Breaking Open the Scriptures
Scriptures June 5th : Acts 1:1-11; Psalm 47; Ephesians 1:15-23; Luke 24:44-53; Theme: Christ Ascending to heaven; song: My Hope is Built UMH 368
Acts: Acts is a series of sermons. Very powerful sermons, which convinced the masses of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is also a testament to the power and majesty of the gospel. So it is fitting that we get our fullest account of the ascension in the book of Acts. Luke is telling the story of how this event affected the disciples. They still did not understand all that was happening, but were willing to pay attention and to witness. It was the angels who explained that they also needed to act – to tell others, to continue the work of Christ, to bring salvation to the world. They were asked why they were sitting and waiting for Jesus to come back down and finish- they realized that Jesus was waiting for them and to stop looking up and to get to work.
Luke: This is an account of the ascension, by the same author for a different reason. This story is Luke’s bridge for the two books. Jesus is giving his final advice to the disciples. What a gift to have a conversation with someone, after they have passed away. You don’t have to assume you know what they said, you can ask all of the right questions. You don’t have to go into the grieving process. Jesus wants to understand that the inevitable must happen, he must leave. But they will never be alone. The will still be able to get the answers to those questions, it will all make sense. The Holy Spirit will help them through. They have a reason not to grieve, but to be happy and celebrate. He was who he said he was, he did what he said he would do.
Questions: What does salvation mean to us? What are we expecting Christ to do in our lifetime? When you pray where to you look for Christ? Up above, or somewhere in your life? What does the fact that Christ ascended to heaven mean for us? What does it mean that he is coming back? What are we doing in the meantime?