He presented himself alive to them after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. And while staying with them He ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, He said, “you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”And when He had said these things, as they were looking on, He was lifted up, and a cloud took Him out of their sight. 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 1:9-11 Today, as you may, or may not know, is the day that is considered to be "Ascension Day," the anniversary of the day that Jesus ascended in to Heaven. What does that mean? Consider, for a moment, that Jesus, after he rose from the dead, stayed some 40 days and strengthened the believers. And then, along with some final instructions, He ascended in to Heaven. What's the significance? Why do some Christians celebrate it, and others do not? Whether some do it as a tradition, and some don't because they didn't know, or it has been overlooked, this is an important day! For a moment, if you will, let's consider why we SHOULD celebrate it.
Jesus the promises of God fulfilled, put on flesh and lived, not merely among us, but as one of us. He took on the form of a slave, not valuing His equality with God, but looking ahead in obedience of the Father's will, He endured the cross that we might be reconciled to God (Philippians 2) He died and was buried, and rose again, and stayed with the disciples 40 days. And then He gave a final call to the Mission of the Church and sat down at the Right Hand of the Father. If He went ahead, then let us not forget the Promise at the last supper: He's coming back! He told us to preach the Gospel, and He'd be back again! Why celebrate the Ascension of Christ? Because He fulfills every word and promise. They're all true. And if we've been Faithful, He's coming back to bring us to our new home some day. Let us celebrate...but let us do so in a way that wins souls to Christ Jesus! “Let not your hearts be troubled.Believe in God;[a]believe also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?[b]3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord,we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” Jesus said to him,“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also.[d]From now on you do know him and have seen him.” (John 14:1-7)