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Chaplain Mark Schmidt

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Ascension
« on: April 12, 2020, 11:52:10 pm »
The Importance of Jesus’ Ascension

In the Christian Church, seasons of the year are divided into liturgical seasons based on the life and ministry of Jesus. Each liturgical season is grounded in the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ life. There is so much emphasis on the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus and far less attention on his ascension or his return to the Father in heaven. Why? The question must be asked, “Why did the ascension have such a minor role in the season of the Christian calendar?”

The seasons of the Christian calendar are: Advent, starting four weeks before Christmas, tells of the coming or advent of Jesus Christ. Advent is a Latin word meaning toward and coming. So Advent refers to the days approaching the coming of Jesus Christ to earth. Christmas or Christmas Tide tells of Jesus Christ’s birth. This is a time of the twelve days of Christmas. Epiphany starts with the manifestation to the Gentiles, when the wise men from the Orient came to see the baby Jesus and proceeds through key moments in Jesus’ life.

Lent is noted for forty days in Jesus’ life. Lent may bring to mind the Hebrews’ forty years of wilderness wandering and Jesus’ forty days of testing in the wilderness. This is a time of repentance, fasting, and preparation for baptism or renewal of your baptism. Holy Week is the time when Jesus entered into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday with the crowd honoring Him, but later the crowd would call for Jesus’ death. Easter tells of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead and his appearance to certain disciples.

Ascension is the passing of Jesus Christ from earth to heaven. The ascension clearly marked the end of Jesus’ earthly ministry. What began in a manger in Bethlehem ended with His return to Heaven! Pentecost begins with the day of Pentecost, concerning the gift of the Holy Spirit and is basically a teaching season. It is interesting that the Malta’s Five Flags stand for the birth, life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ. The ascension flag represents Jesus Christ leaving his followers to themselves, as he ascends into Heaven. Jesus Christ has given them and us the ability to be accountable in our journey in life.

The eight points of the Maltese cross equate to the eight beatitudes in the Bible. Two themes attend the Ascension of Jesus Christ. One is the enthronement of Christ and his power. The other is his command to spread the gospel throughout the world. The Ascension was a vital link in a chain of fulfilled prophecy, promised both in the Old and New Testaments, as revealed in Psalms 110:1 and Acts 2:32- 36.

Jesus Christ also indicated his ascension in Matthew 26:64, John 6:62, John 7:33, and John 14:28. Jesus’ ascension was forty days after the resurrection according to Acts 1:3 and at the Mount of Olives, as indicated by Luke 24:50, compared with Mark 11:1 and Acts 1:12. After Jesus’ resurrection, he realized that he would have to leave his disciples, so they could be on their own. In Acts 1:3-14, Jesus said, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you and you will be my witnesses . . . to end of the earth.” So Jesus, during his resurrection time, is offering his followers the “3Ps.” The three things they would be offered were: a promise, a purpose, and a preparation.

Jesus promises his followers the power of the Holy Spirit, as revealed in Acts. 1:8. We can expect to receive power when the promised Holy Spirit arrives. The presence of the Holy Spirit will bring us comfort as indicated in Acts 9:31 to the believers. Too many people today do not want to give up their old ways of sin and turn their lives over to the Lord. The social life and style today is not compatible with the Bible. The power of the Holy Spirit is for the purpose of witnessing to others and sharing God’s love and gift of salvation. Jesus offered us the time and means of preparation. “All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer.” (v .4)

We should be ready for his sudden return, as illustrated in 1 Thessalonians 5:2, not by standing around looking into the “sky.” Why was the ascension of Jesus important? We may answer this question in the following three points. 1. His ascension marked the success of his earthly mission. Jesus completed all that the Father had designed for him to accomplish. His “Holy Birth,” miracles, teaching, death, resurrection, and appearances had proven His divine nature and had fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies of the Messiah’s first advent. 2. His ascension marked the time when Jesus once again enjoyed His heavenly glory.

During His time on earth, with the exception of the transfiguration on the mountain in Mathew 17:1-9, Jesus limited any expression of the heavenly glory that He enjoyed prior to his earthly birth. 3. His ascension marked the beginning of the time when Jesus was preparing a place for his followers, as John 14:2-3 reveals to us “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?” His ascension established the path for Christ’s second coming as the angels in Acts 1 told his disciples. Jesus will return just as he left, as illustrated in Daniel 7:13-14.

Jesus is in heaven with his Father, waiting for us. His ascension marks the beginning of the time for us to communicate the message of Jesus’ love and salvation for all. We need to work to be God’s eyes, mouth, ears, and hands in witnessing of his gift of salvation. How are you preparing yourselves to accept the “Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20?
« Last Edit: April 13, 2020, 03:34:58 am by patrick jane »
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patrick jane

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Re: Ascension
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2020, 03:35:54 am »
The Importance of Jesus’ Ascension

In the Christian Church, seasons of the year are divided into liturgical seasons based on the life and ministry of Jesus. Each liturgical season is grounded in the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ life. There is so much emphasis on the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus and far less attention on his ascension or his return to the Father in heaven. Why? The question must be asked, “Why did the ascension have such a minor role in the season of the Christian calendar?”

The seasons of the Christian calendar are: Advent, starting four weeks before Christmas, tells of the coming or advent of Jesus Christ. Advent is a Latin word meaning toward and coming. So Advent refers to the days approaching the coming of Jesus Christ to earth. Christmas or Christmas Tide tells of Jesus Christ’s birth. This is a time of the twelve days of Christmas. Epiphany starts with the manifestation to the Gentiles, when the wise men from the Orient came to see the baby Jesus and proceeds through key moments in Jesus’ life.

Lent is noted for forty days in Jesus’ life. Lent may bring to mind the Hebrews’ forty years of wilderness wandering and Jesus’ forty days of testing in the wilderness. This is a time of repentance, fasting, and preparation for baptism or renewal of your baptism. Holy Week is the time when Jesus entered into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday with the crowd honoring Him, but later the crowd would call for Jesus’ death. Easter tells of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead and his appearance to certain disciples.

Ascension is the passing of Jesus Christ from earth to heaven. The ascension clearly marked the end of Jesus’ earthly ministry. What began in a manger in Bethlehem ended with His return to Heaven! Pentecost begins with the day of Pentecost, concerning the gift of the Holy Spirit and is basically a teaching season. It is interesting that the Malta’s Five Flags stand for the birth, life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ. The ascension flag represents Jesus Christ leaving his followers to themselves, as he ascends into Heaven. Jesus Christ has given them and us the ability to be accountable in our journey in life.

The eight points of the Maltese cross equate to the eight beatitudes in the Bible. Two themes attend the Ascension of Jesus Christ. One is the enthronement of Christ and his power. The other is his command to spread the gospel throughout the world. The Ascension was a vital link in a chain of fulfilled prophecy, promised both in the Old and New Testaments, as revealed in Psalms 110:1 and Acts 2:32- 36.

Jesus Christ also indicated his ascension in Matthew 26:64, John 6:62, John 7:33, and John 14:28. Jesus’ ascension was forty days after the resurrection according to Acts 1:3 and at the Mount of Olives, as indicated by Luke 24:50, compared with Mark 11:1 and Acts 1:12. After Jesus’ resurrection, he realized that he would have to leave his disciples, so they could be on their own. In Acts 1:3-14, Jesus said, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you and you will be my witnesses . . . to end of the earth.” So Jesus, during his resurrection time, is offering his followers the “3Ps.” The three things they would be offered were: a promise, a purpose, and a preparation.

Jesus promises his followers the power of the Holy Spirit, as revealed in Acts. 1:8. We can expect to receive power when the promised Holy Spirit arrives. The presence of the Holy Spirit will bring us comfort as indicated in Acts 9:31 to the believers. Too many people today do not want to give up their old ways of sin and turn their lives over to the Lord. The social life and style today is not compatible with the Bible. The power of the Holy Spirit is for the purpose of witnessing to others and sharing God’s love and gift of salvation. Jesus offered us the time and means of preparation. “All these were constantly devoting themselves to prayer.” (v .4)

We should be ready for his sudden return, as illustrated in 1 Thessalonians 5:2, not by standing around looking into the “sky.” Why was the ascension of Jesus important? We may answer this question in the following three points. 1. His ascension marked the success of his earthly mission. Jesus completed all that the Father had designed for him to accomplish. His “Holy Birth,” miracles, teaching, death, resurrection, and appearances had proven His divine nature and had fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies of the Messiah’s first advent. 2. His ascension marked the time when Jesus once again enjoyed His heavenly glory.

During His time on earth, with the exception of the transfiguration on the mountain in Mathew 17:1-9, Jesus limited any expression of the heavenly glory that He enjoyed prior to his earthly birth. 3. His ascension marked the beginning of the time when Jesus was preparing a place for his followers, as John 14:2-3 reveals to us “In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?” His ascension established the path for Christ’s second coming as the angels in Acts 1 told his disciples. Jesus will return just as he left, as illustrated in Daniel 7:13-14.

Jesus is in heaven with his Father, waiting for us. His ascension marks the beginning of the time for us to communicate the message of Jesus’ love and salvation for all. We need to work to be God’s eyes, mouth, ears, and hands in witnessing of his gift of salvation. How are you preparing yourselves to accept the “Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20?

Excellent post, Mark and very informative. I learned from this.
Hearing, believing and trusting the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross; His death, burial and resurrection for the forgiveness of sins and REPENTING, seals us with that Holy Spirit of Promise - EPHESIANS 1:10-14 KJV - The Lord is not slack concerning His promise. 2 Peter 3:9 KJV - 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 KJV - Ephesians 1:10-14 KJV - Romans 10:9-10 KJV - Romans 10:13 - Romans 10:17 - Ephesians 1:7 KJV - Colossians 1:14 KJV -


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Jesus Truth

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Re: Ascension
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2020, 04:04:54 am »
Thank you Chaplain
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patrick jane

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Re: Ascension
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2020, 09:55:14 am »

https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2020/may-web-only/whats-up-with-ascension.html






What’s Up with the Ascension?












Seated at the right hand of God, what’s Jesus doing up there?


Fellow church members occasionally ask: “If all our sin was dealt with when Jesus died on the cross, why must we still confess it?”

The answer is partly found in an oft overlooked aspect of Christian belief—Jesus’ ascension. According to the New Testament, God raised Jesus from the dead, and then, 40 days later, took him up into heaven (Acts 1:9–11). Romans, Hebrews, and 1 John all describe the ascended Jesus actively working for his people in God’s heavenly presence. Romans 8:34 and Hebrews 7:25 identify Jesus’ present activity as intercession. In 1 John 2:1–2, Jesus serves as an advocate before the Father.

But why do God’s people need an advocate? Is the Crucifixion not enough for our salvation? I would answer no. The single event of the Cross is not sufficient—only the person of Jesus is sufficient. If all we had were the Cross, then we’d have no salvation. As important as Jesus’ death is, Christ’s saving work involves more. We need Jesus’ ongoing ministry of intercession for our salvation. Hebrews identifies Jesus’ ongoing intercession as key for Jesus “to save completely those who come to God through him” (Heb. 7:25). To reduce Jesus’ saving work merely to his dying ignores this important aspect of Jesus’ present ministry for his people.

Salvation isn’t accomplished just because Jesus died but because he was also raised and ascended into heaven. There, continuously interceding for us, Jesus maintains the New Covenant better (permanently better) than the Old Testament sacrifices and priests maintained the old. Hebrews and 1 John describe Christ’s heavenly ministry using concepts drawn from Old Testament sacrifices and priestly ministry. Hebrews looks to the annual Day of Atonement (Lev. 16) to explain how the ascended Jesus ensures his people’s salvation. The earthly high priests entered God’s presence in the Holy of Holies once every year to offer the sacrifice of atonement by sprinkling blood.

But Jesus did something better. He ascended to God’s presence in the heavenly Holy of Holies once for all time. There, as an ever-living sacrifice, he offered himself before the Father the way the earthly high priests offered the sacrificial blood (Heb. 9:6–7, 24–26). Hebrews says that Jesus took his seat at God’s right hand after he made purification for sins (Heb. 1:3). Jesus presently rules on the heavenly throne as God’s exalted Son. Hebrews also affirms that Jesus now serves as the Great High Priest who continues to work for the salvation of his siblings. He is seated, but he is not silent. Even now, the ascended Christ ministers as the Great High Priest in the heavenly Holy of Holies (Heb. 8:1–2), perpetually interceding for his people (Heb. 7:25). This is part of how he saves us completely.

Similarly, 1 John reflects on Jesus’ work in the light of Jewish sacrifices: Jesus himself is the “atoning sacrifice” now located in the Father’s presence (1 John 2:1-2). As in Hebrews, Jesus is not silent in God’s presence. He actively advocates for his people when they sin. This advocacy supplies the rationale for John’s admonition to believers to continually confess their sins (1 John 1:9). The reality of ongoing sin requires ongoing confession and forgiveness of sin. Jesus’ ascension makes this possible because Jesus, who is the atoning sacrifice, presently pleads with his Father for his people. Unlike Hebrews, 1 John does not identify Jesus as high priest, but Jesus’ ongoing advocacy clearly implies his priestly ministry.

In Romans 8:34, Paul also highlights the importance of Jesus’ ongoing intercession at God’s right hand as a central means for preserving relationship between God and God’s people. No one can condemn those who are in Christ. This truth depends not only on Jesus’ death, but, as Paul says, even more on his resurrection and present intercession at God’s right hand. Paul can therefore confidently declare that nothing “will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:39). Jesus’ love extends beyond the Cross—his death, resurrection, and ongoing intercession at God’s right hand are essential for his people’s salvation. Take out any one of those elements and, like the Jenga tower that falls to pieces when a key block is removed, Paul’s confident claims in Romans 8:35–39 collapse.

The preceding reflections do not do full justice to the significance of Jesus’ ascension. They only highlight some of the important implications of this event. They remind us that our ascended Lord is not sitting silently in his Father’s presence. He actively intercedes and advocates for us, ministering before the Father as our merciful and faithful high priest (Heb. 2:17). We need this ministry as we continue to wait for the Lord to return and make all things right (Heb. 9:28). Our salvation is completely contingent on Jesus—the one who died but even more rose, ascended, and presently intercedes for us.

All of this brings us back to our opening question. Why do we continue to confess our sins and seek forgiveness even after professing faith in his salvific death? We do this, boldly even, because Jesus ascended as our great advocate, our high priest (Heb. 4:14–16). He has returned to his Father and ours to intercede on our behalf. This present work is an essential part of the ongoing relationship that he, the Father, the Holy Spirit, and we as God’s people share. Jesus’ ascension, we might say, is part of how he maintains the New Covenant relationship he inaugurated at his death. Atonement in the Old Testament wasn’t accomplished simply by slaughtering animals; their bodies and blood had to be brought to the altars by priests with prayers offered. Similarly, Jesus’ ascension brought him, the crucified and resurrected one, into God’s heavenly presence to minister as his people’s high priest. He is the atoning sacrifice who died, rose, and now intercedes for his siblings. He ensures his people will receive the salvation God has promised them. We still sin and fall short, but we have an advocate in heaven. We can, therefore, confidently proclaim his death, until he comes (1 Cor. 11:26).




David M. Moffitt is Reader in New Testament Studies, University of St Andrews, Scotland
Hearing, believing and trusting the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross; His death, burial and resurrection for the forgiveness of sins and REPENTING, seals us with that Holy Spirit of Promise - EPHESIANS 1:10-14 KJV - The Lord is not slack concerning His promise. 2 Peter 3:9 KJV - 1 Corinthians 15:1-4 KJV - Ephesians 1:10-14 KJV - Romans 10:9-10 KJV - Romans 10:13 - Romans 10:17 - Ephesians 1:7 KJV - Colossians 1:14 KJV -


Copyright Disclaimer: All audio and music belongs to the owner/creator. This is a non-profit. Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for "fair use" for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing.

 

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