Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, who also said, “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.” Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day’s journey.
Jesus after His resurrection was witnessed for forty days as He interacted with His disciples and hundreds of people. After which He ascended into heaven in front of a multitude who watched His ascension. There He took His rightful place seated at the right hand of God the Father. Jesus is there today making intercession for us. His position at the right hand of God the Father is representative of His power and authority as the Second Person of the Trinity. Moreover, the fact that He is seated speaks of His completed work on the Cross of Calvary. We read that a cloud appeared when Jesus ascended into heaven; however, this wasn’t an ordinary cloud as we think of them. Rather, it was a display of God’s glory, which was reminiscent of the “cloud of glory” that accompanied Him on the Mount of Transfiguration. After His ascension we are left with the most wonderful of promises! Which is, “Jesus will return in the same manner as He left.” That is in glory and power, returning to the Mount of Olives as Lord of lords and King of kings.
Jesus ascension into heaven marked the end of His earthly ministry and with that Jesus promised to send the Helper. That helper is the person of the Holy Spirit and His arrival is known as the Day of Pentecost (see Acts chapter two). Jesus ascension also marked the beginning of His heavenly ministry, where He is today making intercession for us before God the Father. In addition, His ascension also meant that the task of spreading the Gospel was now placed in the hands of His disciples and the growing church. And we do not carry out that responsibility on our own, nor by or own willpower. No, not at all. All followers of Christ are indwelt by the Holy Spirit and it’s His guidance and direction the church is to follow. Jesus is the head of the church, the Holy Spirit is the power behind believers and we as followers of Christ are to submit to the Holy Spirit’s guidance on a day to day basis. And by doing so, we receive the blessing of being the salt and light to a dark world at enmity with God. We through the power of God are to represent and spread the Gospel of Christ our Lord to a world in the grip of darkness. The Holy Spirit works in the heart of those who are lost and our job is to follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit, as He leads us to those who need to hear the Gospel of Christ.