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Discovery Magazine 10/1/2004

The Greatest Ascension

by  Zach Smith

Jesus Christ rose from the dead on the third day after His death, just as He had predicted. Paul recorded that He appeared to the apostles and to more than five hundred disciples at once (1 Corinthians 15:5-7).He ate with the apostles, spoke with the apostles, and continued to teach the apostles for forty days after His resurrection. But all good thingsupon this Earth come to an end at some point, and eventually it was time for Jesus to return to His Father. He took the disciples up to the Mount of Olives, which was near the town of Bethany, and blessed them. Jesus then gave the apostles some final commands, ordering them not to leave Jerusalemuntil the Holy Spirit came upon them.

After giving His last words,Jesus’ mission upon the Earth was done. He had been born as a man, had lived a perfect life, was tempted and persecuted, gave His life for our sins, and was raised again on the third day. This was His task, and once it was complete, Jesus ascended into heaven. Acts 1:9-11 records that a cloud hid Jesus from the apostles and carried Him out of their sight. While they watched, two angels ap-peared to them and gave them this promise: “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus,who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11). This is a wonderful promise for us, because we know that Jesus is coming back again someday. Because of this, we must be sure that we are ready for His return, and live faithfully for Him all the days of our lives.

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