ACTS OF THE APOSTLES
Sand Lake, Michigan
Acts chapter 1 – Jesus’ Return to Heaven
“This same Jesus which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into heaven” – V. 11.
Jesus is the Son of God, who came from heaven to earth, to die for us, so that we can some day go to heaven where He is. Jesus was resurrected after being dead for three days. He proved that He really was alive by appearing to many different ones – V. 3. Remember how glad Mary Magdalene, the other women, and the disciples were to see Him alive? Then one day, after He had been on earth again for 40 days, Jesus told the disciples that He would be going back to heaven and He gave the disciples some last-minute instructions -Vs. 4-5 & 8. They were to return to Jerusalem and wait for the Promise of the Father, the coming of the Holy Spirit (Holy Ghost), about Whom He had told them before He went to the cross.
The disciples didn’t exactly understand that Jesus would not be on earth right then, to set up His kingdom. Jesus told them that it was not for them to know just when He would do that. He didn’t say He never would. Remember He had talked a lot about the kingdom that would come some day. God had a different plan in mind for the time between Jesus’ return to heaven and when the kingdom would be set up. It will take place when Jesus comes to earth again at the end of this age, which we call the “Grace Age.”
Luke 24:50 says Jesus led the disciples out as far as to Bethany, which is about two miles from Jerusalem. Acts 1:12 says this was the mount called Olivet, or Mount of Olives. When Jesus had told them about waiting in Jerusalem for the coming of the Holy Spirit, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight – V. 9. It was God’s will that they would see Him go. He didn’t want them to wonder what had taken place when they couldn’t see Him anymore. But Vs. 10-11 shows that while they looked up into heaven, they saw two men standing there. We are sure these were angels. They gave them to glorious message that Jesus would return the same way He went away. How did He go? He went with clouds. He will return with clouds – Rev. 1:7. Some watched Him go, and there will be those who will be looking for Him to return – Heb. 9:28. This will be spiritually, with the eye of faith.
Do you really want the Lord Jesus to return? First we must be saved, receive Jesus into our hearts. Believing Jesus died for us on the cross to save us from our sins. None of us are good enough to go to heaven. We must believe what God’s Word says – Rom. 10:9. Have you done this?
The disciples did as Jesus commanded. They returned to Jerusalem and waited for this wonderful Promise, the gift of the Holy ghost – Vs. 13-14. There were 120 people waiting there in that upper room for the coming of the Holy Ghost. The disciples were all there, all but Judas Iscariot, of course, for by that time, he was already dead. The women who loved Jesus were there, and we also find that Mary, the mother of Jesus there. They were obedient, and we will find out that it paid for them to do as Jesus said.
While they waited, they chose a man to take the place of Judas who sold Jesus to the Jewish authorities for 30 pieces of silver. They apparently spent the rest of the time praising and blessing God – V. 14; Luke 24:52-53. Next we will learn what took place after they waited for ten days.
A Continued Study of Acts