Today, Thursday May 10th, is forty days after Jesus’ resurrection, Easter. On Ascension Thursday, Jesus ascended into heaven. Who was there to see this this happen? Where did this occur? Stepping back and looking on Wednesday the day before Jesus’ last day on earth, Jesus spent time with his 11 apostles instructing them for the last time. The next morning they headed out of Jerusalem, and a large crowd followed. They headed to the Mount of Olives. There Jesus blessed the crowd and the whole world. Afterwards he ascended into the clouds. I imagine the crowd would be mixed with all different emotions. Some might have been stunned, shocked, and saddened to see Jesus leave from their sight. Some must have been full of joy to see their Jesus do exactly what he said that he was going to do, join his father in heaven. And the apostles and Mary must have felt both sad and joyful. Sad because they knew Jesus would not be back and joyful because he fulfilled all that he said. They were filled with faith knowing the truth and were witnesses of all that just happened. Yet there must have been some people in the crowd that still would leave in disbelief.
Acts1:9 As he said this he was lifted up while they looked on, and a cloud took him from their sight.They were still staring into the sky as he went, when suddenly two men in white were standing beside them, and they said, ‘Why are you Galileans standing here looking into the sky? This Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven will come back in the same way as you have seen him go to heaven.’ So from the Mount of Olives, as it is called, they went back to Jerusalem, a short distance away, no more than a Sabbath walk; and when they reached the city they went to the upper room where they were staying; there were Peter and John, James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot, and Jude son of James. With one heart all these joined constantly in prayer, together with some women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.
Someday people will live to see the day Jesus comes back the second time. Will they believe when they see Jesus coming just like he left? I can only imagine….