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Sunday, May 12, 2024

The Comfort in Christ's Ascension

“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” Acts 1:10-11

After Jesus taught for 40 days after His resurrection, Christ ascended bodily to the right hand of God. A significant moment this was as our Lord who, in His ascension, would fully exercise His divine power over all things. Therefore the comfort of Christ’s ascension abounds!

From Luther’s Small Catechism

“What comfort do we get from Christ’s ascension to the right hand of God?” 

A. Christ as our Prophet sends people to proclaim the saving Gospel by the power of the Holy Spirit [see Acts 1:8]

B. Christ as our Priest pleads and prays for us before the Father; [see Romans 8:34] 

C. Christ as our King rules and protects His church and governs over all the world especially for the benefit of His church [see Psalm 110:1]

Indeed, because of His ascension our Lord fully exercises His power. And thus when our Lord said, in Matthew 28 “…and behold I am with you always, to the end of the age”, He is. Or as it reads in Ephesians 4:10, “He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things” and He does. Therefore until the Last Day when our Lord returns, we take comfort by the fact that, in His Ascension, He reigns, rules and is closer to us than ever before. A comforting reality this is yet we also know the trials and struggles that are before us. And in this great strife, we begin to wonder and doubt whether God is really there. Yet friends, in light of His Ascension, though the world, the flesh, and the devil will say otherwise, our Lord Christ intercedes and leads you through His Word and Sacrament.

Therefore, at the Altar, we receive the true body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins. Yes, it may seem like ordinary elements of bread and wine, yet by the power of God’s Word, He delivers you the salve for your soul through the eating and drinking of His body and blood. Indeed a gracious mystery this is, yet where our Lord promises to be, there He is for you.

So take comfort in our Lord’s ascension for He not only departs to prepare a place for you but, He shall return on the last day. And when the trumpets sound, and the tombs shake “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away” [Rev21:4].

Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed!

Pastor Jeong

✝️ Pastor Jeong

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