When Jesus left
After he had said this,
He was taken up as they were watching,
and a cloud received Him out of their sight.
While He was going,
they were gazing into heaven,
and suddenly two men in white clothes stood by them.
[Men of Galilee,] - Noun of direct address
why do you stand looking up into heaven?
This Jesus, will come in the same way
who has been taken from you into heaven
that you have seen Him going into Heaven.
1.” After He had said this” Jesus’ last command to the church was the Great Commission. The last command of a leader has great importance so then the Great Commission is very important. The Great Commission is the final marching order for the church.
a. Work of missionary thrust W/ Andrew Fuller, William Carey to India and founding of Baptist Missionary Society. Church at that time mired in hyper-Calvinism which taught God would reach the heathen without human help.
b. Rev 7:9-10 vast multitude from EVERY eqnouj [ethnos]
2. He was taken up as they were watching. Jesus ascended to Heaven as disciples watched. The disciples saw Christ ascend.
Christians commanded “Watch and pray” – watch lest fall into sin, watch for opportunities to witness, watch for acts of service -
Jesus ascended to Heaven, now He acts as High Priest. He ever lives to make intercession.
3. Two men in white clothes stood before them. Angels testified of Jesus ascension. Jesus went up, angels came down to testify.
God bears witness with His servants, Christ, and the work of angels
Illus on angels:
Mrs. Agnes Frazier was the oldest member of our church. She was a woman of deep piety and enthusiastic spirituality. At age ninety-five, her health failed, and I received a call. “Mrs. Agnes is asking for you,” said her nurse. When I entered her bedroom, she was almost too weak to look up at me. Her words were indistinct at times, but it soon became clear that she had wanted to see me because she was curious about “these men.”
“What men?” I asked.
“I keep seeing these two men,” she said.
“What do they look like?”
“Two men, dressed in white from head to foot are standing at the foot of my bed. I don’t know what to tell them. What should I say if they ask me something?”
“Tell them,” I said at length, “that you belong to Jesus.”
That seemed to satisfy her. “Yes,” she said, “I’ll tell them I belong to Jesus.” And shortly afterward, she fell asleep in Christ and those two angels, I believe, ushered her to heaven.
4. Why do you stand looking up into heaven? After we see Jesus, we must get to work. Working comes after looking.
Church went into action after Pentecost – the power of the Holy Spirit.
5. This Jesus will come in the same way. Jesus will come again. Jesus will return in the same way as He left.
a) Cloud – Shekinah glory w/ Tabernacle, Temple, and with Jesus baptism. God’s presence has some physical elements.
b) Jesus return again on Mt Olives Zech 14.