Jesus’ ascension initiated the age of the Holy Spirit. And while it surely must have broken their hearts to lose one they loved so dearly, the presence of the Spirit would ultimately be better for the disciples and for us. How can this be? When Jesus was on earth, His actions were constrained by His humanity. Neither His deity nor His essence were diminished, yet He worked in only one location at a time. When people needed Jesus, they had to meet Him face to face.
The Holy Spirit lives within each follower of Jesus Christ, and the Spirit goes with us wherever we go. He is always present in full power within each of us, all at the same time. The Holy Spirit is not subject to the limitations of human flesh to which Jesus voluntarily surrendered.
What’s more, Jesus’ ascension initiated the age in which we will one day experience His return. Notice the verbs Luke used in Acts 1:9-11 to describe Jesus’ ascension into heaven.
- He was taken up.
- A cloud took Him out of their sight.
- He was going.
In other words, Jesus’ ascension was visible and physical. This was neither a mirage nor a figment of their imagination. It was a tangible, visible event. In the same way Jesus was resurrected bodily, He ascended bodily.
It’s important to realize Jesus physically ascended—not just as a spirit—and He will also physically return. As the disciples watched Jesus ascend, two angels told them, “This Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come in the same way that you have seen Him going into heaven” (Acts 1:11).
No one else has ever ascended from this earth the way Jesus did, and no one is coming back the way He is coming back. He is like no other. He is the distinct and unique message of all creation.Jesus is the distinct and unique message of all creation. Click To Tweet
A day is coming when we will experience a real transformation. This incredible change will occur when Jesus Christ returns for His followers, and we are with Him forever. Jesus used the image of a wedding, on one occasion, to teach about His return (Matthew 25:1-13). At the return of Christ, His followers will take part in a great marriage feast (Revelation 19:6-10). This wedding imagery is so fitting because one day, Jesus will return for us, His bride. That is something we can anticipate with joy and excitement.
I’ve performed a number of weddings in my role as pastor, and one of the most treasured honors is getting to be the last person to see the bride before she walks down the aisle. Her face glows with delight as she’s ready to meet her groom
One day, the trumpet will sound, announcing that Jesus, our Bridegroom, is on His way. And we, His bride, can anticipate that moment with delight.One day, the trumpet will sound, announcing that Jesus, our Bridegroom, is on His way. Click To Tweet