaven at the right hand of His Father.
Heaven is Jesus’ permanent place of power. (2)
Jesus has full saving power; He’s given a paid-in-full ticket for eternity to everyone who believes. He came to buy you back, to shed His blood in exchange for the devils hostages. He gives complete spiritual peace, He offers love and joy. He performs miracles, and sometimes He allows us to be a point of contact for a miracle! He offers life now and forever!