Monday, May 22, 2006
Three Days until Ascension Thursday
Ascension. One final proof of Christ's divine nature. But I always thought: What did the Apostles think at that moment and in the days that followed until Pentecost?
Christ has gone. He has left.
There is some scripture that supports the thought that they had fear:
And when he had said this, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.
I'm sure that the Apostles stood there a long time looking up at the sky. Long enough that God sent some angels to tell them to stop. In a way, that's a bit funny. We all have those what now moments. And here is the largest, "What now" moment in history.
Christ is not in the sky. He is now in the hearts of the world. He'll be back. Remember what He said:
Then he said to them, "These are my words which I spoke to you, while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and the psalms must be fulfilled."
Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures, and said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead,
and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high."
Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands he blessed them.
While he blessed them, he parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. And they returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.
Luke 24: 44-53
And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age."
Matthew 28: 18-20
Go home, pray. Wait. Get ready, because you are about to do your job. I am with you. I will always be with you. And soon the spirit will come.
To me, I'd be scared. Like that moment when a music teacher plays a song that you're learning and then turns to you.
You think: "What me! Me! I can't play it like that. I can't do that. You've shown me, but...I can't."
So here are the Apostles. The teacher gone. Gone but not gone. But the spirit has not opened their understanding yet to what that means. "Go and and make disciples of all nations"
They think: "We're still hunted. They'll kill us. All nations...we can't make disciples of the next block."
But the spirit will come:
Fear of the Lord
These gifts will be in your hearts.
They are in ours. We do not have to wait for the Spirit, we just have to work with Him. So in all of our what now moments, just think on:
Fear of the Lord
I am with you always, to the close of the age
Find Him in each other. Bring Him to each other.
Love each other.
Posted by DavidNic at 5:37 PM