After he (Jesus) said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight. They were looking intently up into the sky as he was going, when suddenly two men dressed in white stood beside them. “Men of Galilee,” they said, “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.” (Acts 1:9-11)
In this passage we read of Jesus’ ascension back to heaven after his glorious resurrection from death. Although it might seem somewhat incidental, it is an important part of what happened. The Life Application New Testament Commentary says this: “The disciples needed to see Jesus make this transition. The Ascension confirmed for them that Jesus truly was God. In addition, they witnessed the fact that he had physically left earth and had returned to his heavenly home.”
When Jesus rose from the dead, He had a resurrected body. People touched Him, ate with Him, walked with Him and interacted in very normal ways. But, His resurrected body was also wonderfully different. He appeared in a room without walking thru the door. He traveled unbounded by time and space. His body defied the law of gravity and in His resurrected body, He entered heaven. Wow!
One day His followers will also be changed. We too will have resurrected bodies like Jesus. “Just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven” (1 Corinthians 15:49).
Often we are wrapped up in the cares and worries of this world and we forget that one day the glory and spender of heaven will be ours to enjoy… forever! This glimpse of Jesus’ ascension to heaven is a taste of the wonder yet to come for all who trust Him. Are you a part of that community of hope?
Question: Does the anticipation of heaven enlighten my daily life?
Challenge: Never forget that our eternal home is in heaven with the risen Jesus.
Prayer: Jesus, thanks for letting us see the incredible wonder of Your ascension. Fill us with that hope and coming joy.
Dude Garrett, Chapel Leader -- Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks